The Legal Advocate

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Arkansas CIP/NITA Public Service Program

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The National Institute for Trial Advocacy (NITA) joined forces with Arkansas Administrative Office of the Courts this year for a public service trial skills program. The program occurred June 14-16 and was held in Little Rock, Arkansas. This three-day intensive training of 46 public service attorneys was led by Program Director, Michael Johnson, who has taught over 100 NITA programs – custom, public, and public service.

This was the second year in a row NITA has worked with The Arkansas Administrative Offices of the Courts in order to put on a public service trial skills program for the advocates. Johnson served as Program Director both years and has had a great experience. “Over the one and a half years that we have worked with the advocates in Arkansas who toil in dependency/neglect proceedings, we have provided training for, and, hopefully enhanced the advocacy skills of more than 140 attorneys. The work these advocates undertake regarding children and families is so fundamentally critical to society. I cannot put it any better than one of the world’s truly inspirational leaders said it: “There can be no keener revelation of a society’s soul than the way in which it treats its children.” Nelson Mandela, Former President of South Africa. It is very rewarding as an advocacy teacher to work with these dedicated professionals.”

In true NITA fashion – each skill was presented in a “learning-by-doing” methodology where participants were able to learn the skill, practice, and receive immediate feedback/critique. One participant stated, “This was the best and most practical CLE I’ve ever participated in. I had not had training in anything that was covered at the NITA training and it was all very valuable information.”

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NITA’s team of practicing lawyers, professors and judges from around the nation dedicates its efforts to the training and development of skilled and ethical legal advocates to improve the adversarial justice system. NITA's Goals are to:
  • Promote justice through effective and ethical advocacy.
  • Train and mentor lawyers to be competent and ethical advocates in pursuit of justice.
  • Develop and teach trial advocacy skills to support and promote the effective and fair administration of justice.
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