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TCL > December 2003 Issue > CBA Distributes Gold Cards and Remarks to New Attorneys

December 2003       Vol. 32, No. 12       Page  27
CBA President's Message to Members

CBA Distributes Gold Cards and Remarks to New Attorneys
by Robert J. Truhlar


I DO SOLEMNLY SWEAR by the Everliving God (OR AFFIRM) that I will support the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Colorado; I will maintain the respect due to Courts and judicial officers; I will employ only such means as are consistent with truth and honor; I will treat all persons whom I encounter through my practice of law with fairness, courtesy, respect and honesty.


    I will use my knowledge of the law for the betterment of society and the improvement of the legal system; I will never reject, from any
consideration personal to myself the cause of the defenseless or oppressed; I will at all times faithfully and diligently adhere to the Colorado Rules of Professional Conduct.

Card Provided by
The Colorado Bar Association


Robert J. Truhlar
The "gold card" pictured above will not ruin your credit no matter how much you use it—rather, the more you use it, the higher your rating. I have had the privilege to distribute thousands of wallet-size plastic cards (they are gold) printed with the Colorado Attorney’s Oath of Admission since beginning my term as CBA president. Lawyers all over the state have had a favorable response to this reminder of their oath. Many have asked for extra copies to distribute in their offices or to colleagues. Upon my handing one to Bill Berger at an Employment Section meeting, he showed me that the oath was stored on his palm pilot for reference. What do you carry in your wallet?

If you would like a copy mailed to you, e-mail me at truhlar or simply ask me for one at the next event we both attend. I always have them handy. Additionally, the CBA will make them available at CBA–CLE Continuing Legal Education programs throughout the year.

On October 20, 2003, approximately 500 new attorneys were admitted to practice law in Colorado by taking the oath before a special session of the Colorado Supreme Court. I thought I would share with you my remarks to these new lawyers. I encourage each of you to give them a warm welcome when you first encounter them in your practices.


The following remarks were made at the swearing-in ceremony for new admittees of the Bar on Monday afternoon, October 20, 2003, at the Boettcher Concert Hall, Denver Center for the Performing Arts, in Denver.

Thank you Chief Justice Mullarkey.

Honorable Justices, Chief Judge Babcock, distinguished members of the Court, and leaders of the legal community.

What an exciting afternoon this is! Those of you here to take the oath of admission have certainly sacrificed and worked hard to reach this day. All that you have achieved will enhance your lives and those of the people whose lives you touch. Congratulations!

On behalf of the 15,000 members of the Colorado Bar Association, I welcome all of you who are being sworn in to the practice of law in Colorado today. The Bar Association recognizes and thanks your families and friends for all the support they’ve given to assist you in reaching your goal. Call us at the CBA when you need assistance in the future. We have many beneficial programs to enrich your professional lives.

As lawyers, you now have a great opportunity to make a difference. There are so many different ways in which you can use your law degree and license for the benefit of yourself and society. It is certainly an honor and a privilege to assume the title "attorney-at-law," but with that title comes responsibility.

In taking your oath today, you will commit to the highest goals of any profession. The Colorado Bar Association has prepared and distributed to you a gold card for keeping in your pocket, desk, card carrier, or wallet to allow you to review that commitment as needed in the future. Thousands of these gold cards are also being distributed to practicing lawyers throughout the state this year as a reminder of their oath. You are not alone in the weighty tasks of delivering legal services and giving access to justice to the people of our state.

One-half hour ago, I was backstage waiting when I met an engineer who worked here at the concert hall. I introduced myself and told him I was going to say a few words. He said: "I heard the Supreme Court was going to be here." I replied that they were and that they were going to swear in all the new lawyers who just passed their Bar exams. He said that he would like to come out and watch that because "one thing I know is that we need lawyers." Remember, that is how people truly feel about you.

Allow me to make three suggestions as you embark on your professional career in Colorado.

First, remember that you will of course be judged on your hard work, but also especially on your integrity. You will be remembered over time for your professionalism. Your reputation will precede you in Court, amongst your colleagues, and most importantly with the public. Never sacrifice your integrity for gain of any kind.

Second, remember that one of your greatest resources is other lawyers. So always, always treat them with civility. Lawyers will assist you in developing your competency and effectiveness. They will work with you to resolve your client’s disputes and problems. They will accept your own individualized style if you are professional. Other lawyers will welcome your contributions to further strengthen our justice system. SO BE NICE!

Third, if you make a mistake, and you will make some, just like all the rest of us up here have . . . [looking at the members of the Supreme Court sitting on stage] . . . well maybe not all of us—own up to it and correct it. Ask your mentor or a friend or a lawyer with some experience for help. It is never the end of the world, and clients, the Court, and other lawyers will appreciate your honesty and straightforwardness.

If you stay the course, work hard to achieve your dreams, and safeguard your integrity, you will have success beyond what you can imagine here today. Twenty-five years from now you may be sitting in Chief Justice Mullarkey’s chair.

So GO FOR IT with all your heart. Good luck. Welcome to the legal community. Thank you.

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