The Solo and Small Firm Section shall take as its province the enhancement of the skill of the lawyer in solo and small firm practice, by providing a forum for the exchange of ideas and information essential to improvement of the lawyers' quality of legal services; the assistance of lawyers in solo or small firm practice in utilizing the best techniques, methods and procedures for carrying on the practice of law and providing legal services, so that lawyers engaged in the solo or small firm practice of law will improve their ability to deliver the most efficient and highest quality of legal services to their clients; the provision of a medium through which solo and small firm practitioners may cooperate with, encourage and assist each other in the resolution of problems common to them and to the legal profession, all to their mutual benefit and that of the Association and the legal profession at large; and the representation of lawyers engaged in the solo or small firm practice of law.
PBA. Bylaws, Article VI, Section 642
Hello and welcome! Hola y bienvenido! Ciao e Benvenuto! Bonjour et bienvenue! Hallo und herzlich willkommen! Привет и добро пожаловать! Olá e bem-vindo! 你好，欢迎光临! Bună și bunvenit! Γειά σας και καλώς ήρθατε!
Just as these languages span the globe, our section members’ practices span the Commonwealth and nearly every conceivable area of the law. What brings us together? We practice as solos or in small firms. What keeps us together? Connections in the substantive law, law office technology, and off-hours activities.
What does the section provide to its members?
First and foremost, our Listserv is a clearinghouse to obtain and provide substantive information and documents, ask about law practice management and ethics, post job openings, talk about tech issues, and more. The Listserv is a limitless library of wisdom and immeasurable wit! Responses to inquiries arrive quickly, usually within a half hour or less.
Other membership benefits include unified lobbying to influence substantive legal issues and legislation to protect our members; representation for members' interests (as was recently accomplished relative to the appointment of a task force to review the PBA dues structure); the Mentoring Initiative for those wanting mentors and those able to serve as mentors (for the long term or a single item/time), collaborating with Widener Commonwealth Law School on a Spring 2019 course on how to start a solo or small firm practice; and a superb newsletter with innovative tools and techniques from experienced practitioners and columns about technology, legislation of interest, and law practice management.
We are also posting more content on our webpage to help members in their practices – check periodically to see what's new. Content includes short video clips on professionalism, hot tips on solo and small firm practice, technology, and more. We will continue to add more content as an increased benefit to Section members.
Our annual conference draws attendees from across the state to address problems encountered by all, improve their practice and quality of life, interact with members of the judiciary and connect with colleagues. The 2018 conference was July 25-27 at the Omni Bedford Springs Resort. The 2019 Conference will be July 31 – Aug. 2 at the Omni Bedford Springs – mark your calendar now!
Growing out of the 2017 conference is the section's Family Tree, the inspiration of past Section Chair Ken Milner. The “tree” provides a pictorial personal referral network with “leaves” showing the geographical location and areas of practice for members who have attended the conference.
The section also presents an annual award. The 2018 award was presented to Arlene Ann Dudeck of Cambria County.
I may be (more than) slightly prejudiced, but I think this section is the best that PBA has to offer. With the Solo & Small Firm Section by your side, life and the practice of law are better, brighter and more connected.
Not already a section member? Join us. For questions and comments, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or 717-846-2246.
Sara A. Austin