Bar Leadership Academy

The Bar Leadership Academy (BLA) is a special program designed to help emerging leaders of the legal profession in Kansas City develop the skills, knowledge, and experience needed to become leaders in both the profession and the community. During this seven-month program, new attorneys participate in seven interactive leadership training sessions featuring prominent speakers, instructors, and discussion facilitators.

Through this curriculum, the Bar Leadership Academy aims to:

  • Enhance participants’ leadership skills so they can better excel in service to the profession and the community.
  • Nurture and encourage graduates to seek leadership positions in Bar organizations, the judiciary, and community organizations.
  • Create a critical mass of diverse future leaders within the legal community.
  • Foster pride, commitment and participation in professional association activities.
  • Provide leadership opportunities in the community for all graduates.


We are now accepting applications for the 2017 Bar Leadership Academy.
Click here to download the application.
Click here for more information.

BLA programming will begin in May after the conclusion of the Ross T. Roberts Trial Academy.
This group will meet once a month from May to November and participants are expected to make sit of the seven sessions.

Benefits of joining Bar Leadership Academy:

  • At least 4.0 CLE hours MO and KS (pending) - valued at $140
  • Eligible for one 1/2 price ticket to KCMBA's Annual Meeting - valued at $32.50
  • All breakfasts and/or lunches and social receptions included
  • Multiple Networking Events
  • Formal learning sessions from several leaders of the Kansas City legal community

Scholarships are available through KCMBA’s Young Lawyer and Diversity Sections. Please download and complete these applications for consideration. All applications are due by April 1st.

KCMBA Diversity Section Scholarship Rules and Application

KCMBA YLS Scholarship Rules and Application

BLA also offers one scholarship yearly for this program. Click here to download an application. Participants are welcome to apply for multiple scholarship opportunities. 

AWLF also grants scholarships throughout the year for financial assistance to women in the legal profession for membership in professional organizations and to attend professional meetings, conferences, educational programs, and other functions and programs in furtherance of their professional development and legal career. Click here to see more details and to apply. 

For more information on the Bar Leadership Academy, contact AnnMarie Thomas at

2015-2016 Bar Leadership Academy Graduates