The Atlanta Lawyer — May 2013 The Atlanta Lawyer
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Thank You For The Opportunity To Serve
Lynn M. Roberson

This will be my last President’s message prior to our annual meeting on May 22 when I will pass the gavel to your incoming president, Wade Watson. Wade will be outstanding as he has worked long and hard for this great opportunity. He will be as humbled as I have been at the wonderful opportunities the presidency presents for leadership, meetings (LOTS of meetings!), and working with the best lawyers in the state who are so generous with their time and give blood, sweat and tears for the betterment of the profession we all love.

This month’s Atlanta Lawyer cover is a collage of photographs from the LawJam over the past few years. LawJam is a wonderful opportunity for some of the bar’s lawyers with musical talent to showcase their creativity and entertain us in the process. LawJam also serves a terrific purpose in raising money for the Atlanta Bar Foundation’s pro bono and charitable activities. I urge you all to come and to be hosts if you can. Bring a younger lawyer with you. In fact, bring all your summer clerks! They will enjoy it and you will become much more hip in their eyes!

As I look back over my year as your president, I am so grateful for this time to serve and to my firm for supporting me during this year of service. I am grateful to my spouse, who thoroughly enjoyed his year as first gentleman, but is probably ready to get back to normal. I am grateful to the bar board and committee members who gave so unselfishly of their time in service to others. A bar president is only as successful as the bar members who do all the real work of the organization. Finally, I must thank the bar staff – those people who work long and hard day after day behind the scenes to make us all look good. We all know that without them, the bar cannot function.

And I am grateful to my parents who brought me to a place where I could rise to the occasion and serve as bar president. In just one generation, they brought us from poverty to prosperity through their strong emphasis on education and hard work.

My mother grew up on small ranches and farms in northern California. Her first dress was bartered by her mother for four coyote pelts.

My father was born very poor in Alabama and quit school in the eighth grade to ride the rails and live in the hobo jungles during the depression. He then pursued boxing where he had some success, but he found a home when he joined the Army Air Corps and went to war. He fought valiantly in the Pacific and barely survived more than one close encounter. He returned stateside to his wife, but was never the same. He suffered most of his adult life from undiagnosed PTSD. He did not live to see me sworn in as President of the Atlanta Bar, but he surely would have been proud!