Roberta Tepper is the Lawyer Assistance Programs Director of the State Bar of Arizona.
What are three points that describe you?
- I am a lawyer passionate about helping other lawyers succeed in their practices.
- I am relatively newly come to the practices of mindfulness and meditation but have found they have enhanced my life.
- I’ve had a varied career, including time as a criminal prosecutor, in court management, and as a bar disciplinary counsel, but my current position—helping lawyers with practice management legal technology—has been the most challenging and rewarding of my career.
How is telework/quarantine going for you?
It’s going much better than expected. I’m a people person and thought I’d go crazy being isolated, but Zoom and Teams have been a saving grace and I am actually being more productive and have been more content than I imagined I could be.
How did you become involved in legal tech?
When I became the Lawyer Assistance Programs Director for the State Bar of Arizona, I was fortunate to become part of an amazing group of practice management advisors from all over the country as well as joining the Law Practice Division of the ABA. Those colleagues helped me on what was a crash course on legal tech so that I could advise our members and assist them in implementing legal tech into their practices.
What projects have you been focused on recently?
I’ve been on the ABA TECHSHOW Board for the last 2.5 years, serving as co-chair for the 2021 TECHSHOW. That’s been my primary focus, in addition to assisting our bar members in transitioning to remote practice during the pandemic.
Is there a legal tech resource of any kind that really helped you when you were starting out in the field?
My practice management advisor colleagues from state and local bars around the country have been my go-to’s and my most trusted resources. The Legal Technology Resource Center has been bookmarked on my browser from the beginning, and the people I have met through my involvement in the Law Practice Division have also been an invaluable resource.
What do you see as the most important emerging tech, legal or not, right now?
Improvement of legal services through the use of document automation, chatbots, and artificial intelligence—particularly focused on bridging the access to justice gap.
What advice would you give to other women who want to get involved in legal tech?
Just go for it and find colleagues and mentors to help you on your way; they are out there and willing to do that if you just reach out.
Give a shout-out to another woman in legal tech who you admire or have learned something from!
There are so many, but I am particularly grateful to my fellow practice management advisors, including Sharon Nelson of Sensei Enterprises, Catherine Sanders-Reach, Shawn Holahan, Charity Anastasio, Natalie Kelly, and Heidi Alexander.