January 2021 Print


Please visit our East Bay Chapter website for more  information!


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REGISTRATION for 2021 CaLM (California Legal Management Conference)

January 29, 2021
8:30 AM - 4:15 PM



Calm Registration Link  
Registration Instructions
Registration is through the ALA SF Golde Gate chapter site. 
Select "Register" at the bottom of the page followed by "Register as Guest." 
After inputting your information, select a ticket that reflects your chapter membership. 
Business Partners:  please select the Business Partner Ticket option. 

Calm Registration Link


East Bay Chapters Book Club - RESCHEDULED February 4th @ 5:30 pm

February 04, 2021
5:30 PM - 6:45 PM

Zoom Invitation in Confirmation Email



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Congratulations to Our New CLMs

Please join us in congratulating our new CLMs on their outstanding achievement! Obtaining CLM certification shows great initiative and dedication to the profession and demonstrates the mastery of a highly proficient legal administrator.

Andrea Everage and Sue Stratton! 

In anticipation of the May, 2021 CLM exam, ALA Chicago is once again launching a CLM study group.  The first study session is scheduled for Wednesday, January 13th.  Over a year ago, Chicago opened their study group to all ALA members.  Chicago is  thrilled to report that their Fall 2020 Study Group had 105 members from 44 chapters around the country, with over 90% of those who passed the November exam being members of our group! 

To help offset costs, ALA Chicago charges a nominal $100 fee to join the Study Group. East Bay Chapter (EBALA) is happy to announce a CLM Course and Exam Scholarship!  The Scholarship consists of $400 to anyone who participates in the Chicago Study Group and passes the CLM exam.

Below is a summary of the Chicago group’s offerings:

  • A series of one-hour comprehensive study sessions via Zoom webinar – approximately 19 sessions (see attachments for a detailed schedule)
  • A variety of highly-qualified speakers including a CPA, several labor and employment attorneys, counsel from ARDC, technology professionals, insurance brokers, real estate brokers, employee benefits experts and more
  • Access to speakers for questions and guidance
  • Full access to the Chicago Study Group’s Google drive of study materials and speaker presentations.  Note: You need a Gmail account to access these.
  • An abundance of sample test questions
  • Support from prior study group participants and current CLM’s to encourage you along your study journey
  • Access to our chapter’s CLM Director to help answer questions and guide you to success
  • Opportunities to form new relationships across ALA chapters

We encourage you to visit the Certification page on ALA Chicago’s website → https://alachicago.org/page/ChicagoStudyGroup.  Registration for the study group is also accessed through this link.

If you have any questions regarding the study group, please contact Rita Nielsen ([email protected]).

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Let me begin with the end in mind . . . . Oh.  Em.  Gee!!!  I passed the CLM certification on my first attempt. 

Now, let's make a few sandwiches and dust off the roadmap.

Fifteen or so years ago, when deciding whether to take the CLM or SHRM certification, I decided to get certified with SHRM.  I made that decision because I wasn't sure I would stay in legal management.  I thought . . . "who outside of legal understands what a CLM is, anyway?"  At that time I already had many (many) years of HR experience, and thought an HR certification made sense.  So, I took the three-month review course at a technical college, gave myself an additional month thereafter to brush up, and took the exam.  I was excited to have passed, and life went on.

I like a challenge, and absolutely love to learn: It's kind of my thing.  I moved to a new firm right before Christmas in 2019 because I needed a new challenge.  I joined Baker McKenzie as its Manager, California Human Resources.  Baker McKenzie is the largest law firm for which I have worked.  It's a behemoth!  Lots to learn = happy girl.  But, I also needed to figure out how I could add value to the firm.  When considering my fiscal year 20/21 goals I set as a priority to, at the very least, gain some of the knowledge required for the CLM exam.  I figured gaining the education would be beneficial to the firm, even if I decided to not take the exam.

I registered for the Chicago ALA Chapter's study group because I understood they had a high CLM pass-rate, and that the group operated like a well-oiled machine.  Rita Nielsen did a great job coordinating each session.  During the study group orientation participants were provided an overview of how the educational sessions would be broken down, and where to access additional self-study materials.  A key element for participants was understanding the study group sessions alone were not be enough to pass the exam; self-study would be required.

The twice-weekly study sessions ran from late September to mid-November.  Sessions were generally held in the mornings at 8:00 a.m. Central time.  Good thing I'm an early riser!  I found each session to be thorough and useful towards completion of this goal.  In other words, there were no "fluff" sessions.

When applying for the exam candidates are sorted into two buckets: (1) Principal Administrators/Branch Managers or (2) Functional Specialists with supervisory responsibility.  All candidates have to provide proof of two (2) hours' education, completed within the prior 24 months, in each of the following areas:

  1. Writing skills
  2. Communication skills
  3. Self-management skills
  4. Information Technology
  5. Organizational Development

In addition, Functional Specialists must provide proof of 15 hours' education, completed within the prior 24 months, distributed across areas outside of their functional specialty.

I really had to sit down and calculate the cost/benefit of pursing CLM.  I had to show proof of 25 hours of prior education before submitting my application.  These 25 hours were not inclusive of the CLM study group, nor of the countless hours of independent study I knew was necessary to sit for the exam.  ALA provided a great education tracker which helped me stay organized. 

I augmented the study group by reading the CLM study guide, cover-to-cover, and making flash cards.  I used LinkedIn Learning to earn certificates of completion in business analysis; business ethics; accounting foundations for leases; communication foundations; developing a mentoring program; finance for non-financial managers; IT security foundations; project management, and more. I even went to YouTube and pulled some great classes on understanding basic financial reporting; basics of life in law firm accounting; balance sheets, income statements and cash flows.  And, I pulled prior SHRM/HRCI records from 2019 which listed sessions I attended from the ALA Annual Conference.

Goodness!  Reading this back I wonder if I would have pursued the designation . . . . yes, I would have because I'm crazy like that!  Is it hard?  You bet!  Was it worth the effort?  My tears of joy upon learning I passed was all the proof I needed. 


Andrea D. Everage, MHR, CLM, PHR
Manager, CA-HR Business Partner

Baker & McKenzie LLP

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