Access to Justice Foundation celebrates 30 years of service

Catherine Robb
Catherine Robb, of counsel to Haynes and Boone and granddaughter of the late President Lyndon Baines Johnson.

On Jan. 23, guests gathered inside the 10th Floor Atrium of the Lyndon Baines Johnson Presidential Library, away from the incoming ice storm, to hear a distinguished group of panelists discuss the history and importance of access to justice. This event kicked off the 30th anniversary celebration of the Texas Access to Justice Foundation and was co-sponsored by Legal Services Corporation, LBJ Future Forum, and the State Bar of Texas. The panel was followed by a reception and presentation of awards.

David Smith, chair of the LBJ Library Future Forum, and Catherine Robb, of counsel to the Austin office of Haynes and Boone and granddaughter of the late President Johnson, welcomed the guests to the event, followed by an introduction by Lamont Jefferson, the chair of TAJF’s 30th anniversary events and brother of former Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice Wallace Jefferson. Elizabeth Christian of Elizabeth Christian & Associates Public Relations moderated the panel, which featured Rep. Pete Gallego of the 23rd District of Texas, Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice Nathan Hecht, and Harvard Law School Dean Martha Minow. Panelists discussed, among other issues, the importance of lawyers in rural towns, the economic recession’s impact on Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Accounts Program, and the important role that law schools can play in encouraging increased access to legal services for underserved populations.

Awards were then presented to William O. Whitehurst, who received the Kleinmann Award; Rep. Sarah Davis of the 134th District of Texas, who received the Legislative Hero Award; and Christopher V. Bacon, Sally Crawford, Bruce Moseley, Eduardo V. Rodriguez, Jane Shin, and Richard Tate, who all received the Pro Bono Award.