– by Jess Feldman
Sarah Everhart, ALEI Senior Legal Specialist at the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law, has recently been appointed as Chair-Elect of the Maryland State Bar Association’s (MSBA) Agriculture Law Section. “As Chair-Elect, I hope to continue to foster the excellent network of agricultural lawyers in Maryland and encourage more young lawyers and students to join the section and take advantage of the professional and personal benefits of being a member,” said Everhart.
The Section was founded in 2014 by Kim Manuelides (Sagal, Filbert, Quasney & Betten, P.A.) and Kathleen Tabor (Law Office of Kathleen JP Tabor, LLC); both women were interested and active in agricultural legal matters and wanted to bring attention to Maryland’s largest industry and the myriad of legal issues involved in agriculture. The Section has strived to serve the interests of the agricultural and legal community of Maryland, which is something Everhart has been passionate about since she first entered the field of law.
To view the Section’s directory of Maryland’s Agricultural Attorneys click here.
“I was in private practice in Maryland for nine years prior to working for the University of Maryland,” Everhart said. “I’ve always really liked working with folks from the agricultural community because I always got a good amount of satisfaction helping them knowing that ultimately, their work was helping my community as well.”
Everhart has served as co-chair of the Agricultural Law Section’s Education Committee with fellow ALEI Extension Legal Specialist Paul Goeringer.
In her position at ALEI, Everhart conducts educational outreach activities to Maryland’s farming community, including one-on-one conversations, in-person presentations, and creating publications and other legal education resources. By having a connection to both ALEI and the Section, Everhart is able to network with agricultural lawyers who can provide representation and beneficial advice to farmers.
“Joining the Section seemed to be a natural extension of my work at ALEI,” Everhart explained. “I can’t do direct representation like I used to (in private practice), but I can point folks who need representation to the members of the Section with the needed expertise. Where ALEI’s work has to stop, the work of the members of the Section begins.”
The regulations and laws that impact farms are constantly in flux and for Everhart, it is essential for her work with ALEI to keep farmers up to date with these alterations. In turn, in her role with the Section she also keeps lawyers up-to-date on legal issues that impact farmers, her hope is that by educating lawyers she aids in the creation of a better and stronger legal community to serve Maryland’s farmers.
As of June 30, 2018 the Section had 151 members (14 Student Members). The Section encourages member participation by holding member meetings throughout the State at different agricultural locations.