SUNY Global Center

ARK Group will be hosting their 12th Annual Best Practice & Management Strategies for Law Firm Library, Research & Information Services. I believe I have been at every conference in every role including: attendee, speaker, moderator, chairperson and keynote. Over the years the program has become more focused on strategy and innovation.

The location has also improved.  I spoke at the first ARK conference which was held at the Roosevelt Hotel in Manhattan.  It was unforgettable because a pipe burst in the ceiling above me in the middle of my presentation. We literally moved on and I completed the presentation without benefit of an umbrella. The past few years the conference has been held at the SUNY Global Center on E 55th St in Manhattan. It is a comfortable high-tech presentation environment.

This year I am co-presenting with colleague Stacy Pangilinan. Our presentation is entitled: “Why are we paying for that? Reinventing the Budget Process with Project Management and KM Principles.” Which will be a case study on the development of new budget workflows and analysis using KM and Project Management tools

Ark Group’s 12th annual Law Firm Library, Research & Information Services conference will once again provide an ideal platform for discussion and debate concerning the convergence and impact of technology and economics on evolving practice strategies—as we take a collective view at the “Big Picture” of Librarians as Disruptors, the importance of interdepartmental support and technology, how to change the stereotypical image of the librarian, and how to run the Library as a business. As usual the speakers include a terrific mix of KM thought leaders, legal tech innovators, and law firm consultants.

  • DATE: February 22, 2018
  • Where: SUNY Global Center, New York, NY
  • Register Here.

Here is the full agenda:

9:00AM   Opening Remarks: Conference Chairperson

9:10AM   OPENING/KEYNOTE on the Front Lines: Assessing New Products and Setting Expectations for how they will Perform at the Firm Legal technology is moving quickly, and so is the marketing language about AI. Separating value from the noise can be difficult. What can AI actually do today? When do you want a product built with it, and when does it not matter? What are the important questions to ask about how a specific AI product works? How can you identify when the emperor has no clothes? KM professionals and law librarians are at the front lines of assessing new products and setting expectations for how they perform at the firm. Answers to these questions are essential for finding solid ground in the rapidly shifting tech landscape. Get critical insider knowledge from someone who has built and sold AI about how you can identify the good, bad, and the ugly.

Daniel Lewis, CEO & Co-founder, Ravel

9:50AM   SURVEY RESULTS & PANEL DISCUSSION Beyond Virtualization: Transforming the Law Library  “What is the Modern Law Library?” The role of library services within firms and organizations has shifted. Rather than being a target of downsizing or outsourcing, librarians are moving beyond traditional roles, reinventing themselves to support the business of law. However, administration must be open to this evolution. Without this support, library modernization cannot be fully realized.  This segment will address the steps firms need to take for maximum efficiency and delivery of legal information resources—and the role of the Modern Law Library.  How is “Library Modernization” being defined?  This session—inclusive of a panel discussion with key experts from the field— will speak to the “Big Picture” of Librarians as disruptors, the importance of interdepartmental support and technology, how to change the stereotypical image of the librarian, and how to run the Library as a business.

Greg Lambert, Chief Knowledge Services Officer, Jackson Walker LLP,  Shabeer Kahn, Director of Research Services, Morrison & Foerster,  Nancy Rine, Director of Research Services and Conflicts, Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP, Michael Feit, President, Feit Consulting , Monice  Kaczorowski, Vice President, Library Strategy & Innovation, Feit Consulting

10:35AM Morning Networking & Coffee Break

11:00AM   CASE STUDY  Why are we Paying for That? Reinventing the Budget Process with Project Management and KM Principles: DLA Piper Case Study Budgets can’t be managed effectively  in a once a year budget recalibration.  Cost optimization is an ongoing process which should be built into your departmental workflow. Digital resource budgets have exploded over the past ten years and expanded the complexity of resource acquisition and renewal. How do you    account for the cost of enterprise, local and practice group spending?  How do you get practice group participation in budget accountability and cost control? Learn how one firm moved from a decentralized and painful budget process to developing a streamlined and effective tool for ROI reporting  by starting with a whiteboard and  workflow analysis.

Stacy Pangilinan, JD, MLIS, Senior Manager, Knowledge Solutions, DLA Piper LLP (US) AND Jean O’Grady, JD, MLS, Sr. Dir of Information, Research & Knowledge  Management, DLA Piper LLP (US)

11:45AM   CASE STUDY The Knowledge Desk… A One-Stop Shop Often law firms roll out multiple search engines, databases and portals to provide information to their lawyers, and then are surprised when lawyers don’t use them.  The belief is that lawyers don’t use these tools because they are not tech savvy.  In reality, it’s because there are too many options and it’s difficult to figure out where to find something.  Enter Knowledge Desk.  Knowledge Desk was launched in 2016 and is designed to provide Littler attorneys with a “one-stop shop” for all legal answers – copies of complaints, answers to legal questions, legal research, SMEs, etc.  The Knowledge Desk has handled more attorney  requests in the first nine months of 2017 than in all of 2016 and is on track to

respond to over 26,000 requests by year-end – a 35% increase year-over-year. In an environment where so many firms and libraries are shrinking, the Littler library has had dramatic growth without taking on new departments.  In this case study, Cynthia Brown will share the secret(s) to Littler’s success.

Cynthia L. Brown JD, Director – Research Services , Littler Mendelson P.C.

12:15PM Networking Luncheon

1:15PM   CASE STUDY  Absorbing Library Services into KM – A Case Study    In early 2016, Ogletree Deakins dissolved its library services department and absorbed all library functions into KM. Two years later, the team behind that (ultimately successful) transition is here to discuss the impetus for the change, its execution, what went well, and what went wrong.

Jennifer P. Mendez, Senior Manager, KM Firm Solutions, Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C., Evan J. Shenkman, Senior Manager, KM Counsel & Research, Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C., Patrick V. DiDomenico, Chief Knowledge Officer, Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C.

2:00PM   INTERACTIVE SEGMENT Teach Your Children Well:  Preparing Law Students For Law Firm Practice Conventional wisdom says that legal education needs to evolve to meet the  current demands of the market place. But what, exactly, should change, and how can legal educators best prepare law students to hit the ground running at their firms? This interactive discussion will allow conference participants to share their thoughts with a law school librarian teaching legal practice technology at Fordham University Law School.  We will begin with an overview of the current state of legal technology education in the resource and information realm. Then, we will evaluate its sufficiency based on law firm needs now and anticipated skills necessary for the future. This will be an opportunity for attendees to share their perspectives directly with the source on educating students for the modern practice of law.

Jocelyn K. Sagherian, Reference Librarian, Fordham Law School Library

2:45PM Afternoon Networking & Coffee Break

3:15PM   PANEL DISCUSSION   Practical Magic: Read/Write AI in Law Firms In the past, law firms could use artificial intelligence only by subscribing to  software that incorporated it – read only.  But today, law firms are using artificial intelligence to create their own tools and solve long-intractable problems – read/ write AI. In this panel, Fastcase CEO Ed Walters will moderate a discussion among law firms who are building their own AI-enabled tools to create the datapowered law firms of the next generation.

Edward J. Walters, Chief Executive Officer, Fastcase, Others TBA

4:00PM   CLOSING PANEL DISCUSSION   The Leadership Imperative:  Leveraging Strategic Relationships Across Departments  In line with the increasing professionalization of law firms, paralegal, docketing and litigation services managers have become key sources of innovation,  intelligence and change. This evolution directly impacts workflow, data capture, and the very provision of legal services by law firms; it also represents an  important opportunity for law librarians interested in broadening their portfolio of knowledge enabling services to help their firms leverage existing talent and resources. This session will provide an overview of key trends in docketing and paralegal relevant to library, as well specific examples from these groups.

Kara Buzga, Paralegal Manager, Mayer Brown , Tara Kim Eberhart, Director of Paralegal Services and Docketing, Dentons, Jessica L. Bengels, Managing Attorney, Manager of Litigation Services, Latham & Watkins LLP, Steven E. DeJesus, Docket Specialist, VedderPrice — Moderated  by:  Anna McGrane, COO, PacerPro