Message from the Chair
“We will screw something up. We’ll screw many things up. Tell us when this happens. If you have an idea that will improve us please speak up. We’ll thank you. Everything we are today, every single recipe, everything we do, has been developed with help from our customers. Read about our adventures: www.cloverfoodlab.com Follow us for updates: @cloverfoodtruck.”
(As seen on Clover Food Lab’s take out bags)
Zagat, the go-to guide for deciding where to eat and drink, calls Boston’s “Clover Food Lab” one of 20 regional chains they wish would go national. If you live or work in Boston, you know what Zagat is talking about. Clover is revolutionary fast food. Fast food is not new, but Clover’s conception of fast food is healthy, locally—sourced and completely innovative—and Clover is growing by leaps and bounds.
I am pleased to report that the Immigration Law Section is also growing and prospering. From October 1, 2014, through May 31, 2015, approximately 100 new members joined our ranks. This is an increase of more than 25%. By contrast, FBA National’s benchmark measure for Sections, Divisions and Chapters is only 3% growth per year.
Our programs and initiatives are also growing and prospering. We have continued our two-day Annual Conference (Memphis), our day-long Symposium (American University, Washington, DC), our Global Citizenship Conference (Rome, Italy) and our Leadership Luncheons (Washington, DC). We have added and/or supported a Border Law Conference (El Paso), and new CLE programs in New York, Boston, Chicago, and New Jersey. We have added a committee (Chapter/Section Liaison) which is devoted to partnering with every FBA Chapter that wishes to start or seek support for immigration law programming. The Chapter/Section Liaison Committee also handles the ILS Chapter and Section Activity Fund, which operates on the same principles as FBA National’s Chapter Activity Fund. An FBA Chapter or Section seeking financial support for a program completes an application for funding and the request is vetted by the Committee, using consistent standards. The Committee has a limited budget which must last through the year. This year, we provided financial support to the Border Law Conference in El Paso, the New Jersey Chapter’s immigration CLE, and the Immigration Law Section’s Younger Lawyers Division Happy Hour at our 2015 Annual Conference in Memphis. As we did last year, we are also funding a reception at the FBA National Annual Meeting and Convention in Salt Lake City (September 2015), along with many other Sections and Divisions.
In addition to our Publications, Programs (CLE) and Social Media Committees, we now have committees devoted to awards, budget, bylaws, diversity, government relations, law students, membership and sustaining membership, pro bono representation, and younger lawyers. We also have a committee (Substantive Law) that acts as a resource for those whose programs are in need of a speaker or those who need an author on a particular subject.
What is it that makes an organization grow and prosper? Countless books and articles are devoted to the subject. I think that Clover has it about right. In addition to my predecessors—Ray Fasano, Hon. Lawrence Burman and Barry Frager—who laid the groundwork for the growth we are currently experiencing, I also have the members of this Section to thank, for every new program and initiative we have undertaken this year has come from your ideas. When something is not working, tell us. If you have an idea for another program or initiative, share it with us. Tom Peters, the author of “In Search of Excellence,” famously said, “[e]xcellent firms don’t believe in excellence—only in constant improvement and constant change.”
From attending FBA National meetings, I know that our Section is fortunate to have an engaged and passionate Board. Every Officer and Board member is on at least one, and often more than one, Committee. Our Committee Chairs are ILS members who expressed an interest in the business of our Section, and welcomed the opportunity to assume a leadership position. Their enthusiasm for the Section has been contagious; their creativity endless. They welcome the opportunity to learn, to network and work on an idea to which they are committed. Many Section members like yourselves are reaching out and asking to be appointed to committees. This is not surprising, as every Committee offers the best that the FBA has to offer: professional education; leadership opportunities; and networking with colleagues in the public, private, non-profit and academic sectors. As a result of so many Section members taking an ownership interest in the Section, we have grown expansively. If you are not yet actively involved in the Section, please reach out to me and let me know what your interests are. We want to see more of you, welcome you and get to know you.
In the meantime, I wish you a wonderful summer!
Hon. Robin E. Feder, Chair, Immigration Law Section
Hon. Robin E. Feder writes in her personal capacity as Chair of the Immigration Law Section of the Federal Bar Association and the views she expresses are her own and not those of the Executive Office for Immigration Review.
The Immigration Law Section (ILS) created a new division, the Younger Lawyer’s Division (ILS-YLD), to promote involvement of younger lawyers in the ILS. Governed by a Committee of...
The purpose of the Immigration Law Section, Younger Lawyer’s Division (ILS-YLD) is to increase FBA-ILS membership of younger lawyers from all...