DRI Winter Board of Directors Meeting

Posted on March 1, 2010 10:17 by Charles H. Cole

I write as we finish up the Winter DRI Board of Directors meeting in Orlando. The gathering of all directors has been exciting, stimulating and thought-provoking. We addressed a number of challenges and examined our processes. We studied our educational programs and reviewed critical membership issues. A number of initiatives were considered which will favorably impact our members, our clients, and the judicial system as a whole. Issues involving diversity, women in the law, the role of an independent judiciary, and the importance of jury trials and jury service were front and center.

The ability to serve on the DRI Board of Directors remains a privilege and a responsibility. Good things are forecast for 2010 and the coming years. Challenges remain and responses are forthcoming. The future is bright. To all members, get involved and become an active part of the largest organization of defense attorneys in the world.

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Categories: Board of Directors

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Online Networking 101

Posted on September 2, 2009 05:15 by Charles H. Cole

I'm pleased to announce that DRI's Public Policy and Technology Committees will present an intriguing and fascinating webcast on October 1, 2009 discussing how to grow your practice using the Internet. Web 2.0 has grown exponentially and all attorneys must know how and why it works. The program will review such tools as the DRI website and its blog, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and other vehicles to market and enhance your practice. The details on the program should be published fairly soon. Look for the information and make sure you sign up.

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Categories: Technology | WebCast

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DRI Board of Directors

Posted on May 18, 2009 05:39 by Charles H. Cole

While attending the DRI Board of Directors meeting, I participated in a very interesting discussion involving the effects of technology on the future of our practice. It is important to contemplate the exciting and somewhat scary changes that are expected in the coming years. In looking to the future, one must reflect on recent changes involving the Internet, the Blackberry, Facebook, Twitter, and Blogging. The speed and availability of information over the internet can be overwhelming.

Will we be facing the “virtual courtroom” in the coming years? Is the availability of wide-spread electronic information to jurors hindering our ability to control the flow of information in a manner consistent with the rules of evidence? Can we or should we control that flow of information and prevent jury access to cell phones, web browsers, and Twitter during trials? Has our “open” and “liberal” rules of discovery hampered the right to a swift and economical jury trial? Is ESI crippling the ability to manage discovery? So much to think about! These discussions will likely continue with vigor so to best protect the right to jury trial and the professional and economic survival of our profession.

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DRI Europe "Culture Clash" Seminar

Posted on May 14, 2009 03:45 by Charles H. Cole

I am attending the DRI Europe Seminar in Munich, Germany. I have been very impressed with the content of the program and the quality of speakers. I am learning that we have very different rules of discovery and procedure in the US when compared to the rules in Great Britain and on the Continent.

For those doing international work, whether general corporate or litigation, fully understanding these rules are critical to one's successful navigation of the minefield created in this area. Having heard many fine speakers today, it seems difficult to fathom legal work in this area without a full understanding of the conflicts that exist. There does not appear to be a "quick fix" as one speaker noted to the conflicts. I am looking forward to the remaining speakers later today.

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The Illinois Supreme Court has issues an important new decision affecting proximate cause in Asbestos and related matters. This ruling will have significant impact in toxic tort matters. The case of Nolan v. Weil-McLain, No. 103137 (April 16, 2009) must be read by all who practice in this area.

Click here to view decision

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Categories: Asbestos | Supreme Court

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An important decision has been rendered by the United States Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit in Beck v. Dobrowski. Particularly noteworthy is Judge Posner's citation with approval to an article authored by Steven Puiszis of Hinshaw & Culbertson in Chicago. Steve is currently serving as the DRI State Representative for Illinois and has been an active DRI member. He was also a Past President of the Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel (IDC). Congratulations to Mr. Puiszis.

Charles H. Cole
Schuyler Roche
ccole@schuylerroche.com

 

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Categories: Securities Exchange Act

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Now more than ever!

Posted on March 13, 2009 07:15 by Charles H. Cole

Attending the DRI State Representatives meeting brings home the point that DRI has maintained its relevance in these difficult economic times. The organization strives not only to serve the interests of members in terms of education and networking, but continues to work with corporations to enhance the visibility of DRI attorneys for selection as outside counsel.

We continue to work to improve the DRI "Brand" in furtherance of the DRI Strategic Plan. The group of DRI leaders attending this meeting is quite impressive and committed to excellence. All of them would serve you well as outside counsel.

Charles H. Cole
Schuyler Roche
ccole@schuylerroche.com

 

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Categories: DRI Brand

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Getting the Word Out

Posted on March 2, 2009 03:16 by Charles H. Cole

DRI is going to blog from seminars. Everyone attending a DRI Seminar is encouraged to share your experience while attending a seminar. We'd like to hear about the substance of the program, the experience of networking on a social and professional level, and the overall experience. No DRI seminar has ever failed to amaze me in terms of the richness and depth of its presentations. I have secured friendships and made business contacts at these programs which have far exceeded expectations. Hope you'll join us.

Charles H. Cole
Schuyler Roche
ccole@schuylerroche.com

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Categories: Continuing Legal Education

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The DRI Brand

Posted on February 17, 2009 03:12 by Charles H. Cole

I've been attending the DRI Board of Directors meeting for the past two days and marvel at the level of talent of this truly remarkable volunteer organization. In these difficult economic times, my colleagues on the Board give their time and effort to make DRI an organization of superior lawyers committed to the protections inherent in a democratic civil justice system.

Holding court with these insightful men and women discussing the best ways to serve the membership while promoting the greater good warms my heart and makes me proud to be a part of this effort. As a member of this preeminent civil defense bar association, you can be confident that your interests are foremost. I hope you are a member of DRI, whether active in a DRI Committee or serving your professional interests on a state or local level. If not, you really need to consider becoming a part of this movement.

I believe you will be hearing and learning more about DRI in the coming weeks and months. The brand of DRI will become far more prominent in our legal profession. In difficult times, DRI will be ready to answer to call. I'm very happy to be a part of it all.

Charles H. Cole
Schuyler Roche
ccole@schuylerroche.com

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The Embarassment of the Illinois Governor

Posted on January 28, 2009 05:00 by Charles H. Cole

I'm sorry, but I don't get it. Once an elected official has lost the confidence of the people he serves, morality, ethics and the public trust require an introspective analysis into whether continued service is desirable or appropriate. The people of Illinois deserve a Governor who not only avoids the appearance of impropriety but actively tries to avoid embarrassing himself and his so-called constituency.

Forget the impeachment trial in Springfield for a moment. It is nothing more than a constitutionally permissible recall vote. It is not a criminal trial and the rules pertaining to civil liberties and the rights of the criminally accused just do not apply. Is there a basis to remove this Governor from office? You bet! Has the Governor acted responsibly and appropriate in the face of the charges brought upon the impeachment? No way!

Whether Mr. Blagojevich is criminally guilty of any of the charges in the criminal complaint or in the soon-to-be-filed indictment is for a court of law with all the necessary protections applied including the right to jury trial, due process, the right to confront your accusers, and guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. What is at issue this week has been a reprehensible media circus filed with sound bites and attempts to invoke such honored men as Gandhi, Mandela and King.

When others in elected positions have faced personal or professional embarrassment which impeded their ability to continue to serve in office, the high road was usually selected which involved a mea culpa and a resignation. These matters involve the court of public opinion and not a court of law. There are no issues of due process at play here. Let's stop the charade and do what is right and fair for the people of Illinois, Mr. Governor. Tender your resignation and allow us to move forward from this pitiful chapter.

Charles H. Cole
Schuyler Roche, Chicago IL

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Categories: Judicial Process | Media

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