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Jax Daily Record Monday, Jun. 11, 201805:20 AM EST

Young Lawyers Section Board of Governors: Candidate bios, platform statements

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Online voting has begun for three seats on the 2018-19 Jacksonville Bar Association Young Lawyers Section board of governors.

Online voting has begun for three seats on the 2018-19 Jacksonville Bar Association Young Lawyers Section board of governors. Members of the JBA in good standing may cast their ballot 24/7 until 11:59 p.m. June 20 at jaxbar.org. Paper ballots will be available from 5-7 p.m. June 21 before the YLS annual meeting. Election results will be announced at the meeting and the new board sworn in along with board president Jessica Mathis. Here are the candidates and their platform statements. To view each candidate’s full profile, visit jaxdailyrecord.com. 

Giselle M. Girones

Giselle M. Girones

Seat 4

Jacksonville Bar Association activities:

• Co-chair for Rendezvous on the Rooftop, 2018

• Assisting with YLS annual meeting slideshow and setup, 2018

• Noon in June setup and mentoring participant, 2018)

• Holiday Project Committee, 2016-present

• Law Week Committee, 2016-present

• Transactional Law/IP Committee, 2016-present

• Hispanic & Latino Interest Committee, 2016-present

• Pro Bono Committee, 2016-present 

Other Bar association activities:

• The Florida Bar Leadership Academy, fellow, Class V, 2017-18

• Business Law Section of the Florida Bar, fellow, 2018-20

• Jacksonville Women Lawyers Association, co-chair for special projects, 2017-18, and incoming public relations director, 2018-19; Judicial Reception Committee member, 2017-18 

• ABA Intellectual Property Law Section member, 2015-present

• ABA Landslide Magazine associate editor, 2017-present

• Federal Bar Association, IP Section entertainment law chair, 2017-present 

• The Florida Bar Journal News Editorial Board, 2017-20

• The Florida Bar Media and Communications Law Committee, 2018-19

• Florida Association of Women Lawyers, Awards & Journal Committee member, 2015-present and incoming Public Relations Committee member

Civic activities:

• Kappa Kappa Gamma, chapter advisor, Epsilon Mu Chapter, 2017-present • Junior League of Jacksonville, member

• Stetson Law Alumni Jacksonville Chapter, 2017-present

• Florida State University, Jacksonville Alumni Young Professionals Committee

• As JWLA Special Projects co-chair, I assisted with setting up the Nursing Room at the Duval County Courthouse

Platform statement:

 When I first moved to Jacksonville in 2016 as a newly-minted lawyer, I was thrilled to be a part of such a friendly and welcoming legal community. While I think the Bar association and the YLS provide excellent social and charitable programming, I do think there is room for improvement as far as increasing member involvement within the YLS. If selected, my main goals are to increase member participation, leadership opportunities and networking opportunities by providing a variety of programs and events that aim to be more inclusive of the young lawyers in our area. The YLS hosts a variety of amazing programming, but I think it is important to provide a variety of social, charitable and professional opportunities that will encourage participation among a wide array of young lawyers with varying interests. In achieving these goals, I will also seek to organize and facilitate events that cater to a large number of individuals and provide excellent networking opportunities by partnering with other professional organizations, local charities and non-legal entities in the area. My hope is that doing so will not only increase our visibility within the Jacksonville community but will also increase member participation and facilitate leadership opportunities within the Section.

Courtney P. Gaver

Courtney P. Gaver

Seat 4, incumbent

Jacksonville Bar Association activities:

• Young Lawyers Section board of governors, 2017-present

• Chair, Afternoon in the Courthouse, November 2017

• Co-chair, Noon in June 2018

• Ante Up for Year Up Charity Poker Tournament committee member, 2018

• Student participant, Noon in June 2015

Other Bar association activities:

• Chester Bedell American Inn of Court, associate member, 2016-17 

• St. Johns County Bar Association, member

Civic activities:

• St. Johns County Chamber of Commerce, member

• Emerging Leaders United Way of St. Johns County, Steering Committee and Special Events Committee, 2016-17

• Riot Student Ministry, crew leader and hospitality team, 2016-17

Platform statement:

My goal is to utilize the resource and the breadth of the Jacksonville Bar Association to increase membership and participation from young lawyers across the area with YLS. As an associate attorney working in both Duval and St. Johns counties (and living in the latter), it is important for attorneys across the First Coast to connect, as well as obtain a broader sense of community within Jacksonville, regardless of whether or not they live there. To that end, I would like to encourage and invite participation from young lawyers living and working in Clay, St. Johns and Nassau counties to get involved in all YLS has to offer. Additionally, I want to make it a priority to encourage law students to get involved in this wonderful organization, which can strengthen their bonds and legal relationships in our legal community early on.

Kayla A. Haines

Kayla A. Haines

Seat 2

Jacksonville Bar Association activities:

• YLS Noon in June Committee, 2018

• YLS Chili Cookoff, student volunteer, 2015 and 2016; participant, 2017 and 2018

• JBA Member Golf Tournament participant, 2018

• YLS Kickball League, 2017 and 2018 

Other Bar association activities:

• Jacksonville Women Lawyers Association 

Public Relations Committee chair, 2016-17; Judicial Reception Committee member, 2016-17; co-chair of the Special Events Committee, 2017-18; Judicial Reception Committee member, 2017-18; director of membership, 2018-19

In October, we enrolled JWLA to participate in Making Strides Against Cancer Walk, we recruited a significant number of members to participate in the walk and we raised more than twice the amount we raised in 2016.

In October and November, my co-chair and I helped our president, Jennifer Shoaf-Richardson, quickly realize a goal for this year in establishing the Nursing Room at the Duval County Courthouse. My co-chair and I worked with Courthouse personnel in finding the perfect room for this project, we rallied individuals to donate pieces of furniture to be used in the Nursing Room, we designed and decorated the room for comfort and relaxation and we organized the ribbon-cutting celebration on Nov. 1, 2017.

I organized a JWLA team to participate in the YLS Chili Cook-Off on Feb. 17. I led a team of incredible ladies to cook the chili and cornbread and volunteer on the day of to set up, represent this organization and hand out our chili. I organized and assigned tasks for each committee member and I oversaw our team’s involvement from start to finish at this event.

Platform statement:

One of the main goals I have for this organization is to increase participation and engagement of our members across the board. I feel as though we have many members who live and practice outside of the Downtown or Riverside areas and I hope to encourage their participation by planning events in new areas around the city. I also want to increase membership and participation of young attorneys in this area. As this is a voluntary Bar association, there are young attorneys who may not understand the benefits of the organization. I would like to provide more opportunities and programs for networking and mentoring within the organization. I think, in partnership with the JBA and other voluntary Bar associations such as the Jacksonville Women Lawyers Association, we can establish strong programs that will provide opportunities for young attorneys to meet and engage with not only other young attorneys, but also more seasoned attorneys. Further, I would like to contribute to the current strength and momentum of the organization’s charitable projects, such as increasing participation in the Chili Cook-Off and raising even more money. Also, in pursuit of these goals, I believe fostering a relationship with other voluntary Bar associations, such as the JWLA, will contribute to the success of this organization and its events.  As a board member of the JWLA, I have the ability to unite these two organizations in the pursuit of their goals.

Tim Miller

Tim Miller

Seat 6

Jacksonville Bar Association activities: 

• Judicial Relations Committee

• Ribault Future Lawyers Program 

• Charity Poker Tournament Committee

• YLS Golf Tournament Committee

• YLS Annual Meeting Committee

• Professionalism and Mentoring Committee

• Vice chair of the Criminal Law Section of the Jacksonville Bar Association 

Other Bar association activities:  

• Chester Bedell Inn of Court

• Catholic Lawyers Guild

• Jacksonville Women Lawyers Association 

Civic activities:  

Since May 2014, I have served as a board member of the Community Health Outreach Center on Timuquana Road. Community Health Outreach provides comprehensive health services, food assistance and counseling to Duval County residents in need. I have also been a volunteer with the Tom Coughlin Jay Fund since 2013. The Jay Fund provides services to children and their families who are battling childhood cancer. Since 2013, I have served as a member of the Jacksonville Sports Council which seeks to enhance economic growth in Jacksonville by hosting events that are sought after nationwide as well as provided for those in need through Gator Bowl Charities. 

Platform statement:

In the past few years of volunteering with the YLS, it is very apparent what a fantastic organization we are fortunate to have here in Jacksonville. I believe that one of our most paramount goals must be to make everyone aware of the fantastic programs available through the YLS and the Jacksonville Bar Association. Having worked in both public service and private practice, I believe one of the most important missions of the YLS should be to bring lawyers together from all different fields and areas of the law and pull in the same direction to make the Jacksonville legal community as strong as it can be. We have been fortunate to have tremendous leadership here at the local Bar level and owe it to ourselves and those who came before us to keep things moving in the positive direction which they are headed.

Paul Palasz

Paul Palasz

Seat 4

Jacksonville Bar Association activities:

• Noon in June Committee, 2018

• Chili Cook-Off participant, 2017

• Coffee at the Courthouse participant, 2017

• JBA Kickball League, 2016, 2017, 2018

Other Bar Association activities:

• The Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division Law Student speed networking event

• The Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division Law Student Division Uniform Motion Practice Workshop

Civic Activities:

• Jacksonville School of Autism Charity Golf Tournament participant and law firm sponsor

• Florida Coastal “Welcome to Coastal” participant

Platform statement: 

As a member of the Jacksonville Bar Association Young Lawyers Section board of governors, my goal would be to serve as a voice to the future legal professionals in the North Florida area. I would like to create an informative pathway for other individuals seeking introduction into the legal field by visiting the surrounding colleges and explaining the process involved in becoming a lawyer and becoming part of the legal field in general. In addition, many of the junior colleges in the area have paralegal programs whose students would gain valuable insight from hearing about what their future profession consists of, as detailed by a prior paralegal (myself). I have always enjoyed helping people learn and to help others put themselves in a better position for success, and the board of governors is a great platform from which to do so.

Cassie Smith

Cassie Smith

Seat 2

Jacksonville Bar Association activities: 

• 2017-18 YLS board member and State Attorney’s Office liaison

• Co-chair of Coffee At The Courthouse

• Co-chair of Ribault High School Future Lawyer’s Mentorship Program 

• Mentor with Ribault High School Future Lawyer’s Mentorship Program 2017

• Volunteer with Chili Cook-Off , 2016

Other Bar association activities: 

• Member of The Florida Bar Florida Prosecuting Attorneys Association

Civic activities: 

• State Attorney’s Office Mentorship Program, mentor at Ribault High School 

• State Attorney’s Office representative for Career Day at Ribault and Robert E. Lee high schools 

• Schell Sweet Community Resource/Edward Waters College Event Planning Committee

Platform statement:

A majority of attorneys within the State Attorney’s Office and the Office of the Public Defender are 35 years of age or younger, yet many are not members of YLS or do not participate in YLS events. My goal is to reach out to my colleagues both at the SAO and PD’s offices to bring awareness of YLS and the many activities. I believe this will lead to an increase in membership among government attorneys. Serving as a co-chair of the Ribault High School Future Lawyers Program has made an impact on my life. Mentorship with high school students from underrepresented areas of Jacksonville is vital for our community as a whole. I would like to grow the program to increase involvement with students and practicing attorneys in the area. I would like to continue to build the mock trial competition while also focusing on college preparation, as many of our participating students are juniors and seniors. Diversity in the legal profession is especially important in this day and time. I would like to partner with other local bar associations such as JWLA and D.W. Perkins Bar Association to host an event aimed at increasing awareness and education on the importance of diversity. This would also serve as a way to recruit and increase membership in the YLS.

Art Stresing

Art Stresing

Seat 6

Jacksonville Bar Association activities:

• Member, 2015-present,

• Co-chair of the Sports League, 2016-18

• Captain of three-time Basketball League champion “The Defenders”

• Diversity Committee, 2014-present

• Major participant in Northeast Florida first and second Minority Picnic, organized Public Defender’s Office and Jacksonville Asian American Bar Association tables, sought sponsorships for the second Minority Picnic

• Organized and volunteered at JAABA table for the YLS Chili Cook-Off, 2017-18; JAABA won Best and Most Original, 2017; JAABBA came in third place and won Most Original, 2018

Other Bar association activities:

• Admitted to The Florida Bar, April 2011; Bar Number 88844

• Admitted to Middle District of Florida

• Jacksonville Asian American Bar Association, president, 2014-present; vice president, 2013-14

• Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, 2016-present

• Northeast Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, 2016-present

• American Association for Justice, member, 2014

• Development Committee on Entertainment Issues of Orange County Bar Association, 2011

Civic Activities:

• Participated and organized numerous Ask-A-Lawyer Tables through JAABA/JALA with the Vietnamese Association of Jacksonville

• Participated in “Project R: Restoring Rights, Repairing Records and Rebuilding Hope” with Three Rivers Legal Services

• Volunteered at Filipino Pride Day 2017 through JAABA

• Organized, volunteered and donated to Night of Asia Food Drive Party with River City Science Academy benefitting Clara White through JAABA

• Organized, volunteered and sponsored events with Mayor’s Asian American Advisory Board, D.W. Perkins Bar Association and Vietnamese Association of Jacksonville.

• Organized and volunteered at networking events with Florida Coastal School of Law’s Asian Pacific American Law Student Association.

Platform statement:

My goals for the YLS mirror my goals for the JBA. They are to promote and encourage diversity in the Jacksonville legal community as well as encourage young, up-and-coming attorneys to join the JBA. I would also like to recruit as many attorneys as possible to participate in the many JBA committees. I’ve worked with many dedicated attorneys that have spent many thankless hours on various JBA events and committees and we could always use more help.

 

 

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