When I started writing this post, I was en route to Austin, home of the NABE 2020 Mid Year Meeting, and I was planning to blog about a completely different topic.  I’ve been back for nearly two weeks now, and I’m still sorting through all that I learned, all of the great people I got to connect with professionally and personally, and what really happened at the LawPay after-party.

Through my work, and particularly my work first as a volunteer and now as a consultant for NABE, I get a great perspective on how different bars across the country do what they do, and which associations are really pushing the envelope when it comes to programming and other initiatives.  Of course, I’m always impressed by my communications colleagues at bars across the country, but on so many levels, so many bars are doing some really cool things.  Here’s a quick round up of some of my favorites things  happening at State Bars:

Spilling the Tea – This video podcast from the Colorado Bar Association is fantastic. Led by social media gurus from the Association’s Communications Department, this video series highlights members and member benefit partners, and is really, really fun for a program about lawyers (and hint to other bars – seems really easy to replicate.)  Another cool thing  to come out of Colorado?  The cover of every issue of Colorado Lawyer magazine is a photo submitted by one of their members.

The Ohio State Bar Association is also all-in on video – their YouTube channel has a host of important and interesting videos, but my very favorite is the membership rap from the organization’s 2018 President (and a big hat tip to whoever came up with the line about lobbying to the left, lobbying to the right, and lobbying all day and all night. )

Alabama’s attorneys get to demonstrate how they “impact lives within and outside of their profession.” Through the Alabama Bar Association‘s #MoreThanALawyer campaign, the organization highlights the ways Alabama lawyers make a difference in their community as “parents, service members, volunteers, mentors, coaches, musicians and committed advocates.”

The State Bar of Georgia really, really considers its members needs. Their staff has created a lactation room on-site for mothers who need a private place to pump, and they’ve also compiled all of their wellness resources and developed a comprehensive wellness website – aptly titled Georgia Lawyers Living Well.

The State Bar of Missouri is getting ready to host its second annual Missouri Bar Leadership Institute, modeled after the American Bar Association’s Bar Leaders Institute.  The program is designed to ” help Missouri lawyers even better lead their legal communities,” with programming “aimed at providing you and your organization’s incoming leaders with tools and advice from others who have been in your shoes.”

Through their Animals and the Law Committee, the New York State Bar Association brought the #barkassociation to its annual meeting – by partnering with a local  pet rescue and adoption facility, NYSBA Annual Meeting attendees had the opportunity to “Stop by and pet, play with and adopt a puppy!”

The State Bar of Texas is helping out in the community through its Free Legal Answers website,  a free online legal advice website that “allows low-income Texans to post questions about their civil legal issues and receive answers from volunteer Texas attorneys.” How cool is that?

And the Texas Bar Association (as well as the Austin Bar Association and the NABE staff) gets a big Texas hat tip for the incomparable hospitality and warm Texas welcome at the NABE Mid year meeting!