It looks like there are still some seats open for the esteemed Arizona College of Trial Advocacy, hosted by the State Bar of Arizona.

The hands-on event runs from July 31 through August 4, at the Black Canyon Conference Center, 9440 N. 25th Ave., Phoenix (see map below).

The Trial College, limited to 48 students, is the flagship program of the Bar’s Section on Trial Practice and Procedure. Here is how Section leaders describe it:

“The College is an intensive, five-day workshop that provides practical hands-on training for trial lawyers. It culminates in a half-day mock trial with live jurors and judges in a Maricopa County Superior Court courtroom. The program is designed to significantly develop and refine the skills necessary for excellence in trial practice.

“Why should this interest you? The College provides a do-it-yourself teaching tool that gives aspiring trial attorneys an opportunity to mentor with top Arizona litigators and judges. Attorneys with personal injury practices can earn 10 points toward an Arizona Board of Legal Specialization in Injury and Wrongful Death Litigation.”

The Trial College Executive Director is Rebecca Albrecht. Co-chairs this year are John Ager, John DiCaro and Bruce G. Macdonald.

For more information or to register, go here.

Advertisements

Tuesday evening saw 2011’s version of what has become a noteworthy legal event for Arizona. That was the reception honoring the lawyers who were counsel in the cases that garnered the Top 10 Civil Verdicts moniker, as published in our June Arizona Attorney Magazine.

Lawers from this year's Top 10 Civil Verdicts. Our author Kelly MacHenry, a trial lawyer herself, is seated in the front row.

Hosted at Snell & Wilmer by partner and litigator Kelly MacHenry, the event brings together those trial lawyers, as well as those who won significant defense verdicts in cases where claimed damages were high.

I wrote about this event last year, and one thing makes the event better with every passing June.

The characteristic that marks the evening and makes it a must-attend event is not the wonderful food or the plush digs, both of which are great every time. The true value of the gathering lies in the remarks by the trial lawyers themselves. For after Kelly describes each case and hands the lawyers their certificates, they get the opportunity to share something about the case—what element was decisive, any aha moments that were milestones, what witness or piece of evidence was key to their success.

It is a pleasure and a surprise for me every year how open and expressive the honorees are in response to Kelly’s invitation to share some of their trial strategies—or moments of great good luck! People whose livelihood is ensuring a good outcome for their clients in a courtroom often relax into a discussion of the moment when it all came together—or when it looked like it was all going to hell in a handbasket.

Huge Arizona Attorney cover-photo appears dwarfed by photograph from Snell & Wilmer's art collection.

I told the attendees why the issue is one of my favorites throughout the year: I enjoy hearing what Arizona juries are doing and what trends the verdicts may reflect. But I also enjoy the successes and stories of trial lawyers. Although a huge part of their job is preparation, at the end of the day, they must act decisively even when surprises arise.

If you are comfortable only when you have your belt and suspenders firmly cinched up, litigating may not be the venue for you.

I also have to single Kelly MacHenry out for praise. She brings to a thankful magazine the complete package: She writes extremely well, she’s laser-focused on accuracy, she meets deadlines—and she’s super-smart! If any potential authors out there embody even one of these qualities, I’d be happy to work with you on an article. If you bring all four—you’ve made my month! Write to me at arizona.attorney@azbar.org.

Congratulations to all the lawyers and their amazing trial teams. And thanks to Kelly for phenomenal writing and idea generation.

Click here to see some more pictures on the Arizona Attorney Magazine Facebook page.

And here is the list of honorees (in alphabetical order):