As the Foundation now looks forward to Rock 17 next year, it's fitting to honor Former CMBA President and loyal Foundation Fellow P. Kelly Tompkins, whose leadership helped create the very first Rock the Foundation.
"The Foundation had somewhat lost its identity as it was largely blurred with the Association. In my inaugural address, I announced a 'coming out' for the Foundation and we set the date of February 25, 2006 as the first Rock the Foundation event." After sixteen years, Kelly says, "obviously it's gained a lot of momentum including this year’s virtual event."
Still giving back, while serving as Senior Advisor to Dix & Eaton, and Leader-In-Residence at Cleveland-Marshall College of Law, Kelly believes lawyers, in particular, must support the Foundation to keep it financially strong for the long haul. "There are a handful of seminal programs, such as the 3Rs, Stokes Scholars, and Mock Trial program, that are at the core of the Foundation. By providing general support for the Foundation, I hope to not only help sustain these programs but all the other worthy initiatives of the Foundation."
Why does Kelly continue as a CMBF Fellow? "Every lawyer can make a check the box donation of $25 as part of their membership to the Bar Association which is great. However, for lawyers who are far enough along in their career with an established practice and name in the profession, they have the financial capacity to step up and become a Fellow. The Fellows program is an easy yet powerful way to say, 'Hey, I'm here, I’m committed, and I believe in the mission.’"