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Miami attorney to become head of ABA

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A Miami attorney with the Greenberg Traurig law firm has become president-elect of the American Bar Association, the firm announced Tuesday.

Bass
Bass

Hilarie Bass, co-president of the firm, will assume the presidency next August.

She is perhaps best known for leading the effort “to eliminate Florida’s 20-year-old ban on gay adoption, which was found unconstitutional in 2010 and led to the state removing questions on sexual orientation from the adoption application,” according to a news release.

“Giving back to the profession that has given so much to me is something I feel strongly about, which is why I have dedicated myself to actively supporting the ABA mission for more than 30 years,” she said.

Bass spoke Tuesday at the annual ABA meeting in San Francisco, where she highlighted her priorities, including “the need for the law profession to embrace the use of technology,” the release said.

“Technology can help make more information readily available to the public and enable individuals representing themselves to more easily access the information and the forms they need to navigate a complex judicial system,” she said.

She also wants the ABA, which accredits law schools, to push schools to add more “experiential learning” instead of just classroom training, so graduates can better “solve a client’s problem in a practical and real way.”

Here’s more from the release: Bass has been actively involved with the ABA for more than 30 years, beginning as a young lawyer and working her way up to become chair of the 70,000-member Section of Litigation in 2010-11. As chair, she spearheaded the creation of a Task Force on Implicit Bias in the Justice System.

Bass has been actively involved with the ABA for more than 30 years, beginning as a young lawyer and working her way up to become chair of the 70,000-member Section of Litigation in 2010-11. As chair, she spearheaded the creation of a Task Force on Implicit Bias in the Justice System.

She has held several other notable positions at the ABA, including serving as chair of the Committee on Rules and Calendar (2012-14), member of the Board of Governors (1990-93), House of Delegates (1988-95, 2000-present) and the Florida representative to the Nominating Committee (2010-present).

Bass currently serves as co-president and a member of the executive committee for the multi-practice firm that has approximately 1,900 attorneys across 38 offices worldwide. She previously served an eight-year term as national chair of the company’s 600-member litigation department.

Bass has successfully represented high-profile corporate clients in jury and nonjury trials involving hundreds of millions of dollars in controversy. In recognition of that success, Bass was inducted in 2011 to the American College of Trial Lawyers.

She earned her law degree at University of Miami School of Law and her bachelor’s degree from George Washington University.

Before joining Florida Politics, journalist and attorney James Rosica was state government reporter for The Tampa Tribune. He attended journalism school in Washington, D.C., working at dailies and weekly papers in Philadelphia after graduation. Rosica joined the Tallahassee Democrat in 1997, later moving to the courts beat, where he reported on the 2000 presidential recount. In 2005, Rosica left journalism to attend law school in Philadelphia, afterwards working part time for a public-interest law firm. Returning to writing, he covered three legislative sessions in Tallahassee for The Associated Press, before joining the Tribune’s re-opened Tallahassee bureau in 2013. He can be reached at jim@floridapolitics.com.

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