laura bagby

Photo of laura bagby

Laura Bagby is Communications Director at the Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Professionalism, where she develops and executes strategy to elevate the Commission among attorneys and judges in Illinois. Laura leverages communications channels to educate and engage with the legal community in support of the Commission’s mission of increasing civility and professionalism to enable the administration of justice.

Latest Articles

The ABA’s Commission on Women in the Profession will host a Spring Summit for Advancing Women in the Law on Tuesday, March 3, at the Dirksen United States Courthouse in Chicago. The Summit will bring together influential leaders from the federal judiciary, law firms, and corporate legal department to discuss the current landscape for women in law and explore takeaways from new research on gender bias and the courts. The Women’s Bar Association of Illinois is also sponsoring the event. “The Spring Summit for Advancing Women in the Law will provide a platform for legal and judicial leaders to address…
The Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Professionalism is pleased to announce that early bird registration is open for its fifth annual The Future Is Now: Legal Services conference. The conference will be held on Thursday, April 23, 2020, at Venue SIX10 in Chicago. The Future Is Now will feature 11 industry-leading speakers tackling pressing topics in the legal profession, the judiciary, and organizational leadership. In a series of TED-like talks and interactive townhall discussions, speakers will provide practical tips for improving the practice of law and discuss trends that are reshaping the profession. For the first time, the 2020 conference…
The Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Professionalism is pleased to announce that Executive Director Jayne Reardon has been named to the ABA Legal Technology Resource Center’s (LTRC) 2020 Women of Legal Tech list. Reardon was one of 20 women selected by the LTRC from almost 200 nominations.  “I’m honored to be recognized by the LTRC, alongside these innovative women who’re pushing the profession forward,” said Reardon. “As changes in technology and globalization transform industries, it’s vital that the legal profession keeps up. We must adopt practices that not only enable lawyers to leverage technology to deliver improved legal services, but also allow lawyers to make a sustainable living. I thank the LTRC for including me in its 2020 class.”  The LTRC provides legal technology resources…
A new American Bar Association resolution encourages U.S. jurisdictions to consider innovative approaches to lawyer regulation to increase access to affordable and quality legal services. If approved by the ABA House of Delegates, the resolution would support the revision of existing regulatory structures to better align with the public interest. The resolution and report, which was released by the ABA’s Center for Innovation, supports regulatory reform in three broad areas. These include new categories of legal services providers, reexamining Rule 5.4 (which prohibits lawyers from partnering and sharing fees with those who aren’t attorneys) and exploring new approaches to…
Why are women leaving BigLaw? Because they’re more likely than men to be denied business development prospects, promotions and other career advancement opportunities, according to a survey from the American Bar Association (ABA) and ALM Intelligence. The Walking Out The Door: The Facts, Figures, and Future of Experienced Women Lawyers in Private Practice study is part of an ABA initiative launched by former-President Hilarie Bass to explore why experienced women lawyers leave the legal profession. For that past several decades, women have made up roughly 45-50% of entering associate classes at large law firms. As they move into more senior…
On November 12, NextChapter and Fastcase announced a new virtual paralegal service. For a starting cost of $300 per case, NextChapter – which was acquired by Fastcase in September – will offer short-term virtual paralegal help for clients on its cloud-based bankruptcy case platform. The news reflects the profession’s move toward more flexible and even virtual workplaces. According to the American Bar Association’s TECHREPORT 2019, over 50% of lawyers telecommute. Enhanced technology and secure, cloud-based practice management software is making this virtual legal practice easier than ever. Add to that lower overhead and more rate flexibility, and many firms…
Law firms may not be walking the walk on cybersecurity, according to the American Bar Association’s (ABA) TECHREPORT 2019. The report found that, while almost 60% of law firms use cloud computing applications to store client data, only 35% take standard precautionary measures to secure these data. The annual ABA TECHREPORT examines how attorneys use technology in their practices. The results stem from the ABA’s Legal Technology Survey Report in combination with analysis from leaders in legal technology. Articles on cloud computing, cybersecurity, practice management and websites and marketing have been released online. Five additional articles will be released…
The Administrative Office of the Illinois Courts (AOIC) announced last week that it received a $100,000 grant from the National Center for State Courts (NCSC) as part of the Justice for All project. The Illinois Court’s Access to Justice Commission will use the funds to support strategies to expand access to legal services in the state. Justice for All grants were created to implement two advanced resolutions: meaningful access to effective assistance for essential civil legal needs and for traditional and non-traditional stakeholders to collaborate to develop a comprehensive approach to achieve meaningful access to justice. Illinois is one of…
Clio, a cloud-based legal technology company, announced the results of its 2019 Legal Trends Report this week at the Clio Cloud Conference in San Diego. The annual report is the legal industry’s largest nationwide assessment of client services among law firms. The study found that client service remains a challenge for law firms. Potential clients struggle to get timely and informative responses when contacting law firms. To be successful, however, law firms must strike a balance between revenue-generating tasks and delivering exceptional client service. “Clients want law firms that understand the importance of their legal issue. They want timely responses to…
Northwestern Pritzker School of Law has joined a national initiative aimed at creating a more diverse legal profession. The Move the Needle Fund, a first-of-its-kind experimental “laboratory,” will test innovative approaches to improving diversity and inclusion over five years at five U.S. law firms. These pilots will serve as roadmaps for diversity and inclusion efforts in the legal profession and beyond. The Move the Needle Fund is a unique collaboration between the Diversity Lab — an incubator for innovative ideas and solutions that boost diversity and inclusion in law — law firms, more than 25 general counsel, community leaders and…
Last week, the Illinois Judicial Conference released a three-year strategic agenda for the Illinois Judicial Branch. The agenda, which runs through 2022, outlines the mission, vision and core values of the judicial branch, as well as organizational goals and strategies for achieving those goals. “If the courts are to continue to make good on the promise of equal justice under law in this new and challenging environment, we must be proactive. Waiting for problems to develop and then responding will no longer do,” wrote Illinois Supreme Court Chief Justice Lloyd A. Karmeier in the strategic agenda. “Rather, it is critical…
Each year, National Hispanic Heritage Month celebrates the Latino community’s contributions to American history, heritage and culture. In 1968, the U.S. Congress authorized and requested that the president issue an annual proclamation designating the week that included September 15 and 16 as National Hispanic Heritage Week. President Lyndon Johnson issued the first proclamation that year. It stated, in part: Wishing to pay special tribute to the Hispanic tradition, and having in mind the fact that our five Central American neighbors celebrate their Independence Day on the fifteenth of September and the Republic of Mexico on the sixteenth, the Congress by…
The justices of the Supreme Court of Illinois have selected Hon. Anne Burke to serve as their next chief justice. Burke was sworn in on Sept. 10, 2019, with an effective date of Oct. 26, 2019. Her three-year term will run through Oct. 25, 2022. Burke will be the court’s 121st chief justice. Burke succeeds Chief Justice Lloyd A. Karmeier, who has served in the role since 2016. She will be the third woman to serve as chief justice, following the late Justice Mary Ann McMorrow and Justice Rita B. Garman. The position of chief justice rotates among the seven…
The Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Professionalism is thrilled to announce that the University of Illinois College of Law has joined the Jumpstart law school preparation program. The University of Illinois is the first law school outside of Chicago to participate in Jumpstart. Retired U.S. Seventh Circuit Judge Ann Claire Williams launched Jumpstart over 20 years ago as an educational program to support first year, minority law students who are traditionally underrepresented in the legal profession. The curriculum, which is designed in collaboration with the law schools, provides context for success in law school and beyond. “I’m thrilled to welcome…
In the U.S., the bar exam has determined the fate of eager would-be lawyers since 1738. The exam is aimed at sorting out those who have the skills to practice law from those who don’t. However, state regulators haven’t agreed on a definition of the minimum competence needed to practice law. This begs the question, “Does the bar exam accurately identify who has what it takes to practice law?” The Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System (IAALS) is aiming to fill this critical gap with its recently launched Building a Better Bar: Capturing Minimum Competence project. The…
The legal employment market may be improving for recent law school graduates, according to new data from the National Association for Law Placement (NALP). Late last month, NALP released a summary of key findings from its annual Jobs & JDs: Employment and Salaries of New Law School Graduates report. The data showed that while the employment rate for law school graduates continues to rise, graduates found 150 fewer jobs in 2018 than 2017. Legal employment market makes gains Members of the class of 2018 experienced an 89.4% employment rate, compared to 88.6% in 2017. The number of law firm jobs…