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BEN FRANKLIN on Ethics (60 Minutes)

Featuring Christopher Lowell

Ben advises … “Search others for their virtues.  Search thyself for thy vices” and challenges lawyers to put ethical considerations at the heart of legal practice.

Even in Ben Franklin's time, the public held cynical views about lawyers.  How can one be a better practitioner and help negate some of the lingering negative attitudes toward today’s lawyers?  In this engaging and informative program, Ben Franklin (who worked with more lawyers than most modern day practitioners) challenges today’s lawyers to expand their own notion of ethics much as he, himself, did during his own life.  Portrayed by Christopher Lowell, internationally acclaimed actor, historian, and Franklin scholar, Ben discusses the ethical issues he confronted and challenges attendees to put ethical considerations at the heart of legal practice. Franklin speaks of the importance of ethical practices and the spirit of Pro Bono Publico as the underpinnings of a virtuous life. Topics also include Diligence in Accounting and Documentation, Money Matters, Loyalty, and the importance of Civility, Humility, Honesty and Integrity in practice.

BREAK (15 Minutes)


From the Atlanta Chief Justice's Commission on Professionalism

Abraham Lincoln once said, “As a peacemaker the lawyer has superior opportunity of being a good man [person]. There will still be business enough.”

Lincoln on Professionalism was created by the Atlanta Bar Association in partnership with the Chief Justice's Commission on Professionalism in Georgia in celebration of the 200th Anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s birthday. The program presents ten vignettes that contain the writings of Abraham Lincoln to create a documentary-style program on professionalism.  The exemplary qualities of personal honor and legal professionalism that Lincoln demonstrated day in and day out in his law practice are presented in the slides, readings and contemporary commentary that comprise the program. The vignettes provide comments and conclusions on the following in the practice of law …

Lack of Vanity  •  Candor with the Court   •  Justice and Fairness • Candor to Opposing Counsel   •  Dignity and Civility   •  Courtesy and Goodwill  • Brevity and Clarity  •  Candor to Client   •  Diligence   •  Conclusions for Modern Day Lawyers

The vignettes are followed by a filmed discussion with a panel of noted jurists.

Both programs are accompanied by a live Moderated Chat Room in which attendees can participate in discussion on how Franklin's and Lincoln’s philosophies and standards apply to ethics and professionalism in the today's legal practice.


Mandatory MCLE Credit Hours and Legal Ethics & Professional Responsibility (LEPR) Credit Hours
This seminar qualifies for 2.25 MCLE Credit Hours, including up to 2.25 LEPR Credit Hours (Tentative).


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