Last October, the Bar Foundation’s Lunch and Laughs With Legal Legends event was held in Morgantown with the honorees being Ellie and Judge Ed Flowers.   Ellie served as the Assistant Dean for Career Services at the WVU College of Law for more than 20 years and Ed held leadership positions in WV as a Supreme Court Justice, a U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge and a WVU Vice President. He is a Bar Foundation Fellow.   The Lunch was very successful with many people from around the state and region participating virtually because of the Covid-19 virus pandemic. Lunch and Laughs honorees choose a charitable activity to receive an equal division of the net proceeds and the Flowers decided upon the Black Law Students Association (BLSA) and the Career Services Center at the WVU College of Law.   BLSA has now made the final decision to utilize its share from the Flowers’ Lunch and Laughs proceeds to continue the Justice Frank Cleckley Award named in honor of the highly esteemed civil rights lawyer, College of Law Professor and WV Supreme Court Justice. Below is the news release announcing this important grant.   “BLSA is excited to announce the second BLSA Book Scholarship Award. This $1,500 book stipend award is in honor of Justice Frank Cleckley, a legal pioneer in West Virginia. He was the first African-American faculty member at the College of Law, the first full time African-American professor at WVU, and the first African-American justice on the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals. We are honored to celebrate the impact of his work through this scholarship.    To apply, any student enrolled full time during the 2021 Fall Semester must write a 1,000-1,500 word essay discussing the impact of one of the following opinions written by Justice Cleckley on either the state of West Virginia or the nation:   · State v. Guthrie, 194 W. Va. 657, 461 S.E.2d 163 (1995). · State ex rel. Roy Allen S. v. Stone, 196 W. Va. 624, 474 S.E.2d 554 (1996).  · Skaggs v. Elk Run Coal Co., 198 W. Va. 51, 479 S.E.2d 561 (1996).  · State ex rel. Suriano v. Gaughan, 198 W. Va. 339, 480 S.E.2d 548 (1996).   Essays will be judged based on originality, depth of analysis, depth of research and readability.    The deadline is Juneteenth (Saturday, June 19) at 11:59pm. The winner will be announced on August 5, Justice Cleckley’s birthday.”   The Bar Foundation wishes to commend the Flowers and BLSA for their significant actions to honor the legacy and the memory of Justice Frank Cleckley.
The WV Bar Foundation Board of Directors, consisting of judges and lawyers from all parts of the state and all types of law practice, is pleased to announce the 22nd and 23rd classes of Bar Foundation Fellows!   The criteria for Bar Foundation Fellows are those judges and lawyers whose professional, public and private careers have demonstrated outstanding dedication to the welfare of their communities and honorable service to the legal profession with the individuals selected reflecting the diverse nature of the legal profession in West Virginia.   There have been approximately 400 lawyers and judges selected as Fellows over the years from the more than 6,000 judges and lawyers here in WV.   The members of the 2020 class of outstanding individuals are:   Perri Jo DeChristopher-Morgantown Barbara Fleischauer-Morgantown Carte Goodwin-Charleston Michele Grinberg-Charleston Anne Harman-Wheeling Karen Kahle-Wheeling Judge Patricia Keller-Huntington Judge H. L. Kirkpatrick-Beckley Judge Thomas Kleeh-Clarksburg Charles Loeb-Charleston Melissa Luce-Charleston Christopher Luttrell-Martinsburg Sandra Murphy-Charleston Larry Rowe-Malden Gloria Stephens-Welch Teresa Tarr-Charleston Dean John Taylor-Morgantown Justice Beth Walker-Charleston Brenda Waugh-Charles Town   The members of the 2021 class of outstanding individuals are:   Justice Tim Armstead-Charleston Randy Bernard-Wheeling Kim Croyle-Morgantown James Dodrill-Charleston Paul Farrell, Jr.-Huntington Sharon Flanery-Charleston Karen Garrett-Moorefield Lary Garrett-Moorefield Judge Michael Lorensen-Martinsburg Greg McDermott-Wheeling Meshea Poore-Morgantown Stephen New-Beckley Andy Richardson-Charleston Paul English Smith-Huntington Bob Tweel-Charleston Professor Suzanne Weise-Morgantown Anthony Werner-Wheeling Chip Williams-Beckley   Congratulations to these exemplary leaders!
The WV Bar Foundation Board of Directors has set the Bar Foundation Fellows Dinner for Thursday, June 24, 2021, at the Marriott Hotel in Charleston.   Both the 2020 Fellows class and the 2021 Fellows class of highly regarded judges and lawyers will be honored at this wonderful event. The 2020 annual Fellows Dinner was cancelled because of the Covid-19 virus pandemic and the 2021 Dinner, originally scheduled for April 22, 2021, has been re-set for Thursday, June 24, 2021. The increased availability of the COVID-19 vaccine, more citizens being vaccinated, and the lessening of restrictions for in person meetings demonstrate that moving the Dinner to June 24 enables attendees to have a greater degree of safety and comfort in deciding to be present for this highly anticipated event.               Social distancing and masking guidelines in effect at that time will be followed for this black tie optional Dinner. A Reception begins at 6:00 PM, followed by the Chef’s special meal and then the honoring of the 2020 and the 2021 classes of Bar Foundation Fellows. The event will conclude before 9:30 PM.   More details regarding the 2021 Bar Foundation Fellows Dinner will be forthcoming.