Thanks for your response. Before Page load I am getting the list from the DB and the list is not empty.
rich:pickList won't call
master.setSelListName(...)when the pickList is changed. I know it DOES call the setter when I submit the form. I tried changing my form submit h:commandButton to an a4j:commandButton with ajaxSingle="true" and my changes never got to the server.
You would think there would be an easy way to make a pickList call the setter every time the user changes something. Perhaps something like <rich:tabPanel switchType="ajax">.