Civility Promise CLE/CJE for Legal Professionals in Tuscany, Italy

April 29 – May 7, 2017

Join fellow legal professionals for a unique and engaging seminar on civility in the medieval village of Sovana, in Italy.

More information on this seminar will be available soon. Please subscribe for email updates. Alternately, you may view information about the October 2015 seminar.

Civility Skills: The Art of Listening CLE/CJE

July 29, 2016

About the Seminar

Lawyers and judges are the face and symbolic heart  of justice. When lawyers and judges listen well, they foster civility and promote justice. Effective listening builds the public’s confidence in the system, promotes efficiency by reducing costs and ensuring greater compliance with court orders, and increases the likelihood of just and fair results. Research has shown that a critical factor in our justice system is for litigants to feel heard. When we listen with consciousness, creativity, and a sense of community, we foster civility. Effective listening requires more than simply hearing spoken words. It requires us to approach the communication with openness, respect, and curiosity; to observe non-verbal communication; to “read between the lines” of written communication; and to consider the context of the situation and the speaker. 

In this day-long interactive continuing legal education seminar, participants will examine the value of listening, explore ways in which listeners demonstrate that they have heard, identify challenges to listening, discuss strategies to improve their listening skills, and be provided with opportunities to practice effective listening.


Seminar schedule

8:30 - 8:45: Why better listening promotes civility and the profession
8:45 - 9:00: Identifying the characteristics of effective listening and of civility
9:00 - 9:30: How listening fosters civility and promotes justice
9:30 - 10:15: The challenges to effective listening
10:15 - 10:30: Break
10:30 - 12:00: Foundations of civility as a listening strategy
12:00 - 12:45: Lunch
12:45 - 2:15: Specific strategies to listen in a variety of contexts
2:15 - 2:30: Break
2:30 - 4:00: Practicing listening skills
4:00 - 4:45: Inculcating a culture of listening
4:45 - 5:00: Conclusion

National Efforts to Promote a More Civil Practice of Law CLE/CJE

March 10, 2017

Incivility in the legal profession has been a rising concern across the profession. Numerous studies have documented the perceived increase in uncivil behavior and the cost such incivility extracts from individuals, the practice, and the effective administration of justice. Local, state, and national bar organizations, as well as individual firms and public offices, are engaged in efforts to promote civility in the profession. These efforts can facilitate the administration of justice. Civility improves working conditions in the profession, increases effectiveness of representation,  reduces costs for clients, and enhances the overall perception of the legal system. This CLE will explore the wide range of efforts across the nation engaging lawyers in building a more civil practice of law. We will examine ways of assessing the effectiveness of the various approaches and of measuring civility in the profession. Finally, we will develop a strategic plan for advancing a coordinated approach to civility in the law on a national scale.

Civility Skills: Understanding the Impact of Bias

Washington Children's Justice Conference

May 2–3, 2016

Spokane, WA

Tim Jaasko-Fisher, Senior Director of Curriculum and Programming for Robert’s Fund, will present Civility Skills: Understanding the Impact of Bias on Civility in the Law and What to Do About It at the Washington State Children’s Justice Conference. Mr. Jaasko-Fisher will explain that justice is best served when biases and assumptions are effectively addressed. Two integral components of civility are being aware of our own biases and assumptions and being able to respond to those of others. Everyone has biases and assumptions; we need them to survive. But problems arise when we act without examining these assumptions and how they impact the way we operate in the world. Likewise, biases and assumptions that others hold can impact the choices available to us in a given situation. Developing skills to navigate these situations effectively can promote a more civil and just legal system. Sessions will be held on May 2, from 9:45-11:45 a.m., and on May 3, from 8:00am -10:00 a.m., at the Spokane Convention Center.