History Project: The 1990s

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1995 Large Delegation goes To Sao Paolo

The CLA has had a special relationship with Brazil for many years largely due to the energy and enthusiasm of Esther Nunes and Ricardo da Silva. Through their efforts the CLA has co-sponsored the ABDI annual Congress on Computer and Telecommunications Law. Many Presidents of the CLA have attended this program held in Sao Paulo or Rio de Janeiro. In 1995 Ian Kyer led a large delegation of CLA members to Sao Paulo, including Jay Westerrmeier the program planning chair and Barbara Fieser the CLA Executive Director.

1995 Membership Snapshot

John Fieser, a geographer and statistician and the husband of Barbara Fieser, the CLA Executive Director, periodically provided the Association with a graphical representation of its membership. Here is what CLA membership looked like in 1995: (coming soon.)

1996 25th Anniversary

In 1996 the CLA celebrated its 25th anniversary with a gala dinner hosted by then President Jay Westermeier. The event was marked by the adoption of a new CLA logo and a special commemorative publication.

Jay Westermeier recalls the anniversary in this way:

I had the privilege of co-chairing CLA’s 25th and 30th Anniversary programs in Washington, D.C. As part of the 25th Anniversary program that I co-chaired with Art Levine, who had been executive director of CONTU, I designed a CLA logo with the assistance of Art Levine’s wife. This logo of a globe with the words "Computer Law Association" wrapped around the globe with the symbols for scales of justice, communications and storage media was used thereafter as the CLA logo with the letters "CLA" replacing "25" in the 25th Anniversary logo. I also developed a logo to describe CLA that CLA used on its stationery for many years -- "Representing Information Technology Legal Practitioners Worldwide".

The 25th Anniversary Dinner Program was held at the ANA Hotel in Washington, D.C. on April 25, 1996. William A. Tanenbaum was CLA President and Master of Ceremonies. There was a 50th Anniversary Tribute to ENIAC, the first computer and case awards. Robert Bigelow gave a presentation on the history of CLA. The guest of honor was the Honorable Marybeth Peters, Register of Copyrights, U.S. Copyright Office and long time member of the CLA Board of Directors.

1996 Ed Langs Dies

Edward Langs from Detroit was a force in the CLA for many years. He served as President in 1992-3 and assisted in the organization of and attended the first Australian program.

He was a constant source of insightful comments and humorous remarks during board meetings. Long a promoter of Detroit and Michigan generally, he organized a conference in Detroit in 1983 and in Dearborn Michigan in 1989, which included a tour of the Ford Museum.

He died suddenly in 1996, sending a wave of sorrow through the CLA. The Fourth Volume of the CLA Computer Law Companion series was dedicated to his memory.

1997 CLA Goes to Hawaii

In keeping with the tradition of taking every second Pacific Rim conference outside of the continental USA, the 1997 program, organized by Ian Kyer and Christopher Erickson with the assistance of Mark Gordon, took place at the Royal Hawaiian Hotel (the "Pink Palace") on Waikiki Beach . The program was co-sponsored by the Japanese Electronics Industry Development Association or JEIDA, which sent a large delegation.

1998 Membership Drive

At the time of the Y2K scare and the Internet boom, interest in IT law was at an all time high. Steve Davidson, the President in 1998, had been a driving force for increased membership. During his Presidency he suggested that the CLA push for 2000 members by the year 2000 and recruited Jay Westermeier to lead the campaign. Buttons were prepared and membership efforts were doubled and the goal was achieved.

Jay Westermeier recalls his role in this way: “I was elected to the CLA Board of Directors in 1992. Then President Mark Gordon asked me to chair the CLA Membership Committee. At the time, CLA only had about 1200 members. I remained active on membership for many years even after I became President of CLA in 1997. When Steve Davidson was president in 1996-97, he developed the membership slogan -- "2000 by 2000". In 1998, CLA membership exceeded 2,200 members.”

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