Lucy Prashker elected President of Literacy Network of South Berkshire

The Board of Directors of the Literacy Network of South Berkshire, Inc. (LitNet) has elected Lucy Prashker as President of the 20-year old 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization based in the Lee Library in Lee, Massachusetts.  Prashker was first elected to the Board in 2012, and served as its vice president in 2013.  She succeeds long-serving co-Presidents Lois Lennett and John Felton. LitNet is the largest provider of one-on-one literacy and ESOL tutoring of adults in the Berkshires.  LitNet’s dedicated professional staff trains volunteer tutors, providing them with materials, as well as logistical and ongoing educational support.  LitNet has more than 120 tutors who donate 11,520 hours annually.  LitNet receives no government funding; all of the revenue to support its important work comes from generous individuals and businesses. “LitNet is a great little organization that has had a profound impact on so many lives in South County.  The transformative power of literacy is compelling, both for LitNet’s students, and for our extraordinarily generous tutors who give so much of their time and their hearts.  I feel privileged to be a part of it,” said Prashker.

Lisa M. McCormack speaks at Berkshire Probate and Family Court Bench-Bar Roundtable

On Wednesday February 26, 2014, Senior Associate Lisa M. McCormack participated in a roundtable discussion presented by the Berkshire Probate and Family Court Bench-Bar Committee and the Berkshire Bar Association.  The topic was selected issues surrounding incapacitated persons and persons in need of protection.  The only practicing attorney on the panel, Lisa drew on her 12 years of extensive experience handling guardianships and conservatorships, and utilizing the courts to resolve legal issues that arise in medical emergencies.  The panel also addressed legal instruments available to avoid court involvement in the cases of incapacitated persons and the legal capacity to execute such instruments. The other presenters were Noelle Barrist Stern, Esq., Judicial Case Manager, Berkshire Probate and Family Court, and the Honorable Richard A. Simons, First Justice Berkshire Probate and Family Court. To view Lisa’s profile, click here.  

Cain Hibbard & Myers welcomes Attorney Sarah Kohrs to the firm

Sarah received her Bachelor of Music in music education from the Eastman School in 2004.  She then attended Georgetown University Law Center, where she was an editor of the Georgetown Journal of Law and Public Policy,  graduating cum laude in 2007.  Following law school, Sarah began her legal career as a litigator at a major Boston law firm, working on large complex commercial cases.  She received the firm’s award for most significant impact in a pro bono case for her work done on behalf of pre-adoptive parents, a case featured in Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly. Sarah has litigated in a number of different areas including, complex commercial litigation, product liability, international torts, and domestic relations.  She also has experience in labor, employment and employee benefits law, having drafted employee handbooks, helped structure reductions in force, and defended discrimination suits. Managing Partner Lucy Prashker, on the newest member of the firm: “Sarah’s talent, sound judgment, and big firm experience will serve our clients well.  We are very pleased that she has joined our litigation team.”

Syd Smithers honored with Life Trustee Award from Trustees of Reservations

Cain Hibbard & Myers F. Sydney Smithers was recently honored with the Life Trustee Award from The Trustees of Reservations, a nonprofit group dedicated to the preservation and enjoyment of nearly 25,000 acres of open space and historic structures in Massachusetts. A member since 1981, Syd was elected as a corporate trustee in 1983 and most recently served as chair of the Board of Directors from 2003 to 2009.  Under his leadership the Trustees raised more than $90 million dollars in revenue and land value, and implemented governance reform. The mission of the Trustees is not mere land conservation, but in keeping the land open for public use and enjoyment in perpetuity.  In 1993 Syd and his wife Mundi donated the 93-acre Smithers Woodland Preserve in Windsor, Mass to The Trustees. Syd was presented with the award at the 122nd annual meeting in Boston, Massachusetts on November 7, 2013. To read more about Syd and this prestigious reward. For more information on the Trustees of Reservations. Other news Syd Smithers chosen editor-in-chief of Crocker’s Notes on Common Forms View Sydney Smithers profile

Diane DeGiacomo Makes Twentieth Edition of The Best Lawyers in America

When the 20th edition of The Best Lawyers in America is published, it will include Cain, Hibbard & Myers’ Diane DeGiacomo.  For over 30 years, Best Lawyers has served as the definitive reference guide to lawyers with superlative skills.  Diane makes the list for her work in the areas of Employment Law and Family Law. Lawyers make the list solely through a process of peer review.  Comprised of more than 4 million confidential evaluations, the selection survey helps to identify the top attorneys in the country.  Once the field is broken down by geography and area of practice, nominated practitioners are evaluated by those who know them best – their professional peers.  Tens of thousands of the leading lawyers in the country confidentially evaluate the nominees through a process designed to accurately capture the consensus opinions regarding the professional abilities of their colleagues.  This year’s publication includes over 50,000 attorneys in over 100 practice areas, covering all 50 states and the District of Columbia. About The Best Lawyers in America The Best Lawyers in America has been published annually since 2006 and is the oldest peer review publication in the legal profession.  Published world-wide in over 60 countries, Best Lawyers’...

Cain Hibbard & Myers “Walks a Mile” in Second Annual Benefit for Elizabeth Freeman Center

Cain Hibbard & Myers “Walks a Mile” in Second Annual Benefit for Elizabeth Freeman Center SEPTEMBER 21, 2012 Sixteen walkers clad in signature pink t-shirts represented Cain Hibbard & Myers in the Second Annual “Walk A Mile in her Shoes” fundraiser in downtown Pittsfield’s Third Thursday event September 20th, 2012. Friends and family walked in support of the hundreds of men who donned heels and other women’s footwear for the mile-long trek. Shoes were supplied by the organizers, but many men chose to bring their own highly decorated heels, flats, sandals, and flip-flops. The one mile walk looped down North Street and back to Park Square. This year’s event doubled the attendance from last year, raising over twenty-thousand dollars to benefit the Elizabeth Freeman Center, a nonprofit organization that provides counseling, intervention, and other support for local victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. According to the Center, violence against women happens with greater frequency in rural areas like the Berkshires than in more urban areas. Cain Hibbard & Myers has been a strong supporter of the Elizabeth Freeman Center. We look forward to participating in this event for many years to come. For more information on Walk A Mile...

Syd Smithers Chosen as Editor-in-Chief of Prestigious Conveyancing Treatise

F. Sydney Smithers was recently appointed editor-in-chief of the leading reference book for title and real estate lawyers, Crocker’s Notes on Common Forms.  First published in 1883 by Uriel H. Crocker, Crocker’s Notes on Common Forms has served as the essential reference for Massachusetts title attorneys and conveyancers for over 100 years. As editor-in-chief, Syd will be responsible for many aspects of the production.  He will help to identify new contributors, review updates to chapters as they come in from authors, and serve as advisor when determining the best choice of case law for the various chapters.  Prior to accepting editorial duties, Syd contributed two chapters to earlier editions of the treatise. Since acquiring the copyright in 1995, Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education (or MCLE) has published two editions of Crocker’s Notes.  The most recent edition, the ninth, was published in 2006, with supplements published in 2008 and 2010.  The 2012 edition will be the tenth in the publication’s history, and the first edited by Syd.  Syd takes over editorial duties from prominent real estate lawyer Henry H. Thayer, Esq. of Rackemann, Sawyer & Brewster, who served as editor for both the eighth and ninth editions.  Look for the newest edition in...

Cain Hibbard sponsors Darwin the Dinosaur at the Mahaiwe

Cain Hibbard & Myers sponsored the performance of Darwin the Dinosaur, an innovative and heart-rending tale of a dinosaur discovering the true meaning of love performed by the highly-talented New Orleans troupe Corbian. The story was told through electroluminescent crayon-like evolutionary creatures that magically lit up the stage. The performance, which was a part of the A-HA! educational series at the Mahaiwe, was enthusiastically received by an energetic house of elementary school children from Berkshire County schools. Cain Hibbard is a regular sponsor of the A-HA! series at the Mahaiwe.

Diane DeGiacomo part of expert panel on family law

Diane DeGiacomo joined other experienced family law practitioners and Probate Court judges from Hampden, Hampshire, Franklin and Berkshire counties to speak at the annual seminar ‘Sophisticated Issues in Western Massachusetts Family Law Practice’ held on February 29, 2012 in Springfield, Massachusetts. Her topic explored the complex issues involved in advising and representing clients in divorce cases during times of economic upheaval.

Client Alert: New Legal Protection for Transgender Individuals in Massachusetts

JANUARY 31, 2012 Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick has signed into law “An Act Relative to Gender Identity,” also known as the “transgender equal rights law,” which expands Massachusetts anti-discrimination laws to protect from discrimination against transgender individuals in employment, education, housing, and credit.  The legislation makes “gender identity” a protected class alongside others such as race, color, religious creed, national origin, ancestry, sex, age, disability, mental illness, sexual orientation, and genetics.  The legislation also expands the Massachusetts hate crimes statutes to add “gender identity” as a protected class.   The new law will go into effect July 1, 2012. 1.  What is Gender Identity?  The new law defines “gender identity” as “a person’s gender-related identity, appearance or behavior, whether or not that gender-related identity, appearance or behavior is different from that traditionally associated with the person’s physiology or assigned sex at birth.”  A person may prove his or her gender identity by demonstrating “medical history, care or treatment of the gender-related identity, consistent and uniform assertion of the gender-related identity or any other evidence that the gender-related identity is sincerely held, as part of a person’s core identity.”  The law therefore appears to protect not only those individuals who have had...