It is hard to believe that 2012 is almost gone. The Paralegal Association held many great events this past year and we are striving to do the same in 2013.
On Nov. 30, 27 PAR members attended a tour of the Monroe County Crime Lab. What a fantastic building.
Our tour guide was James F. Wesley, drug chemistry supervisor and forensic chemist. He told us the Crime Lab is four stories and 45,000 square feet. He stated that the building is Monroe County’s first LEED platinum rated “green” government building. From the solar roof panels to the collections of rain water for reuse, all I can say is wow!
A very interesting thing he told us was that the glass on the bathroom walls is recycled brown beer bottle glass. He made a joke and said he preferred green, but they got brown.
We started on the top floor and walked down to the other 3 levels. It was very interesting looking at the displays through the halls as Mr. Wesley told us about the different labs. On the floor where the drug lab was, Another lab technician, Michelle, came out and spoke to us about the things that go on in her lab. We again saw the displays which were so interesting and seeing the different drugs that are available in Rochester on the street was unbelievable.
As we ended the tour on the bottom floor, we went into the room where an entire automobile or truck can be held and torn apart for an investigation. If another police or sheriff’s department brings in an automobile for an investigation, the entire area can be sealed so that no one can come in except the people who are doing that investigation. A sort of funny thing happened while we were in here. We could not get out. It seemed that the pass cards did not work. We called Michelle, the technician, and she came and released us. What a comical end to a great tour!
The Paralegal Association’s free holiday lunch was on Dec. 12. It was held at the First Federal Building in the conference room. We indulged in a light lunch of pizza, wings and dessert. It was well-attended by PAR’s members and sponsors and was a great networking event.
Our Christmas charity again this year was “Adopt a Family” through Alternatives for Battered Women. PAR adopted 2 families with a total of 6 family members. We were provided with a “wish list” by the families whereby PAR members and its sponsors graciously provided many wonderful gifts for these families. This is so gratifying knowing we are actually making someone’s Christmas wishes come true.
PAR also adopted a Hurricane Sandy family. We discovered that one of our own PAR member’s families were greatly affected by this storm and lost almost everything. The affected family is now temporarily living in a family member’s household in New York City. Gift cards were donated by PAR members for this family so they can apply them to purchase their most critical necessities. I would again like to thank everyone for all of the wonderful donations.
I’d like to shoot out a couple of things happening in 2013. We are going to have a follow-up tour of the Crime Lab for the people that could not attend this past November, a CLE for UPL in February and our 3rd Annual Casino Night.
I also want to mention that the Empire State Alliance is hosting the first ever statewide conference for paralegals on May 3 and 4, 2013, in Saratoga Springs. Details are forthcoming but please save the date.
At this time I want to thank everyone who has made all of our events with PAR this past year such a success. Without dedicated individuals and sponsors these things could not have taken place. We at PAR wish everyone a very happy holiday season and please stay safe. See you next year.
Deborah King is a paralegal and PAR’s primary representative to the National Federation of Paralegal Associations.