Friday, October 12, 2007

Manatee Bar names new leaders


BRADENTON --Bradenton attorney Mary Fabre LeVine is the newly elected president of the Manatee County Bar Association.

"I consider being selected to such a prestigious position a true honor," said LeVine, who has practiced law for 27 years. "The bar serves a critical role in our community, and as the new president I hope to continue this legacy and ensure that we diligently work to improve the administration of justice in Manatee County."

LeVine, 57, began her tenure as president this summer. She practices commercial litigation and civil appeals law and is a member of the Florida and California bars.

LeVine is one of a handful of recently elected and installed new officers and directors who were administered the oath of office this summer for the 2007-2008 year.

Stepping into the yearly rotating position, LeVine replaces past president Barry Bell, with SYSCO-West Coast Florida.

"She's a great leader, really interested in providing public education about legal issues and developing programs that benefit the public, including discussing elder law issues," Bell said.

A graduate of the University of Miami School of Law, LeVine relocated to Bradenton from California in 2001 to join Blalock, Walters, Held & Johnson P.A., a county law firm for over 80 years.

LeVine said she is excited for the upcoming year.

"From Chief Justice Fred Lewis' 'Justice Teaching Initiative' in the Manatee County schools to the annual Moot Court program for high school students, and the opening of the new Manatee County Judicial Center in the spring of 2008," LeVine said.

The new courthouse, she said, will enable the judicial system to manage its caseload as the community grows and provide for a "safer, more efficient administration of justice."

During the past four years, LeVine has sat on the Manatee Bar's board of directors, serving most recently as president-elect and secretary. She also authored a monthly column in the bar's newsletter, "Inter Alia," and is active in bar leadership and programs. LeVine is also vice chair of the Florida Bar's local 12th Judicial Circuit Grievance Committee and was past vice president of Florida Association of Women Lawyers, Manatee.

Cliff Walters, managing partner at Blalock, Walters, Held & Johnson, said his firm is "extremely proud" of LeVine and her election to the local bar presidency.

Other new officers and directors elected for the 2007-2008 year include President-elect Mark A. Nelson, Secretary Angelina Colonneso and Treasurer Eric Bruce.

Natalie Neysa Alund, legal affairs reporter, can be reached at 745-7095.

New officers

Manatee County Bar Association's new officers and directors for 2007-2008:

• President Mary Fabre LeVine

• President-elect Mark A. Nelson

• Past president Barry Bell

• Secretary Angelina Colonneso

• Treasurer Eric Bruce

• Directors Rodney C. Wade, John F. Lakin, Laurie E. Baker, H. Roger Lutz, Melton H. Little and Maggie D. Mooney

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