State Bar




The meeting was called to order at 3:50 p.m. on Friday, September 20, 2013 at the Minnesota CLE Conference Center in Minneapolis.  President Phil Duran presided, with Judson Haverkamp recording.  The Roll Call is attached.


President’s Report

President Duran reported that the Council had conducted a planning session in July. Alan Haynes has resigned from his role as chair of the Diversity Committee; Gail Brandt has agreed to become chair.  Bryan Lake, formerly MSBA’s Government Relations Director, has taken a job with the Minnesota Business Partnership.


Treasurer’s Report

Mike Unger reported that as of June 30, 2013, MSBA had collected 98.2% of budgeted dues revenue, down from 98.6% in 2012.  Total revenue for fiscal 2012-13 is projected at 96.3% of budget, which is up from 96% in 2012.  Expenses are in line with the budget for 2012-13 and projected revenue exceeds projected expenses for the fiscal year.


Executive Director’s Report

Tim Groshens announced that he had no additions to his written report.


Consent Calendar

A.  Approval of minutes of the June 28, 2013 meeting

B.  Action on the recommendation to approve the membership of Assembly Committees including non-Assembly members and authorize the President to make changes throughout the year

A motion was made and seconded to adopt the consent calendar.  The motion carried.


Governance Committee

The Governance Committee had no report.


Judiciary Committee

The Judiciary Committee had no report.


Legislative Committee

Chris Morris, Chair, discussed deadlines for sections and others interested in the Legislative Committee’s vetting process are:  October 25 for legislative proposals; October 28 legislative proposals will be circulated to all sections for review and comment; November 15 comments on legislative proposals are due; and December 2 and 3 the Legislative Committee will meet to review proposals and develop recommendations.


Elections/Appointments Committee

A.  Action on the recommendation that the Assembly nominate Joseph Beckman, Hennepin County, and James Cullen, Hennepin County, to the Lawyers Professional Responsibility Board

B.  Action on the recommendation that the Assembly nominate Howard Bolter, Hennepin County, to the State Board of Legal Certification

C.         Action on the recommendation that the Assembly re-elect Andrew Baese, Ramsey County, to the Southern Minnesota Legal Services Board

Jacqui Dorsey, Chair, presented the Committee’s slate of nominees and called for nominations from the floor.  There being none, a motion was made and seconded to adopt the slate.  The motion carried.


General Policy Committee

Eric Larson, Chair, invited sections and committees to consider what policies they would like MSBA to adopt and to bring those forward for review by the General Policy Committee. 


Action on the recommendation of the General Policy Committee for Assembly approval of the Human Rights Committee’s proposal related to renewal of an expired MSBA position concerning Civil Liberties

Mark Frey and Justin Cummins of the Human Rights Committee were invited to present the Committee’s Resolution on Civil Liberties.  Mr. Frey and Mr. Cummins advised that their resolution updated a policy resolution adopted by the MSBA in 2005 that had expired.  They further advised that the substance of the resolution is to affirm that the Constitution of the United States is and should remain paramount in guiding and judging legislation and executive action. 


Matthew Meyer, Chair of the Military & Veterans Affairs Section, prefaced his remarks by noting that this Section did not exist when the 2005 resolution was adopted, and that MSBA now includes many members who are veterans, current and former JAG officers.  He advised that the section is concerned that the resolution as presented does not appropriately balance consideration of the law of armed conflict together with concern for civil liberties.  He also noted the Section’s concern that the resolution does not include a legal analysis of its underlying legal rationale.


Mr. Larson presented a letter submitted to the General Policy Committee by Joe Van Thomme, incoming chair of the Criminal Law Section.  The Section’s concern was not with the conclusion of the Human Rights Committee resolution but with how the conclusion was reached.  He further observed that many of the affirmations in the resolution went beyond the practice of criminal law in Minnesota and expressed doubt that the argument for the resolution could gain the support of the Section.


Veronica Walther, Chair of the Immigration Law Section, advised that the Section strongly believes in the conclusion of the resolution but has issue with the lack of legal citations being offered in support of the conclusions reached.  She further noted that such citations had been offered in support of the 2005 resolution.


Fred Finch observed that the speakers’ concerns seemed to be focused on the content of the “Whereas” clauses rather than the policy statement itself.  Accordingly, he moved that the resolution be amended to remove the “Whereas” clauses.  The motion was seconded and, following brief discussion, carried.


There being no further discussion on the main motion as amended, the amended resolution was voted and carried.



Mr. Duran announced that the next meeting of the Assembly would be on Friday, December 13, 2013, commencing at 12:00 noon at the MCLE Conference Center.



The meeting adjourned at 4:30 p.m.



Respectfully submitted,




Robin M. Wolpert