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  • 25 Apr 2017 3:30 PM | Lynette Pitt (Administrator)

    by Erin Collins, Director, NCADA Board of Directors

    The NCADA’s website now contains an online resource that connects the entire membership for discussion of trending issues, experts, recent case law, CLE, and any other topic of interest. These discussion forums are designed to allow NCADA members to easily engage, interact and brainstorm with each other from anywhere at any time by simply logging onto the NCADA’s website and using the forums.

    What are these forums?:

    The discussion forums were added to the NCADA website as a part of its recent update. The NCADA website contains forums for the following practice groups: Commercial Law, Construction, Employment Law, Government Law, General Liability, Medical Malpractice, Product Liability, and Workers’ Compensation. Additionally, the Young Lawyers Committee, the Women Litigators, and the Paralegals also have their own discussion forums. Members can choose to be a part of any or all of these forums.

    The forums allow NCADA members to discuss any issue of interest with other members that are involved in the same practice groups or committees. So far NCADA members have used the forum in several different ways:

    • Workers’ compensation practitioners used their discussion forum to collaborate regarding the impact of recent appellate court decisions;
    • A construction law attorney used the construction law forum in his search of an expert;
    • The general liability forum was used to brainstorm an attorney’s strategy for dismissing an untimely appeal to the Court of Appeals; and
    • The paralegal forum was used to discuss an upcoming CLE.

    These are all important topics and it is evident that insight from other members would be helpful to the inquiring members.

    How do we access these forums?:

    To use these forums, follow the below easy steps.

    Step 1. Easy Log In. Go to www.ncada.org. Click "Log In" at the top right hand corner. If you have not logged in yet and set your new password, go to "Forgot Password" to have a "Reset Password" email sent to you, then create your preferred password (min of 7 characters; max of 50; case sensitive). Then access the site. Email lynettepitt@ncada.org if you have problems.

    Step 2. Go to Members Area/Forums. Here there will be a list of available Forums for each practice group, paralegals, women litigators and young lawyers. You may participate in any one or all!

    Step 3. Subscribe. Select your Forum(s) of interest. Click the 'Subscribe to forum' link on the top right hand corner. Once subscribed, you will receive email notifications of updates to any of the topics in the Forum with links to the new or updated topics. You may even subscribe to individual topics.

    Step 4. Create a Discussion Topic. Access the Forum of interest. A 'Create topic' button is at the top of this page which will take you to a template to create your message. Then 'Create' to post and replies will come directly to your mailbox.

    Step 5. Manage Your Preferences. The default notification for Forums is a daily email. You may change the frequency of the email notifications from daily to weekly or immediately.

    To change your Forum subscription settings, go to the Email subscriptions page within your member profile and click the Edit Profile button. Additionally, in the Forum subscriptions section, you can unsubscribe from forums and topics and change the frequency of forum update notifications. Do not forget to click 'Save' to save your changes.

    How do we convert these forums to a tool that can be useful to our members?:

    This answer is simple: we must use it. The goal is to maximize the amount of useful information being provided to the discussion boards. The higher volume of members using this forum will translate to more traffic, more information, and more diverse perspectives on any given topic. Please subscribe to your forums of interest and consider using the forums when searching for information. Please also consider sharing your expertise when another member needs information.

    NCADA members generally have online access at almost any time of the day and regularly need expert information, case law updates, and brainstorming sessions. The NCADA discussion forums could be an extraordinarily helpful tool if regularly used by the membership. If we all commit to subscribing to discussion forums of interest, the discussion forums have an opportunity to become a valuable part of the NCADA membership.

    Thank you for your assistance in this endeavor!


  • 27 Mar 2017 2:45 PM | Lynette Pitt (Administrator)

    The terms of five current members of the NCADA Board of Directors will expire in June 2017. Nominations for the five vacant Director positions are now being accepted to serve a three year term beginning at the close of the 2017 Annual Meeting through the close of the 2020 Annual Meeting.

    Director responsibilities include:

    • Regular attendance and participation at quarterly meetings of the Board;
    • Membership recruitment and retention;
    • Contributing and participating in Association programs and services;
    • Other individual responsibilities as required.

    To qualify for a position on the NCADA Board of Directors, the nominee should

    • Be a member in good standing with the North Carolina State Bar and the North Carolina Association of Defense Attorneys; and
    • Shown commitment and support of the NCADA through regular attendance at the NCADA's Annual Meeting, other programs and activities.

    Leadership opportunities in the NCADA’s Practice Groups are open for nominations. Members interested in the continued growth and relevance of the NCADA through its practice groups will be considered for leadership positions in the following areas of practice: Construction, Commercial, Employment, General Liability, Government, Medical Malpractice, Product Liability and Workers’ Compensation.

    The following information should be included in the nomination:

    1) Member Name, Firm, contact information and a brief biographical sketch;

    2) Brief statement by the nominee of his or her availability and commitment to actively serve as a member of the Board, or as a practice group leader;

    3) Brief statement why nominee would like to serve as a member of the Board of Directors, or as a practice group leader.

    Persons interested in submitting a nomination may E mail or write to the Nominating Committee in care of Lynette Pitt, Executive Director (E mail: lpitt@ncada.org; U.S. Mail: 3700 National Drive, Ste 212, Raleigh, NC 27612).

    Nominations must be received no later than Monday, April 10, 2017, 5 p.m.

  • 28 Feb 2017 4:28 PM | Lynette Pitt (Administrator)

    Nominations are being accepted for the 2017 J. Robert Elster Award for Professional Excellence. This Award is named in honor of the life and career of J. Robert Elster, the second president of the Association. 

    Please nominate a present or past member of the NCADA for consideration as a possible recipient of the Award for Professional Excellence that will be presented at the 40th Annual Meeting, June 15-18, 2017. Your letter of nomination should be addressed to J. Nicholas Ellis, Chair, NCADA Awards Committee, 4030 Wake Forest Road, Ste 203, Raleigh, NC 27609. The letter should reference the "J. Robert Elster Award for Professional Excellence," include the name and current address of your nominee, along with supporting information and any appropriate documentation you believe will help the Awards Committee in making a recommendation to the Board of Directors. Your letter must be received at the Raleigh office no later than Friday, March 24, 2017.

    Criteria: The recipient shall be a present, or former, member of the North Carolina Association of Defense Attorneys. The recipient must exemplify the highest standards of professionalism, integrity, and ethics, and conduct herself, or himself, in a civil, courteous manner with all persons. The recipient must exemplify sustained, excellent service to individual and corporate defendants in civil litigation, to the Bar, and to the community.

    Other factors that may be considered are involvement in judicial or other professional educational activities; participation in activities that improve the civil justice system; and such other criteria as the Board or Awards Committee shall determine to be important to the extraordinary achievement intended to be recognized by this Award.

    Nomination and Selection:

    Nominations shall be by current members of the NCADA

    The Awards Committee shall receive all nominations in confidence. It shall review the nominations, and if a recipient is selected, shall confidentially recommend a recipient of the Award to the Board of Directors of the NCADA. If the Award recipient is approved by the Board of Directors, the Awards Committee shall prepare an outline of the presentation to be made by the President of the NCADA at the Annual Meeting, and shall obtain the Award on behalf of the NCADA for presentation.

    The Award is intended as a special recognition, and it is not necessary that an Award be given as often as annually.

    PAST RECIPIENTS

    2016   John S. Willardson
    2015   Hon. Linda Stephens           2009   Alan W. Duncan
    2014   Harvey L. Cosper, Jr.            2008   William K. Davis
    2013   James W. Williams                2007   J. Donald Cowan, Jr.
    2012   Richard V. Bennett               2006   James D. Blount
    2011   L. P. "Tony" Hornthal, Jr.      2006   Stephen P. Milliken
    2010   Charles E. Burgin                  2005   Richard T. Boyette


  • 17 Oct 2016 9:11 PM | Lynette Pitt (Administrator)

    NCADA's ninth biennial Judicial Candidates' Forum was held on Friday, September 30th. The Forum featured candidates running in statewide elections for seats on the North Carolina's Appellate Courts. Each candidate briefly discussed his or her qualifications and answered a brief question regarding areas of concern for businesses, civil defense attorneys and their clients. In addition to the videos by race, candidate profiles and statements of candidacy statements are available in this special issue of The Resource. Please download and share with colleagues, clients and friends.

  • 10 Oct 2016 11:02 AM | Lynette Pitt (Administrator)

    The N.C. Defense Fund, the political action committee of the North Carolina Association of Defense Attorneys, endorses the following candidates seeking seats on the North Carolina Supreme Court and Court of Appeals:

    For Associate Justice of the North Carolina Supreme Court, the N.C. Defense Fund endorses for the Edmunds Seat: Robert H. Edmunds, Jr.

    For Associate Judge of the North Carolina Court of Appeals, the N.C. Defense Fund endorses:

    For the Geer Seat: Margaret P. Eagles for election to the Court.

    For the Stephens Seat: Linda Stephens for re-election to the Court.

    For the Hunter Seat: Robert J. Hunter, Jr. for re-election to the Court.

    For the Dietz Seat: Richard Dietz for election to the Court.

    For the Zachary Seat: Valerie Johnson Zachary for election to the Court.

    The NC Defense Fund made the decision to endorse each judicial candidate based on the following criteria:

    • Substantial exposure to or appreciation of issues involved in civil litigation;
    • Commitment to the evenhanded application of the rules governing our courts;
    • An outstanding reputation in the legal community;
    • An outstanding record of judicial achievement or possession of the potential to be an outstanding judge.

    The N.C. Defense Fund is the political action committee of the North Carolina Association of Defense Attorneys. The North Carolina Association of Defense Attorneys [NCADA] is a professional association for lawyers and paralegals defending the interests of individuals and businesses in civil litigation. Current membership stands at approximately 900 attorneys and paralegals from across the State.

    For more information about the N.C. Association of Defense Attorneys, please contact the Association office at 1-800-233-2858.

    ***END***

  • 19 Sep 2016 1:00 PM | Lynette Pitt (Administrator)

    The North Carolina Association of Defense Attorneys (“NCADA”) will hold a Judicial Candidates' Forum on Friday, September 30, 2016 from 11:15 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The Forum will feature judicial candidates running in statewide elections for seats on the North Carolina Supreme Court and the North Carolina Court of Appeals. The appellate races are statewide races that impact all citizens of North Carolina.

    Twelve candidates seek election for six open appellate level judicial seats - two candidates for North Carolina Supreme Court and six candidates for North Carolina Court of Appeals. A special appellate candidates publication providing Information about each candidate may be found on the NCADA’s website at www.ncada.org under the Judicial Candidates’ Forum page under the events link or here.

    The Forum will be held at the Grandover Resort & Conference Center in Greensboro, North Carolina in conjunction with the annual Fall Seminar. More than 300 attendees are expected.

    The Forum gives members of the public and the bar a rare opportunity to learn about the candidates who wish to serve the state at the appellate court level. Each candidate will have the opportunity to answer a question germane to the members of the civil defense trial bar and to briefly discuss his or her qualifications for the position.

    The NCADA is a statewide association of lawyers defending the interests of individuals and businesses in North Carolina. For more information about the NCADA or the Judicial Candidates' Forum, please contact the Association office at 919-239-4463 or lpitt@ncada.org.

    ***END***


  • 29 Aug 2016 4:00 PM | Lynette Pitt (Administrator)

    The North Carolina Association of Defense Attorneys (“NCADA”) is pleased to participate as a sponsor of the NC Institute of Political Leadership’s (IOPL)****  Hometown Debates. Partnering with local chambers of commerce, IOPL will host three debates featuring key down-ballot races for lieutenant governor, attorney general, and state treasurer.

    The live debates will be held on consecutive Tuesday nights in September. Candidates for lieutenant governor, Linda Coleman and Dan Forest, will debate in Wilson at Barton College’s Kennedy Theater on September 13. Candidates for attorney general, Buck Newton and Josh Stein, in Asheboro at the Sunset Theater on September 20. The final debate will be between candidates for state treasurer, Dan Blue III and Dale Folwell, at the Statesville Civic Center on September 27. Each debates will begin at 7 p.m. and is open to the public.

    The debates will air on UNC-TV’s NC Channel one day after each event at 9 p.m., and will be broadcast live on radio stations that are part of the NC News Network. The candidates will be questioned by local newspaper editors in each of the three locations.

    NCIOPL is a non-partisan, non-profit organization whose mission is to educate future political and community leaders in modern campaign strategy, ethical decision making, and governance, such that its participants will have a sound grounding in ethical behavior, consensus building, and cooperative and collaborative leadership. No other program in North Carolina offers such a comprehensive curriculum in strategic, nonpartisan political leadership development.

    The NCADA is a professional association for civil trial attorneys defending individuals and businesses in North Carolina. For more information about the NCADA or the Judicial Candidates' Forum, please contact the Association office at 919-239-4463 or lpitt@ncada.org.

    *** End ***


  • 23 Aug 2016 10:30 AM | Lynette Pitt (Administrator)

    The new 2016 Notary Handbook is the first update in 10 years, replacing the 2006 edition. It is now available for purchase from the UNC School of Government bookstore.

    All notaries are required to have the most recent manual as a reference guide (NC Gen Stat § 10B-5(b)(7)).

    This is a great revision of the previous edition and includes more information on the types of transactions notaries may not participate in, red flags, and tips for avoiding trouble situations.

    This edition is available in print and is now in two E-Book formats

    Tip provided by Lawyers Mutual

  • 27 Jul 2016 4:30 PM | Lynette Pitt (Administrator)

    One difference between successful, happy lawyers and frustrated, unhappy ones is time management.

    The first group manages their time wisely. They prioritize, delegate and plan ahead.

    The second group mismanages their time. They procrastinate, miss deadlines and are late for appointments.

    Here are some tips on adding timeliness in your practice:

    • Start with yourself.
    • Take care of the important things.
    • Record your time.
    • Budget your time.
    • No salvation in systems.
    • Prioritize.
    • Just say no.
    • Delegate.
    • Develop a niche.
    • Don’t procrastinate.
    • Call Lawyers Mutual if you miss a deadline.

    More practice management tips at: http://www.lawyersmutualnc.com/blog.


  • 28 Jun 2016 12:38 PM | Lynette Pitt (Administrator)

    John S. Willardson of Willardson Law Firm in Wilkesboro, NC, is the 2016 recipient of NC Association of Defense Attorneys highest award. The J. Robert Elster Award for Professional Excellence recognizes NCADA members who exemplify the highest standards of professionalism, integrity and ethics and who conducts themselves in a civil, courteous manner with all persons. The recipient must exemplify sustained excellent service to individual and corporate defendants in civil litigation, to the Bar and to the community.

    Willardson, an NCADA member since 1984, served as President from 2000 to 2001 after more than a decade of active service as a leader in the Association. At the national level, Willardson served as NC’s State Representative to DRI, the voice of the defense bar, from 2004 to 2007, and then on DRI’s Board of Directors as the Mid-Atlantic Regional Director from 2007 to 2010. Other professional activities include:

    • North Carolina State Bar Councilor for the 23rd District (current);
    • Member of the Chief Justice’s Commission on Professionalism;
    • Member of the North Carolina Bar Association’s Dispute Resolution Council and the Committee for the Independence of the Judiciary;
    • Recipient of NCBA’s Citizen Lawyer Award in 2015;
    • Immediate Past President of the 23rd Judicial District Bar;
    • Past President of the UNC Law Alumni Association;
    • Past President of the Wilkes County Bar Association.

    Additionally, Willardson is a tireless volunteer in his community. In 2010, he was inducted into the YMCA’s Red Triangle Society by the YMCA of Northwest North Carolina. Induction into the Red Triangle Society is the highest honor a Y volunteer can receive. Recipients demonstrate long-term and significant commitment, enthusiasm and dedication to the Y’s mission. Other community service activities include:

    • Chair of the Wilkes Family YMCA Board of Managers;
    • Chair of the Wilkes Family YMCA Annual Giving Campaign and served as a member on the Bandits Triathlon Committee, Board Development Committee, Finance Committee and Membership Committee;
    • Chaired the Merlefest Committee and worked as an event volunteer running the concession stand;
    • Board member for the North Wilkesboro Kiwanis Club, Wilkes Adult Developmental Activity Programs Inc., Hospice, Wilkes Art Gallery, Wilkes Babe Ruth League baseball and Wilkes Flying Club.

    Willardson is a native of Santa Monica, California and has lived and practiced in Wilkesboro, North Carolina for over 35 years after graduating from UNC-Chapel Hill, where he completed a double major in Spanish and political science. He served in the Army before attending UNC Law School where he obtained his J.D. in 1972.

    John Willardson is a true leader in the law and a servant leader in his community.

    North Carolina Association of Defense Attorneys (NCADA) is a professional organization of nearly 900 attorneys and paralegals who devote a majority of their time representing the interests of business and individuals in civil litigation. Visit us at www.ncada.org.


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