Santa Barbara Legal Professionals Association (SBLPA) was chartered in 1938. By early 2000, however, the Association was in hiatus. In 2003, SBLPA made a last ditch attempt to revitalize and re-vamp itself into a modern organization that would appeal to a multi-generational workforce. The Board that year was NOT going to allow over 70 years of hard work and dedication to SBLPA and the career of the Legal Secretary to end.
It took some forward thinking and a "can do" attitude, attributes either inherent or acquired by any legal secretary worth her salt, but the organization pulled it off. In existence over 70 years, SBLPA boasts a richly textured website (www.sblegalnet.com), quarterly dinner meetings with engaging guest speakers, networking, educational opportunities through its "Learning at Lunch" series, and outreach through career centers, high school career days and scholarships.
In 2008, SBLPA took Fighting Back's Teen Court under its wing as part of our mission to give back to the community. The program struck a chord with SBLPA members after Ed Cue, Teen Court's Director, gave a presentation about how first time youth offenders have an opportunity to be judged by their peers, and then in turn experience the other end of the spectrum by sitting on the jury and participating in sentencing. Teens learn how it is to be on both sides of the fence, turning a negative situation into a positive experience.
LawBowl was created in 2008 by SBLPA's Board, with then-President Lindsey Parks at the helm, in order for interested law firms, legal organizations, high school youth, Teen Court volunteers, and their families and friends to form bowling teams, obtain pledge money, and compete for great prizes in a friendly, non-adversarial environment. A HUGE thank you goes out to Steve and Terri Davis, of Zodo's Bowling & Beyond for their assistance and terrific venue.
Because Teen Court vies with the many Fighting Back programs under the auspices of the Council on Alcohol and Drug Abuse (CADA), they are continually in need of funding, as well as volunteer attorneys to assist in overseeing the "court." SBLPA hopes to become a force among Teen Court's advocates and help with fundraising.