Hobbs joins BoG as a public member

first_img May 15, 2000 Regular News Hobbs joins BoG as a public member Gary Blankenship Associate Editor An English professor at Florida A&M University who once wanted to be a lawyer has been named as the newest public member on The Florida Bar Board of Governors. Dr. Vivian L. Hobbs, 56, of Tallahassee was selected by the Supreme Court from three finalists submitted by the Bar Board of Governors. Around 90 people filed applications for the post. The appointment, announced by the Supreme Court late last month, gives Hobbs a chance to pursue her long-time fascination with the law. “My initial interest was I wanted to become an attorney,” she said. Unfortunately for that goal, “I got married to a guy who was in the military as a career, and we moved on an average of every 18 months, and I reared four kids.” But she also had an interest in pursuing a doctorate and “I was able to juggle the rigors of a Ph.D. and raise my kids and move with my husband.” Her degrees are in English literature, and Hobbs’ special interest is the medieval and Victorian eras. “It sets the practices and standards for today’s society,” she said. “The way we interpret in Western Civilization was set in medieval England.” Her career path may have been a loss to the legal profession, but is definitely a gain for teaching. “I kind of believe that teachers are born and I love being a teacher,” Hobbs said. “It’s not enough to know stuff, you need to know how to articulate and communicate it to others. “I guess I was reared to always give something back to the community. That’s one way to do it and probably the most important way to keep our youths educated and informed, and to prepare them to become the adult citizens of the next generation.” Hobbs said she is looking forward to her board service, especially since it comes at a time of heightened concern about increasing the number of minorities in the profession and when chances are improving in the legislature that FAMU will “retrieve” its law school. (See story, page 1.) “This will give me a way to become that voice for the minority citizen in this big operation called the Florida legal system,” Hobbs said. Besides that role, she said she’s looking forward to learning more about the legal profession and the Bar, adding, “I’d like to do more to promote the Bar and all of the wonderful things you do.” Her anticipation was heightened, Hobbs said, by her interview with the Bar’s Public Member Screening Committee. “I was bowled over by the professionalism and the type of questions they asked me that led me to paint a picture of myself,” she said. “It was probably one of the best experiences I’ve ever had. I left [not knowing she would be a finalist for the public member seat] with a warm feeling about the Bar.” Among 90 applicants, Hobbs was one of 11 the screening committee decided to interview, and then one of the five chosen for further consideration. The committee presented those five to the Board of Governors, and recommended its top three, which included Hobbs. The other two were Florida Medical Association President Dr. Mathis Becker of Plantation, a retired thoracic and vascular surgeon, and Wilfredo Gonzalez of Jacksonville, the district director of the U.S. Small Business Administration office in Jacksonville Board member Carol Brewer, who chaired the committee which screened the applicants, told the Board of Governors the panel was pleased with the quality and diversity of the applicants. The committee didn’t make any special attempt to wind up with diverse nominees, she said, but its five finalists include two African-American women, one Hispanic woman, one Hispanic male and one white male. Hobbs will replace Dr. Alvin Smith, who has served the maximum two terms for public members allowed under Bar rules. She will be sworn-in June 23 at the Bar Annual Meeting in Boca Raton, along with other new and returning board members. Hobbs joins BoG as a public memberlast_img

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