Pennsylvania Bar Association Names Lawyers for 2017-18 Class of Institute Developing Future Leaders    

HARRISBURG (June 28, 2017) – Pennsylvania Bar Association President Sharon R. López has named 11 Pennsylvania lawyers to the 2017-18 class of the association’s Bar Leadership Institute (BLI).

“Our young attorneys are the bright lights in the bar’s future. The investments that we make in them now are critical for the profession’s growth. I’m so pleased to name these hardworking attorneys to this year’s class and look forward to working with them, as they connect and form relationships with more seasoned members, create a network throughout the commonwealth to share experiences and learn more about the varied paths to leadership within the PBA,” said López.

The new BLI class members include:

Allegheny County
Amber Reiner, Picadio Sneath Miller & Norton P.C., Pittsburgh

Beaver County
Frank Paganie, Beaver County Public Defenders Office/Law Office of John Salopek, Ambridge

Blair County
Jon Higgins, Beard Legal Group, Altoona 

Centre County
Sharon Barney, Leech Tishman Fuscaldo Lampl, State College 

Dauphin County
Gina Miller, Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission, Harrisburg 

Lackawanna County
Katie Nealon, Munley Law PC, Scranton 

Lehigh County
Keri Schantz, Allentown

Monroe County
Donald Gual, Monroe County Court of Common Pleas, Stroudsburg 

Montgomery County
Michael Lyon, Kane Pugh Knoell Troy & Kramer LLP, Norristown 

Philadelphia County
Jordan Fischer, XPAN Law Group, Philadelphia                       

Westmoreland County
Emily Shaffer, Westmoreland Court of Common Pleas, Greensburg 

This year’s BLI co-chairs are Melinda C. Ghilardi, Office of the Federal Public Defender, U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, Scranton, and Philip H. Yoon, Superior Court of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia. Both Ghilardi and Yoon have served in a number of PBA leadership roles.

The BLI class was limited in size. To apply, candidates had to demonstrate leadership ability, commit to attendance and participation in the required events, be currently licensed to practice law in Pennsylvania, be a PBA member, and be age 38 years or younger or have practiced five years or less.

The BLI was originally developed by Arthur L. Piccone of Kingston in 1995-96 during his year as PBA president to strengthen the PBA’s ongoing efforts to recruit and develop leaders of the association. The first chair of the institute, Gretchen A. Mundorff of Connellsville, re-launched the BLI when she became the 2010-11 president of the PBA. 

Founded in 1895, the Pennsylvania Bar Association exists to promote justice, professional excellence and respect of the law; improve public understanding of the legal system; facilitate access to legal services; and serve the 26,000 lawyers who are members of the association.