Virtual Conference for Legal Professionals: Wellness, Health, and Sobriety During These Difficult Times

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

The Other Bar is a California non-profit service organization dedicated to assisting attorneys, judges, paralegals and law students who struggle with wellness issues and related problems with alcohol or other substance use.   We are proud to sponsor this conference offering wisdom, guidance, humor and education designed to help you stay sane, productive, and yes, even happy, during this unprecedented confluence of overwhelming events and challenges.


We have assembled a lineup of stellar speakers for this event, which includes 2 MCLE presentations: Mental Competency/Substance Abuse in the Legal Profession, and Legal Ethics. (1 hour credit each.)   


What:                Wellness and Sobriety Conference

When:               Saturday October 24, 2020




Registration:   All registered attendees will receive follow-up emails with supplemental materials, instructions, Zoom links, and, for Other Bar members, a meeting password.  To register, click here:  or call or email David Mann at 415.240.1599  (



9:15-9:30 a.m.                   Introduction to The Other Bar and Conference Guidelines

9:30-10:30 a.m.         (1) Justice R. Ashby Pate

Be the Light: The Power of Human Connection in the Criminal Justice System


10:45-11:45 a.m.       (2) Roland Williams, MA, MAC, LAADC, NCACII, CADCII, SAP

Staying Clean, Sober and Sane During These Trying Times*




1:30-2:30 p.m.           (3) Mark Lundholm

HUMOR Begins & Ends with HR                                 


2:45-3:45 p.m.           (4) Attorney Samuel C. Bellicini

 Ethics in the Time of Coronavirus**


4:00-5:00 p.m.           (5) Attorney Francine Ward

Lessons Learned in Dealing With COVID-19 … and Everything Else!



6:30-8:00 p.m.                  Other Bar Meeting (closed: members and invitees only)


*1 CLE Credit: Mental Competency/Substance Abuse in the Legal Profession

**1 CLE Credit: Legal Ethics




The Other Bar is a certified MCLE provider (#10821) and a California 501(c)(3) non-profit whose mission is to provide free confidential support  and referrals to attorneys struggling with addiction to alcohol or other substances.  For more information, please visit our website at or call 1.800.222.0767 for a confidential consultation.


SPEAKER:  Justice R. Ashby Pate

TITLE:  Be the Light


In this presentation, Justice Pate illustrates the power of human connection through his unique “story,” which includes his own experience in the criminal justice system as a young man, all the way to his appointment to serve as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of Palau, a remote—and disconnected—island nation in the western North Pacific. Weaving stories of his time in Palau, where he helped bring an end the nation’s practice of solitary confinement, he shares how the power of human connection changed his own life and illustrates what can happen when lawyers and judges realize that the law’s highest calling is not to disconnect, but to reconcile, not to lock people up, but to set them free.


Ashby Pate is an attorney at Lightfoot, Franklin & White, LLC in the firm’s Birmingham, Alabama office. He maintains a general commercial defense practice, while routinely taking on some of the firm’s most important and controversial matters, including co-prosecuting former Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore in a widely-publicized judicial ethics trial. Pate also formerly served as Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of Palau, where he helped design the island nation’s first-ever jury-trial system and was the youngest justice appointed in Palau’s history.

Pate is also a sought-after public speaker. His speech, Be the Light, highlights the importance of human connection in the practice of law.  He has spoken across the country, including giving the keynote address, alongside Justice Anthony Kennedy of the United States Supreme Court, at the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals’ Law Clerk Orientation in San Francisco, as well as presentations to the American College of Trial Lawyers’ in Savannah, Maui, and Wilmington.



TITLE:         Staying Clean, Sober and Sane During These Trying Times

It’s Easy When it’s Easy and it’s Hard When it’s Hard, The Trick to Longevity in Recovery is Being Able to Do it When it Gets Hard.



This solution-oriented presentation will offer practical suggestions and usable coping strategies for managing our recovery during these very uncertain times. Achieving and maintaining long term recovery is dependent on us being able to “use our tools” even and maybe especially during the hard times. You will often hear in the meetings that “life shows up”. Well actually life has been here all along; what actually happens is “we show up”. Its easy to stay spiritual, grateful and engaged in recovery when things are going well, but everybody will come to a time and place where things get really, really hard, and then what are you going to do? Is your faith and gratitude still there? Are you still practicing these principals in all your affairs? Are you reaching out to others? Are you asking for and offering support?

Well here we are in 2020 and all of us are facing unprecedented levels of stress, fear, anxiety and uncertainty. And it may get worse before it gets better.

This presentation will offer support, encouragement and validation. It will be a reminder for those of us fortunate enough to be in recovery that we have been groomed to deal with chaos and uncertainty our whole lives and we have repeatedly demonstrated that we have what it takes to get through hard times.



Roland is an interventionist, author, trainer, counselor and consultant specializing in the treatment of Substance Use Disorders. He is President and Founder of Free Life Enterprises an international counseling and consulting firm that provides consultation, clinical training, program development, interventions and staff supervision, worldwide. He is the Founder and Director of the United Auburn Indian Community Recovery Program. He is the past Coordinator of Chemical Dependency Studies at Cal State East Bay. Roland is the past Director of Clinical Operations for DARA Thailand, and Clinical Director for Lionrock Recovery. He is the co-founder and former Executive Director of Alta Mira Recovery Programs, in Sausalito, California, as well as co-founder and former Clinical Director of Bayside Marin, in San Rafael, where he designed the initial clinical model for each facility.  Roland worked at Good Samaritan Hospital in San Jose, CA. for 15 years, where he was the Director of Behavioral Health Services, and was responsible for the psychiatric and chemical dependency programs. Roland was one of the first Licensed Advanced Addiction Counselors in the State of California, a member of the Department of Alcohol and Drug programs advisory board, he sat on the oral examination board of CAADAC, (California Association of Alcohol and Drug Counselors), and is a member of the NAADAC Trainers Academy. He has provided counseling and consulting services to individuals and treatment facilities worldwide.  Roland works with the Offender Mentorship Certification Program teaching CAADAC classes to incarcerated inmates. He also works with impaired legal and medical professionals and facilitates weekly support groups. He has published 3 books related to Relapse Prevention from a cultural perspective and written numerous articles on addiction and recovery. He is a frequent conference lecturer and workshop presenter.  However, he is most proud of the fact that he has been in recovery himself since June 10, 1986.


SPEAKER:   Mark Lundholm

TITLE:         HUMOR Begins & Ends with HR


This 45 minute stand-up comedy presentation is quicker than a 4-legged B&E perp, more seductive than oxycodone and more original than the Declaration of Independence. Check your ego at the door and hold on to your rear end because this show is not PC or PG. It is real, it is funny, it is recovery. Real. Funny. Recovery.



From the mean streets of Oakland, California, to stages, theaters, prisons, and arenas all over the world...former convict and recovering homeless drug addict Mark Lundholm has entertained U.S. Presidents, CEO’s, inmates, soldiers, judges, families, students, inpatients, physicians and healers of all kinds. Mark’s very unique style blending heart, hope and healing is the core message of every keynote, comedy show and corporate workshop he delivers. Lightning fast and straight to the point of it all, no one does what he does the way he does it.

Creator of the Clinical/Comical Process Group Day for treatment centers, Mark works with primary clients, families, IOP patients and adolescent populations. Issues and answers addressing shame reduction, relapse prevention, 12 step tools, co-occurring disorders, shortcuts to reintegration and to lowering ATA rates and improving client extensions and referrals are only a few of the topics tackled during this 6 hour day of original programming.

Credits include:
Showtime, Netflix, ABC, Disney, CBS, A&E, NBC and Fox Network and every social media outlet in existence. Caution: not all content on the internet has been approved by MLE, inc. Recorded products (comedy AND clinical) are too many to mention but may be found at

For more info, please go to:     408.464.0726


SPEAKER:  Attorney Samuel C. Bellicini

TITLE:        Ethics in the Time of Coronavirus


As we navigate our way past the half-year mark of the COVID-19 pandemic, it should have occurred to all of us by now that the practice of law has changed to accommodate the various shelter-in-place orders, and that many of these changes may become permanent as an accommodation to an overcrowded and under-funded court system.  This one-hour Ethics MCLE presentation will explore the professional responsibility and competency issues peculiar to the pandemic, both in our professional, and in our personal lives.



Attorney Samuel C. Bellicini is a solo practitioner in San Rafael, California. His primary practice emphasizes defense of State Bar cases, admissions, and general ethics advice. Mr. Bellicini is the 2015 and 2016 past President of the Association of Discipline Defense Counsel.  He is a member of several local Bay Area Bar Associations, and is a member of The Other Bar.  Mr. Bellicini has presented MCLE programs to many of these local bar associations and Inns of Court.


SPEAKER:  Attorney Francine Ward

TITLE:         Lessons Learned in Dealing With COVID-19 … and Everything Else!


“Accept the things we cannot change” sounds great in theory, but what if we are faced with a pandemic that impacts our livelihood? What if we are faced with the loss of a loved one? What if our lives are turned upside down?  What if?

When times are tough it’s easy to think that we have no choices.  When you are dealt a rotten hand it’s easy to think that you have to just roll over and take the hit.  And in fact, the acceptance of conditions, whatever they are, is a start, but it’s just one of many tools useful for weathering life’s storms.  No one knows this better than Francine Ward, lawyer, recovering person, and survivor of life’s challenges. Join her in this last session as she shares strategies for not only coping, but effectively managing, and actually thriving during this perfect storm of conditions.



A 1989 graduate of Georgetown University Law Center, Francine is an intellectual property and estate planning attorney with a focus on copyrights, trademarks, publishing, social media law issues, and estate planning. She is also the author of Esteemable Acts: 10 Actions for Building Real Self-Esteem and other books, as well as a highly-regarded motivational speaker and life coach.

And, she’s got 41 years of continuous sobriety!



» «