Typically held every December, the Bank Counsel Conference is a one-day event offered by the Illinois Bankers Association (IBA) that provides members an opportunity to learn about state and federal banking regulations. They also hear speakers discuss court decisions and banking legislation that may have changed during the year. One board member who usually speaks at these conferences is Bruce J. Baker, the IBA's vice president and general counsel. Mr. Baker has occupied this position since 1999, representing the concerns of more than 700 banks, thrifts, and trust companies.

Held in downtown Chicago, the conference covers varied topics, such as high-tech banking methods and their impact on the financial industry. In 2012, Bruce J. Baker spoke about recent developments regarding litigation and banking law within the state. He also discussed voidable mortgages, new trust laws, and Dodd-Frank updates. Certified regulatory compliance managers (CRCM) or Illinois attorneys who attend the conference may be eligible to receive continuing education credits for their participation.
 
 
As executive vice president and general counsel for the Illinois Bankers Association (IBA), Bruce J. Baker advocates for over 700 financial institutions of all sizes. Bruce J. Baker’s responsibilities include handling legislative issues that affect banks, trust companies, and thrifts.

The IBA has published preliminary information regarding Illinois’ new concealed carry of firearms law, which permits this action for persons who obtain a license. The law lists many areas where even licensed individuals may not carry guns, but banks are not on this list.

However, as private businesses, financial institutions are permitted to post signs prohibiting concealed carry. This applies also in bank parking lots, but only for persons while they are outside of their cars. The law is unclear as to whether licensed persons may carry firearms into drive-through banking areas.

The IBA anticipates the Illinois State Police will not begin to issue licenses until January 2014. The law allows the police 90 days to process an application. Persons who have licenses from other states will have to file new applications in Illinois.
 
 
Bruce J. Baker began his service as executive vice president and general counsel of the Illinois Bankers Association (IBA) in 1999. He has practiced law for well over 30 years. Bruce J. Baker received his Juris Doctorate at the Washington University School of Law in St. Louis, Missouri.

The Washington University School of Law Annual Alumni Weekend will be held from October 25 to 26, 2013. Alumni will return to campus to meet former classmates, faculty, and current students. The weekend begins on Friday evening, with a Welcome Back Reception, which will be held in Anheuser-Busch Hall. A continental breakfast will be provided the following morning, followed by a discussion on "Hot Topics in the Law," led by Professor Karen Tokarz and a number of other members of the faculty. Attendees are invited to a tour of the school from student ambassadors, and encouraged to share their experience with students at a late morning coffee reception. Dean Kent Syverud will give an address during lunch. After an evening reception featuring wine and appetizers at Cardwell’s, trolleys will take guests to their respective class dinners.
 
 
A professional and practicing attorney for over 30 years, Bruce J. Baker works diligently to provide his clients the highest quality service both in and out of the courtroom. Bruce J. Baker currently serves as an attorney for Barack Ferrazzano Kirschbaum Perlman & Nagelberg, a law firm in Chicago.

The founders of Barack Ferrazzano created the firm with the purpose of establishing an alternative to the traditional “mega-firm.” They focus on efficiently delivering team-oriented services, aiming for quality results for clients over quantity of cases.

In 2005, Barack Ferrazzano founded the BFKN Foundation. This organization, dedicated to serving the community, partnered with the Sharon Krista McAuliffe School in the same year to benefit students. Through this partnership, the BFKN Foundation has supported four annual events: a back-to-school event that supplies children with backpacks and school supplies, a winter holiday program that makes gifts of warm weather clothes to children, a spring career day that invites students to Barack Ferrazzano’s offices to encourage learning about legal careers, and tutoring sessions.
 
 
Bruce J. Baker serves as the general counsel and executive vice president of the Illinois Bankers Association. He helps to negotiate legislation for banking, create policies in regards to regulatory issues, and provide legal representation to the association. Over the course of his career as an attorney, Bruce J. Baker has been affiliated with a variety of associations. He belongs to both the American Bar Association and the Illinois State Bar Association.

Since it was founded in 1877, the Illinois State Bar Association has been dedicated to improving the legal and judiciary field while increasing the public’s access to justice. Possessing over 30,000 members, the Illinois State Bar Association has become the state’s largest voluntary lawyer organization.

In addition to providing professional services, the association works with members of the public to help them learn more about the legal profession. The Illinois State Bar Association helps people searching for lawyers through its website. The association offers teachers information on how to hold mock trials and lesson plans to teach students about the judiciary system. The association also publishes legal rights information, a free legal service directory, and a guide to fee disagreements.
 
 
Bruce J. Baker serves as general counsel and executive vice president of the Illinois Bankers Association (IBA), a position he assumed in 1999. In this role, Bruce J. Baker oversees all regulatory and legislative issues, assists in product development for individual IBA member institutions, and serves as a liaison between the IBA and senior management at the major financial institutions in Illinois. Bruce J. Baker possesses more than 30 years of experience in the financial services industry, having represented and worked with many of the major banking institutions in the state. 

The Illinois Bankers Association represents all banks in the state of Illinois, including savings banks, savings and loan associations, and state and national banks. Established in 1891, the IBA is dedicated to providing a positive business environment for the banking industry and their local communities and accounts for approximately 90 percent of the assets in Illinois’ banking industry. 

In an effort to assist its members and to continue fostering banking leadership in the state, the IBA offers a number of programs that recognize the next generation of banking leaders. The Future Leaders Alliance (FLA) program addresses the ever-changing needs of the banking industry. The IBA also offers several recognition programs including the Outstanding Legislator Award, Volunteer of the Year Award, and the Illinois Banker of the Year Award.
 
 
Bruce J. Baker has been practicing as an attorney for nearly 35 years, and has a wealth of experience in business law. Since 1999, Baker has utilized his extensive background while serving as Senior Vice President and General Counsel for the Illinois Bankers Association. 

For over 120 years, the Illinois Bankers Association has functioned as a trade association for banking professionals throughout the state. Representatives from state and national banks and savings and loans associations, as well as individuals in related fields, are eligible to become members. The IBA’s members oversee more than 90% of the assets held within the state's banking sector. 

The Illinois Bankers Association runs a myriad of programs for career veterans and new entrants into the industry. It runs networking and educational events that discuss the latest developments in the field and suggest ways to enhance one's practice. 

Those interested in expanding their education can even apply to the organization for financial assistance. The IBA offers its members access to a number of scholarships, including the University of Wisconsin, Madison, Graduate School of Banking scholarship and the University of Illinois Executive MBA Scholarship.

To find out more about the group, including how to join, log onto www.ilbanker.com.