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Our Mission

The International Practice Management Association (IPMA) is the premier resource for information and education on the management of paralegals and other practice support professionals in law firms and law departments globally. Its mission is to advocate for the effective use and management of these professionals, to promote and enhance the proficiency and professionalism of its members, and to provide thought leadership to the membership, the legal industry and the public at large on the value of utilization and management of paralegals and other practice support professionals.

2015 Annual Conference & Expo

31st IPMA Annual Conference & Expo
Westin Kierland in Scottsdale, Arizona
October 28-30, 2015

Click here to read IPMA 2015-2016 President Marcia Bibb's Annual Conference speech!

The 31st IPMA Annual Conference & Expo was held October 28-30 at the Westin Kierland in Scottsdale, Arizona. With increased member attendance and the participation of dozens of IPMA business partner representatives, late October was the perfect timing for gathering at a beautiful resort in the Arizona desert. Chaired by IPMA Directors Brian Bernhard, Jennifer Karns, and Patty Maxwell, the educational program featured a variety of sessions on practice support management topics, including personnel management, financial management, and emerging industry trends.

Have some conference photos to share? Send them along to the IPMA team, and selected photos will be featured on the IPMA website! (Be sure to identify any individuals pictured in your photos.)

Keynote speakers at the Conference included Tamara Rounds, who addressed navigating high-conflict environments and bridging generation gaps in the workplace, and Renate Mousseux, who addressed the important role that body language plays in our workplace communications. Among the other plenary sessions at the Conference were the popular IPMA Talk Live Roundtable session and dual (U.S. and Canada) sessions on hot employment law topics in the workplace.

Participating IPMA Business Partner members and other industry service providers contributed to the event's success at the Expo, where more than 20 exhibitors demonstrated their wares and networked with attendees.

At the IPMA Annual Business Meeting Luncheon, outgoing President Victoria Snook passed the gavel to incoming President Marcia Bibb, who welcomed incoming Board of Directors members Kathy Anderson and Michelle Lewis.  Several IPMA members were recognized for their service: Paige Stepan received the President's Award for her continuing efforts on the IPMA Awards Committee and the Chicago Chapter. Carlson Floy received the Rising Star Award for his leadership of the IPMA Management Resources Committee. Anthony Iannini was recognized with the Community Spirit Award for his ongoing volunteer efforts in the legal community.

IPMA 2015-2016 President Marcia Bibb's Annual Conference Speech

I want to thank Victoria Snook for her leadership and guidance over the past year. Vicki has been a true professional and a fantastic mentor. She has met every challenge presented to her with enthusiasm and a desire to move the IPMA forward in a positive direction. I also want to thank each of you, the membership of the IPMA. Without you, there would be no Association.

Today I would like to take a few minutes to speak to you from the heart. As many of you know I am passionate about the IPMA, its mission, its goals, and, most importantly, its membership. I recently completed my tenth year as a member of the IPMA and I am entering my fifth year serving on your Board of Directors. Everything I have put into the Association has come back threefold. During my tenure with the IPMA, I have received a strong appreciation for the value of our network of professionals. You are remarkable. The enthusiasm, loyalty, and dedication I have witnessed is contagious.

It is now time for me to give back. You may ask what are my objectives and goals for the coming year. I propose the following:

  • We will focus on increasing and enhancing the educational opportunities and training we provide to our membership. Each one of us continues to struggle with the changing trends in the legal industry. We understand your need for education and training in areas that may take you out of your comfort zones, like technology. We understand that the management skills you have relied on in the past may need to be changed or enhanced to enable you to better service the diverse group of practice support professionals you manage.
  • We are going to explore opportunities to strengthen our relationships with other professional associations, like ILTA, NALA, and ALA.
  • We are going to enhance and promote our relationships with our Business Partners. We cannot dismiss the value of these partnerships from an educational and financial perspective.
  • We will continue to enhance our social media to promote communications with our membership and potential new members.
  • We will continue to evaluate and educate you on the changing trends and positions in the legal industry to enable you to become more proactive in your management roles.

Then, you may ask, what can I do as we prepare to transition the IPMA into 2016.

  • First, I challenge each of you to “get up offa that [seat],” as James Brown so famously put it back in the 70’s, and get involved. Be the one to make a difference.
  • Support IPMA activities and events and participate in committee and chapter meetings. We do not need to keep our professional network a secret.
  • And, consider taking on leadership roles in the IPMA. Ten years ago, I never anticipated that I would be standing before you today in this capacity.

After all, the IPMA is OUR Association. It’s future and success is directly attributable to the efforts and contributions of each of us.

Thank you again for your support and I look forward to working with you in the coming year.