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Michelle BanksAS 2016 KICKS OFF, the MCCA team has created three showcase educational opportunities for you. I encourage you to plan on attending any or all of these events. I will attend all three and hope to see you and members of your team participating. Not only do MCCA events offer excellent CLE-approved legal programming, they are intimate enough that you and your team can make networking matter.

The MCCA General Counsel Summit, held April 13-16 in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., is a four-day event that provides innovative educational offerings on leadership and diversity. Many of these sessions are also CLE approved, and many people commented to me last year that the networking at this relaxed event is unsurpassed. This annual educational and recreational event is the sole fundraiser supporting the MCCA LMJ Scholarship Program, named after MCCA’s Founder Lloyd M. Johnson. Since 2004, the LMJ Scholarship Program has given out $2.85 million to LMJ Scholars—outstanding diverse individuals attending law school. We did not raise this money alone. Your generous contributions made these scholarships possible. Details about GCS are at www.mcca.com/gcs and you can learn more about the LMJ Scholarship Program at www.mcca.com/scholarships.

Washington, D.C., will again host the MCCA Creating Pathways to Diversity Conference on July 18. This full-day conference promotes the advancement of diversity and inclusion in the legal profession with cutting-edge sessions, focused on global diversity, inclusive leadership, and talent optimization, many of which are approved for CLE. Quickly following on the heels of this event are two special programs for both inside and outside counsel: The Blueprint and The Exchange. Blueprint sets up an engaging mock competition to provide corporate legal services that will enhance outside counsel business development skills in a way that matters to inside counsel. Exchange is a MCCA member-only networking breakfast that provides an opportunity to expand your professional network in a targeted way whether you are outside or inside counsel. Both of these special sessions are open only to Pathways conference attendees. Details about these three programs can be found at www.mcca.com/pathways.

The MCCA CLE Expo hosts two days of advanced educational seminars focused on leading topics of interest to the legal community and multiple networking opportunities. Many sessions are CLE-approved, which makes the October 6-7 time frame a perfect way to round out your professional development calendar. We are thrilled to announce that after years in Chicago, Ill., and then Southern Calif., CLE Expo is moving this year to inspiring New Orleans, La. So, save the date! Event details, including past conference agendas, can be found at www.mcca.com/cleexpo.

Thank you for partnering with us to advance diversity and inclusion in the legal profession. Your support allows MCCA to provide diverse lawyers with key leadership development programs, our member organizations with substantive research and engaging discussion about the value of an inclusive legal workplace, and opportunities for our stakeholders to develop meaningful professional relationships with each other.

Happy New Year and I look forward to seeing you at one or more of these 2016 CLE events.

Michelle Banks
MCCA Chairperson

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