Posted inLocal BarsNewsPeople

Judge Tonya Parker to receive Dallas Bar Association Martin Luther King Jr. Justice Award

Judge Tonya Parker, of the 116th District Court in Dallas, will receive the 2021 Martin Luther King Jr. Justice Award from the Dallas Bar Association.

Parker will receive the award during the 28th Martin Luther King Jr. Luncheon at noon January 18 via Zoom. The event is open to the public.

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Posted inCoronavirusGovernmentJudiciaryLegislatureNewsState BarTexas Supreme CourtTLAP

State Bar COVID-19 response and other updates

Editor’s Note: The following message was sent to all members on January 5.

Dear Member,

This message includes updated information related to the COVID-19 pandemic and other State Bar of Texas information. We hope this message finds you and your loved ones safe and healthy.

Supreme Court of Texas Emergency Orders

The Texas Supreme Court recently issued two emergency orders related to the COVID-19 pandemic and evictions in Texas. The renews the Texas Eviction Diversion Program, a statewide housing-assistance program designed to help tenants behind on rent avoid evictions. Learn more about the program at .

The court’s extends deadlines for eviction procedures to reflect recent actions taken by Congress to continue certain eviction protections afforded in the CARES Act. Continue Reading

Posted inLaw SchoolsNewsPeople

Genora K. Boykins elected as South Texas College of Law Houston Board of Directors chair-elect

Genora K. Boykins, a 1985 alumna of South Texas College of Law Houston, was elected chair-elect for the law school’s board of directors. She is the first woman and African American to hold this position at the law school.

Boykins has served on the South Texas College of Law Houston Board of Directors since March 2012. She will serve a five-year term as board chair.

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Posted inGuest BlogState BarTexas Lawyers' Assistance ProgramTLAP

Stories of Recovery: My Happy New Year

Editor’s note: TLAP offers confidential assistance for lawyers, law students, and judges with substance use or mental health issues. Call or text TLAP at 1-800-343-8527 (TLAP) or find more information at

I remember a number of years having terrible experiences with New Year’s Eve and drinking too much, doing something that was humiliating or that caused a problem in my marriage and then swearing I’d quit drinking for the new year.

As a lawyer, I had the idea that working hard and playing hard was expected and understandable, and the stresses of practicing law would always guide me back to the bar or at least to the bottle within a few days. I always felt so ashamed of myself for the failure to keep my resolution. I actually hated myself for not putting those I loved before my desire to get relief from drinking. I couldn’t see at the time that I was actually powerless to quit on my own. I needed help.
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Posted inCoronavirusCourtsNewsTexas Supreme Court

Emergency order extends eviction-diversion program deadlines

Editor’s Note: The Texas Supreme Court issued the following advisory on December 22.

In an emergency order posted Tuesday, the Texas Supreme Court has extended deadlines for procedures for tenants and landlords under a statewide housing-assistance program intended to avoid evictions for tenants behind on rent.

The Texas Eviction Diversion Program, announced in October, is supported by Gov. Greg Abbott’s commitment of federal money for landlords to provide an eviction alternative. Eligibility for rental assistance under the program will be administered by the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs.

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Posted inLocal BarsMentoringNews

Dallas Bar Association and Dallas Association of Young Lawyers launch mentorship program

The Dallas Bar Association and the Dallas Association of Young Lawyers are launching the 2021 STEER program, a mentorship program that focuses on cultivating relationships and providing substantive and practical legal advice.

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Posted inCLECoronavirusCourtsEducationEthicsJudiciaryNewsState BarTexas Supreme Court

Office of Court Administration reiterates COVID-19 remote proceedings mandate

Editor’s Note: State Bar of Texas Executive Director Trey Apffel sent the following message to members on December 18.

I hope this message finds you and your loved ones safe and healthy. I am writing to share information related to the COVID-19 pandemic and to remind you about the upcoming public forums on the 2021 rules vote.

Office of Court Administration Reiterates Remote Proceedings Mandate, Requires Recertification of In-Person Operating Plans

On December 17, 2020, the Office of Court Administration that trial judges in district, county, justice, and municipal courts must not hold in-person proceedings in any matter unless the trial judge has used all reasonable efforts to conduct the proceeding remotely. This is mandated by the Texas Supreme Court’s and is required regardless of whether a city or county has approved an operating plan.

Also, unless local administrative judges and presiding judges of municipal courts re-certify their in-person operating plans before January 1, 2021, courts in their localities may not hold any in-person proceedings.

Details on these new instructions, other court guidance, and local operating plans are on the . Continue Reading

Posted inNews

Celebrating Bill of Rights Day

Bill of Rights Day is celebrated on December 15 each year. The Bill of Rights, composed of the first 10 amendments to the U.S. Constitution, sets out the foundational civil rights and liberties guaranteed to all Americans.

President Franklin D. Roosevelt declared December 15 to be Bill of Rights Day in 1941 in commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the Bill of Rights’ ratification.

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Posted inLocal BarsNewsPeople

Aaron Tobin elected Dallas Bar Association president

Aaron Z. Tobin, a trial attorney and named partner in Condon Tobin Sladek Thornton Nerenberg, has been elected Dallas Bar Association president for 2021.

Tobin will be inaugurated as the Dallas Bar’s 112th president in January.

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