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Nicole Black '95, who was previously profiled in 2010, continues to be passionate about the intersection of law and technology. This focus is well aligned with her position as the director of business development and community relations at MyCase, a web-based law practice management system for solo and small practice attorneys. In this role, she continues the discussion—both online and offline—about new technologies and their effects on the practice of law.
“Technology is evolving rapidly at a rate never before seen,” she said. “Lawyers need to sit up, take notice, and learn as much as they can about emerging technologies such as cloud and mobile computing so that they can position their law firms to thrive in an increasingly competitive global legal marketplace.”
As part of her mission to educate lawyers about the rapidly changing legal landscape, she writes and speaks often about legal technology issues.
Black co-authored Social Media for Lawyers: The Next Frontier with Carolyn Elefant, which was published by the American Bar Association in May 2010, and her book Cloud Computing for Lawyers was published by the American Bar Association in 2012. And, although not related to technology, she also co-authored Criminal Law in New York with Judge Karen Morris.
She continues to write her longstanding weekly legal technology column for the Daily Record, distributed nationally on a newswire, recently writing about the American Bar Association’s decision on the use of social media by attorneys. She also frequently contributes to other publications.
Black recently wrote a chapter focusing on Twitter use by lawyers for a soon-to-be-published American Bar Association book about marketing for solo and small firms. She also authored a law review article, “Lawyers, Cloud Computing, and Innovation: How Cloud Computing Facilitates Innovation in the Delivery of Legal Services,” which was published in Moritz Law School’s May 2014 edition of I/S: A Journal of Law and Policy for the Information Society. And she wrote a book review for the New York Law Journal, “The Marble and the Sculptor: From Law School to Law Practice,” which was published in January.
In addition to her blog, Sui Generis, which she launched in 2005, she writes for the MyCase blog, as well as writing a weekly column for the Legal IT Pros blog.
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She also spreads the word about the benefits of technology on the practice of law by speaking to lawyers across the country. In the last six months, she has spoken at more than 11 different venues about legal technology issues, including Albany Law School, the New York State Bar Association’s Annual Meeting and the American Bar Association Litigation Section’s Annual Meeting.
“One of my favorite encounters with an attorney following one of my talks occurred in Florida,” Black recalled. “During my presentation, I explained how lawyers using social media should occasionally share their personal interests as well as professional ones in order to be more approachable.”
“As an example I mentioned a New York City lawyer I know who shares her adventures in mushrooming. When I was done speaking a man came up to me and handed me his phone and showed me a photo of a mushroom. Apparently he likes to go mushrooming, too,” she said. “Who knew there would be two mushrooming lawyers?”
Black has more than 16,000 followers on her Twitter account, where she follows her own advice and regularly shares her hobbies with followers, which include wine, cooking and creating jewelry.
In addition to being the director of business development and community relations for MyCase, she is also of counsel to the Rochester, N.Y., law firm Fiandach & Fiandach. Previously, Black worked as a litigation associate at Trevett, Cristo, Salzer, & Andolina P.C., and as an assistant public defender.