Leaders from the New Jersey State Bar Association welcomed more than 100 new attorneys into the profession at a swearing-in ceremony in Trenton on Dec. 5.
The state Supreme Court and U.S. District Court of New Jersey held a special joint session in the Patriots Theatre to formally swear in recent law school graduates to the state and federal bars. NJSBA President Timothy F. McGoughran joined state Supreme Court Chief Justice Stuart Rabner and other jurists to impart their wisdom on the young lawyers who recently passed the bar exam.
With hundreds of their families and friends supporting them, the new attorneys rose as Justice Rabner and U.S. District Court of New Jersey Chief Judge Renee Marie Bumb admitted the group to the state and federal bars. In a speech, McGoughran said the new attorneys would remember this moment, as he does nearly 40 years after graduating from Seton Hall Law School.
“The state bar officially welcomes you as a new member of our great and noble profession. We commend you for your fortitude and your resilience in overcoming obstacles that come with the rigors of law school and studying for the bar exam,” McGoughran said. “It took a great deal of effort – long days and sleepless nights – to arrive at this moment. But let me assure you that your timing is perfect, and we need you.”
Justice Rabner said the group can now embark on careers that serve clients professionally and forcefully, all the while abiding by the highest of ethical standards.
“You will be able to volunteer in different ways using your legal skills to help serve the public interest, the communities in which you live and help people who desperately need legal assistance they cannot afford. In these and other ways, you will be making a difference for the better in many lives starting now,” Justice Rabner said.
Chief Judge Bumb, who became the district’s chief judge in February after the retirement of Freda L. Wolfson, told the new attorneys to embrace the responsibility entrusted to them as officers of the court. Always remember that the impact you have on the lives of others can shape the course of justice, she said.
“You now have the privilege of joining an esteemed profession here in New Jersey. You can be the voice for those who cannot speak for themselves. You are the ones who can make a difference in another person’s life, in the cases you handle and the clients you represent,” Judge Bumb said.