Bar Admission Requirements: Ideas and Initiatives for Change

Senior Counsel Rick Trachok will be participating on a panel at the 2023 Western States Bar Conference to discuss the latest ideas and initiatives for changes to lawyer admission requirements. Rick has served as Chair of the Nevada State Bar’s Board of Bar Examiners since 2000 and is a member of the State Bar’s Board of Governors.

The traditional pathway to becoming a lawyer requires graduation from an ABA-accredited law school and taking a bar exam. The National Conference of Bar Examiners (NCBE) provides the Uniform Bar Exam (UBE) for most jurisdictions. To ensure a continued high-quality and relevant exam—and in response to calls for its reform—the NCBE is in the process of re-building the UBE into the NextGen Bar Exam. Given equity concerns around standardized testing, some jurisdictions are exploring pathways to licensure that would not require the UBE or passing a bar exam. 

Rick’s panel presents on March 31 from 10:30 – 11:45 AM. Rick’s co-panelists include Leah Wilson (Executive Director, State Bar of California), Joan Howarth (Distinguished Visiting Professor, William S. Boyd School of Law), Danette McKinley (Director of Diversity, Fairness, and Inclusion Research for the National Conference of Bar Examiners), and Joanna Perini-Abbott (License Pathways Development Committee Chair).

About McDonald Carano

McDonald Carano has been shaping Nevada’s legal, business, and policy landscape since our founding in 1949. With more than 60 lawyers and government affairs professionals working from offices in Reno, Las Vegas, and Carson City, we are Nevada’s law firm for business. Our local, national and international clients include Fortune 500 corporations, fast-growth and mid-market companies, entrepreneurs and startups, non-profit organizations, government entities, and high-net-worth individuals. Our attorneys deliver cross-discipline, one-stop, business law and government affairs counsel. Please visit

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