Several of us in Kansas City had talked about forming a Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. In 1978 Jerry Handley sent out an invitation to approximately 20 Lawyers in Kansas City, inviting them to a suite at the Phillips Hotel for this organizational meeting.
In attendance were Jerry Handley, Jim Speck, Dave Russell, Bob Duncan, Marty Kerr, Bob Welch, JD Williamson and others who contributed their thoughts and ideas. A lively discussion was had as to what we could do and how we would put this organization together. One thing we settled on was the name of the organization as the Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. Dave Russell, who was active in the National Association, helped plagiarize the By-Law and Articles of Incorporation from that group.
The meeting ended with a committee being appointed to pick the officers for the 1 year term, for fees to join the organization, and for the planning of the 1st seminar. There was a strong sentiment that this should not be a Kansas City organization but a Missouri organization and we individually would reach out to our colleagues in St Louis to help us get started.
Jerry Handley was selected to be the president for the 1st year. We then decided to proceed with the seminar. There was a significant amount of work to gain exempt status for mailing purposes, bank accounts and other details.
The first seminar was held at the Crown Center Hotel. Mr. Handley prepared the seminar program and carried it to a printer who helped print the material. We gathered the names of those who were active in Criminal Defense and we sent them a program. The mailings were done from Mr. Handley's home with his wife helping him attach the labels to the brochures.
The registration desk at the 1st seminar was chaired by Sandy Handley and Jackie Russell. We had a better than expected turnout. The organization has been a great success due to the hard work of a lot of people.
JERRY HANDLEY, 1st MACDL PRESIDENT 1978 - 1979