2016 Join Conference - Leadership Conference - Saturday, April 30, 2016

8:30 - 8:35
Welcome  ~ Opening Remarks
Yvonne DeAntoneo
Vice President & Director of Membership

8:35 - 9:30
Membership Matters

  • Recruiting new members
  • Convincing your firm to support membership

Brenna Dickey
Oregon Paralegal Association

9:35 - 10:30
Respectful Communication – It’s not what you said but how you said it
Yvonne DeAntoneo
Vice President & Director of Membership

10:35 - 10:45
10:50 - 11:50
Mentoring Students and New Paralegals
Linda Odermott, RP
Regulation Committee  Co-Chair
Oregon Paralegal Association
Certification Ambassador

11:50 - 1:00

Leadership as an Ethical Mandate
Allen Mihecoby, CLAS, RP
NFPA Vice President & Director of Professional Development

1:00 - 2:00
Dealing with Difficult Leaders (those who don't show up, don't follow through, etc.)
Mindi L. Schaefer, M.S., RP, OSBA, AACP
Paralegal Association of Central Ohio

2:05 - 2:35
Mock Board Meeting - Panel Presentation

2:40 - 3:10
Converting Members to Leaders
Lisa Vessels, RP, CP, FRP
NFPA President

3:15 - 3:25
3:30 - 4:30
What’s on your Mind?  Q & A with NFPA Leaders
NFPA Leaders

Speaker Bios

Yvonne Lewis DeAntoneo

Vice President & Director of Membership

Yvonne Lewis DeAntoneo is a litigation paralegal with Nationwide Insurance in their Tampa Bay Trial Division and has over 20 years of paralegal experience in medical malpractice, personal injury, mass torts and commercial litigation.

Yvonne has served two terms as the President of the Tampa Bay Paralegal Association, Inc.  An active member with TBPA since its inception, Yvonne has also served in various other roles and committee positions with TBPA, including 1st Vice President, Pro Bono/Community Service Committee; 10th Anniversary Celebration Chair; Bar Liaison/Public Relations; Education/Professional Development/Student Mentoring; Membership; Newsletter; Parliamentarian; Seminar/CLE; and State & National Affairs.

Yvonne has an Associate Degree In Paralegal Studies from St. Petersburg College and a Bachelor’s of Arts in English & American Literature from the University of South Florida.

Mindi Shaefer, M.S., RP, OSBA, AACP

NFPA Leadership Coordinator

As Administrative & Paralegal Support Director, Mindi Schaefer is responsible for the management of the administrative and paralegal support staff which includes recruiting, training, work-flow coordination, productivity management, and continuing legal education.  Additionally, she analyzes public relation and promotional strategies for the firm including sponsorship activities, pro bono opportunities, and speaking engagements. She researches print and electronic media options for the firm to promote and advertise the firm. In addition, Mindi focuses on social media implementation and website content management to maintain fresh and current firm content.

Mindi participates in various types of litigation cases in the areas of medical malpractice, dental malpractice, professional liability, general liability, governmental entity liability, business planning, and business disputes. She handles all aspects of the legal process including investigation, discovery, file management, and trial preparation. Through her work at Poling Law, Mindi works closely with clients, counsel, and the legal community to illustrate the firm’s belief in results, service, and relationships.

Mindi actively participates in the Paralegal Association of Central Ohio (“PACO”) and presently holds the positions of President of the Executive Board, Advisory Board Chair, Professional Development Chair, National Federation of Paralegal Associations (“NFPA”) Secondary Representative/Statewide Representative.

She is a continuing legal education presenter with the Columbus Bar Association (“CBA”), NFPA, myLawCLE, and Institute for Paralegal Education focusing on the areas of case preparation from start to Trial and document management.  Mindi has been a featured author with the Columbus Bar Friday Paper (affiliated with The Daily Reporter / CBA), PACO, and National Paralegal Reporter (affiliated with the NFPA) focusing on topics associated to paralegals, PACO, employment, mentoring, and trial preparation.  She is also a frequent guest speaker at Capital University Law School, Columbus State Community College, ITT Technical Institute, Miami-Jacobs Career College, and local area high schools focusing on interviewing, entering the paralegal profession, and the overall paralegal profession in Central Ohio.

Brenna Dickey

Oregon Paralegal Association

Brenna Dickey, a member of the Oregon Paralegal Association ("OPA"), is a paralegal in Miller Nash Graham & Dunn LLP's ("MNG&D") business department, assisting with corporate formation, maintenance and governance, due diligence review (including data room creation and updates), and mergers and acquisitions. Brenna joined MNG&D in 1998. Before joining MNG&D, Brenna worked as an in-house litigation paralegal for Hilton Hotels Corporation.  Brenna earned her Bachelor of Arts, cum laude, in political science and journalism (news-editorial) from the University of Oregon.  Brenna earned her post-graduate paralegal certificate from University of California, Los Angeles, summa cum laude.  Brenna currently serves as OPA's NFPA Secondary Representative and Corporate Specialty Group Chair, and has served in the past as OPA's President, Vice President, and Secretary. Brenna was the recipient of OPA President’s Award in 2012 and 2013, OPA's Outstanding Member Award in 2013, and OPA's Outstanding New Member Award in 2009.

Allen Mihecoby, CLAS, RP

NFPA Vice President & Director of Professional Development

Allen Mihecoby, CLAS, RP is currently employed as a Senior Paralegal at Kimberly-Clark, a global enterprise which manufactures some of the best known brands in the consumer products industry.  In this role, he is responsible for supporting the Company’s efforts in SEC Reporting, Corporate Governance, Strategic Transactions and Compliance.  He was previously employed in the position of Manager, Law Department, for the second largest railroad in the U.S. He has primarily worked with international firms and multinational corporations in various areas of law, including IP, corporate, securities, real estate and commercial litigation. He received his BA in Political Science at the University of Texas--Arlington, with a concentration in International Affairs and Pre-Law. In 1997 he graduated with an ABA-approved paralegal certificate from Southeastern Paralegal Institute in Dallas, Texas. He became a PACE Registered Paralegal in 2002; and earned the CLAS credential (Business & Corporate Law) in 2005.

Allen has served the paralegal profession on national, state, and local levels. He is a member of the Dallas Area Paralegal Association (DAPA), the Metroplex Association of Corporate Paralegals (MACP), Fort Worth Paralegal Association (FWPA), the Texas Center for Legal Ethics (TCLE), the Paralegal Division of the State Bar of Texas (PD) and a charter member of the State Bar College (SBC). In several of these organizations, Allen has served in leadership positions, including: NFPA CLE Co-Coordinator and Assistant Pro Bono Coordinator; DAPA President, VP of Programs, Board Advisor and Ethics Chair; FWPA First Vice President-Programs and Ethics Chair; PD Parliamentarian and District 3 Director; and MACP Co-Chair/Ethics/Professional Development.

In 2004, Legal Assistant Today named Allen as one of the runners-up in its Paralegal of the Year Contest. The same year, NFPA and Dyncorp awarded him the Outstanding Local Leader award. He was named 2009 Fort Worth Paralegal Association’s Paralegal of the Year. ParalegalGateway.com named Allen as one of its 2011 Paralegal Superstars and DAPA awarded him the 2011 Pro Bono award.

Linda Odermott, RP

Regulation Committee Co-Chair, Oregon Paralegal Association
Certification Ambassador, Oregon Paralegal Association

Ms. Odermott is a PACE Registered Paralegal with more than eight years of experience in complex litigation and working for a municipality. She works with attorneys from both the Litigation Team and the Corporate Team at the law offices of Dunn Carney Allen Higgins & Tongue LLP in Portland, Oregon. Her paralegal practice includes: land use, construction defect, complex litigation, real property, tribal law, treaties, franchise agreements, ordinances and resolutions of local and state agencies, easements, right of ways, land use agreements, policies and regulations of government agencies, historic maps and diagrams, public records and public meeting laws, and most recently on marijuana related matters. Ms. Odermott is also a member of the part-time faculty at Portland Community College where she teaches on real property to the paralegal students.

Lisa Vessels, RP, CP, FRP

NFPA President

Lisa Vessels lives in Miami, Florida, and is employed by Duane Morris LLP managing the docketing function and rules-based docketing software for her firm's U.S. offices. Lisa has worked in the paralegal profession since 1992 with experience in commercial litigation, as well as corporate contract law specializing in commercial aviation equipment leasing and sales.  

Lisa is a former two-term President of the South Florida Paralegal Association and the Florida Alliance of Paralegal Associations. As an active member in both organizations, she served in many roles since joining in 2005.  She is currently the NFPA President for the 2014-2016 term.  She has also served as NFPA’s Vice President and Director of Positions and Issues from 2012-2014, Regulation Review Coordinator from 2009-2012, and was an active participant on the PCC Exam Development Committee from its inception in 2008 through its launch in 2011.

Lisa served on Miami-Dade College's Paralegal Studies Program Advisory Board from 2006 to 2012, serving as chairperson from 2010. She is currently serving her fourth three year term as a non-lawyer member of The Florida Bar's Unlicensed Practice of Law Committee for the 11th Circuit in Miami-Dade County. She was an adjunct instructor at Florida International University's Paralegal Studies certificate program from 2006 to 2008. Lisa also volunteers for the Girl Scout Council of Tropical Florida as a trainer for adult volunteers.

Ms. Vessels earned her Bachelor's degree in Paralegal Studies from Nova Southeastern University in 2005, and Associate's degrees in Computer Information Systems and Computer Programming (Visual Basic) from Miami Dade College in 2002. She earned the Certified Paralegal® credential in 2005, became a Florida Registered Paralegal with The Florida Bar in 2008, and earned the PACE Registered Paralegal credential 2012.

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