Eric Quitugua 2017-04-26 15:00:12
An online portal links new attorneys with mentors across the state. Budding lawyers searching for a support system have one just a few keystrokes away. The SBOT Advisory Network, an online database of experienced practitioners, connects new attorneys with mentors who are willing to answer practice or region-specific questions. “More and more lawyers are choosing to hang their own shingle. They may not know who to reach out to for general advice on the practice of law,” said Kenda Culpepper, immediate past chair of the State Bar Professionalism Committee, which is helping to expand the network by increasing the number of mentors available. “In years past, lawyers came out of law school with a job that provided a wealth of mentoring opportunities,” Culpepper said. “Whether it was with a large or small firm or with the government, lawyers had a built-in support system upon which to rely.” With those opportunities now limited, LeadershipSBOT launched the network as a way to help attorneys find mentors not only in Texas’ larger jurisdictions but also in less-populated areas, where lawyers may not have access to formal mentoring programs. Attorneys can now find a mentor using the online tool in two ways: by clicking a region on the judicial district map—northern, southern, eastern, or western—or searching with a menu that lists practice areas. Once a district or practice area is chosen, a list of names displays. Users can click on any to see a potential mentor’s brief profile along with his or her firm, contact information, practice area, and a link to email the attorney. Clicking on “view full profile” reveals the mentor’s eligibility to practice in Texas as well as his or her education. The Advisory Network, Culpepper said, is the next step in making mentoring available to every lawyer in the state. “These resources will initially be practice related,” she said. “But, hopefully, the mentors will also be encouraged to talk to mentees about professionalism and civility.” For more information and to use the State Bar of Texas Advisory Network, go to texasbar.com/mentoring. To volunteer as a mentor, contact the Professionalism Committee at email@example.com.
Published by State Bar of Texas. View All Articles.
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