Why should you attend Making the Right Moves? And what is Making the Right Moves anyway? All your questions are answered here!
Making the Right Moves (MRM) is the annual professional development conference from MSJDN created specifically for the needs of military spouse attorneys. The first MRM was held in Washington, DC in 2013. Members traveled from across the country to take part in the event led by Linda Mercurio from the Washington College of Law Lawyer Reentry Program (more about Linda later!). In 2014, MRM hit the road for the West Coast – Thomas Jefferson School of Law hosted the 2nd conference in its new building in downtown San Diego. Last year, MRM stayed on the West Coast, as Bracewell & Giuliani hosted the event in their beautiful offices atop the Columbia Tower in Seattle. This year, MRM returns to its roots in DC on October 21st!
MRM is different from other conferences because it is created for military spouse attorneys by military spouse attorneys. Our leadership team works to bring together the best speakers and resources to educate members on topics unique to military spouses in the legal profession. There are plenty of places to find CLE, network, or hang out with military spouses – but not all at once! MRM is a professional development opportunity that helps you build your career path as a military spouse attorney by addressing the unique challenges shared by this group. Career portability, networking, federal jobs, and much more are all on the agenda this year! It’s also a wonderful time to connect with your peers who understand the challenges of balancing your legal career with the military lifestyle. There are only 45 seats available this year – check out the top 5 reasons to attend and then save your seat today!
1. Connect with your tribe. MSJDN is an incredible network because it allows us to connect, even though we are scattered around the globe. But as awesome as our online forums are, nothing beats a “real life” connection. MRM is the perfect time to mix and mingle with other military spouse JDs face-to-face. Maybe you’ll meet that MSJDNer you’ve been connecting with on Facebook! One military spouse attorney will also be honored with the fourth annual Exceptional Service Award. You don’t want to miss the opportunity connect and celebrate with your fellow milspouse attorneys! [Want to come but need help defraying the costs? MSJDN is offering a limited number of scholarships including a ticket and a $125 stipend for travel, hotel, childcare, etc. Apply here.]
2. Invest in your career. We get it – traveling to a conference can be expensive, especially if you are between jobs or balancing all those state bar dues! Consider it an investment in your future – you and your career are worth it. You can request CLE credits in many states, but it’s not just about the credits (although CLE credit is pending for the election law session!). MRM is the only conference designed specifically for military spouse attorneys. The panels are created to address issues frequently raised by MSJDN members in our forums – how can I leverage my network when I’m PCSing or how do I find federal employment? You can see the full agenda here. The day will close with Linda Mercurio leading a workshop designed to help you create your own career path. Linda runs “The Relaunching Attorney Platform,” a six-week online course supporting relaunching and transitioning attorneys. She’ll be sharing that expertise with attendees and providing tools and tips for military spouses working to build a sustainable and meaningful career path.
3. Leverage the Network. MRM provides excellent networking opportunities, with MSJDN members and supporters alike. Connect with panelists and our hosts at Vinson & Elkins. We will also be joined by representatives from our sponsors, including USAA and MOAA. Networking has paid off for attendees in the past who are now employed thanks to connections made during MRM. So don’t be shy – bring your business cards and get busy building your network!
4. Get inspired! The frequent relocations, multiple bar exams, the job search on repeat – it can be a grind. Add in solo parenting and a last minute change to your spouse’s work schedule – milspouse attorney life is bonkers! Sometimes we get so bogged down in our daily routines that we only focus what’s in front of us and forget why we started down this path in the first place. It’s an honor to support our spouses and significant others in their service to this country, even when that makes our career paths an uphill journey. MRM is the perfect time to recharge your career batteries and celebrate being part of the incredible military family community. Come connect with other like-minded military spouses and learn from those who have successfully balanced their careers with the military lifestyle.
5. Tour the Capitol City. DC is an extraordinary place to visit (even amidst the craziness of an election year!). While we can’t guarantee a Frank Underhill sighting, it’s an entertaining city to visit solo or with the family. Contact your representatives to schedule a tour of Congress or the White House. Take in the monuments and memorials or cruise the Potomac. Visit the museums (the new National Museum of African American History and Culture is open; the Newseum is also amazing). There’s so much history, plus great food and entertainment – plenty to keep you busy outside of the conference! Just be sure to leave time for the post-MRM happy hour.