Come join the GBA at SouthEnd Brewing for an evening of fellowship! Your first drink is on us! SouthEnd has a fabulous menu, including Bavarian Pretzels, Salads, Sandwiches, Beer Mac & Cheese, and Flatbread Pizzas. They also have a covered front patio and a semi-covered, beautiful back patio with a fire pit!
DATE: Wednesday, April 6, 2022
PLACE: SouthEnd Brewing
117 West Lewis Street
Greensboro, NC 27401
RSVP: Register Here
Cynthia Hager and Kailyn Hutchins, both current students at Elon University School of Law, have been selected by the Greensboro Bar Association’s Scholarship Committee as the recipients of the organization’s inaugural Academic Scholarship. The newly created GBA Academic Scholarship, which will be awarded annually, is intended to financially assist two (2) 2L Elon Law students who demonstrate academic responsibility, a passion for community involvement,
and a personal connection to Guilford County.
Cynthia Hager relocated to Greensboro in 2020 to attend Elon Law. In addition to her legal studies, she currently serves as a member of Elon Law’s Innocence Project, a clinician in the AARP Tax Clinic, as president of Elon Law’s Family Law Society, and is a Guardian ad Litem here in Guilford County. Cynthia has family in the Triad area and plans to remain local following her December 2022 graduation from law school.
Kailyn Hutchins is an alumna of North Carolina A&T State University where she graduated with the highest academic honors (summa cum laude). She currently serves as the President of Elon Law’s Innocence Project, is a teaching assistant to one of her law professors, and is also a Guardian ad Litem here in Guilford County. Following graduation in December 2022, Kailyn intends to remain in the area and continue serving the people of Guilford County and the surrounding counties.
Cynthia and Kailyn will each be presented with a scholarship check in the amount of $2,500 at the GBA’s April 21st meeting.
June 21, 1957 – March 5, 2022
Dwight Austin Ensley, 64, went to be with our Lord on March 5, 2022. His death by heart attack was sudden and unexpected. He is survived by his beloved wife, attorney Carolyn J. Woodruff, of Greensboro; a daughter, Maggie Ensley Williams of Denver, Colorado; and three grandchildren, Ethan, Cameron and Addison Williams. These grandchildren were the apple of his eye. He was predeceased by his mother, Ruth Harding Ensley Becherucci of Orville, Ohio; his father, Austin Ensley and step-mother Gladys Ensley, of Cherokee, North Carolina; and his daughter Carly Ensley, of North Canton, Ohio.
After high school in North Canton, Ohio, Dwight graduated from Kent State University in Business Administration with a concentration in Aviation in 1979. He received his MBA from the University of Steubenville in 1986. Feeling the need to develop environmentally-friendly businesses, he owned and operated a glass recycling plant in Baltimore, Maryland, and a plastics recycling plant in Ohio and North Carolina. He was the owner and CEO of the following: Plastic Recycling Company, 1977-2008; Glass Recycling Company, 1993-1997; and Multi-material Recycling Company, 1989-1993. After selling these plants, he utilized his MBA skills to become a Certified Valuation Analyst (CVA) in 2010. In 2010, he started the business valuation firm known as ValuePointe.biz, a specialty consulting firm that provided more than 500 business valuations for divorces, SBA loans, and estate planning in the Southeastern United States. During the years 2008 to 2010, he was the business director for Woodruff Family Law Group in Greensboro.
Intrigued by the law and his lifelong desire for continuous learning, Dwight decided to attend law school, where he excelled at Elon University School of Law, only a short distance from his Greensboro home. He was the oldest guy in the class of 2013. After passing the North Carolina Bar Examination, he continued his pursuits with ValuePointe.biz with even more knowledge of the requirements for being an expert witness. He had ongoing projects with ValuePoint.biz at the time of his death.
Dwight was the author of When the Wrong Person Gets the Money, concerning the 2009 U.S. Supreme Court case Kennedy v. Plan Administrator for Dupont about divorce and the misdirection of retirement benefits to a new spouse. He also wrote Business Valuations for NC Family Lawyers, which he used as his text at his frequent CLE speaking engagements.
In addition to his business and professional pursuits, Dwight was an accomplished airplane pilot all of his adult years. He also participated in the creative arts and was active in numerous charitable endeavors.
Dwight was a member of the North Carolina State Bar, the American Bar Association, the North Carolina Bar Association, the Greensboro Bar Association, the Institute of Business Appraisers, and the National Association of Certified Valuators and Analysts. He was also a member of First Presbyterian Church of Greensboro and Starmount Forest Country Club.
The 2021 Centennial Award for outstanding and exemplary community service was presented to Gerald L. Walden, Jr. at the virtual GBA member meeting on March 17, 2022.
Gerald is married, with two young children. He has a passion for giving back to students, especially to inspire the study of law and to engage with legal associations for professional development and collegiality. He holds active engagement with his fraternity and his church, both its governance and outreach; the church offering his favorite volunteer experience as it offers opportunities reflective of his values and a place where he can grow in his faith journey. There, he serves on the Executive Board.
Too, he is on the Chamber of Commerce Community Programs Advisory Board; the Elon Law School Advisory Board; and the North Carolina Central University Law School (NCCU) Advisory Board. He has served on the North Carolina Bar Association Board of Governors as well as chair of multiple committees; as President of the Guilford County Association of Black Lawyers; and, as chair of various committees of the Greensboro Bar Association.
He taught part-time at the NCCU School of Law for nine years where he made significant impact with the externship program placements, judging various advocacy competitions and mentoring students. He went the extra mile mentoring students with an open door, a giving intellect, and a knack for fun dining experiences with students to humanize the advisory role he aptly served. One can imagine he was quite the popular advisor for that alone! The ongoing engagement by law students and young lawyers is indicative of his service on campus and within legal associations. In fact, he has won awards for influence, legal advocacy and as elite corporate counsel.
Gerald is a summa cum laude graduate of North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University with a degree in mechanical engineering; a cum laude graduate of the NCCU School; and recently earned an MBA at Elon University. He clerked for two judges of the North Carolina Court of Appeals (Hunter and Campbell) and has spent the last decade working as in house counsel for a local corporation. He began with oversight in commercial contract matters and commercial real estate and licensing matters; then, became assistant general counsel for labor and employment matters and litigation; then head of legal.
He is currently the Vice President and Deputy General Counsel and head of Diversity for The Fresh Market, voted the #1 Supermarket in the country for the second year in a row by USA Today’s Readers’ Choice.
We are pleased to recognize Gerald Walden for his dedicated service to the community and his commitment to making it a better place for all.
On March 24, 2022, YLS members attended the Lawyers on the Lawn outdoor happy hour for Say Yes Guilford. This event was a great success and was sponsored in part by YLS. YLS would like to thank everyone who attended and showed their support for Say Yes Guilford.
Connect with YLS:
YLS is organizing a connections event for April. Keep a lookout for an e-mail blast and Facebook post regarding this event. We encourage all members of YLS to join us for an opportunity to connect!
Come out and support the YLS Kickball Team, Torts Illustrated. Games will be played on Monday. Game times will be posted on Facebook. Do you have any ideas for future YLS events, service projects, and/or socially distant activities? Please share by emailing Nicole Scallon at [email protected].
YLS would like to celebrate life’s milestones with our members. Email [email protected]
to share personal and professional updates about yourself that you would like celebrated on the YLS Facebook page.
If you would like to be added to the YLS email list, please email Nicole Scallon at [email protected].
On February 10, 2022, the NC State Bar published the Synopsis for the January 2022 meeting, which was held remotely. The meeting consisted of committee meetings, virtual receptions to welcome new councilors and a joint event with NCBA and law student attendees. Please remember you can always check out the NC State Bar’s YouTube channel for livestreams of selected public meetings as well as view past committee, subcommittee, and Council meetings.
Which standing committees met and what do they do?
These committees of the perform the work of the Council and subsequently report to the Council for final decision-making. The committees are made up of State Bar councilors and officers, advisory members, and public members and each committee is assisted by NC State Bar staff.
- Legal Assistance for Military Personnel (LAMP)– this committee provides information on North Carolina to (current or former) members of the military and their families. This Committee also publishes various articles specific to NC law as well as non-state specific information for service members (current or retired) or their families regardless of where they are located.
- Communications– this committee develops coordinate NCSB communications to members, third parties, including but not limited to printed publications, electronic, and social media messages.
- Administrative– this committee studies and makes recommendations on policies concerning the administration of the State Bar, including but not limited to facilities, automation, personnel, retirement plan, and district bars, the membership functions of the State Bar, collection of dues, the suspension of members for failure to pay dues and other fees, and the transfer of members to active or inactive status.
- Authorized Practice– this committee responds to and/or investigates inquiries and complaints about conduct that may constitute the unauthorized practice of law, studies and advises the Council on the appropriate and lawful use and regulation of legal assistants, paralegals and other lay persons in connection with the provision of law-related services and professional organizations.
- Grievance (with I, II, and III subcommittees)– this committee reviews investigations and communications with complainants, lawyers, NCSB staff and Counsel, and makes recommendations to the Council for action.
- Issues– this committee reviews new questions, matters, or concerns (e.g. regulatory changes) that are identified by officers, committees, councilors, and staff.
- Current focus: amending the rules on secured leave and compensation of court-appointed attorneys.
- Finance and Audit– this committee oversees the preparation of the NCSB’s annual budget, make recommendations to the Executive Committee regarding financial policies, review quarterly financial statements and report the same to the Council.
- Ethics– this committee studies the rules of professional responsibility, make recommendations to the Council for amendments to the rules as the committee deems necessary or appropriate, examine and respond to questions that arise concerning the meaning and application of the rules of professional conduct and to issue opinions in response to questions of legal ethics.
- Executive– this committee receives and reviews reports and recommendations from standing committees, boards, and special committees, nominate individuals for appointments made by the council, finally, this committee makes long range plans for the State Bar.
The second quarter meeting of the NC State Bar Council will be held in Raleigh, NC at the Crabtree Marriott and the NC State Bar Headquarters. The meeting of the full NC State Bar Council will be held on Friday, April 22nd, 2022 (beginning at 8:30am) and can be viewed on the NC State Bar’s YouTube channel.
No topic gains more attention than attorney compensation and a current topic of discussion is whether the eat-what-you-kill model of compensation is outdated.
Here are a few of the issues:
- The model rewards individual behavior and discourages collaboration
- The model may put the lawyer at direct odds with their clients’ interests
- The model assumes that the most important firm goal is maximizing revenue over all other behaviors that make a firm great such as mentoring, teaching, recruiting, and managing the business to name a few
- The model encourages client hoarding
- The model encourages getting new business often to the detriment of serving current clients
Creating a compensation plan for the modern law firm will better align lawyer and firm interests and lawyer and client interests.
In her ABA Journal article, Evolution of a Law Firm Compensation Plan: A Parable, Debra L. Bruce outlines a values-based system that determines compensation based on conformance with the firms’ values and performance measures.
Consider these questions when creating a values-based compensation program:
- How do we define success?
- What do we want to be known for?
- What do like about practicing law and how do we do more of it?
- What do we like least about practicing law and how do we do less of it?
- What is required to create and maintain trust among us?
- What must we have in place to recruit and retain good people?
- What do our clients expect from us?
- What behaviors must be encouraged to support the firm’s sustainability?
How to Create a Modern Compensation Plan
Determine fair market salaries. Without doing the research, how can you know where you stand against similar employers in your market?
Set a goal and support your people on their journey. Set firm financial goals as well as individual goals. If your team doesn’t know how to reach those goals, you must equip them through mentorship, skill teaching, or providing an outside coach.
Develop goal-based incentives for your team. Run financial models showing potential results. There will be a sweet spot where you can share the rewards of the firm without sacrificing the financial stability of the firm.
What else motivates your team? Ask them. You’ll see some generational differences in your responses. Millennials are motivated by innovation, growth, diverse work experiences, and a transparent path forward.
There are plenty of methods of motivation that don’t require money:
- Focus on team member growth. Be transparent about the path to partnership or any other advancement opportunities.
- Professional development. CLEs are required for ethics compliance in many states, and certainly for substantive legal skill growth. However, your team members want training, development, coaching, and mentoring in the soft skills such as collaboration, leadership, and rainmaking.
- Offer work flexibility. Many of our employees are digital natives, those raised with technology and in the information age. They understand the tools that allow them to function outside the parameters of 9:00 – 5:00 or the office cubicle.
- Recognition. Thank your team for their hard work, especially during such a trying time as a pandemic. Your team wants to be inspired, encouraged, and recognized.
Our next workplace generation, Gen Z, grew up with parents who were financially impacted by the 2007 – 2009 Great Recession. While they care about the world around them, and their own professional development, they gravitate toward security which often means financial rewards, making a modern compensation system even more important.
Good to Great
In his bestselling book, Good to Great, Jim Collins says, “We found no systematic pattern linking executive compensation to the process of going from good to great. The evidence does not support the idea that the specific structure of executive compensation acts as a key lever in taking a company from good to great.”
“The purpose of a compensation system should not be to get the right behaviors from the wrong people, but to get the right people on the bus in the first place, and to keep them there.”
Attorney compensation is not the silver bullet but having a modern compensation system gives you an advantage over other firms who cling to outdated practices.
Camille Stell is the President of Lawyers Mutual Consulting & Services and the co-author of “Designing a Succession Plan for Your Law Practice: A Step-by-Step Guide for Preparing Your Firm for Maximum Value”. Continue this conversation by contacting Camille at [email protected] or 919.677.8900.
BarCARES is a confidential, short-term intervention program provided cost-free to members of the 24th Judicial District Bar and other participating judicial district bars, voluntary bar associations and law schools. If you would like additional information about the program and/or its availability in your area, please contact the BarCARES coordinator at 919.929.1227 or 1.800.640.0735 or click on the icon below.
Katherine W. Dandy
Sharpless McClearn Lester Duffy, P.A.
Endorser: Pamela S. Duffy
Tuggle Duggins, P.A.
Endorser: Blake P. Hurt
April 6 – Mix & Mingle, 5:00 PM, SouthEnd Brewing
April 13 – Board Meeting, 4:00 PM, Zoom
April 20 – YLS Board Meeting, 12:00 PM, Zoom
April 21 – Annual Joint Meeting of the GBA and the 24th Judicial District Bar, 5:30 PM, Starmount (with a Zoom option)
April 20 – Submission Deadline for May Newsletter
Spring is here and Greensboro is again beautiful with trees and blossoms. Even better, it looks like we’ve seen the back side of Covid-19. I guess you never know but with cases dropping and the world opening up again, there’s a feeling of renewal (and Spring) in the air. Meanwhile, back at GBA we have a full slate of live (believe it or not) activities and events coming up.
Most importantly, our annual meeting (April 21 at Starmount Forest Country Club) will be our first live membership meeting in two years. We will still have a virtual option for anyone not comfortable with attending live or just for those who can’t fit the trip into their schedules. It’s fitting it’s a social and dinner with a full business agenda, including JD 24 business, and a vote on our officers and some directors for the upcoming year. We’ll be presenting our Distinguished Service Award (thanks again to Jim Bryan and his committee) and we’ll wrap up the GBA year with our speaker, Matt Brown. Matt is the director of the Coliseum Complex and the Tanger Center. He’ll be telling us what’s happening and what to expect at the Tanger Center – I’m looking forward to that one.
Our last all virtual (I hope) membership meeting was March 17. We presented our Centennial Award to Gerald Walden. Thanks to Judge Patrice Hinnant for the introduction and congratulations again to Gerald on a well-deserved recognition. His service to the GBA and the larger community is greatly appreciated. We heard from our speaker, Winston McGregor, president of the Guilford Education Alliance and at-large school board member. We all definitely found out some things we didn’t know before about Guilford County schools.
We also have a few (live!) social events coming up, including our Mix & Mingle (April 6 at Southend Brewing) and the May Picnic (May 22 at Grasshoppers Stadium). Check our website (https://www.greensborobar.org/for-members/get-involved/member-events/) for details and more events.
Thanks to all of our membership for supporting GBA and our events – a lot of people work hard to put them on and they are gratified to know the events are enjoyed. See you all soon.
GBA President, 2021-2022