Association Spotlight - Massachusetts Paralegal Association
The Massachusetts Paralegal Association, Inc. ("MPA"), established in 1975, is the oldest and largest professional organization for paralegals in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Currently celebrating its 43rd year in existence, and led by a nine member Board of Directors, MPA is proud of its history and its standing within the legal community, with nearly four hundred members holding various levels of membership consisting of Voting, Associate, Student, and Sustaining. MPA's community represents a broad spectrum of interests and practice areas, representing all areas of law, with members employed by law firms, corporations, governmental agencies, and academia. MPA is also proud of its enthusiastic Student member population, as well as the positive relationships it has fostered with the many colleges and universities across the Commonwealth offering varying levels of degrees and certificate programs in Paralegal Studies. You will often find members of MPA's Board presenting in the classroom, sharing their respective real life experiences with the students.
MPA promotes camaraderie among its membership through a variety of networking and social events held annually. These events consist of the Association’s Annual Meeting, our most anticipated and celebrated event, held each October in the heart of Boston, with approximately three to four additional events offered throughout the year such as a Winter Warmer event, a Holiday Party, a Summer Social, an On Board event, and a Heat Up Your Career event, where members of all levels can benefit from expert guidance in resume building, support, and advice in establishing social media accounts, and the presence of a host of top recruiting firms at the ready to share their expertise.
Many of these events feature keynote speakers and provide a casual yet professional environment to mix and mingle with your fellow friends and MPA colleagues. Several events also incorporate the sponsorship of drives for a variety of local charities. Our members enjoy taking an active part in this effort and it MPA looks forward to continuing its commitment to supporting local charities.
Additionally, MPA has a robust Continuing Legal Education (CLE) programs we provide to our membership, many of which often have waiting lists to attend. This program, divided into Sections, covers a wide variety of disciplines and areas of concentration. One of the highlights of MPA's CLE offerings this past year included a round table discussion with Clerks of the Probate Courts in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, which focused on general procedures in their respective Courts. Another exciting CLE event focused on cyber scams facing legal professionals in the real estate sector, which featured a speaker from the FBI’s Office of Criminal Affairs.
The CLE branch of MPA takes great pride in its affiliations with other organizations, including its ongoing relationship with MCLE (Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education). MCLE hosts an annual, full day Paralegal Conference each year where many of the featured speakers are members of our Association. In addition, MCLE has kindly invited MPA to contribute in authoring, as well as assist in editing, a paralegal guide to professional responsibility. We are very excited about this endeavor and look forward to its upcoming publication!
MPA and REBA
MPA also enjoys its professional relationship with REBA (Real Estate Bar Association for Massachusetts) and its Paralegal Section. Several real estate seminars and webinars are co-hosted each year. At its recent Annual Meeting, REBA’s Chief Operating Officer acknowledged MPA noting, “….. (that) both groups enjoy a close collaborative relationship and co-hosting Continuing Legal Education programs together…”
Further, MPA has built a strong relationship with the Central Massachusetts Paralegal Association and the Western Massachusetts Paralegal Association. Together, the three associations have formed the Massachusetts Consortium. The Consortium meets approximately four times per year to share information and activities relative to their respective Association as well as information that involve paralegals statewide. Additionally, in a joint effort, the Associations petition the Governor of the Commonwealth to issue a Proclamation proclaiming Massachusetts Paralegal Day, which typically occurs in late June to coincide with the MCLE’s Annual Paralegal Conference.
MPA strives to keep its members engaged and enthusiastic about the paralegal profession, as well as educated on current issues and topics surrounding our profession. We continue to openly share our collective knowledge with each other, beginning with what happens here at home, through our neighboring associations across New England and on a national level as a proud and long-standing member of NFPA.