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The American Bar Association comes to Washington, D.C., on Thursday, and with it thousands of lawyers ready to debate and discuss. Some highlights. LIFE DURING WARTIME Sept. 11 and the war on terrorism captured the attention of the world. News outlets camped outside of federal courthouses. Pundits filled the airwaves with discussions of military tribunals and the rights of detainees. Now, it’s the American Bar Association’s turn to take on the subject. � One of the most well-attended programs at the annual meeting promises to be a plenary session, “Leadership in a Time of Crisis: The Aftermath of September 11th.” Moderated by NBC News’ Pete Williams, the event features Assistant Attorney General Michael Chertoff and Kenneth Feinberg, the special master of the Sept. 11th Fund, along with other panelists. The panel will discuss issues of security, personal liberties, criminal justice and insurance. Mayflower Hotel Sat., Aug. 10, 9 to 10:30 a.m. � The ABA’s Section on Litigation will hold three breakout sessions. Included in that group is “The Criminal Justice System Confronts Civil Liberties in a Time of Crisis.” The panel, which will address the government’s programs to combat terrorism, includes Assistant Attorney General Viet Dinh and Laura Murphy from the American Civil Liberties Union. Mayflower Hotel Sat., Aug. 10, 10:45 a.m. to noon � Bringing an international perspective to the convention, the ABA’s Section of Dispute Resolution is holding “Negotiating in the Face of Terrorism.” There, Dennis Ross, special Middle East coordinator under then-President Bill Clinton and current counselor for the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, will address the United States’ role in aiding negotiations in the Middle East. Marriott Wardman Park Hotel Fri., Aug. 9, 2:00 to 3:30 p.m. � Post-Sept. 11 prosecutions will also be up for debate in “Military Tribunals — Justice and the ‘War Against Terrorism’: An Argument Before the Court.” Mock arguments dealing with the president’s authority to convene military tribunals will be judged by former President Clinton’s then-chief of staff, John Podesta, and Walter Cox III, former chief judge for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces. The St. Regis Hotel Fri., Aug. 9, 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. The events dealing with Sept. 11 and terrorism don’t end there. Indeed, nearly every group seems to have a relevant event — from the Young Lawyers Division to the Association of Jewish Lawyers, and from the Section on Business Law to the Section on Individual Rights and Responsibilities. � For instance, the Section on Science and Technology is sponsoring, “Spying on Terrorists (and You): Public Needs v. Private Rights.” George Washington University Professor Jonathan Turley will be one of the speakers addressing the lengths that governments need to go to combat terrorism. Marriott Wardman Park Hotel Sun., Aug. 11, 9:30 a.m. to noon CORPORATE CORRUPTION With such companies as Enron, WorldCom and Global Crossing tumbling and with lawyers and the government dealing with the messes left behind, corporate accountability and regulatory oversight will be at the forefront of the ABA meeting. � To start, Vinson & Elkins partner Mark Tuohey will moderate “Federal Enforcement 2002.” The roundtable event will be “an opportunity for the agency heads to discuss the current priorities for enforcement, both criminal and civil,” says Tuohey. The panelists will also be answering audience questions. Nearly a dozen federal officials will make up the group, including Timothy Muris, chairman of the Federal Trade Commission; Isaac Hunt Jr., a member of the Securities and Exchange Commission; Michael Chertoff, head of the Criminal Division of the Department of Justice; Mark Mathews, chief of the Internal Revenue Service’s Criminal Investigation Division; and Roscoe Howard Jr., U.S. Attorney in the District. Mayflower Hotel Fri., Aug. 9, 1:30 to 4 p.m. � A panel discussion, “Keeping the Government Out of the Boardroom,” will include tips for avoiding problems with regulatory agencies and a look at the increased scrutiny corporate financial statements will receive after the meltdown of Enron and the conviction of Arthur Andersen. Scheduled to join the group is William Jeffress Jr., a Baker Botts partner and counsel for Martin Grass, the former Rite Aid Corp. CEO. Grass was indicted earlier this year on conspiracy and accounting fraud charges. Hyatt Regency Hotel Fri., Aug. 9, 10 a.m. to noon � John Fedders, the former SEC enforcement chief, will make an appearance at “The Post-Enron Role of Audit Committees.” Program speakers will address how the role of the audit committee has changed in today’s corporate climate. Hyatt Regency Hotel Fri., Aug. 9, 1 to 3 p.m. HUMAN CLONING AND ‘DESIGNER BABIES’ Technological advances can cure once incurable illnesses, fix formerly fatal injuries, and otherwise improve our lives. But they bring a host of ethical dilemmas. � A handful of panelists will debate those very issues at a session called “Human Clones and the Law: From Embryos and Stem Cells to Duplicate and Designer Babies.” Speakers will address the latest developments in state and federal law, and discuss the legal implications for advances in technology. Panelists include Michael Harrison, a member of Britain’s Gene Therapy Advisory Committee; Antonio Regalado, a reporter at The Wall Street Journal; and Lori Andrews, Chicago-Kent College of Law professor and director of the Institute for Science, Law & Technology. Marriott Wardman Park Hotel Sat., Aug. 10, 9:30 a.m. to noon WHEN JUDGES RUN FOR OFFICE Judicial elections are a hot topic. The recent Supreme Court ruling lifting some speech restrictions on state judicial candidates has made the issue even more contentious. The House of Delegates will take up a twofold recommendation — calling for a study of campaign fund raising and its impact on the public’s view of the justice system, and calling for state and local bar associations to monitor conduct in judicial campaigns. “The recommendation comes from a growing feeling of concern in certain circles that the selection method for judges has become too political,” says Edward Madeira Jr., a partner at Philadelphia’s Pepper Hamilton and member of a committee proffering the recommendation. Further, judicial elections will be a major focus for incoming ABA President A.P. Carlton. During the annual meeting, he will be announcing the formation of the Commission on the 21st Century Judiciary, which will be conducting public hearings on the issue around the country. Finally, the Standing Committee on Judicial Elections is sponsoring a panel discussion on speech and judicial elections, “The Supreme Court Speaks — Can Judicial Candidates? Life After Republican Party of Minnesota v. White.” Panelists will include: James Bopp, a First Amendment and campaign finance lawyer with Indiana’s Bopp, Coleson & Bostrom; James Andrew Wynn Jr., a North Carolina appellate judge; and professors from two D.C. area law schools, Howard University’s Loretta Collins Argrett and University of Maryland’s Sherrilyn Ifill. Legal Times Supreme Court correspondent Tony Mauro is also on the panel. Marriott Wardman Park Hotel Fri., Aug. 9, 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. JUDICIAL ETHICS FLAP: LOWERING THE VOLUME A controversy over judicial ethics that had threatened to make sparks fly at this week’s ABA meeting has cooled off — or at least, that is what ABA officials hope. Top officials of the federal judiciary were warily predicting that the ABA’s Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility would use the convention as a platform to issue an advisory opinion discouraging state and federal judges from attending seminars sponsored by interest groups. It’s an especially touchy issue for federal judges, and Leonidas Ralph Mecham, director of the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts, slammed the ABA for studying it in secret. In a June memorandum to federal judges, Mecham warned that the ABA committee’s opinion would be released with “great public relations and media fanfare” at the convention. Not true and never was, says the committee’s chairman, Marvin Karp, partner in the Cleveland firm Ulmer & Berne. The committee will meet privately on Aug. 9 and 10 to discuss the issue, Karp says, but members are far from agreeing on an opinion that is ready to release. On Aug. 10, the committee will get input on the issue — again in private — from its nine-member Judicial Advisory Committee. The panel of advisers includes four federal judges: U.S. District Judges Andre Davis of Maryland, J. Thomas Greene Jr. of Utah, and Irene Keeley of West Virginia, as well as Judge M. Margaret McKeown of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. “We want to hear from judges on this, and the advisory committee is the mechanism we have to do that,” says Karp. Karp says “the temperature has been reduced considerably” since Mecham’s memo alarmed judges into thinking committee action was imminent. “The more information that has gotten out beyond the Mecham missive, the more people understand about our process.” Mecham declined comment last week. After its meetings this week, Karp says the committee will likely discuss the ethics of sponsored judicial seminars further in a conference call in September. Karp appears determined that the committee will stick with the issue and eventually promulgate an opinion, no matter how controversial. Asked if the committee might decide to back off, Karp said, “It is certainly possible the committee will decide the issue is so amorphous that we can’t come up with anything helpful. It’s also possible there will be a snowstorm in Washington in August during our meetings.” SMALL IS BETTER The ABA meeting may be swarming with lawyers from some of the biggest firms in the nation, but that doesn’t mean the little guy will be forgotten. � The General Practice, Solo, and Small Firm Section is sponsoring “Solo and Small Firm Day.” The all-day event on Aug. 8 will include tips on using high-tech tools, a discussion on the ethical use of trust funds with the D.C. Office of Bar Counsel, information on case management software, and marketing and profitability ideas. The St. Regis Hotel Thurs., Aug. 8, 8:45 a.m. to 5 p.m. AWARDS PLATE As the ABA’s annual meeting comes to town for the first time since 1985, some of the District’s own will be honored. � Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg will receive the Arabella Babb Mansfield Award from the National Association of Women Lawyers. Named for the first woman admitted to a bar in any state, the award honors Ginsburg for her contributions to the legal profession. D.C.’s Dickstein Shapiro Morin & Oshinsky and Chicago’s Jenner & Block will also receive NAWL awards for the advancement of women in the law. Omni Shoreham Hotel Sat., Aug. 10, 12:30 p.m. � Eleanor Holmes Norton, D.C.’s delegate to the U.S. House of Representatives, will be honored by the ABA’s Commission on Women in the Profession. Marriott Wardman Park Hotel Sun., Aug. 11, 11:30 a.m. ($100) � Stephanie Harrison, a career attorney with the D.C. Public Defender Service, will receive one of two Livingston Hall Juvenile Justice Awards on Aug. 11. Ohio Northern University College of Law Professor Victor Streib will also receive the award, which will be presented by the ABA Criminal Section’s Juvenile Justice Center. Hilton Washington & Towers Sun., Aug. 11, 5:30 p.m.

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