Meet the BCBA Executive Council
Members interested in serving on the Baltimore County Bar Association Executive Council submit a letter of interest to be considered by the Nominations Committee, prior to December 31st each year. Once elected, that person begins a ten-year track of leadership service.
Jay D. Miller
Law Offices of Peter G. Angelos
Baltimore County Bar Association
The Baltimore County Bar Association continues to honor its past and focus on its future, connecting members to one another and the community, while promoting access to justice and respect for the rule of law.
The mission of the Baltimore County Bar Association is to serve as a leader in advancing excellence, ethical conduct, professionalism and public responsibility in the legal profession; to improve the efficiency, fairness and accessibility of our system of justice for all citizens; to increase the public’s understanding and appreciation of our profession and our legal system; to use our collective resources to improve the well-being of our community and its citizens, especially our youth; and to identify and support the needs of a diverse membership and foster an environment in which members experience a sense of fulfillment and satisfaction in the practice of law.
The earliest records of the Baltimore County Bar Association commence with typed minutes of a May 21, 1920, meeting, some sixty-nine years after the formation of Baltimore County as a unit of government. The official separation of Baltimore County from Baltimore City had occurred on July 4, 1851. After the separation, however, it took three separate elections to have Towson declared the seat of County government and to provide for local government. The County Courthouse was started in 1854. Originally, it was to have cost $30,000, but not surprisingly, there was a cost overrun, and an additional $20,000 had to be raised to complete the structure. The first session of court in Baltimore County occurred in January, 1857. There have been three separate additions to the structure since that time, with the final addition occurring in 1958. A new courthouse was constructed and put in use across a plaza from the original structure in 1974.
Courtroom 5 in the Old Courthouse is still used for trials as well as for ceremonies and for Bar Association meetings. It has been fully restored and contains portraits of past jurists and members of the Bar since the founding of the County. The portraits were commissioned by the Bar Association starting in the mid-1920's and include some of the most prominent members of the bench and bar in the State. The courtroom itself so accurately reflects the public image of an old-style courtroom that it has been used in movies and in county promotional videos.
CIVILITY: I shall (1) conduct myself in a manner that enhances the public perception of law-yers; (2) strive to exemplify and promote the highest ideals of the legal profession; (3) be courte-ous in all professional relations; and (4) encourage courteous behavior in others.
PREPARATION: I shall be adequately prepared to represent my client on all occasions.
ZEAL AND COMMITMENT: I shall represent my client zealously and, after becoming thor-oughly knowledgeable concerning the facts of the matter and the applicable law, strive to achieve a desirable result as expeditiously and inexpensively as possible. In doing so, I shall ex-ercise independent professional judgment as to the merits of the issue and its appropriate resolu-tion. I will not permit my client’s ill will to interfere with the proper discharge of my obligations as an officer of the Court.
PUNCTUALITY: I shall be punctual in communicating with others. I shall return phone calls promptly. I will be prepared for all hearings, depositions, and other proceedings. I shall make best efforts to notify promptly all other persons affected by any delay that prevents me form ap-pearing on time.
COMMUNICATION BETWEEN LAWYERS: I will be certain that others can rely on my word. I will always be courteous, candid and honest in my communications with other lawyers. I will observe all oral agreements I make and will memorialize those agreements promptly in or-der to avoid misunderstandings. I will not criticize counsel personally at any time. In negotia-tions, I will act courteously and in good faith. I will state information and proposals to other par-ties accurately and within the authority granted by my client. I will not quibble unnecessarily over style, but will focus on the substance of the matter at issue.
DEADLINES: (1) Before scheduling dates or imposing deadlines, I shall endeavor to accom-modate calendar conflicts resulting from previously scheduled hearings, depositions, meetings, conferences, vacations, seminars, or other functions. (2) I shall agree to reasonable requests for extensions of time and for waiver of procedural formalities when the legitimate interests of my client will not be materially or adversely affected. (3) I shall not request an extension of time solely for the purpose of unjustified delay or to obtain a tactical advantage. (4) I shall avoid last-minute cancellations or requests for extension of time except in cases of legitimate necessity. (5) I shall not make scheduling, filing or service decisions that unfairly limit another party’s oppor-tunity to prepare or respond. (6) I shall not impose arbitrary or unreasonable deadlines for ac-tions by others. (7) I shall notify other counsel at the earliest time when hearings, depositions, meetings, or conferences are to be cancelled or postponed.
COMMUNICATIONS WITH THE COURT: (1) I shall speak civilly to all court personnel. (2) I shall be mindful of time constraints when requesting hearings, and shall attempt to schedule lengthy proceedings well in advance. (3) I shall not attempt to alter the appearance of neutrality in my dealings with court personnel. (4) I shall promptly notify the court when cases have been settled. (5) I shall refrain from making unauthorized ex parte communications.
DISCOVERY: (1) I shall (a) limit my discovery requests to items that are necessary for the preparation and evaluation of my client’s case; (b) conduct discovery in a courteous and respect-ful manner; (c) conduct discovery without harassing or intimidating any person; and (d) volun-tarily withdraw any claim or defense that should be withdrawn as a result of information re-ceived during discovery. (2) I shall refrain from (a) interpreting the adverse party’s discovery requests in an artificially restrictive manner; (b) engaging in any conduct during a deposition that would be inappropriate in open court; (c) delaying my response to discovery requests; or (d) pro-ducing documents in a disorganized or unintelligible fashion, or in a way calculated to obscure a particular document.
NEGOTIATIONS: (1) I shall always encourage my client to explore the possibility of settle-ment as soon as enough is known about the case to make settlement discussions meaningful. (2) I shall always consider the issue of whether my client’s interest would be better served by alter-native methods of dispute resolution.
GENDER, RACIAL AND ETHNIC BIAS: In both my personal and professional life, I shall, at all times, refrain from engaging in conduct that creates the appearance of gender, racial or ethnic bias.
The Baltimore County Bar Foundation is the fundraising arm of the
Baltimore County Bar Association, but is a separately incorporated 501(c)(3) entity.
The objectives of the Foundation are to foster and maintain the honor and integrity of the profession of the law; to improve and to facilitate the administration of justice; to enhance and improve the image of lawyers; and to promote the study of the law and research therein, and the diffusion of knowledge thereof.
In furtherance of those objectives, the Foundation provides financial support for non-profit programs and organizations that have a significant relation to the Baltimore area community and that may be expected to contribute to:
1. the improvement of the administration of justice;
2. the provision of legal services through staff attorneys or unpaid volunteers to persons who find it difficult to obtain legal services through normal channels;
3. the education of the general public, including primary and secondary school students, regarding law and the legal system; or
4. the improvement of the image of lawyers and of the legal profession through lawyer participation in community outreach programs and other good works.
The Foundation meets three times a year, and reviews applications as they are received at its next meeting. The completed Grant Application should be submitted to the Baltimore County Bar Foundation, 100 County Courts Building, 401 Bosley Avenue, Towson, MD 21204, for consideration.
If you would like to make a tax-deductible donation to the Baltimore County Bar Foundation, please call the Bar Office (410-337-9100). Thank you for your continued commitment and support oft he Baltimore County Bar Foundation.
If interested, please e-mail Rachel Ruocco at email@example.com.
If the Baltimore County Public Schools are delayed or closed for weather, all BCBA meetings in the County Courts Building are cancelled. Of course, if the Circuit Court for Baltimore County is closed, programs are cancelled. This would include Continuing Legal Education, Bench/Bar Committee and Executive Council meetings. Every effort will be made to notify anyone registered for a program via email, and to reschedule the program. If you are not registered for a program, you may not receive the email notice.
Of course, there are exceptions when we can’t cancel due to contracts. These would be the Annual Black-Tie Banquet, Wine Tasting, Golf Outing and Bull Roast. If you are in doubt please call the Bar Office about these events. If you are attending a Committee dinner or meeting, please call the Chair of the Committee directly. Committee Chair contact information can be found in Committee Reports.
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The Baltimore County Bar Association presents the information on this web site as a service to our members and other Internet users. While the information on this site is about legal issues, it is not legal advice. Moreover, due to the rapidly changing nature of the law and our reliance on information provided by outside sources, we make no warranty or guarantee concerning the accuracy or reliability of the content at this site or at other sites to which we link.