Eleanor Magers Vuono

From the President’s Desk:

Happy October! Although the weather is still warm in Washington D.C., my thoughts are on the changing seasons, and the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday (my favorite of the year!). I have so much to be thankful for this year, but I’m especially grateful for all the ways that MSJDN has enriched my life and strengthened me personally and professionally. For this conversation, I’d like to focus on the power of networking.

The MSJDN network has grown and expanded to every corner of the globe. With our new website and our private Facebook page, MSJDN members connect daily to discuss job opportunities, register for local professional development conferences, and figure out how to use the new licensing arrangements in those states with military spouse accommodations. A wealth of information is available online to every member; you just have to ask. Recently, a MSJDN member who is pursuing an adjunct teaching position posted on Facebook to ask what a reasonable salary should be. Within minutes, five MSJDN members offered salary experiences as adjuncts. Knowledge is power, especially when we are negotiating for compensation.

MSJDN’s reputation in the legal community is especially strong. Over the last four years, MSJDN members have engaged with state and local bar associations, joined ABA committees, volunteered for veterans’ law clinics, and invited colleagues to participate in our annual events. Conferences like our annual “Making the Right Moves” (later this month in Seattle) serve to showcase the incredible range of talented MSJDN attorneys and spotlight our accomplishments. We are known nationally as a group of lawyers who get stuff done! As a result, military spouse attorneys are gaining the reputation (which we always knew, but felt we had to prove!) as versatile professionals who bring extraordinary talents to any team.

The bottom line: our network makes us stronger. Together, we can better manage the PCS moves, gaps in our resumes, multiple bar exams, and the inevitable exhaustion that comes from starting all over again, every two to three years. So stay in touch. Post an idea. Ask a question. And volunteer your time! Please reach out to me directly at president@msjdn.org. I would love to hear from you!