Vermont Paralegal Organization ~ Established 1990
The VPO's first newsletter, The Paralegal Perspective, was published in October 1990, and in November 1990, the first Statewide Meeting was held at Vermont Law School. The meeting which had over 30 attendees, included seminars on the organization of a personal injury file, deciphering medical records, and preparation of a trial notebook.
In November 1991, the VPO established its criteria for voting membership. By the summer of 1993, the VPO had grown to 102 members. Cell meetings and mixers were being held throughout the state. In September 1994, the VPO proposed affiliating with a national organization. The membership voted and in January 1995, the VPO joined the National Federation of Paralegal Associations (NFPA®).
The VPO implemented a scholarship program in the summer of 1995 with the first scholarship being awarded to a worthy paralegal student in the spring of 1996. In 2005, the VPO obtained official tax-exempt status. In early 2008, the VPO unveiled a brand new logo, revamped newsletter and website. The VPO also added a Facebook page and a Members' Listserv/Discussion Forum for networking and disseminating information to members. In May 2010, the VPO awarded its first Paralegal Certification Exam scholarship. In October 2013, the VPO was the driving force behind the establishment of a Paralegal Section with the Vermont Bar Association.
October 2016 became a highlight in the VPO's history when we hosted the 2016 National Federation of Paralegal Association's Annual Convention and Policy Meeting. This was the first time the NFPA Convention had been hosted in our small state of Vermont. For 4-6 days, Burlington became the "hot spot" for local and national paralegals, from near and far, to network, learn new areas of law or receive updates on their current practices, see old colleagues and to meet new friends, and to learn the current status of the paralegal profession. We were lucky enough to have Former Governor Howard Dean, MD, as our keynote speaker, and he was a big hit among the convention attendees.
In July 2019, the VPO incorporated as the Vermont Paralegal Organization, Inc.The VPO is Vermont's only paralegal networking medium which provides visibility to the paralegal community through its newsletter, Paralegal Focus, its website, and its Facebook page.