October 8-12, 2012
Theme: NO COURTS, NO JUSTICE, NO FREEDOM
Gerald R. Ford
XXXVIII President of the United States: 1974-1977
Proclamation 4327 – National Legal Secretaries’ Court Observance Week, 1974
October 14, 1974
By the President of the United States of America
Our vast and complex system of justice cannot function without the skill and dedication of our Nation’s legal secretaries. Without these unsung heroes of the legal process, the wheels of justice would grind to a permanent halt. They deserve the praise, gratitude and respect not only of their employers but of the system which they serve so well. One way in which their employers can demonstrate their appreciation for jobs well done is by giving their legal secretaries greater opportunities to observe courtroom proceedings—to see more of the system in action.
Thus began the Court Observance Week tradition. For these past 38 years, NALS members have upheld the legacy established by this proclamation by sponsoring and participating in themed activities that promote understanding of courtroom procedures. The NALS Education Committee is charged with the responsibility of creating each year’s theme, and the theme selected for 2012 is No Court, No Justice, No Freedom.
We encourage every member, chapter, and committee to organize, publicize, and participate in an event during the week of October 8-12, 2012, in celebration of the constitutional freedoms our courts protect. Our courts must be open and available to accomplish that goal. Some of your events could include: mock trial for staff members in your firm and invite staff members from other firms in your area to attend as well. Coordinate and promote a courthouse tour. The possibilities are limited only by your creativity and dedication. For more ideas, check out what other chapters have done in the past. An internet search using the term “court observance week” will produce several useful links. And while you’re there, take time to read the full text of President Ford’s proclamation on The American Presidency Project’s website. It’s just another reminder of the importance of your contribution to the legal community.