Section Spotlight: Workers’ Compensation

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Commissioner John A. Mastropietro

On September 20, the CBA Workers’ Compensation Section sponsored a retirement dinner for Commissioner John A. Mastropietro at La Bella Vista in Waterbury. Section members, workers’ compensation attorneys, claim representatives, family, friends, and colleagues joined together to wish the commissioner well in future endeavors.

The CBA Workers’ Compensation Section aims to organize the members of the CBA who are workers’ compensation practitioners and to educate all members of the bar from all sides at all levels of expertise as to workers’ compensation law. Furthermore, this section attempts to provide services to organizations other than the CBA when those organizations are involved in the Connecticut Workers’ Compensation system.

Interested in joining the section? You can join the Workers’ Compensation Section at any time throughout the bar year.

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Section Spotlight: Workers’ Compensation

On May 24, the CBA Workers’ Compensation Section sponsored a retirement dinner for Commissioner Christine L. Engel at the Waterbury Country Club. Section members, workers’ compensation commissioners and attorneys, claim representatives, family, friends, and colleagues, joined together to thank the commissioner for her years of service.

Commissioner Engel became a Board Certified Expert in Workers’ Compensation in 2003 and joined the Workers’ Compensation Commission in 2008. Prior to becoming commissioner, she worked at Nicholas & Johnson LLC where she primarily focused her practice in workers’ compensation, but also represented clients in social security disability claims, real estate closings, personal injury actions, and family matters.

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Commissioner Christine L. Engel

CBA Presents the ABA’s Grit Project

The CBA presented the seminar, “The Grit Project: How to Develop the Secret Skills of America’s Top Women Attorneys.” The Grit Project is an American Bar Association (ABA) Commission on Women in the Profession initiative designed to educate women lawyers about the science behind a grit and growth mindset to enhance the effectiveness, retention, and promotion of women lawyers.

Dr. Milana L. Hogan, author of Grit, the Secret to Advancement: Stories of Successful Women Lawyers, presented an interactive program that explained growth mindset and why many female attorneys lack it. Attendees participated in small group exercises, discussing video scenarios presented, to help participants learn how to tackle difficult work problems.

After Dr. Hogan’s presentation, Supreme Court Justice Maria A. Kahn, Leander A. Dolphin of Shipman & Goodwin LLP, Sarah Man of Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, and Elizabeth Seeley of Seeley Seeley & Berglass LLC, shared their personal and professional stories of grit and growth. The event was organized and moderated by Danielle J.B. Edwards of Sexton & Company LLC.

The ABA Commission on Women in the Profession has made the Grit Project Program Toolkit available to those interested in hosting the program. The toolkit includes the Grit Test, Mindset Quiz, and all materials necessary to present the program at a law school or firm.

Dr. Hogan’s book, featuring the stories of 47 women who used the grit and growth mindset to advance their careers, is available on the ABA website. CBA members can save 15% on ABA publications.

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(L to R) Leander A. Dolphin, Elizabeth Seeley, Dr. Milana L. Hogan, Justice Maria A. Kahn, Sarah Man, and Danielle J.B Edwards.

Section Spotlight: Federal Practice

On Wednesday, April 18, the CBA Federal Practice Section presented, “Women in the Law: A Fireside Chat with Judge Shira Scheindlin and Journalist Linda Greenhouse,” at the Quinnipiack Club in New Haven, moderated by Chief Judge Janet C. Hall. Judge Shira Scheindlin is a retired United States District Court Judge and counsel at Stroock, NY and Linda Greenhouse is a Joseph Goldstein Lecturer in law, senior research scholar in law, and Knight Distinguished Journalist in Residence at Yale Law School. During the program, Judge Scheindlin and Ms. Greenhouse shared their insights about women in the law, in court, and in practice.

The CBA Federal Practice Section aims to disseminate information to Connecticut federal court practitioners to enhance their skills and awareness of legal or procedural developments affecting federal practice and to provide a forum for consultation and dialogue between the federal bar and bench on issues of rules and practice, personnel needs, and facilities. Learn more about this section, including how to join!

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Federal Practice Section Co-chair Jonathan Orleans, welcoming members to the event.
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Chief Judge Janet C. Hall introducing Linda Greenhouse.

Section Spotlight: Labor and Employment Law

On Wednesday, April 4, the CBA Labor and Employment Law Section and the Connecticut Employment Lawyers Association co-sponsored, Three Views from the Bench: Questions & Answers with Harford’s Federal Judges, at the Hartford Golf Club in West Hartford. Judges Alfred V. Covello, Donna F. Martinez, and Michael P. Shea, shared insights and anecdotes from their many years of presiding over federal employment cases. In honor of Judge Covello’s 25th year on the District Court in 2017, Judges Martinez and Shea joined the panel, for what has annually been a Q & A with one judge.

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Judges Alfred V. Covello, Donna F. Martinez, and Michael P. Shea sharing their views from the bench.

Section Spotlight: Environmental Law Section

Former US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator and Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection (CT DEEP) Commissioner Gina McCarthy addressed an audience of 200 environmental professionals at the Connecticut Science Center on Thursday, March 22. The Environmental Law Section of the Connecticut Bar Association (CBA), Connecticut Environmental Forum (CEF), Connecticut Society for Women Environmental Professionals (SWEP-CT), and Environmental Professionals’ Organization of Connecticut (EPOC) hosted the sold-out event, “An Evening with Gina McCarthy.”

During her lecture, McCarthy shared her views of the current and future state of environmental regulations at the local, regional, national, and international levels. “It is a difficult time but we must feel positive about the world and the future,” expressed McCarthy. “We have the rule of law on our side and that is what matters and that is what will prevent us from going backwards.”

McCarthy served as the EPA administrator from 2013-2017 and CT DEEP commissioner from 2004-2009. She has been a leading advocate for common sense strategies to protect public health and the environment for more than 35 years. Currently, McCarthy serves as director of Harvard Chan’s Center for Health and the Global Environment, and is a professor at the Harvard University Center for the Environment and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

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(Pictured L to R) SWEP-CT Co-chair Jane Kimball Warren, CBA Environmental Law Section Chair M. Anne Peters, EPOC Executive Director Seth Molofsky, Event Speaker Gina McCarthy, CEF President Todd Berman, and SWEP-CT Board Member Jordana Langford, at “An Evening with Gina McCarthy.”
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Event speaker Gina McCarthy shared her views of the current and future state of environmental regulations.