Hello GBA Members!
It is my sincere honor and privilege to serve as the President of this esteemed association for the 2023-2024 bar year. Having been a member for over a decade, I know first-hand that I have big shoes to fill thanks to the hard work and dedication of our past presidents. I’m eager to embark on this journey.
Before highlighting a few things members can expect this coming bar year, I will share a little about my professional background to help set the stage. For those unfamiliar with me, I have served as in-house counsel at The Fresh Market, Inc. for over 19 years (currently, as General Counsel). I have also been passionate about advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion just as long, holding the additional position of the company’s Head of Diversity for the last three years. As a result, I will bring aspects of both roles to my presidency.
That said, I’m excited to share the following: A new Business/Corporate Law Section of the GBA is being created to better engage and service at least a quarter of our members who are either in-house counsel or practicing business/corporate law. There will be an increased commitment to providing a place and space for all GBA members regardless of practice area, race, gender, age, sexual orientation, etc. through leadership roles, CLE offerings (including, a return to CLE Lunch & Learns), and association programs/activities/events (including, diversifying where and how we hold monthly member meetings). Further, expect to see greater (i) engagement in Guilford County, (ii) efforts to assist and mentor aspiring and young lawyers, and (iii) focus on elevating the GBA brand.
Finally, I’m extremely excited about our various committees. Joining several returning and highly committed committee co-chairs, are many new co-chairs, some of whom have been GBA members for years while others are brand new to our association. These individuals are passionate about the committees they are leading and ready to develop and/or reinforce programs/activities/events that will continue to enrich our membership, as well as our legal and local communities. Expect to hear more from them in the coming weeks, and I strongly encourage you to serve on any committee that piques your interest.
I hope you are as enthusiastic about what I’ve shared above as I am. With your continued support of the GBA, it is sure to be a great year!
Gerald L. Walden, Jr.
President, Greensboro Bar Association 2023-2024