2011 News

Posted: December 15th, 2011 by

Judy Stouffer, and other members of the Philadelphia Bar Association’s Green Ribbon Committee, presented the Latest and Greatest Green Initiative Practices at the Philadelphia Legal Secretaries Association Lunch-N-Learn on December 13, 2011.

Judy Stouffer was elected as First Vice President of The Philadelphia Association of Paralegals at the December 12, 2011 Board meeting.

On December 8, 2011, a surprise reception was held at Berner Klaw & Watson prior to the annual Family Law Section dinner, where Megan Watson was inducted as the 2012 Chair.

Megan Watson co-presented Philly VIP’s annual divorce training at Cozen O’Connor on December 2, 2011.

Three cheers for law clerks Melanie Wender, Katelyn Hufe and Jessica Borno, each of whom passed the New Jersey Bar on November 17th. All three are now licensed in both PA and NJ. Congratulations!

Judy Stouffer’s article “A Season for Being Thankful and Finding Ways to Give Back” was featured in the November 16th edition of The Legal Intelligencer.

Congratulations to Law Clerk Eileen Gilbert Murphy and Patrick Murphy, who married on November 12th.

Judy Stouffer was reappointed as the 2012 Study Materials Coordinator of the National Federation of Paralegal Associations on November 7th.

sag11awardStephanie Gonzalez Ferrandez was honored by the First Judicial District with a 2011 Pro Bono Publico Award in a ceremony at City Hall on October 27th.

Megan Watson not only serves as Treasurer for The Nicholas A. Cipriani American Inn of Court, but she was appointed as a Master of the Bar on October 19th.

Margaret Klaw is now an official blogger for The Huffington Post. See her October 18th posting atwww.huffingtonpost.com/margaret-klaw/stuff_b_1015878.html. Margy will also continue to blog atwww.familylawunraveled.blogspot.com.

Stephanie Stecklair participated in the Baltimore Running Festival on October 16th, completing the half marathon division in the 47.9 percentile. Click image to see photo of Stephanie Stecklar (right) and friend after the race.

Law Clerks Jessica Borno, Katelyn Hufe and Melanie Wender were notified on October 14th that they passed the Pennsylvania Bar. Way to go Melanie, Katelyn and Jessica!

Judy Stouffer taught the Paralegal Advanced Competency Exam Overview on October 13th at the NFPA Annual Convention in Minneapolis. She also participated on a panel at the NFPA Annual Pro Bono Conference held on October 14th.

Anna Marie Trantas married Steve Scaduto (without a hitch 🙂 on Saturday, October 1st. All at BKW were honored to attend the traditional ceremony and/or fabulous reception and to learn that donations were made to the American Cancer Society and Students Run Philly Style. Sincere congratulations to Anna Marie and Steve!

WTC Board Members Joni Berner and Lisa Jordan, along with their husbands and several BKW members, supported the 3rd Annual Karaoke for a Kause fundraiser on September 17th.

Judy Stouffer was invited to speak with Professor Jane Breslin Jacobs’ paralegal class at Community College of Philadelphia on September 15th.

news_templePartners Joni Berner, Margaret Klaw and Megan Watson are serving as Adjunct Professors for the Fall 2011 semester at Temple University, teaching “Pennsylvania Divorce Law and Practice.”

BKW’s Second Annual Law Clerk Program begins on September 1, 2011, welcoming 2011-2012 Law Clerks Melanie Wender, Katelyn Hufe, Pamela Hill, Eileen Gilbert and Jessica Borno.

Joni Berner taught an ethics CLE, “Avoiding Pitfalls of Handling Funds,” at PBI’s 4th Annual Law Practice Management and Development Institute, held in Lancaster from August 3-5, 2011.

Joni Berner moderated and Lisa Jordan participated in a panel of family law practitioners for PBI’s July 20, 2011 “Family Law 101” CLE.

When your day-to-day practice involves couples splitting up (we’d rather major in prenups and minor in divorces :), we get very excited about engagements. Sincere congratulations to Summer Law Clerk Nina Vecchione, who said “I do” on the Jumbotron at the Phillies’ game on July 8th!

Lisa Shapson co-presented on the June 15th General Practitioners’ Update 2011 CLE.  Margaret Klaw and BKW Law Clerk Alyssa Limberakis co-authored the “Pennsylvania Custody Case Law Updates — April 2010 – May 2011” portion of the manual for this presentation.


BKW members attended the Philadelphia Bar Association Family Law Section Spring Reception at the Ritz Carlton on June 8th.

BKW treated employees to a Phillies v. Dodgers game as part of The Philadelphia Bar Association’s Night at the Phillies held on June 7th.  Net proceeds benefitted the Bar Association and Philadelphia’s Senior Law Center.

Judy Stouffer was a co-presenter at a panel hosted by the Philadelphia Bar’s Green Ribbon Committee, which she co-chairs, on June 2nd. The PowerPoint and a podcast of “The Road to Green: Cost-Saving Sustainability Tips for Legal Departments and Law Firms of All Sizes” are available on the Green Ribbon web site.

Also, hear the June 2 podcast or read the PDF review at philadelphiabar.org (p. 6).

June 2011 Philadelphia Bar Reporter

Berner Klaw & Watson was honored by the Philadelphia Bar Foundation and Philadelphia Bar Association for making an early commitment to the 2011 Raising the Bar campaign. Read the PDF review at www.philadelphiabar.org (p. 20).

Lisa Shapson’s article “Valuations Challenging in Divorce” was featured in the June 2011 Philadelphia Bar Reporter (p. 10).

Judy Stouffer co-authored “Bringing Green Of fice Practice to Law Firms” in the June 2011 Philadelphia Bar Reporter (p. 8).

Click here to download the PDF and read the articles.

Stephanie Stecklair was approved as a Big Sister by the Bucks County, Pennsylvania Chapter of Big Brothers/Big Sisters on May 3rd and was matched with her little sister (a very lucky girl) on June 1st.

imgresBKW employees and friends gathered on May 25th to speak with representatives from the Women’s Medical Fund. Thanks to all who attended and/or donated — together we raised close to $1,500. To learn more about WMF or to make a tax-deductable contribution, please click here.

Judy Stouffer’s article “Even Today, Phone Calls, Face-to-Face Chats Play Important Role” was featured in the May 19th edition of The Legal Intelligencer.

The permanent placement of former law clerks Michelle Payne, Karen Graham and MariaJosé Delgado have made room for us to resume our summer law clerk program. On May 16th, the firm welcomed summer law clerks Nina Vecchione (Drexel); Inna Goykhman (Temple) and Maggie Gardella (Villanova).

Megan Watson co-presented the “To Prep or Not to Prep” portion of the Presentation of a Custody Evaluation in a Complex Custody Trial CLE on May 10th.

Stephanie Stecklair participated in the Zumbathon charity walk on May 1st for the National MS Society – Greater Delaware Valley Chapter. Her team raised close to $3,000. Way to go Stephanie!

Martindale-Hubbell® Bar Register of Preeminent Women Lawyers™

In April 2011, Joni Berner and Margaret Klaw were selected for the inaugural edition of the Martindale-Hubbell® Bar Register of Preeminent Women Lawyers™ – exclusively for women attorneys who have received the highest possible rating in both legal ability and ethical standards from their peers. Less than 5% of women lawyers have been recognized with an AV Preeminent Rating, placing her among the elite women in the legal industry.

Margaret Klaw’s “Family Law Unraveled” article was featured in the Spring 2011 edition of The Philadelphia Lawyer, including a copy of her May 16, 2010 blog entry, “Prince Charming.”

Judy Stouffer attended NFPA’s 2011 Joint Conference in Cleveland from April 28th – May 1st.

On April 27th, BKW said goodbye to Law Clerk MariaJosé Delgado, who will be joining the offices of Shemtob Law, P.C. as a family law attorney.

On April 25th, Joni Berner co-presented “Avoiding the Pitfalls of Handling [clients’/others’] Funds,” a luncheon CLE at Philadelphia Bar Association.

Click here to listen to the April 25th podcast or read the PDF review at www.philadelphiabar.org (p. 8).

On April 13th, Margaret Klaw and Lisa Shapson led a workshop at the Pennsylvania Bar Institute’s CLE titled “Family Law Institute – 2011,” focusing on the relationship between alimony and equitable distribution. Margaret also participated on a panel on Government Intervention in Parenting Decisions.

Berner Klaw & Watson was one of the many sponsors of the Support Center for Child Advocates’ annual benefit held on April 13th. Judy Stouffer served on the event committee.

On April 12th, Judy Stouffer was presented with a Certificate of Special Achievement for outstanding performance and lasting contributions in 2010 at The Philadelphia Association of Paralegals quarterly luncheon.

BKW receives a $640,000 verdict. Lisa Shapson’s win on a domestic violence assault case was featured in the March 2011 issue of Pennsylvania Jury Verdict Review & Analysis.

On March 29th, Judy Stouffer coordinated The Philadelphia Association of Paralegals’ volunteer night at the Public Interest Law Center of Philadelphia.

Not only is March 21st the first full day of spring, Law Clerk Karen Graham will also begin permanent employment as a family law attorney in Bucks County, Pennsylvania with Cooley & Handy. Good luck Karen!

Joni Berner and Megan Watson attended Philly VIP’s 30th Anniversary Gala at the Westin on March 19th. Joni sat on the 30th Anniversary Host Committee and the firm was one of the many sponsors for the event.

On March 11-12th, Judy Stouffer was invited to assist NFPA with final review for their new Paralegal Core Competency Exam, which will debut in June. Judy and several other Registered Paralegals convened for two days at the offices of Professional Examination Services in New York City, reviewing over 700 multiple choice questions.

On March 8th, Judy Stouffer was named Co-Chair of the Philadelphia Bar Association’s Green Ribbon Committee.

Megan was featured in Philadelphia Inquirer staff writer, Amy Rosenberg’s, March 1, 2011 article on new changes to Pennsylvania’s custody law.

While we are saddened to lose Law Clerk, Michelle Payne, our loss is The Defender Association of Philadelphia’s gain. Michelle will become an attorney in the Child Advocacy Unit effective February 28th.

Lisa Jordan was elected to the Board of the Women’s Therapy Center on February 25th.

Joni Berner and Lisa Jordan were guest lecturers at Professor Lewis Becker’s Villanova law class on February 22nd, 2011. The lead topic was Pennsylvania’s new custody statute (effective January 22, 2011) and alternative dispute resolution for contested custody matters, including the availability of parenting coordination for the most high-conflict cases.

Joni discussed issues surrounding the new statute’s recognition that mental health professionals may play a necessary role in child custody matters, particularly where parents or household members have been convicted of certain crimes. Lisa discussed Pennsylvania’s proposed parenting coordination statute and the controversy surrounding whether lawyers alone should be permitted to act as Parenting Coordinators (as currently proposed) or whether therapists should also be permitted to act in this role.

You many not know this, but among her many talents, Joni Berner helps run the family farm in Columbia, Missouri.  Although the brutal winter is affecting farms across the nation, please remember to buy locally whenever possible. For more information visit Pierpont Farms.

On February 2nd, Megan Watson and Kris Calalang presented on Grandparent Custodial Rights at the February Meeting of the Nicolas A. Cipriani American Inn of Court. Kris did an excellent job of playing the role of the Domestic Relations Judge as Megan, once again, zealously advocated for her client before “Judge” Calalang.

Megan Watson was interviewed by LI reporter, Amaris Elliott-Engle, recently with regard to the new changes to Pennsylvania’s custody law. The article appeared in The Legal Intelligencer on January 24, 2011. Megan’s quotes were picked up in The Pittsburgh Post Gazette on January 31, 2011.

On January 24th, Megan Watson, Kristine Calalang, Lisa Shapson, Lisa Jordan and Michelle Payne were each named to the First Judicial District’s 2010 Pro Bono Roll of Honor.

Margaret Klaw, Megan Watson and Kristine Calalang were named on the 2011 Pennsylvania Super Lawyers and Rising Stars List on January 21st.

Megan Watson began serving as Vice Chair of the Family Law Section for the Philadelphia Bar Association. In December, Megan also began serving on the Bar’s Civil Gideon Task Force and Co-Chairing the Family Working Group on January 1st.

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