Issue May 2010

State renews access to justice effort, promises ‘demonstrable results’

Court funding may be slashed again this year, and employees and resources are already stretched thin at overcrowded courthouses, but an intensive effort is underway to improve access to justice in Massachusetts.

The courts' commitment is reflected in a two-pronged approach, with the creation of the Access to Justice Initiative last year and the recent expansion of the Access to Justice Commission.

MBA Mock Trial marks silver anniversary

The Winsor School, an all-girls high school in Boston, won the Massachusetts Bar Association's 2010 Mock Trial State Championship, advancing to the national competition in Philadelphia May 6-9.

On the twenty-fifth anniversary of the competition, the Winsor School team bested Pioneer Valley Performing Arts Charter Public School of South Hadley by a 2-1 vote after a two-hour mock trial on March 26.

Event inspires change in veteran attorney's courtroom demeanor

Despite 20 years of experience in securities litigation, it took two high school Mock Trial competitions for Kevin J. Diamond to realize he needed to reevaluate his approach in the courtroom.

"I found that my style should be tempered. That was probably the greatest lesson," said Diamond, a member of the Massachusetts Bar Association's Executive Management Board. "What I learned is subtleness is probably heard better."