History

The Oregon Chapter, formerly known as the Oregon Legal Management Association (OLMA), traces its roots to a cafeteria in downtown Portland where a group of law office administrators occasionally met for an informal lunch to discuss current challenges within the newly defined position of "legal administrator." OLMA became a chapter of the Association of Legal Administrators (ALA) in 1978. The original focus of this group was to network and be supportive in helping each other grow.

Over the years, the Oregon Chapter has become known statewide and in southwest Washington for the following resources:

  • The Survey of Compensation and Benefits, which was started in 1974. This is a comprehensive, in-depth overview of salary ranges by area, firm size, experience, and position in law firms located in Oregon and southwest Washington. Also included in this survey is data regarding benefits offered to retain staff.

  • The Resource Directory began in 1979 and provides detailed information about products and services currently utilized by firms in the area. It is a useful tool for law office administrators facing purchasing, budgeting, and other decisions. Members may indicate their expertise in various areas and are listed in a "contact your peer" section of the Directory.

  • Legal Management News (formerly OLMANet) is a quarterly newsletter published to enhance communication among members in the Oregon Chapter's geographic region. In addition to substantive educational articles, the newsletter covers past and upcoming chapter events. Legal Management News started as a one-page publication in 1979 and is now a 36+ page publication.

The Oregon Chapter first partnered with the Oregon State Bar in 1979 by offering a half-day educational program. This partnership has grown through the joint efforts of the Oregon State Bar Law Practice Management Section and the Oregon Chapter to now include the Managing Partner Dinner (since 1984), publication of the Resource Directory, and additional educational seminars.

This above is a brief synopsis of the Oregon Chapter's beginnings. In 1993, one of the founding members, Jon Stacey, wrote a humorous and informative newsletter article about OLMA. Below is a link to that article. We hope you enjoy reading his recollections.