Albert S. Dandridge III will become the Philadelphia Bar Association’s 88th chancellor in January.
Invoking the names of two legendary Philadelphia lawyers, incoming ChancellorAlbert S. Dandridge III challenged the 13,000-member Philadelphia Bar Association to embrace public service at a deeper level than ever before at the Association’s annual meeting Tuesday afternoon.
Dandridge reflected back to 1952, whenBernard G. Segal, one of the co-founders of his firm, Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis, became the Association’s first Jewish chancellor. Segal became president of the American Bar Association in 1969 and controlled clients such as RCA, NBC,Hertz Corp, UPS and Gimbel Brothers. But he is perhaps best known for championing a movement to provide more legal services for the poor.
Cecil B. Moore, the civil rights activist who led the fight to integrate Girard College and went on to become president of the localNAACP and a Philadelphia City Council member, was admitted to the Bar a year later in 1953.
“I believe both of them today would be concerned about several on-going phenomena: Our treatment as a society of the poor amongst us; our struggles to become more diverse and inclusive; and the treatment of our veterans,” Dandridge said.
So Dandridge said when he becomes chancellor in January, he will ask Bar members to enhance their service to the broader community.
“In this regard, I will ask every leader of our Association not only to undertake pro-bono service, which we all have committed to do, but also commit to other service in our community, which is not of a pro-bono nature,” Dandridge said.
He then introduced more than 20 leaders of local community-service organizations, as well as the School District of Philadelphia Superintendent William Hite, to emphasize that need.
Dandridge also said he would ask Bar members for help in promoting programs to help veterans, including seeking legislative solutions for that community and participating in military assistance programs such as counseling military personnel about predatory lending practices and explaining to and assisting veterans in receiving the benefits to which they are entitled.
To co-chair the Association’s military affairs committee, Dandridge said he will appoint his Schnader Harrison partner Denny Shupe (himself a U.S. Air Force veteran), as well as Fox Rothschild partner and former U.S. Congressman Patrick Murphy (a U.S. Army veteran).
Lastly, Dandridge said the Bar Association will propose the adoption of diversity action plans, in which the Bar leadership will be asked to individually take on diversity and inclusion initiatives and responsibilities.
Continue Reading »