As a fundamental policy, The Johnson County Family Law American Inn of Court aspires to promote and foster excellence in professionalism, ethics, civility, and legal skills and, in furtherance of this goal, the Inn has developed a Mentoring Program.  The Inn's Mentoring Program assists members in developing high standards of professionalism based on accepted principles of appropriate behavior consistent with the legal profession's core values.  

            The Mentoring Program addresses the following: 

  • High competence and legal skills 

  • Adherence to ethical standards, rules, and obligations 

  • Appreciation of the importance of civility and professional demeanor at all times 

  • The importance of pro bono representation and fostering access to justice 

  • The importance of participation in bar organizations at all levels 

  • The transmission of professional values and standards to others, especially less experienced practitioners 

  • Balancing self interest with the interest of clients, the justice system and public interests.           


                  MENTORING COMMITTEE

                A Mentoring Committee, which Committee may comprise the Executive Committee or which may be a separate committee appointed by the Executive Committee, is responsible for overall administration of the Inn's Mentoring Program.  The Mentoring Committee is specifically responsible for fostering informal mentoring and for overseeing  Mentoring Groups. 

                 INFORMAL MENTORING

                The foundation of the Inn's Mentoring Program is the informal sharing of wisdom and guidance among Inn members as a routine product of Inn functions and activities, and it is expected that all Inn members, especially those with considerable experience, will tutor and nurture other members.

                Informal Mentoring may take place:

  • During the regular monthly meetings

  • Within the pupilage teams as they meet to plan and prepare their programs

  • In relationships designed for this purpose with scheduled meetings between wise and trusted counselors and less experience members

  • In small groups that meet outside monthly Inn meetings

                All Inn members, regardless of membership level, are expected to informally mentor other les-experienced members.

                MENTORING GROUPS

                Mentoring Groups include Mentors and Protégés. Mentoring Groups, Mentors and Protégés may be selected, added, or formed at any time.  Each Inn year, the Inn Secretary  invites Inn members to request placement in a Mentoring Group, as either a Mentor or a Protégé.  Members serving as Mentors should have significant experience in practicing family law and generally will be preeminent members of the Bar.  Though Mentoring Groups are designed primarily for the benefit of Inn members with minimal practical experience, any Inn member is welcome to participate as a Protégé. Formal mentoring is conducted within Inn Mentoring Groups under the guidance of the Group Mentor(s), who are responsible for the Mentoring Group's activities for the program year. In matching Inn Mentors, Mentoring Groups, and Protégés, the Mentoring Committee takes into consideration areas of practice, common interests and other relevant factors that will facilitate a successful mentoring experience. 

              Participation by Inn members in Mentoring Groups is generally voluntary, though the Mentoring Committee may assign any member to a Mentoring Group, either as a Mentor or as a Protégé.  All Inn members are expected to participate if requested to do so by the Mentoring Committee.

                 MENTORING SCHEDULE

              Mentoring Groups should generally adhere to the following policies:

  • Initial Mentoring Group Meeting: An initial Mentoring Group meeting should be conducted during the period September through November of the Inn year, addressing such topics as the Mentoring Group selects.

  • Interim Mentoring Group Meeting: An interim Mentoring Group meeting should be conducted during the period December through February, following up on the initial session.

  • Final Group Meeting: A final Mentoring Group meeting should be conducted during the period March trough May, addressing any final issues.

  • Additional or Individual Meetings: Additional group or one-on-one meetings may take place as needed at such times and locations as the Group Mentor(s) deem appropriate.

  • Meeting Location:  Mentoring Group meetings should be convened at such locations as facilitate collegial discussion and interaction, and the Group Mentor(s) are responsible to host and defray the costs associated with such Group meetings. 


                 Each Inn Mentoring Group submits to the Mentoring Committee at least one report summarizing the Group's mentoring activities.  Such reports shall be submitted in the format prescribed by the Mentoring Committee, and preparation of same is the responsibility of the  Mentoring Group Mentor(s). Prior to the conclusion of the Inn year, the Mentoring Committee conducts an overall evaluation of the Inn's Mentoring Program, seeking input from Mentors and Protégés and using information from group reports and feedback surveys. The results of the evaluation, which are submitted to the American Inns, serve as a means for continually improving the Inn's mentoring program.