WisBar News

News and developments from the State Bar of Wisconsin.

With Thanksgiving 2021 upon us, this year has proven to be more challenging than we had hoped, as the pandemic lingers, and we are still finding our way to keeping everyone as healthy as possible while moving forward. To keep building the resilience we all need to make our way, we want to lean on our gratitude to support us on this journey. While we are grateful as we see new prevention and treatments for Covid-19 unfolding at breathtaking
Continue Reading Our Gratitude To You: Helping Us Build Resilience in Challenging Times

​​Nov. 10, 2021 – An action to compel a school district to turn over applications for a vacant school board position and applicants’ personal information will go forw​​​ard under an opinion issued by the Wisconsin Court of Appeals District II last week.
In Mastel v. School Di​strict of Elmbrook, 2020AP1871 (Oct. 28, 2021), a three-judge panel held that a Waukesha County Circuit Court judge erred by dismissing a mandamus action brought by a public records requester.

The requester,
Continue Reading Appeals Court Allows Mandamus Action on School Records to Proceed

​Nov. 4, 2021 – During her State of the Judiciary yesterday (Nov. 3), Wisconsin Supreme Court Chief Justice Annette Ziegler said the state’s justice system will build upon innovations forced by the pandemic to become more efficient.“Ultimately, people got creative and found new ways to get the work accomplished,” Chief Justice Ziegler said during the address at the 2021 Annual Meeting of the Wisconsin Judicial Conference. “The last year-and-a-half may not have felt like a success as it unfolded.
Continue Reading State of the Judiciary: Chief Justice Ziegler Highlights Success in Meeting Pandemic Challenges

Nov. 1, 2021 – Plans for a statue of the Hon. Vel Phillips, one of Wisconsin’s most prominent and influential attorneys over the last 100 years, moved a step closer to reality today with a combined $25,000 donation from the State Bar of Wisconsin and the Wisconsin Law Foundation.

The State Capitol and Executive Residence Board today officially approved the statue and siting on the Capitol grounds, which now allows the board to engage a sculptor to create
Continue Reading Vel Phillips Capitol Statue Proposal Moves Forward with State Bar Support

Nov. 1, 2021 – For the second year in a row, meeting the challenges posed by the virtual practice of law was the main topic of discussion at the Wisconsin Solo and Small Firm Conference (WSSFC) hosted by the State Bar of Wisconsin (Oct. 27-30).

With 18 months of pandemic experience under their belts, presenters shared a wealth of tips with conference attendees, who accessed the conference through a web portal and mingled in a virtual lobby and a
Continue Reading Wisconsin Solo & Small Firm Conference: A Focus on Virtual Law Practice

​The State Bar of Wisconsin’s Board of Governors held its first meeting of the fiscal year in Kenosha, engaged in other State Bar-related activties there, and met with local leaders. Pictured at the Civil War Museum in Kenosha, from left, State Bar Executive Director Larry Martin, Kenosha Bar Association President Zach Brost, Kenosha Mayor John Antaramian, State Rep. Tip McGuire, Immediate Past State Bar President Kathy Brost, State Bar President-elect Margaret Hickey, and current State Bar President Cheryl Furstace Daniels. Photo credit:
Continue Reading State Bar Board Adopts Plan to Address Rural Lawyer Shortage, Acts on Remote Depositions

Twenty volunteer Wisconsin lawyers, including those pictured here, took part in the free expungement clinic on Sept. 21 in Kenosha.Sept. 22, 2021 – An arrest or criminal conviction has serious and long-lasting consequences for people who are trying to obtain housing, employment, educational, or other opportunities. Imagine if your criminal record contained false information or inaccuracies that you did not realize.

Shannon Green
is communications writer for the State Bar of Wisconsin, Madison. She can be reached by
email or
Continue Reading Kenosha Expungement Clinic Offers Hope to 56 Clients

June 17, 2021 – The Wisconsin Supreme Court has issued an order with an interim rule on filing appellate court documents. E-filing is mandatory in the court of appeals, starting July 1, but mandatory e-filing to the Wisconsin Supreme Court is delayed.

According to the order, on July 1, e-filing is mandatory for all new actions and proceedings brought in the court of appeals and for all new documents submitted in previously filed cases, unless otherwise provided by rule
Continue Reading Supreme Court Issues Update, Interim Rules on Appellate Court E-filing

June 14, 2021 – The State Bar of Wisconsin‘s Annual Meeting & Conference last week brought judges, lawyers, and other legal professionals together to discuss a truly challenging year, what disruption has taught the legal profession, and other topics.

The State Bar’s Board of Governors kicked off the three-day event June 10 with its final meeting of FY 2021, and Cheryl Daniels was sworn in as the 66th State Bar president.

The Wisconsin Association of Legal Administrators (WALA)
Continue Reading Virtual AMC Roundup: Learning and Perspectives in a Pandemic Year

June 10, 2021 – “We aren’t running out of lawyers in the state, but we are running out of lawyers in rural areas,” said Minocqua attorney John Danner, chair of a task force that recently made recommendations to address a shortage of lawyers in rural Wisconsin.

Danner, chair of the State Bar of Wisconsin’s Task Force on the Greater Wisconsin Initiative, presented the group’s report and recommendations yesterday to the State Bar of Wisconsin’s Board of Governors, which held
Continue Reading State Bar Board Discusses Shortage of Rural Attorneys, Acts on Diversity CLE

From left, immediate Past-president Jill Kastner, incoming president Cheryl Daniels, outgoing President Kathy Brost, and former State Bar President Michelle Behnke.

June 10, 2021 – Cheryl Furstace Daniels has spent her entire career as a government lawyer, and now she’ll spend the next year governing the State Bar of Wisconsin. Daniels was sworn-in yesterday evening as the State Bar’s 66th president.

Wisconsin Supreme Court Chief Justice Annette Ziegler gave remarks before administering the oath of office. Former State Bar
Continue Reading Moving Forward: Cheryl Furstace Daniels Sworn in as 66th State Bar President

Annie Louk, Milwaukee County’s newest assistant district attorney, poses in front of the Capitol Building in Madison on May 24, the day she was sworn in as a Wisconsin lawyer.

May 26, 2021 – It was a day years in the making – with part of those years involving a global pandemic. On May 24, 158 graduates of Marquette University Law School took the last two steps in becoming Wisconsin lawyers, at the Wisconsin State Capitol Building.

After taking
Continue Reading Welcome to 158 New Wisconsin Lawyers: Marquette Admissions

U.W. law grad Amakie Amattey signs the Attorney Roll book – a tradition in Wisconsin for more than 170 years – that is the final step in becoming a Wisconsin lawyer.

May 21, 2021 – It is the culmination of years of work, with a twist: The U.W. Law School class of 2021 spent half their time in law school in a pandemic.

In a year of remote work and virtual education, the Class of 2021 took their oath
Continue Reading U.W. Admissions: Welcome to 148 New Wisconsin Lawyers

Margaret Wrenn Hickey of Milwaukee said she plans to focus on addressing the racial inequities in our judicial and legal system, promoting diversity and inclusion in the legal profession, and improving access to justice.

April 23, 2021 – Milwaukee lawyer Margaret Wrenn Hickey is the next president-elect of the State Bar of Wisconsin.

In the elections ending April 23, 2021, Hickey defeated Milwaukee attorney Odalo J. Ohiku by 2,347 votes to 1,186.

Hickey will serve a one-year term as
Continue Reading State Bar President-elect Post Goes to Margaret Hickey

The State Bar of Wisconsin’s Board of Governors met virtually for its April 16 meeting and adopted policy positions on racial justice and law enforcement reform, among other actions, including approval of the organization’s FY 2022 budget.

April 19, 2021 – The State Bar of Wisconsin’s Board of Governors last Friday discussed a proposal to require at least two of 30 CLE credits per reporting period on topics of racial bias and other issues that promote education on diversity,
Continue Reading Board Sets Racial Justice Policies, Discusses Diversity & Inclusion CLE, Approves 2022 Budget