Defense Counsel Journal

President's Page - Volume 85, Number 4

Volume 85, No. 4

February 07, 2020

Thompson_Craig_2010_sized Craig A. Thompson

Craig A. Thompson

“Individual commitment to a group effort - that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work.” -Vince Lombardi

What makes the IADC great can be summed up in two words: committed members!

As I have traveled around the globe and connected with members, it has become even clearer to me that the strength of our organization lies in our members: committed volunteers who are willing to host meetings, travel to programs, speak, and share business and tips for success. The IADC is proud of its history of achievement, and will continue to lead the efforts to advance our profession and the justice system.

We promise to do the following:

Never Lose the Personal Touch

We are focused more than ever on ensuring that each and every member of the IADC receives the full value of membership. This will be accomplished by determining the most appropriate and timely programs and offerings that we can for our diverse members. An example: the Board of Directors approved the creation of a new structure to improve the quality of programming, networking, and business development for our international members. The International Steering Committee (ISC), chaired by Manuel Barrocas from Portugal, is comprised of members from various regions of the world who will embrace the tasks of developing strategies for bringing the substance and spirit of the IADC to their respective regions. The goal of the ISC is to respect the uniqueness of various parts of the globe, and appreciate the needs both professionally and personally of our members wherever they live.

Keep It Super Simple (KISS)

I have realized over the years that while using certain words and attempting to “sound like a leader” may impress family and friends, they do not necessarily influence or inspire colleagues who like straight talk about our future. Whether discussing our financial position (which is strong), our membership numbers (which are very solid), our diversity goals (which are ambitious), or our vision for younger members (which is growing), our leaders will be straight with you and talk about positive and challenging issues with equal candor. That is the only way we grow.

Communication is key, and we are embarking on an exciting effort to transform the way we structure the IADC message. A task force led by former board member David Rosenberg is examining our portals of communication (website, social media, etc.) and working on developing more effective and efficient ways to provide information and promote the benefits of membership. 

Build On Our Strengths

At the DRI Annual Meeting in October, President-Elect Toyja Kelly provided each of the leaders of the defense bar “sister” organizations with an opportunity to speak on behalf of our respective organizations. I started my presentation by stating who we are: 2,500 members; 52 countries; 6 continents; and 50 US states. If anyone asks, THAT is who we are at the IADC!

We will continue to develop cutting-edge programming with the best speakers around. We will further our efforts to ensure that members “Think IADC First” when it comes to referring business and developing professional relationships that last a lifetime. We will reach well beyond a strategy of simply increasing the number of diverse members, and strive to arrive at the valued goal of inclusion while embracing the shared values of our profession. We will strengthen our resolve to make the IADC family-friendly, whatever that definition of family is for our members.  

As you take time to review this edition of the Defense Counsel Journal, please know that the commitment of the Defense Counsel Journal Board of Editors who select material for your consideration is unparalleled in our profession. I could not be more proud to serve with these outstanding attorneys, and believe strongly that there is no better time to be a member of the IADC!