I thought I’d bring your attention to three upcoming conferences that crystallize the enormous changes taking place in the legal services marketplace these days. I aim to attend all three, but if you can get to even one of them, you’ll be exposed to some tremendous insights into what’s happening in the legal profession right now.
The first stop will be Denver, Colorado, from September 25-26, 2009. That’s where the College of Law Practice Management will be hosting its inaugural Futures Conference, as leaders and visionaries of the legal profession lay out their vision of the future course of this industry. Keynote presentations will be made by Ward Bower of Altman Weil, Bruce MacEwen of Adam Smith Esq., and Harry Trueheart, Chairman of Nixon Peabody LLP, with interactive discussions provided by the Fellows themselves. I wrote about this event in more detail here, and I continue to highly recommend it for anyone interested in where the profession is heading.
Next up is Toronto, Ontario, from November 16-17, 2009. The Canadian Bar Association will present its fifth annual Law Firm Leadership Conference, with a focus on change management. There’s an amazing international lineup for this event: Richard Susskind, Bruce MacEwen again, Legal OnRamp’s Paul Lippe, Cravath, Swaine & Moore’s Evan Chesler, Valorem Law Group’s Patrick J. Lamb, top GCs like David Allgood and Gord Currie, and the managing partners of Torys, Fasken Martineau, and other firms. More information and registration details are available at the CBA website.
The third and final leg of the tour is in Washington, D.C., from March 22-23, 2010. The Center for the Study of the Legal Profession at Georgetown University Law Center will host a symposium titled “Law Firm Evolution: Brave New World or Business As Usual?” The call for papers has gone out, and there’s still time to submit your abstract: September 15, 2009, is the deadline for proposals. The Center’s previous symposium, on the future of the global law firm, attracted a stellar cast of managing partners, leading academics, and professional thought leaders. This year’s symposium figures to be no less insightful and significant.
So there you go: three North American hotspots for talking about and advancing the cause of innovation on legal services delivery. If you plan on attending one or more, please let me know.