March 2019 Bar Bulletin
Yes, the title of this article is cliché, and we all know already the reasons why we should start each morning with a healthy breakfast. Despite this, how many of us settle for a cup of coffee and rush out the door to the office? We take a short cut because we may have a double-booked calendar awaiting us, we may have motions due or we may be facing a day-long deposition.
For one day next month, though, I hope you won’t skip breakfast. That short cut could mean fewer of our neighbors receiving the legal assistance they need or the money necessary to attend law school.
Wednesday, April 3 is the King County Bar Foundation’s annual “Breakfast with Champions” event. Each year more than 1,000 attorneys, judges, law professors and government officials come together for an hour before the workday to raise money at this event in support of the bar’s pro bono and diversity programs.
The largest annual gathering of the legal profession in the Pacific Northwest, the Breakfast with Champions challenges each of us to make a financial and/or time commitment to our community’s ever-growing need for low-cost legal services and scholarships at the two area law schools.
If you’ve never attended the Breakfast before, I think you’d find it both a great networking opportunity and an inspirational program.
On the networking front, where else can you find in one room outside a courthouse the scores of judges, prosecutors and government officials that you will find at the Breakfast? In the same room, you’ll find the managing partners of the major law firms in Seattle, as well as some of the legends of the profession. Law professors will be on hand with elected officials. Young associates at our firms and law students from our area schools will be together. Downtown practitioners, eastside colleagues and southside attorneys will gather, plus many more coming from across the state. With an expected attendance of more than 1,000, that’s what I call a lot of networking opportunities.
On the inspirational front, you’ll hear briefly from one of the minority law students who is benefiting from our scholarship program. You’ll hear about the impact the bar’s work in representing the indigent in eviction matters is making to thousands of people each year. These stories may motivate you to give back more of your own time and/or donations to support this critical work.
You’ll also hear from our keynote speaker, former United States Attorney General Loretta Lynch. She should have a lot of thoughts to share on current events.
You may at this point be wondering “this is quite a lot of program for a breakfast, will I be stuck at the event until lunch?” The answer to that is a resounding, “No.” In fact, under the able leadership of Jeff Frank as event chair, I can assure you we plan to run a very tight timeline for the morning.
The ballroom doors at the Westin Seattle will open promptly at 7 a.m. for a 7:30 a.m.-sharp start time, and the program will end no later than 8:45 a.m. (we know that many of our judges and attorneys need to be in court for early calendars). We have many years of practice and a solid track record of completing the Breakfast with Champions on time each year.
So, how can you be a part of this event? First, if you’re at a firm, check with your colleagues. Someone may already be organizing a table. The organizer either picks up the cost or shares it with tablemates. They may still have room for you at their table. If they don’t, perhaps you’d be willing to organize some colleagues to join a table of your own (or a half table if you choose).
And if you are on your own or can’t find anyone attending whom you know, we are happy to sell you a single ticket and assign you to a table of colleagues whom you can get to know better. Having your attendance and participation is critical to making this the biggest and most successful bar event in King County.
Information about table hosting, individual ticket sales and other sponsorship options are online at www.kcbf.org/bwc.
I hope you’ll take some time at the Breakfast on April 3 to join your colleagues in supporting pro bono services and providing diversity scholarships for law students. Don’t miss the most important meal of the day.
Andrew Prazuch is executive director of the King County Bar Association. He can be reached by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or phone (206-267-7100 ext.7061).