The oldest and largest association of lawyers and judges, the National Bar Association, is bringing their 97th annual convention to Memphis. Starting this Sunday, July 24, thousands of legal minds will convene at the Sheraton Memphis Downtown Convention Center for networking, panel talks, and official meetings. This gathering will also mark the first in-person convention since the COVID-19 pandemic.
While the convention is geared towards lawyers, there events are also crafted for those aspiring to become part of the legal world. For example, the Youth Enrichment Program offers children and teens, age 6–17 years old, a glimpse into the legal profession. They’ll get to argue with logic with a crash course on debate, and get familiar with court proceedings with mock court hearings. It will also offer a tour of the host city’s history, and culture — this year, focusing on Memphis.
Talks on “Black Prosecutors Matter,” and “Black Judges Matter” which will focus on diversity and alternative sentencing are two of the featured talks. Bulk of the convention’s events are reserved for numerous continuing legal education seminars which offers the state of the art in the legal world. It will help lawyers get up to speed with required number of learning hours which may be required in several states. There are also plenty of time allotted for everyone to rub shoulders with several dinners, banquets, and luncheons. Of course, there is time off from all the legal talk with morning fitness classes, a free viewing of the Netflix documentary “Civil,” blood drives, and a one-night concert by the R&B group Dru Hill.
The National Bar Association was founded in the 1920s and has lived on for almost a century today. The association claims to represent the interests of 66,000 attorneys, judges, law professors, and legal students from all over the country. Its members have been notable in their work of defending human rights for African Americans, and the poor.