American Inn Of Court Met Virtually To Elect New Officers

Saturday, June 20, 2020
Pam Fleenor
Pam Fleenor

The members of the Justices Ray L. Brock Jr. - Robert E. Cooper American Inn of Court met virtually via WebEx for their annual business meeting and wrapped up another year with a twist to electing its new officers.  

The purpose of each American Inn of Court, where membership is by invitation only, is to improve the skills, professionalism, ethics, and civility of both the Bench and Bar (judges and attorneys).

The Chattanooga chapter is composed of over 100 local judges and lawyers and the group met both in-person and virtually over this past year.  In-person meetings at the Walden Club from September 2019 through early-March 2020 saw the group raise $10,650 in just over an hour that was donated recently to The Orange Grove Center (“Orange Grove”), launch a new program to begin collecting suits for the local Drug Court participants and other charitable organizations that assist persons being reintroduced to the workforce, and provide continuing legal education to members.

In May, the local Inn conducted its first virtual and remote meeting of members and learned about the local plans for state court operations in Hamilton County regarding COVID-19 that were approved by the Tennessee Supreme Court and other plans being implemented in the local federal courts.

On June 11, the Inn again conducted a remote electronic meeting by WebEx to wrap up the Inn’s annual business meeting and elect the Inn’s new officers and executive committee members.  The new slate of officers is as follows: 

THE JUSTICES RAY L. BROCK, JR. – ROBERT E. COOPER 
AMERICAN INN OF COURT
2020-2021 OFFICERS AND EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE MEMBERS
President: Chancellor Pamela A. Fleenor
President Elect: Katherine H. Lentz
Immediate Past President: David C. Higney 
Secretary & Achieving Excellence Coordinator: Ron D. Powers
Treasurer: W. Adam Izell
Founding Member, Executive Cmte. Member: W. Neil Thomas, III
Membership & Program Co-Chairs, Executive Cmte. Members: Sheri A. Fox & Jennifer Exum 
Special Projects Chair & Executive Cmte. Member: Judge Gerald Webb 
Executive Committee Members At Large: Ariel Anthony, William R. Hannah, Richard C. Rose, Lee Davis, & Chris Collins 
Technical Assistance/Advisor : Kara L. West

At the June annual business meeting, just before passing the gavel to Chancellor Pam Fleenor as the Inn’s new president, Immediate Past President David Higney noted to the members that when the continuing education theme for the Inn year was developed by leadership there was no one in the group who could have predicted a pandemic like the coronavirus.  In summer 2019, the theme selected for the Inn’s teaching groups to focus upon through 2020 involved first identifying the ways older members had overcome and forged through crisis to operate successful law practices and, then, to combine those historical lessons with the emerging technology, energy and analytical methods new members now offer to established practitioners and judges. 

Mr. Higney later added that those lessons “proved fortuitous and beneficial to the Inn’s membership.”   He said, “All of us have gained new tools, perspectives and ideas about how to confront COVID-19 challenges in a manner that helps our clients, our law firms, and the courts, as we begin navigating the unique landscapes that now lay ahead of our civil and criminal justice systems." Some changes to court operations brought about by the coronavirus could become the “new normal.”

The Inn will continue meeting 10 times per year, whether remotely or in-person, to foster improved education, professionalism, ethics, and civility, that are the cornerstones of its purpose. 

For additional information, please contact David Higney, Esq. at 756-8400, ext. 230 or dhigney@gkhpc.com


Katherine H. Lentz
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