Letter from the President
Be A Better Attorney in 2019 – Five Tips From Your President
By Jason P. Stoffel
I am honored to serve as your Clark County Bar Association President in 2019. I am originally from Iowa and have lived in Nevada since 2004. I am filling some big shoes with the past president, John Aldrich, who completed his term in 2018 as the CCBA president. John served the CCBA well. I look forward to accepting my role and will continue to carry on the tradition as a good CCBA president.
Here are five things I want you to know about what I believe in.
Throughout my career, I have always taken family law cases with the Legal Aid Center of Southern Nevada and participated in the Ask-a-Lawyer program, helping the less fortunate in our community. Not only have I learned to become a better attorney by working with the less fortunate, I am proud to serve and give back to the community when I can. I have been named Pro Bono Attorney of the Year and have won other honors. However, I hereby challenge others to take cases pro bono so that the aspirational goal of 20 hours of free or reduced fee cases is a reality for all Nevada attorneys.
Take time for yourself
I try and set at least two vacations a year for myself. There is a healthy balance that needs to be made or an attorney will suffer career dissatisfaction and burnout. It is ok to recharge and come back from a vacation ready as ever. I am fortunate to have great staff that can hold the fort down while I take some needed down time. Plan ahead and you can take a needed break.
Do more than the minimum for CLE’s
Too often, attorneys will do the bare minimum to meet their Continuing Legal Education requirement. I challenge everyone to DOUBLE what credits you earned last year. Not only will you likely be a better attorney staying on top of changes to the law and field of practice, you will stay off the naughty list, as too many attorneys are not CLE compliant. Our clients deserve the best and not an attorney who takes the “good enough” approach.
Get involved with the CCBA
If you are reading this article, you are already a CCBA member. However, there are many ways to maximize your member benefit such as taking advantage of CLEs, social events, volunteer opportunities, discount Golden Knights tickets, etc. Many committees with the CCBA are seeking to add members and many hands in various committees make light work. Why not get more involved? Also, with the CCBA “Meet Your Judges Mixer” being held at the Smith Center, lets make this event the most well attended event ever!
Be a mentor
I encourage everyone to look at a newer attorney that we have cases with and basically offer to “break bread.” Make it clear that the practice of law can be challenging. Some of my most rewarding experiences have been offering to help a newer attorney with questions that they may have long after the case I have with them is completed. I remember those that helped me in my first few years of practice and I certainly am committed to passing on my knowledge to others. I have learned to value the relationships with others.
Note: This page is updated with the release of each edition of the printed bar journal, COMMUNIQUÉ.