Leadership Forum

The Alabama State Bar is now accepting applications for Leadership Forum Class 16. All applications must be completed and received by the Bar by 5:00 p.m. on November 15, 2021. Successful applicants will be notified no later than December 17. Class 16 will consist of no more than 30 participants.

Applicants must be in good standing with the Alabama State Bar and have practiced law for not less than 5 years and for not more than 16 years as of January 1, 2022 (based upon first admission to any state bar).

To apply, or nominate someone from your firm, please complete the online application. For more information, contact Robyn Bernier.


As you know, the Alabama State Bar Leadership Forum took a year off in 2019 to focus on our alumni and the future of the program.  The Leadership Forum Alumni Section hosted three summits for its alumni to reflect, reconnect and re-energize. Each summit included a Thursday night social for alumni to reconnect with classmates and meet alumni from other classes. The following morning, the summits featured “Ed Talks” named in honor of Ed Patterson, who successfully lead the Leadership Forum during its first fourteen years. Each Ed Talk was a unique and diverse reflection of the Leadership Forum alumni as a whole with topics ranging from funny and lighthearted to thought provoking and challenging. No matter the topic, all of the Ed Talks were engaging, insightful and provided the Leadership Forum alumni in attendance with an impactful experience that will not soon be forgotten.

>>View Dothan lawyer Holly Sawyer’s Ed Talk

>>View Judge Jim Hughey’s Ed Talk.

After the Ed Talks portion of the summits, Leadership Forum alumni divided into smaller focus groups to discuss ways to grow and develop the program going forward. We are looking forward to implementing the feedback from Leadership Forum alumni as we plan for Class 15.

The Alabama State Bar Leadership Forum is honored as a dynamic and highly effective model for nurturing and developing leadership skills and values among a select group of qualified, promising lawyers each year. Now in its 15th year, the Alabama State Bar Leadership Forum has illuminated a pathway for other state bars and legal organizations recognizing the need for servant-minded bar and community leadership. Graduates of the Alabama bar program become models of ethical and professional behavior both within and outside the legal community.

The Leadership Forum is distinguished by the quality and prominence of forum presenters, as well as its highly innovative approach to an array of subjects informing development of leadership skills and presence. The “servant leadership” ethic advanced by the forum enhances professionalism as it calls for sharing power and helping others develop and perform to the best of their ability. From the program’s inception in 2005, it has produced around 400 graduates equipped not only to influence the bar but to shape the future of the state of Alabama. Entry to the program is competitive, with more than 40 percent of applicants chosen for the 30 positions each year.

Who may apply?  Because the Leadership Forum took a year off, we have extended eligibility to any member of the Alabama State Bar who is in good standing and who has been admitted to practice law for not less than 5 years and for not more than 16 years as of January 1, 2020 (based upon first admission to any state bar).

How do I apply? Click here to download the application. Signed and completed applications may be submitted by e-mail to leadershipforum@alabar.org.

When is my application due? Applications must be completed and received by the Bar by 5:00 p.m. on November 1, 2019.

Who do I contact if I have questions? You may contact the Alabama State Bar Programs Department by calling (334) 269-1515 or by emailing leadershipforum@alabar.org.

To view the Leadership Forum Class 1 through 13 highlight video, click here.

Click here to read about the Leadership Forum in the July 2019 issue of The Alabama Lawyer.