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A lesson in bridge-building

WILLIAMSBURG—The Virginia Law Foundation tapped its 2020 class of Fellows Jan. 23 at a banquet held at the start of the Virginia Bar Association’s winter meeting.

Twenty-three new Fellows were inducted:

• Pamela S. Belleman (Richmond)
• Candace Ali Blydenburgh (Richmond)
• F. Andrew Carroll III (Alexandria)
• Michael S. J. Chernau (Chesterfield)
• Kyung “Kathryn” Dickerson (Vienna)
• John G. “Chip” Dicks (Richmond)
• T. Daniel Frith, III (Roanoke)
• Peter D. Greenspun (Fairfax)
• Leonard C. Heath Jr. (Newport News)
• Hon. Henry E. Hudson (Richmond)
• Katherine Cabell Londos (Roanoke)
• Paul M. Mahoney (Roanoke)
• Deborah G. Matthews (Alexandria)
• Richard C. Maxwell (Roanoke)
• Tara A. McGee (Goochland)
• Justice LeRoy F. Millette Jr. (Richmond)
• Christine Mougin-Boal (Leesburg)
• Hon. Robert E. Payne (Richmond)
• Overman Randolph Rollins (Richmond)
• M. Bryan Slaughter (Charlottesville)
• Henry N. Ware Jr. (Richmond)
• Barbara S. Williams (Leesburg)
• Robert M. Worster III (Fairfax)

To be inducted, a lawyer must be present. Robert E. Sevila of Leesburg had been selected for the Class of 2020, but he was unable to attend the ceremony. He therefore becomes the first member of the Class of 2021.

The ceremony was in part a celebration of the new Supreme Court Judicial Learning Center, which opened last September. The center, the brainchild of Chief Justice Donald W. Lemons, was funded with a $75,000 grant from the VLF.  The festivities included a video highlighting the center and its public education function.

Lemons was the guest speaker, and he was most appreciative of the support for the center. Its purpose dates back to the 1990s, when Lemons was a circuit judge in Richmond and he would provide on-the-spot history and civics lessons about the rule of law and the courts to visitors.

Perhaps to prompt the Fellows to consider the center’s future, the chief closed by reading a poem by Will Allen Dromgoole called, “The Bridge Builder.”

The work tells the story of an old traveler who was able to cross a wide and difficult chasm. After reaching the other side, he started the task of building a bridge back across. A fellow pilgrim chides him, noting that he is old and unlikely to pass that way again. The man responded,

“There followed after me to-day

A youth whose feet must pass this way.

This chasm that has been as naught to me

To that fair-haired youth may a pitfall be;

He, too, must cross in the twilight dim;

Good friend, I am building this bridge for him!”

— Paul Fletcher, Fellows Class of 2008