Monday, January 4, 2010

All Aboard the ALSP Train!

Next year I will have the distinct pleasure of serving on the national board of the Association of Litigation Support Professionals (ALSP). Although I have been on several boards in the past (including Valora’s, of course) and I have been involved in countless litigation industry associations, I have never had the option to combine those two, and I am eager to give it a go.

Serving on a board is a strange mix of honor and stress, much like parenting. You give your best ideas, efforts (and often money) to the organization on whose board you sit and you represent that honorable group to the community. You are a walking embodiment of the organization itself. Its goals become your badges of honor and its achievements become your glories.

At the same time, you absorb the pain and stress that comes from non-profit organizations struggling to achieve impossible things, with impossible budgets and ever-competing mindshare among constituents. Just like above, the organization’s troubles become your troubles and you come to represent its unseen drama and turmoil.

As for the litigation industry, ALSP holds a unique position. There are lots of regional and job classification groups, but none that span the gamut like ALSP. ALSP includes anyone involved in litigation, be they vendors, attorneys, paralegals, litigation support personnel, government agencies and corporate GC’s. All it takes to be a part of ALSP is a willingness to belong and to contribute to the common good. There is no exclusivity and no hierarchy. Simply an egalitarian group aiming to better the profession.

I look forward to serving on the board of such an honorable and class-free institution. Here’s to you, ALSP! Thanks for having me aboard.