Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 27

"I love going into a class to teach
and serve that population. And
I love being in that audience . . .
It's a few hours of your time, and
you have that choice now."
DIANE SELTZER TORRE
Principal, Seltzer Law Firm

Diane Seltzer Torre of the Seltzer Law Firm is among the more than 300
faculty members who volunteer to teach courses for the CLE Program. She
speaks highly of how much the program has advanced since she first
started teaching.
"I've been teaching long enough that I've seen the CLEs taught in different
buildings. Now in the new building, I'm waiting for someone to do my
makeup and hair," she jokes. "It's really high caliber." But Seltzer Torre is
serious about the investment put into both the in-person and online
experience, which went from "nothing to everything," she says.
Seltzer Torre focuses on employment law in her own practice and in the
classroom. Some of her classes include "Drafting Employee Handbooks,"
"Can They Fire You for Putting That on Facebook? A Guide to Lawful Social
Media Policies and Practices," and "It Didn't Happen at Work: Can They Fire
Me Anyway?"
"Sometimes teaching or being a student is less than fun. I wanted to change
that, especially because there is no CLE requirement. If you make it interesting, people will want to come," she says.
The CLE Program keeps a pulse on what topics are important and relevant
today and updates its recurring courses to make them more engaging, Siff
says. But he also believes that the CLE Program's pool of talented experts
from the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area is a big draw.
"It's enticing to have a broad range of new speakers teach on an array of
topics," he says. "Getting people to commit that time is a big accomplishment. They're not only experts, but they also can teach the material in an
engaging fashion."
For Fisher, the EPA attorney who is a frequent CLE attendee, her experience has
been positive overall. "The CLE courses are well run; they include experts who
are presenting the best information they have, so the courses are always topical,
very timely, and very informative on a range of topics," says Fisher.
With so many other continuing legal education providers vying for attorneys' attention, a top-notch faculty is one reason the CLE Program stands
out from its competitors, Cuevas says. "It can be very lucrative for these
[other companies]. The D.C. Bar CLE Program exists to serve its members.
We really hope to just cover our expenses," he adds.

The CLE Program keeps its registration fees competitive, and it even has a
hardship policy in place for Bar members who, under certain circumstances,
can take a course at a discounted rate or for free.
Flexible and modernized course offerings have been a win for the CLE
Program, but having choices is a win for faculty and students alike. Some
faculty appreciate the benefits of a classroom setting compared with the
virtual format. The in-class experience gives students the opportunity to
network and ask follow-up questions after class.
"I love going into a class to teach and serve that population. And I love
being in that audience," Seltzer Torre says. "It's a few hours of your time,
and you have that choice now."
Siff prefers to teach in person for the interaction with the students. "I like
that you can tell when people are catching on. You can see if they're interested or falling asleep. It's more dynamic," he says. With online courses, Siff
says, it's up to the faculty to figure how to make them more interactive and
interesting.
As well as the program is doing, there's still room for improvement. From
a technological standpoint, Seltzer Torre can't wait to see the online
programming go to the next level with the ability to pause and restart
in real time.
"Let's say you're in a [live] webinar and all of a sudden your client calls you
and you need to pause. We don't yet have that capacity, but we will," she
says. "You lose the synchronicity, but at least you can take that call and
return without missing anything. That's what I'm excited about!"
Overall, Cuevas says the CLE Program will continue to offer excellent service
and establish itself as the go-to CLE provider for attorneys in the District and
beyond. "Attorneys get very busy," he says. "They can see it as a burden to
take courses. We want them to see it as an opportunity."
Stacy Julien is a regular contributor to Washington Lawyer. Additional reporting
provided by John Murph.

CLE class photo, Alfred Carroll; Dennis Cuevas, John Murph; Diane Seltzer Torre, Patrice Gilbert Photography

*

SEPTEMBER 2019

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WASHINGTON LAWYER 27


https://www.dcbar.org/

Washington Lawyer - September 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Washington Lawyer - September 2019

Digital Extras
Your Voice
From Our President
Practice Management
Calendar of Events
Tomorrow’s Lawyers: Jd + Practice Ready
The Justice Gap & The Rise Of Nonlawyer Legal Providers
D.C. Bar Cle: Keeping Up With The Law
Aba Delegate’s Corner
Member Spotlight
Global & Domestic Outlook
Worth Reading
Media Bytes
Attorney Briefs
Ask The Ethics Experts
Disciplinary Summaries
2019 Celebration Of Leadership & Presidents Reception
Community & Connections
Last Word
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - Cover1
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - Cover2
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 1
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 2
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 3
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - Digital Extras
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - Your Voice
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - From Our President
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 7
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - Practice Management
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 9
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - Calendar of Events
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 11
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - Tomorrow’s Lawyers: Jd + Practice Ready
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 13
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 14
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 15
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 16
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 17
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - The Justice Gap & The Rise Of Nonlawyer Legal Providers
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 19
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 20
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 21
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 22
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 23
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 24
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - D.C. Bar Cle: Keeping Up With The Law
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 26
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 27
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - Aba Delegate’s Corner
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 29
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - Member Spotlight
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 31
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 32
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 33
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - Global & Domestic Outlook
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 35
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - Worth Reading
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 37
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - Media Bytes
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 39
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - Attorney Briefs
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - Ask The Ethics Experts
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - Disciplinary Summaries
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 43
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 2019 Celebration Of Leadership & Presidents Reception
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 45
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - Community & Connections
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - 47
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - Last Word
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - Cover3
Washington Lawyer - September 2019 - Cover4
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