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President's Message | January 2019 Newsletter

It’s hard to believe that a year ago I was sworn in as ACBA president. At the inaugural meeting I was admittedly nervous, excited and a bit overwhelmed. As I endeavored to write my first presidential column, I referenced ACBA’s mission statement, which is as follows:

“To promote professional collegiality among the bench and the bar; facilitate public service and access to justice for all; and offer programs, benefits, and services to enhance the skills of its members.”

With your help, I must say we exceeded the mission and for that I would like to thank you. I have sincerely enjoyed working with all our members including the executive board, our board of directors and of course our executive director Marquita Rhodes, who is clearly the glue that keeps us all together.

As I reflect on the past 12 months, I look at all we have accomplished together. Below is a list of a few of my favorite highlights:

1. The Young Lawyers brought Back the Clam Bake;

2. The Court of Appeals’ dinner was in full force during a snow storm;

3. An extremely relevant #METOO CLE;

4. A Raise the Age CLE;

5. Running in the Law Day run;

6. ACBA’s collaboration with the Albany County DA’s office with Clean Slate; and the list goes on

I must admit, however, that the one achievement I am most excited about from this past year is the fact that with Marquita’s assistance and that of our executive team, we were able to increase the number of public sector attorney membership by 67%. Indeed, we recently welcomed all the attorneys in the Albany County District Attorney’s office as members and all the attorneys in the City of Albany Corporation Counsel’s office. As a member of the public sector, I’m thrilled because public sector attorneys will have a larger voice among our organization and more seats at the table. And, as president, I am thrilled that we have also grown membership overall.

While this past year has been a blast, I look forward to joining the ranks of the Past Presidents of this organization. As such, I also look forward to working with ACBA’s Foundation.

This past year I interviewed a public sector member each month and I am happy to report that the public sector will continue to have a voice in a new monthly column authored by one of its members.

Thank you again for being so welcoming and for making my year as president a gift.

Hon. Christina L. Ryba
ACBA President



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