News Releases

January 10, 2020

MBA Welcomes New Leaders at Annual Business Luncheon

Passing of the Gavel

2019 MBA President Gregory R. Gifford, Esq. (right) passes the gavel to 2020 President Patrick J. Kurtas, Esq. (left)

Blue Bell, PA -- On Friday, January 10, 2020, the Montgomery Bar Association (MBA) held its Annual Business Luncheon Meeting at Blue Bell Country Club in Blue Bell, PA.  Nearly 300 local dignitaries, legal professionals and community leaders attended the event which included the election of the MBA’s officers for 2020, an awards presentation to honor area attorneys and judges, as well as the installation of its new president, Patrick J. Kurtas, Esq., with the ceremonial passing of the gavel.

Patrick J. Kurtas, Esq. is a partner with the firm of Prince and Kurtas. Mr. Kurtas graduated from Ursinus College in 1999 with a degree in Political Science. He thereafter attended both Villanova University School of Law and Villanova College of Commerce and Finance earning a Juris Doctorate as well as a Masters in Business Administration in 2002. Kurtas opened his own law practice, Kurtas Law, in 2003, and thereafter merged forces with the oldest law firm in the Pottstown area, Prince and Prince, in 2006, to create Prince and Kurtas.

During his inauguration speech, Mr. Kurtas acknowledged Mr. Gifford, his fellow officers, and past presidents of the bar association for their support, inspiration and guidance. Mr. Kurtas also shared stories from his upbringing in Chester County, where his first job was working on a farm at 14 years old. It was during this time that Mr. Kurtas first aspired to become a lawyer, the true profession of the farm's owner and Mr. Kurtas' first professional mentor, John Frazier Hunt. The first MBA President from Pottstown, Mr. Kurtas also acknowledged the guidance of his law partner, Paul Prince, and praised the work of his fellow Pottstown attorneys.

Mr. Kurtas also implored those in attendance to stay involved in the bar association, and to encourage their colleagues to do so as well. He praised the many benefits of membership and the important initiatives and programs offered by the bar association, especially its diversity efforts, leadership programs, and many CLE offerings.

Mr. Kurtas concluded his speech by crediting his current position to the love and support of his incredible family, especially his mother Alice, brother Peter, Jr., sister Alyson, and his father Peter, who unfortunately passed in September.

For the 2020 Bar Year, Jacqueline M. Reynolds, Esq. will serve as President-Elect, Sarinia M. Feinman, Esq. will serve as Vice President, Justin A. Bayer, Esq.  will serve as Treasurer and Lisa A. Shearman, Esq. will serve as Secretary.

Also of Note:  Justin A. Bayer, Esq., of Kane, Pugh, Knoell, Troy & Kramer, LLP in Norristown will also serve as President of the MBA’s Trial Lawyers Section, Joseph A. McNelis, III, Esq. of Fox Rothschild, LLP in Blue Bell was named Chair of the MBA’s Young Lawyers Section, Gerald L. Shoemaker, Jr., Esq., of Hangley Aronchick Segal Pudlin & Schiller in Norristown was named Chair of the MBA’s Family Law Section, and Obadiah G. English, Esq., of Mannion Prior, LLP in King of Prussia, will continue as Chair of the MBA’s Probate and Tax Section.

In addition to new leadership being appointed, the following awards were distributed:


Hon. Milton O. Moss Public Service Award

Dr. Valerie A. Arkoosh

Moss Award

Dr. Valerie A. Arkoosh (right) receives the Hon. Milton O. Moss Award.

Hon. Louis D. Stefan Law Enforcement Award

Julio M. Algarin

Stefan Award

Julio M. Algarin (right) receives the Hon. Louis D. Stefan Award from Montgomery Bar Foundation President Carl N. Weiner, Esq.(left).

Hon. Louis D. Stefan Law Enforcement Award

Beth Sanborn, DPA

Moss Award

Det. Beth Sanborn (left) receives the Hon. Louis D. Stefan Award from Montgomery Bar Foundation President Carl N. Weiner, Esq. (right).

Hon. Horace A. Davenport Diversity Award

Jimmy C. Chong, Esq.

Davenport Award

Jimmy C. Chong, Esq. (left) receives the Inaugural Hon. Horace A. Davenport Diversity Award from 2019 MBA President Gregory R. Gifford, Esq. (right).

Committee of the Year Award

Solo/Small Firm Practice Committee

Committee of the Year

Co-Chair Kenneth P. Milner, Esq. accepts the Committee of the Year Award on behalf of the Solo/Small Firm Practice Committee.

Young Lawyers Section Award

Michael J. Lyon, Esq.

Young Lawyers Award

2019 Chair of the Young Lawyers Section Michael J. Lyon, Esq. (left) receives the Young Lawyers Section Award from 2019 Vice-Chair Joseph A. McNelis, III, Esq. (right).

Click here to view more photos from the event.

Click here to read coverage from The Reading Eagle.