BANGOR, Maine — Lawyer Anne-Marie L. Storey kicked off 2011 with a new title — vice president of the Maine State Bar Association. Next year, she is slated to serve as president of the 3,100-member organization.
Storey is a partner at Rudman & Winchell, a Bangor law firm founded in 1917. She has been active in the MSBA for years.
“Our primary challenges for 2011 will be to continue to provide high-quality and innovative services to our members while recognizing the effects of the economy on many law practices,” Storey said last week in an e-mail response to questions. “In addition, the MSBA will continue to seek solutions to the needs of many Maine citizens who are unable to afford legal counsel.”
Those topics are scheduled to be discussed at the association’s annual meeting Jan. 20-21 in Portland.
Many lawyers around the state depend on the MSBA to obtain the continuing legal education credits, or CLEs, required to keep their legal licenses current. One of her goals next year will be to improve how they are offered to members.
“I think there is a growing challenge for the MSBA to remain cutting-edge and relevant to changes occurring in the way in which continuing legal education is offered — for example, more computer- and technology-based — but still recognizing that many of our members do not have access to such systems,” Storey said.
She is not concerned only for the future of the bar association, but for its future members as well. Storey’s advice to high school and college students interested in becoming lawyers is not to go straight from college to law school
“I would advise an individual to consider taking some time off between college and law school to obtain some real life experience, preferably in an area that is law-related,” she said. “For instance, working as a paralegal for a few years during that time is a very good way to determine whether the legal profession is something he or she would genuinely enjoy and find challenging. In addition, such work would help him or her focus on areas of legal practice that he or she particularly likes or does not like.”
Storey spent time in Thailand as a Peace Corps volunteer after graduating from Middlebury College in Middlebury, Vt. She graduated from the Vermont Law School in Burlington.
Her primary legal focus at Rudman & Winchell is on representing employers and insurance companies in employment-related matters. That includes giving her clients general employment advice, handling employment-related litigation, offering workplace training and representing clients before administrative agencies such as the Maine Human Rights Commission, the Maine Workers’ Compensation Board and the Unemployment Commission.
In addition to serving as vice president of the bar association, Storey has been appointed to a four-year term on the Professional Ethics Commission of the Board of Overseers of the Bar. The board is responsible for investigating complaints against attorneys. She also is a member of the Maine Supreme Judicial Court’s Advisory Committee on the Maine Rules of Evidence.
Her community work in Bangor includes serving on the board of directors of the Maine Discovery Museum.