Updated: July 27, 2022

Small Town and Rural Practice Committee

The WSBA Small Town and Rural Practice (STAR) Committee is committed to strengthen and support the practice of law in the rural communities throughout Washington state. Members of the STAR Committee will work to ensure that the practice of law in rural communities is present, growing, and thriving.

Practitioners in rural communities are few and far between. Additionally, many of these practitioners are nearing retirement without a clear plan of succession for their clients, leaving a void of access to legal representation and counsel. The STAR Committee members will guide policy and program development, serve as ambassadors between the WSBA and these communities, explore and advocate for creative and innovative solutions, and regularly assess the legal landscape in rural communities to determine if WSBA policy, advocacy, and program development require further resource for sustainability and improvements. To learn more about the STAR Committee's purpose, composition, scope of work, and roles, review the STAR Committee Charter.

The formation of the STAR Committee is the result of work conducted by the Rural Practice Project.

Meet the STAR Committee Members

2021–2022

Hunter Abell, Chair 
Term: Oct. 1, 2021–Sept. 30, 2022

Sunitha Anjilvel, Board of Governors Member
Term: Oct. 1, 2021- Sept. 30, 2024

Vacant, Board of Governors Member
Term: Oct. 1, 2021- Sept. 30, 2024  
Current Term: Upon Appointment- Sept. 30, 2024  

Allison Foreman, At-large Member
Term: Oct. 1, 2021–Sept. 30, 2023

Rusty McGuire, Rural Member
Term: Oct. 1, 2021- Sept. 30, 2024

Kathryn Burke, Rural Member
Term: Oct. 1, 2021–Sept. 30, 2022

Sarah Cuellar, Rural Member
Term: Oct. 1, 2021–Sept. 30, 2023

Elizabeth Penoyar, Rural Member
Term: Oct. 1, 2021- Sept. 30, 2024

Merf Ehman, Qualified Legal Service Provider Member

Term: Oct. 1, 2021- Sept. 30, 2024

Zachary Bryant, Young Lawyer Member
Term: Oct. 1, 2021- Sept. 30, 2024

Laurie Powers, Gonzaga University School of Law Member
Term: Oct. 1, 2021–Sept. 30, 2022

Cindy Yeung, Seattle University School of Law Member
Term: Oct. 1, 2021–Sept. 30, 2023

Vacant, University of Washington School of Law Member
Term: Oct. 1, 2021-Sept. 30, 2024
Current Term: Upon Appointment- Sept. 30, 2024

Julianne Unite, Staff Liaison

For questions, please email Committee Chair Hunter Abell or staff liaison Julianne Unite.

STAR Committee Meetings

Next Meeting

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN by the Washington State Bar Association, that a Small Town and Rural Committee meeting will be held on:

Date: Thursday, July 28, 2022│ Time: Noon–2 p.m.

Join the Zoom meeting.

Meeting ID: 820 7597 9655 Passcode: 705180

The purpose of the meeting is for the committee to discuss, deliberate, and take potential final action regarding the following agenda items (no final disposition regarding any matter will occur at the meeting except as indicated on this notice:

  AGENDA: 

1. Introductions, May Meeting Recaps, and Approval of May Meeting Minutes (Gov. Abell)
2. WSBA Updates (Gov. Abell and Julianne Unite)
3. Subcommittee Report Updates
   a. Community, Education, and Outreach (Kari Petrasek, Chair)
   b. Pipeline Placement Program (Laurie Powers, Chair) 
   c. Job Opportunities and Clearinghouse (Betsy Penoyar, Chair)
4. Discussion of Bar News rural themed issue in November 2022 – copy due by Sept. 1, 2022
5. Discussion of recommendations by Equity and Disparity Workgroup to Board of Judicial Administration regarding remote access to the courts. 
6. Other Business
7. Next Steps/ Conclusion 
8. Adjournment 

 

Meeting Materials Packet

Reasonable accommodations for people with disabilities will be provided upon request. Please email julianneu@wsba.org.

Note: Discussion and action may be taken on any item on the agenda. The time and order of agenda items are subject to change at the discretion of the committee chair.

FY 2022 Past Meeting Materials 

May 2022

March 2022

February 2022

January 2022

November 2021

October 2021