Reba Peden, PP, PLS-SC, the 2013 recipient of the NALS Award of Excellence, has been in the legal field for over 25 years and has held every support role in a law office from receptionist to office administrator on both the plaintiff and defense side.
She has been a member of NALS since 1997 and has held offices on the local, state, and national level. Reba credits NALS with a lot of her success. Because of the networking and education provided by NALS, Reba has been able to keep abreast of new laws, rules, and regulations in the legal field. The networking possibilities are endless. You can find anything you need, be it a process server in Alaska or a form for a legal document in Louisiana, you can obtain it through your contacts in NALS, usually within minutes.
Reba obtained her Professional Legal Secretary (PLS) certification in July 2003, her Professional Paralegal (PP) certification in March 2004 and her Specialty Certificate in Litigation/Civil Law in July 2013. Each must be recertified every five years and requires 75 hours of Continuing Legal Education with 50 being in substantive law and 5 in ethics.
NALS is an all inclusive organization of legal support professionals.
The NALS Award of Excellence is presented annually to recognize outstanding achievement in association leadership and professional development. It is the top honor a member can receive from NALS. This award began in 1957 and was then called the Legal Secretary of the Year. The name was changed in 1994 to better reflect the membership of NALS and to be more
inclusive of those being honored..
1. Nomination by your peers;
2. Prepare a notebook answering questions on the NALS AoE Application form consisting of formal education, work experience, service to NALS on all levels, service to the legal community; and community service;
3. Obtain letters of recommendation;
4. Three national finalists are chosen from all entries;
5. Finalists must attend the national convention and be interviewed by three judges (this year’s judges were an attorney, a judge, and a Georgia State Bar Association executive).
Credit for the above goes to the NALS website: http://www.nals.org/