On January 21, 2021 the Mercer County Bar Association (MCBA) held its annual Installation Ceremony where the 2021 slate of officers and trustees were sworn into their new positions. As his Presidency of the Mercer County Bar Association comes to an end, Stark & Stark Shareholder James Creegan reflects on the trying year of 2020 and what the MCBA accomplished.
James has been involved with the MCBA since 2002, and always believed in its mission statement: “to serve its members and to aid and instruct the public in matters pertaining to the law, the practice of law and the legal system and to promote the administration of justice in Mercer County, the State of New Jersey and the United States of America”. As President, James’s main responsibility in 2020 was charting a course forward for the MCBA during the pandemic, transitioning the Bar’s programs to remote formats, communicating with the Association’s members and Executive Board, and keeping them up to date on any changes in the Courts. Considering all of the trials and tribulations throughout 2020, James remained focused on his agenda to expand the MCBA’s efforts towards diversity & inclusion. Each month, the organization held different events and programs, such as a panel on women in law enforcement, retaining diversity in the private sector, a panel discussion with regards to representing LGBTQ clients and more. With technology playing a major role in helping to hold these kinds of events safely, the Association was able to bring these programs to a wider audience than ever before, while significantly expanding its library of recorded CLE’s.
The ability to record remote CLE programs greatly increased the MCBA’s video CLE collection. To put it in perspective, in March 2020, there was only one virtual CLE program in the MCBA’s library. By the end of the year, there were at least 40 unique CLE’s, which is great progress for the organization and includes the MCBA’s Promoting Diversity series. James also focused on educating MCBA members on remote platforms such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams, so that they could better utilize this technology for their offices and participate in regular remote Bench Bar meetings with the Judiciary and Court staff to obtain the latest updates.
After almost 20 years, James has never been more proud to serve as President of the MCBA. “It’s definitely one of the most meaningful experiences I’ve ever had,” Mr. Creegan stated. “There were a lot of difficult things that people had to deal with this year. From March on, we tried to figure out how we can make the best of our situation, and I believe we truly did. We were put in a position where we weren’t sure from the beginning what the role of the County Bar Association would be during the pandemic, but started with the core principal of serving our members. I really tried to put the Bar in a better position than it was in at the start of my term with regards to Diversity and Inclusion and relevance to our members – looking back on the past year, we did that.”
James practices Workers’ Compensation Law, and is certified by the Supreme Court of New Jersey. He specializes in representing injured workers from a variety of backgrounds throughout the state, including those who have suffered significant spinal injuries, totally disabled individuals, and workers injured as the result of the negligence of a third party.