A new year has begun for YLS.
As of June 4, at 6:48 p.m., the Young Lawyers Section of The Jacksonville Bar Association has new leadership.
After eight years on the YLS board, I finally get to be queen. Ha ha!
All joking aside, this year I have the privilege of serving as president; Christian George (Akerman), my Jax Bar bestie, as vice president; Shea Moser (Moseley, Prichard) as secretary; and Alex Hill (Gray Robinson) as treasurer.
Our returning board members are Cyndy Trimmer (Ansbacher Law) and Jessica Mathis (Wicker Smith), who were elected this year without opposition (whoop, whoop), and Adam Edgecombe (Quintarios Prieto).
Our newly elected board members are John Wallace (Moseley Prichard), Alessandro Apolito (Brennan Manna) and Amanda Brooks (Driver McAfee), and our ex-officio board member is Michael Lockamy (Bedell Firm).
With the induction of our new board, I am focused on what lies ahead. But in doing that, I can’t help but think back and reflect on what a truly phenomenal year we have had.
Under the outstanding leadership of Pat Kilbane (Ullman Financial), the YLS has flourished this past year. Our traditional programs have continued to thrive.
Our annual Tee It Up charity golf tournament raised more money than ever; our Holidays in January for children in the foster care system displaced during the holidays, was held at the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens and was bigger and better than in years past; and our Chili Cook-Off donned a new location at the Riverside Arts Market and was a huge success.
Just a couple of weeks ago, our Noon in June program had more participants than ever and some wonderful new speakers, including Cassie Sadowitz, the deputy general counsel of the Jacksonville Jaguars, and State Attorney Angela Corey.
This past year, the YLS added a new community event, which we plan to continue next year — our charity poker tournament.
If you didn’t attend the tournament this past year, you missed out. A night of fun and networking around the poker table with some local celebrities — all for a great cause.
In looking back and remembering the many successful educational programs and social and charity events from this past year, I know I have some very big shoes to fill.
This year, I want to focus on community outreach and continue to provide opportunities for our members to help the citizens of Jacksonville.
We will continue with all of our fundraising events that benefit local charities like the golf tournament, Holidays in January, the Chili Cook-Off and the poker tournament.
But one of the new programs the YLS will be implementing this year is “Wills for Warriors.”
The idea behind this program is not only to meet with and draft simple wills for our members of the armed forces and first responders, like members of the fire department and police department, but also to assist them with the drafting of any advanced directives they or their families need.
These individuals put themselves in harm’s way every day to keep our community safe and the least we can do is to offer some peace of mind to them and their families that things would be taken care of in the event of tragedy.
The YLS has been fortunate enough to have had some amazing leaders in the past. I can only hope I will be able continue their tradition of hard work and dedication to the amazing members of The Jacksonville Bar Association and to the Jacksonville community.
If you ask me, the future of the YLS is looking bright.