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DCBA BRIEF

Ted Donner and Melissa Piwowar served as active members of the Bar Association's editorial board for many years. Both have served as Lead Articles Editor and contributed a number of articles and stories to the magazine. Melissa served as Assistant Editor in 2011-12 and as Editor-in-Chief of the annual parody edition, the DCBA Grief for eight years, starting in 2007. Ted served as Editor-in-Chief twice, first in 2007-08 and again at 2010-11.  During that second stint, he, Melissa, Kristen Scribner and Rob Potter redesigned the magazine from stem to stern, changing everything from the cover logo to the fonts and type sizes. That redesign set a new bar and established a reputation for the magazine which other members of the Editorial Board have since met and surpassed.  In 2012, the DCBA Brief won the National Association of Bar Executives' Luminary Award for excellence in Regular Publications and in 2013, the DCBA Grief itself won in the Special Publications category. That first award was reported in the magazine in a story titled "DCBA Brief Wins National Award for Excellence," by John J. Pcolinski, Jr., DCBA Brief, Vol, 25, Issue 3 (December 2012) (reprinted with permission):


The DCBA Brief was announced as the winner of a 2012 Luminary Award for Excellence in Regular Publications by the National Association of Bar Executives at its annual meeting in October, 2012. "Each year, the NABE Luminary Awards program recognizes excellence in bar association communications by honoring the outstanding communications projects of the past year," according to the NABE website. The National Association of Bar Executives, which works closely with the American Bar Association, was founded in 1941 to serve the staff of bar associations and law-related organizations. Its mission is to be "a diverse, inclusive organization offering professional development opportunities to members."


NABE annually makes awards in the categories of Excellence in Regular Publications, Excellence in Special Publications, Excellence in Electronic Publications, Excellence in Public Relations, Excellence in Marketing and Excellence in Websites. The 2012 Winners for Excellence in Regular Publications were: The Journal of the DuPage County Bar Association - DCBA Brief (Small Bar category); San Diego Bar Association - San Diego Lawyer (Medium Bar category); and State Bar of Arizona - Arizona Attorney (Large Bar Category). One NABE judge’s comment regarding the Brief was: "A truly impressive volunteer-written publication, the content of which is better than many state bar journals. This is a ‘by lawyers, for lawyers’ magazine, and you can tell the contributors and editors bring tremendous energy and dedication to its production."


DCBA Executive Director, Leslie Monahan and Financial and Information Systems Manager, Jacki Hamler are members of the National Association of Bar Executives. Both Hamler and Monahan play an active role in the magazine each month, contributing content, working with the Editorial Board, and handling advertising and distribution. They submitted a sampling of issues from this last year’s magazine for consideration and were recognized by NABE in its award. "Eric Waltmire, who served as Editor-in-Chief, did an excellent job of keeping things going this last year," said Hamler. "He kept everyone on track and did a great job as editor. I couldn’t be happier that his work, and the work we all did this last year, was recognized in this way."


Last year’s DCBA President, Colleen McLaughlin, who appointed Waltmire as Editor-in-Chief, was particularly glad to hear the news. "I am just so proud of Eric and the rest of the Editorial Board, " she said. "I know how hard everyone worked on the magazine this last year. Sitting in with this group during my tenure as President, I was impressed with how imaginative and how dedicated to the cause they all are, and I am particularly proud of Eric. As a younger lawyer, taking on this task and achieving this level of success is a notable accomplishment."


"I am excited that the DCBA Brief is recognized as a Luminary Award winning publication," said Waltmire. "This award honors all the hard work of the contributors and editors of the DCBA Brief over the last year. In addition, this would not have been possible without the DCBA Brief redesign efforts led by prior Editor-in-Chief, Ted Donner, and our prior Assistant Editor, Melissa Piwowar. The redesign established a format for the magazine, a base within which we worked throughout the prior year. We aimed to deliver scholarly legal articles, legal news, and entertainment that would appeal to our broad membership in an engaging and appealing format."


"Not only have we received positive feedback from our membership, Waltmire concluded, "but this award further recognizes the publication’s quality on a national level. It’s an exciting time for the publication and, I’m sure, for our current Editor-in-Chief, Terry Benshoof, who is doing an excellent job leading the magazine forward this year."