1101 Market Street, 11th Floor • Philadelphia, PA 19107

Phone: 215-238-6300 •

June 01, 2007

Professional Responsibility Committee Meeting June 18

The Bar Association's Professional Responsibility Committee will host a meeting at noon on Monday, June 18 in the PBI CLE Conference Center, 10th floor, Wanamaker Building, 13th and Market Streets.

The topic of the meeting is "Prohibiting Discrimination and Harassment through ethics rules — will it solve the problem or create others?" Register online now!

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court's Interbranch Commission for Gender Racial and Ethnic Fairness, whose purpose includes suggesting "ways to reduce or eliminate …bias or invidious discrimination within all branches of government and within the legal profession…" has recommended changes to the Pennsylvania Rules of Professional Conduct as well as the Pennsylvania Code of Judicial Conduct that will make prohibited discrimination and harassment ethical code violations. Whether this is an effective way to address these issues will be topic of our next meeting.

Those on our panel who will speak in support of the proposed changes will be:

  • Lisette McCormick, Esquire. Ms. McCormick is currently serving as the Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Interbranch Commission for Gender, Racial and Ethnic Fairness where she directs the implementation of recommendations from the 2003 study on racial and gender bias by the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania.
  • Kathleen D. Wilkinson, Esquire. Ms. Wilkinson is an equity partner in the Philadelphia office of Wilson, Elser, Moskowitz, Edelman and Dicker LLP. She presently serves as the Assistant Secretary on the Association’s Board of Governors and is a governor’s appointee to the Interbranch Commission.
Those on our panel who will speak in opposition to the changes will be:
  • Bourne Ruthrauff, Esquire. Mr. Ruthrauff is a partner at Bennett Bricklin & Saltzburg, LLP, practices defense in product liability matters, commercial litigation and ethics matters, serves as ethics counsel to his firm and is a past chair of the Association’s Professional Guidance Committee.
  • James C. Schwartzman, Esquire. Mr. Schwartzman is a shareholder in Stevens and Lee, P.C., and has extensive experience representing and counseling lawyers and judges on ethics-related issues. He is a former Chairman of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania’s Disciplinary Board and Continuing Legal Education Board.
    This will be an important and spirited discussion and we urge you all to attend. Copies of the proposed changes are attached.

    Registration is required and lunch will be available at a cost $7.50 per person.

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