Later this month, I look forward to returning to Washington,
D.C., to participate in the American Bar Association's Lobby Day.
This year, I am especially honored to represent the commonwealth as
the MBA president in the many congressional meetings that take
place over this three-day event.
As one can imagine, orchestrating such a trip and coordinating
such high-level meetings require tremendous effort. The MBA is well
poised throughout this influential trip, thanks to MBA Chief
Operating Officer and Chief Legal Counsel Martin W. Healy and MBA
Legislative Activities Manager Lee Constantine, who serves as the
state captain for the Massachusetts ABA delegation.
House Speaker Robert A. DeLeo wants to transform the management
of the state's courts by hiring a professional business
administrator -- not a judge -- to handle all of its business
DeLeo announced his plan at a Boston Chamber of Commerce forum on
March 15, where he also stated his preference to keep the
scandal-ridden Probation Department under the authority of the
courts. Gov. Deval Patrick wants to place it under executive branch
The aftermath of the state's Probation Department patronage
scandal has fueled debate over which branch of government should
manage the troubled agency. On Feb. 17, members of the judicial,
legislative and executive branches discussed that issue in front of
an overflow crowd at Suffolk University Law School.
"A New Path for Probation" drew more than 175 attendees to the
Boston law school, with people lining the walls to listen in on the
discussion. The event was presented by MassINC, the publisher of
Commonwealth magazine, sponsored by the Massachusetts Bar
Association and hosted by Suffolk University Law School's Rappaport
Center for Law and Public Service.
Supreme Judicial Court Associate Justice Ralph D. Gants joined
more than 500 people in calling for adequate legal aid funding at
the Walk to the Hill for Civil Legal Aid on Feb. 22 at the
Statehouse's Great Hall of Flags.
The annual event calls on legislators to protect state funding for
programs providing civil legal aid to low-income Massachusetts
residents. This year's Walk to the Hill marked the first time a
sitting justice on the SJC attended. As co-chair of the
Massachusetts Access to Justice Initiative, Gants made a plea to
the governor and lawmakers to provide justice for all.
Ronald P. Corbett Jr., Ed.D., is matter-of-factly looking beyond
the troubles of the Massachusetts Probation Department to restore
its former practices, when the department was nationally recognized
as an innovative leader. No stranger to the legal community or
state government, commissioner Corbett is swiftly applying his
management know-how to get the fraud-riddled department back on
track in the interest of public safety.