The Atlanta Lawyer February / March 2019 - Page 4

PRESIDENT'S MESSAGE The Future of Law is Human Nicole G. Iannarone Georgia State University School of Law All lawyers understand the importance of keep- ing up to date on changes in the law. We know that the law is never static, and changes in our respective areas of practice must be studied in order for us to competently represent our clients now and help them navigate as they plan for the future. When we think about the future of law, we tend not to think about where the doctrine will be, but instead how law will be practiced. Each of us has seen tremendous technological change in our lives, and no matter how long our legal career has been, we have been witness to technology that has the potential to streamline or even replace certain aspects our practices. Lawyers, however, tend to be wary about adopt- ing technology and embracing the future of law. As one scholar aptly put it, “Lawyers historically have been reluctant to embrace new inven- tions, resisting the newfangled invention of the telephone as undignified, looking skeptically at mechanical devices like typewriters, and even avoiding taking elevators.” 1 Despite our skepti- 1 Catherine J. Lanctot, Becoming a Competent 21 st Century Legal Ethics Professor: Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Technology (But Were Afraid to Ask), 2015 Prof. Law. 75, 76 (2015). 4 February/March 2019 cism about innovation, there is no doubt that new technology is changing how we currently practice law, and will bring a new future of law practice. While technology will shape a different practice than we have now, the future is not the tools, tricks, or technology that we will use to deliver legal services. The future of law is us – the hu- mans who have been called to serve as lawyers – and those who will join us in that calling. Current lawyers should play a significant role in shaping that future. I am proud that our Atlanta Bar members embrace the future members of our profession and work to promote them as much as we work to improve our own future practices. We are a reflective group, thinking through what we do well, what we can improve, and how we can improve. In addition to our self- reflection, we run towards – not away – from the future members of our practice. Our Atlanta Bar members have been shaping the future of law for decades, and continue to find new ways to support each lawyer’s growth. Cur- rently led by Wade Malone, Nekia Hackworth- Jones, and Natasha Perdew Silas, the Summer