MSBA Construction Section
Annual Report


Section Membership

As of June 18, 2019 the Section has 335 members.

Financial Status

The Section had an account balance of $22,578.39 as of April, 2019.

CLEs & Events

The Section hosted 11 events in fiscal year 2018-19. 

Program Title


Event Code

CLE Credits

Number of Attendees

A Watchful Eye- Inspection and Testing on Construction Projects



1.0 Standard


MSBA Construction Law Section's Annual Legislative Update



1.0 Standard


Holy Cow! This Insurance Stuff is Complicated, What do I do Now?



1.75 Standard


The Intersection of Ethics, Inclusion, and Professionalism- The New Model Rule 8.4 (g)



1.0 Elimination of Bias


The Evolution of Commercial Mediation: Where It Is and Where It’s Going with ADR Section



1.0 Standard


Legal Roles in Construction Law Roundtable & Social with New Lawyers Section



1.0 Standard


An Overview of Canadian Construction Law – Ten Issues to Consider



2.0 Standard


2018 Construction Case Law Update



1.0 Standard


Ethical Issues for Construction Lawyers



1.0 Ethics


Debt Collection & Avoiding FDCPA Violation



1.0 Standard


2019 Annual Construction Law Symposium



3.0 Standard



Annual Meeting and Election Results

The Section’s Annual Meeting was held on June 21, 2019 and 60 people attended.

The following new council members were elected to serve on the Section’s Governing Council from 7/1/2019 to 6/30/2021:

  • Elise Radaj, Fabyanske Westra Hart & Thomson PA

The following council members were re-elected to serve on the Section’s Governing Council from 7/1/2019 to 6/30/2021:

  • J. Scott Andresen, Bassford Remele
  • Connie Armstrong, McGough Construction
  • Lincoln Loehrke, Dorsey & Whitney LLP
  • Christopher Ryan, Life Time Fitness
  • Robert Shainess, Capstone Law LLC
  • Julia Velasquez, Commercial Partners Title LLC

The following council members were re-elected to serve on the Section’s Governing Council from 7/1/2019 to 6/30/2020:

  • Sarah Roeder, Dewitt LLP
  • Bryan Keane, Dorsey & Whitney LLP
  • Michael Rowley, Goetz & Eckland PA
  • Mike Schechter, AGC of MN
  • Jason Tarasek, Thompson Tarasek Lee-O'Halloran PLLC

The following officers were elected to serve on the Section’s Governing Council from 7/1/2019 to 6/30/2020:

  • Chair: Patrick Lee-O’Halloran, Thompson Tarasek Lee-O'Halloran PLLC
  • Vice Chair: Tom Radio, Felhaber Larson Fenlon & Vogt
  • Treasurer: Hugh Brown, Fabyanske Westra Hart & Thomson PA
  • Secretary: Nick Loyal, Stinson LLP
  • Past Chair: Ryan Hatton, Gurstel Law Firm PC

New Lawyers Section Liaison to the Construction Law Section (Non-Voting Position, 2019-2020 term):

  • Thomas Schram, Fabyanske Westra Hart & Thomson PA

Diversity and Inclusion
What diversity and inclusion goals did the Section include in the 2018-2019 work plan, how did you approach these goals, and what was the result?

  • It was the goal of the Section to host an elimination of bias CLE program for its Section membership and the Council achieved that with a fantastic CLE program by Kubes Law, LLC in December that had 49 persons attend.
  • The MSBA Construction Law Council will seek to place a renewed emphasis on diversity and inclusion within the Council in the coming bar year, to ensure that they are seeking voices from different stakeholders, firms, and backgrounds.
  • The Council placed an emphasis on attending MSBA One Profession Events that were held in the various judicial districts to reach their greater Minnesota membership by speaking about the value of membership with the MSBA. Events attended by Council members were in Willmar (8th District) and Mankato (5th District).
  • Members of the Council also attended “Meet the Bar Events” to discuss careers in Construction Law with incoming law students at the University of St. Thomas Law School, University of Minnesota Law School, and Mitchell Hamline School of Law.
  • For the second year in a row, the Council put on its Annual Construction Law Writing Competition; inviting 2L's and 3L's who are thinking about membership in the MSBA to showcase their writing skills and compete for one of two prizes, awarded to the best submissions on the year's topic. $1500 in total was awarded in prizes.

Other Section Accomplishments:

  • A couple years ago the Legislative Committee of the Construction Law Section drafted and proposed legislation to give original jurisdiction to district courts for public procurement actions (bid protests) in response to the Rochester Lines case where the Minnesota Supreme Court ruled that some portions of an action needed to be filed in district court while other portions needed to be filed with the Court of Appeals.The Section approved the legislation in 2018, but there were other legislative priorities at the time. This year, our legislation was designated as an MSBA priority and Bryan Lake was tasked with the lobbying efforts at the Capitol.The collective efforts of Bryan Lake and the Legislative Committee were successful and the Governor signed the bill today and the law is effective May 10, 2019.
  • The Council supported the MSBA Mock Trial Program with a $500 donation.
  • The proceeds from the November CLE were donated to Second Harvest Heartland, for a total of $715.
  • The Council voted to sponsor the MSBA Convention, a $500 sponsorship that allows all Section members to attend the convention for $45 (a $65 savings) for 11.25 CLE Credits.
  • The Section missed one of its goals for the year of increasing section membership. We are currently at 335 members for the year but had a total of 343 members last year at the same time. The Section Chair encourages all Section members to commit to inviting attorneys who may benefit from the programming and collegiality of the Section to come to meetings and join.

Submitted By:   Ryan Hatton, Section Chair   Date: June 19th, 2019