Dear LPG Members:
I am excited and honored to be your Chair of the Legal Professional Group for the 2019-2020 year. I am so grateful to our previous chairs and hope to build on what they have achieved for the LPG in the 10 amazing years since our professional group began in 2009.
For the past decade, the LPG chairs have worked hard to expand and collaborate with the various professional and special interest groups within ASRM, as well as establish our own presence at ASRM. I think the fruits of their labor is evident. Our membership is up from last year, and we continue to grow. We have a meaningful presence, and this would not have happened without the hard work and support of our members.
From the beginning, the LPG Board launched various committees dedicated to expanding our purpose and mission, which are:
“The purpose of the Legal Professional Group is to work collaboratively with ASRM members to raise awareness of, and to clarify the legal issues surrounding, assisted reproductive technologies. The LPG’s mission is to promote ethical legal policies, practices, and protections for ART families, third party collaborators, and providers. The LPG also seeks to broaden access to health care for those affected by infertility, reproductive or genetic disorders, and other challenges to their family-building goals. Through advocacy and education, the LPG strives to enhance and contribute to the development of sound law and ethical legal practice in this evolving field.”
Currently, we have six committees: Executive, Bylaws, Electronic Communications, Nominating, Program and Pro Bono. These committees work on everything from collaboration with other professional groups, to developing courses for continuing education, and making the listserv more robust--all with the objective of enriching and elevating your experience with ASRM and the LPG. As we have grown, our committees are evolving to meet the needs and desires of the LPG. This year we hope to implement a new committee focused on our membership outreach.
Further, LPG has become an important part of the educational opportunities provided by ASRM. This year, at the ASRM Scientific Congress in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, LPG members were involved with three fascinating pre-Congress courses; they led six roundtables, and participated in one plenary session, as well as organized and led six interactive sessions and symposia concerning the law.
We also have continued our tradition of co-hosting an annual party with the other Professional Groups at the Scientific Congress. This year we had more than 200 attendees! Our website has been running well, and we have posted articles and many new resources for LPG members and colleagues. We encourage all of you to utilize the website to find and share resources that help us maintain the highest possible ethical standards for our amazing field.
The LPG Board meets monthly in an ongoing attempt to maximize benefits to you, our members, and expand our presence within ASRM. As always, we are looking for your input and help in continuing to improve the LPG. If you are interested in serving on any of our committees or have any questions, please feel free to contact me.
Shoshana Kunin-Leavitt, J.D.
LPG Chair, 2019-2020