Young Lawyers Section

The Young Lawyers Section provides our members with the opportunity to develop the technical skills necessary to cultivate a career, as well as the ability to participate in networking and charitable activities. Our Section is comprised of 'new' lawyers practicing in every area of the law. This diverse membership allows us to host annual CLEs encompassing several areas of the law, providing our members with the tools necessary to develop a strong practice. In addition, we host several social events with other young professional organizations to provide our members with networking opportunities.

We also are actively involved with local charities giving our members a chance to give back to the community. Our goal is to promote young lawyers, develop strong leaders, enhance the image of the legal profession, and support the community. We encourage you to join our section.

A "young lawyer" is defined as an attorney who is no older than 36 as of May 31st of that year of membership or, has been a member in good standing of the Bar in any state for no more than five years, whichever is later. This provision does not apply to officers of this section while they are serving the term of their position. Any Young Lawyer, whose dues are paid, upon request and payment of the Section dues for that current fiscal year, shall be enrolled as Member of this Section.

Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association - Young Lawyers Section







Nadeen Nassar 


 Alexander B. Reich 


Kelly M. Zacharias 


Synenberg, Coletta & Moran, LLC 

Vice Chair

Calfee, Halter & Griswold LLP  



Law Office of Kelly Zacharias

Council Members:
Evan Byron
Julie DiBaggio
Terry Doyle
Lauren Gilbride
Chelsea Mikula
Christopher St. Marie
Robert Terbrack
Kimberly Textoris
Elaine Tso
Seth Wamelink
Ryan Young

The Young Lawyers Section sponsors at least three social events each year. The events afford YLS members an opportunity to network and socialize with colleagues.

In addition to these general social events, the Young Lawyers Section partners with the CMBA on events throughout the year to bring members of our section together with honored members of the Judiciary, Leaders in Public Office, as well as General and other In-House Counsel from our corporate community.

Offered exclusively to the younger lawyer members of the CMBA, the CMBA Connections Program was launched in September of 2010 to build connections between the established leaders of our community. In the CMBA Connections Program, a prominent leader of the Cleveland legal or business community will host, at his or her place of business, a brown bag lunch with 10-12 young/new members of our bar association. The host will be asked during the lunch to share stories about his or her career, how he/she arrived at the current position, and to share insights with the young CMBA members about practicing law in Cleveland, Ohio and the future of lawyers in our region. These lunch meetings will be small and intimate, allowing the participants to chat informally with someone that is playing an important role for our city. For more information, go to:

The Young Lawyers Section also participates in several community, pro bono, and charitable events each year.

In the past, YLS attorneys have volunteered to participate in the Fugitive Safe Surrender program held at the Mount Zion Church in Oakwood Village. This event has allowed thousands of non-violent fugitives to turn themselves into the law and move on with their lives. As a volunteer, YLS attorneys have had the unique opportunity to interface with all facets of the criminal justice system including: municipal judges, public defenders, prosecutors and staff from the U.S. Attorneys’ and U.S. Marshals’ offices. Attorney Volunteers provide brief legal advice to fugitives on-site in one of 3 areas of law: family, financial, and housing. Senior attorneys from the Legal Aid Society are on-hand to clarify particular issues in each area.

YLS attorneys have also participated in the Wills for Heroes program to provide free estate planning to first responders. The Wills for Heroes programs provide free wills and other estate planning documents to first responders and their spouse or domestic partner. Qualified first responders include firefighters, police officers, paramedics, corrections and probation officers from federal, state, county, city and town departments and agencies.

The Young Lawyers’ Section sponsors a basketball league each winter. Games are currently being played at the downtown YMCA. To form a team or to get more information, please contact Terry Doyle of our Athletics committee.

The Young Lawyers’ Section also sponsors a summer softball league. For more information or to register a team, please contact Terry Doyle of our Athletics committee.

Please check the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association events calendar for a listing of our monthly meetings. If you are interested in attending, please contact the Young Lawyers Section Chair at least two days in advance to verify the meeting time and place.

As you can see, the Young Lawyers’ Section has a lot going on. We encourage you to get involved! 

Whether you’ve tried 50 cases or you are preparing for your first trial, this seminar gives you valuable insight from the people in the best position to critique courtroom advocacy – judges. The program features some of the most highly regarded judges in the area who share their courtroom experience with you. Learn how to be an effective advocate and how to avoid costly mistakes that other lawyers have made. From opening statements to appellate oral arguments, this half-day seminar will arm you with valuable skills.

This popular CLE is typically offered each December.

Please check the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association calendar for registration and scheduling information.

This CLE is essential for anyone engaged in pro bono appellate practice. The topics covered include an introduction to pro bono appellate work, the benefits of pro bono appellate work, a review of the Criminal Justice Act and Habeas Corpus proceedings, and pointers for successfully handling pro bono appellate matters.

This well regarded CLE is typically offered each winter. Please check the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association calendar for registration and scheduling information.

All attorneys admitted to the practice of law in Ohio must complete their New Lawyers Training requirements by the end of the following year. Please click here to view more details on the regulations.

The CMBA offers courses approved for NLT credits throughout the calendar year. Please check the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association calendar for registration and scheduling information.