Posted inAbout The BarNewsState Bar

State Bar Board of Directors to meet April 16

The State Bar of Texas Board of Directors will meet at 9 a.m. CDT April 16. All State Bar members and the public may watch the meeting on the State Bar of Texas YouTube channel.

Among items on the agenda are:

  • 6d. Action: Election of Chair of the Board for 2021-22.
  • 8e. Action: Consider and discuss approval of the creation of a Workgroup on Texas Lawyer Needs Arising From the 2020 Pandemic and 2021 Winter Storm. Continue Reading
Posted inConferenceDiversityLocal BarsNews

Austin Bar Association to hold Equity Summit

The Austin Bar Association will hold an Equity Summit from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on May 14, 2021, via Zoom. The event is free and open to the public.

The event will include a mindfulness exercise and panels on implicit bias, the roots of racism in Austin, the Tim Cole Act, how to reduce the justice gap through pro bono work, and how attorneys can leverage their power to create a more equitable community. A discussion on institutional racism embedded in the Austin Land Code will focusing on the lasting impacts and potential remedies will also be held.

Continue Reading

Posted inAccess to JusticeUncategorized

Champions of Justice Gala Benefiting Veterans raises approximately $448,000

The Texas Access to Justice Commission with its co-sponsor, the State Bar of Texas, honored veterans throughout the state at the 2021 Champions of Justice Gala Benefiting Veterans on April 6, 2021, via YouTube. This year, the commission raised approximately $448,000 to help provide civil legal services to low-income Texas veterans.

Texas Supreme Court Justices Eva Guzman and Brett Busby, both court liaisons to the commission, were masters of ceremony and welcomed guests to the virtual event. Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice Nathan L. Hecht and former Texas Supreme Court Justices Deborah Hankinson and Harriet O’Neill talked about the history of the commission, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, and the importance of providing civil legal services to low-income Texans.

The following award recipients were recognized: Beth Mitchell and Allison Eichenfeld Neal both received the James B. Sales Boots on the Ground Award, R. Paul Yetter received the Harry M. Reasoner Justice for All Award, and Fred Fuchs received the Emily C. Jones Lifetime Achievement Award.

Texas Access to Justice Commission Chair Harry M. Reasoner introduced keynote speaker Gen. Larry O. Spencer, former vice chief of staff of the U.S. Air Force who retired in 2015 after 44 years of distinguished service to the U.S., having earned the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, the Air Force Distinguished Service Medal, the Defense Superior Service Medal, and the Legion of Merit. Spencer said he tries to support those whom he thinks are the backbone of the military—the enlisted. He talked about three enlisted men who were all injured during combat, in Japan for medical assistance (two were sent there and one was already stationed there), and then ultimately landed at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Maryland for recovery and treatment, where they met and became lifelong friends. The third man was Spencer’s father, and these three gentlemen grew up in Spencer’s home. He saw them all the time and grew up listening to their stories, things they had to go through as young soldiers. “What is fascinating to me about those three gentlemen is that they never complained,” Spencer said. “I never heard them say anything bad about their experiences. All three of them wanted to do one thing—and that is they wanted to serve our country.” Spencer said that all three were Purple Heart recipients and stayed in the U.S. Army for 20 years. “Those three gentlemen are the reason I joined the military,” Spencer said. “Because they instilled this sense of patriotism in me and they instilled in me this sense of love for our country and that it’s all about responsibility to make this country as strong as it can be.”

Spencer said it wasn’t until later in life that his father told him he attended a group that helped him with his PTSD from the Korean War. His father said back then you were told to suck it up and not complain. Spencer said he was thankful for all of the resources now available to veterans and thankful for all work by the commission. For more information about the Texas Access to Justice Commission, go to texasatj.org.

Above: Gen. Larry O. Spencer, retired. Photo by Michael Pausic

Posted inNewsState Bar

Public hearing on State Bar budget set for April 6

The State Bar of Texas will hold a virtual public hearing on its proposed budget for the 2021-2022 fiscal year at 9 a.m. CDT April 6.

To sign up to speak during the meeting, please email cbarber@texasbar.com or call 800-204-2222, ext. 1416 (toll free) before 5 p.m. CDT April 5.

The public can watch the meeting on the State Bar’s YouTube channel. More information about State Bar finances is available at texasbar.com/finances.

Posted inNewsState Bar

State Bar Executive Committee to meet April 6

The State Bar of Texas Executive Committee will meet at 10 a.m. CDT April 6. All State Bar members and the public may watch the meeting on the State Bar of Texas YouTube channel.

Among items on the agenda are:

  • 4d. Action: Consider and discuss approval of the creation of an Advertising Review Task Force
  • 4e. Action: Consider and discuss approval of the creation of a Workgroup on Texas Lawyer Needs Arising from the 2020 Pandemic and 2021 Winter Storm.
  • 7b. Action: Consider approval of the State Bar of Texas 2021-22 proposed budget for presentation to the Supreme Court.
  • 15b. Action: Consider and discuss approval of the proposed amendments to MCLE Accreditation Standards.

View the full agenda here. Materials for the meeting can be found here.

To sign up to speak during the meeting, please email amy.starnes@texasbar.com or call (800) 204-2222, ext. 1706 (toll free) before 5 p.m. CDT on April 5.

Posted in2021 president-elect candidatesWomen of Law

2021 Elections: Watch ‘A Minute with the Candidates’ Now

“A Minute with the Candidates” Video Series 

Voting in the 2021 elections for State Bar of Texas president-elect and open district director positions starts tomorrow, April 1, and ends at 5 p.m. CDT on April 30. To help you get to know the president-elect candidates better, we’ve produced a four-part video series, “A Minute with the Candidates,” featuring short interviews with Sara Dysart and Laura Gibson. 

The series concludes today with the video linked below. Watch to learn how the candidates decided to become a lawyer. All four videos in the series can be viewed at  texasbar.com/elections  and on the  State Bar’s YouTube channel

For information on voting in the 2021 elections, go to texasbar.com/elections—and watch your mailboxes and email inboxes for your paper and electronic ballots. All lawyers who are active and in good standing with the State Bar of Texas are eligible to vote in State Bar elections. 

Get to know the president-elect candidates by clicking on the video link below. 

Posted inLaw Firms and Legal Departments

Scams continue to target Texas attorneys

Update 3/30/2021: We received a report of another scam. A Texas attorney received two email scams. One of them was from a “student” who claimed they were referred to the attorney by the “Bar Referral Services.” The other was from someone who claimed they found the attorney on LinkedIn, but the attorney does not currently have a LinkedIn profile. View the scam emails. Continue Reading

Posted in2021 president-elect candidatesWomen of Law

2021 Elections: A Minute with the President-elect Candidates, Part 3

Learn more about the State Bar of Texas 2021 president-elect candidates—Sara Dysart, of San Antonio, and Laura Gibson, of Houston—through our four-part video series, “A Minute with the Candidates.”

In today’s third video of the series, the candidates answer the question: “What do you do to recharge your batteries so that you can serve your clients?”

If you missed the first two videos of the series, check them out at texasbar.com/elections or our YouTube channel. The fourth video will be released on Wednesday, March 31.

Subscribe to the State Bar’s email newsletter to get a link each day the videos are posted, along with other legal news of interest to Texas lawyers.

Be sure to check back with us tomorrow for the last video!

Get to know the president-elect candidates by clicking on the video link below.

LexBlog