Chair’s Comments

By Leslie Pegram

Hello, 2019!  If 2018 was a great one for you, congratulations. If it was not so great, you survived. Congratulations to you, too.  (We’ve all been there.) I look forward to the beginning of a new year. It’s an opportunity to reflect on the prior year and set a positive path for the new year. I think it’s important to set goals – personally and professionally.  I’m sure we all share similar goals for improved health and well-being. As important as it is to nurture and achieve your personal goals, don’t forget about your professional goals. I’ll share a few of mine for 2019: 1) Continue to work hard as Paralegal Division Chair 2) Finish up the Hurricane Florence professional clothing donation efforts 3) further develop my leadership skills and 4) (finally) test for a national paralegal certification. Needless to say, it will be another busy year.

If one of your goals is to become more involved in the Paralegal Division and the NCBA, below please find a variety of opportunities to serve our fellow citizens of North Carolina:

●      Legal Feeding Frenzy:  Food banks across North Carolina are welcoming volunteers from the legal community this January and February.  Follow this link to learn more: Food Bank Opportunities With the Legal Feeding Frenzy

●      FEMA Appeal and Restoration Clinics:  the NC Pro Bono Resource Center is looking for attorney, paralegal, and law student volunteers. Clinics will take place on Feb. 9 in Wilmington and Feb. 23 in Morehead City. Paralegals and law student volunteers can sign up here. If you know an attorney interested in volunteering to take cases remotely, please share this link for clinics (training and malpractice insurance are provided).

●      Disaster Legal Services Hotline: Phone intake still needs volunteers. Volunteer here.

●      Wills for Heroes Clinics:
Saturday, Feb. 2, 2019 – Winston-Salem
Saturday, Feb. 23, 2019 – Durham
Saturday, March 9, 2019 – Durham
Saturday, March 16, 2019 – Raleigh

Find more information here.

The Division is filled with wonderful members who contribute their time and energy to helping out their local communities. I would like to extend a special note of thanks and appreciation to the following Division members who volunteered their time for the following NCBA and NC Bar Foundation initiatives during the first half of the bar year!

FEMA Disaster Recovery Centers Volunteers

Carol Bates

Debra Cranford

Lauren Cullipher

Natasha Deloach

Denise Hargrove*

Alice Herring

Linda L Johnson

Nancy Martin

Jill Lacey Perras*

Laura Peterson

Rachel Royal*

Joyce A Ward

Dede Williams

Disaster Legal Services Hotline Volunteers

Susan Brey

Cynthia Cook

Stephanie Elliott*

Gabrielle Fressle

Denise Hargrove*

Elisabeth Rosa Di Sant

Emma Sherry

Wills for Heroes Notaries

Yazmeen Gadalla

Cynthia Knight

Katelyn Morton

Teri Rodriguez*

Hurricane Florence Clothing Drive Volunteers/Collection Site Hosts

Tina Dadio*

Stephanie Durham-Rivera*

Stephanie Elliott*

Yazmeen Gadalla

Denise Hargrove*

Debbie Harris*

Alicia Lewis

Jill Lacey Perras*

Rachel Royal*

Tina Thacker*

Carolyn Timmons*

*Indicates PD Council Member, Committee Chair or Section Liaison

I would also like to encourage you to consider applying to become a council member.  Council members serve a three-year term and are integral in shaping the future of the Division and make decisions on business items for the membership.  The application period will be opening soon. If you have questions, please feel free to reach out to me for additional information.

Please save the date for the Paralegal Division Annual Meeting on May 3, 2019 at the Winston-Salem Marriott.  Our CPE planners have been working hard to put together another fantastic program. If you are a recent winner of our Premier Pass giveaway or have purchases a Premier Pass, you can use the pass to attend the Annual Meeting.  Be on the lookout for more information.

Also, please make plans to be at the NCBA’s 2019 NCBA Annual Meeting, June 20 – June 23, 2019.  This year the Annual Meeting will be held at Biltmore in Asheville.

Thank you again for being a member. It’s great to see our members be involved in our local community and throughout the NCBA. I hope 2019 is your best year yet.