This week’s edition of P.S. features two president-elect candidates for an upcoming election for the State Bar of Texas’ public service arm, background on an associate who Weil is lending to a Dallas-area legal aid organization for two months to provide full-time pro bono legal services and nomination information for Legal Aid of NorthWest Texas upcoming Builders of Justice awards.
In this Q&A with the 2023 recipient of the Dallas Bar Foundation Fellows Justinian Award, Frank Stevenson reflects on being in the “Believe-in-People Business,” invokes Friedrich Nietzsche and Mark Twain on writing well, and shares how he has dealt with career expectations and doubts.
After nearly two decades at T-Mobile, prominent telecom legal executive Chris Luna has retired and returned to public service, which he had vowed to do after serving as a Dallas City Council member in the 1990s. The Lawbook recently spoke with Luna about his priorities leading the SPCA of Texas and with Jones Day partner Joe Van Asten, the new pro bono counsel Luna has retained.
This week’s edition of P.S. features new lawyer board members of a Dallas nonprofit focused on supporting survivors of family violence, an announcement from a Dallas firm about two associates selected for diversity and inclusion-focused leadership programs with the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity and a legal aid organization’s upcoming trivia night that supports a charitable cause.
In the first year of her law practice, Dallas associate Grace Caputo handled a significant asylum pro bono case. Her work on this matter resulted in a favorable outcome for her client and an internal pro bono award. In this sponsored Q&A, Caputo and Katten Dallas managing partner Mark Solomon tell us more.
This week’s edition of P.S. features new board leadership at the Dallas LGBT+ Bar Association, an Austin-based chief marketing officer who recently won an award from the Travis County Women Lawyers’ Association, an upcoming mixer involving Dallas-area allied bar associations and the judiciary, and a group of Texas lawyers — including top-ranking lawyers at American Airlines and Energy Transfer — who were recently recognized by Legal Services Corporation for their contributions to pro bono work at the state legal aid organizations that LSC funds.
Plus: info on the North Texas charity Carrington Coleman donated thousands of diapers to last year.
This week’s edition of P.S. includes information on a Munck Wilson Mandala shareholder who has been elected to the alumni board of TSU’s Thurgood Marshall School of Law, February dates for the Dallas Volunteer Attorney Program’s pro bono clinics, 2024 officers of the Asian American Bar Association of Houston and how to donate during the final days of a campaign that supports civil pro bono legal services in Dallas.
When it comes to DEI, Kelly Chen of Toyota is a person whose actions match her words. She says hiring diverse outside legal teams is important; she gives legal work to diverse teams. She values mentoring young diverse attorneys and law students because she didn’t have anyone to ask questions (“whether they looked like me or not”) when she was starting her career. She says the legal industry is full of people with smarts, advocacy and creativity to figure out how to move the needle forward despite a challenging DEI climate. And she doubles down to do her part to lead programs and collaborate with outside counsel on solutions.
“When I think about what ‘commitment and service to diversity’ means, what comes to mind is a person who shows up, rolls their sleeves up — in ways both big and small, and works — over and over again — not for one time, one event, one year … Kelly Chen comes to mind,” said Toyota’s Mey Ly Ortiz.
The Texas Lawbook and Association of Corporate Counsel’s DFW chapter have named Chen the recipient of the 2023 DFW Corporate Counsel Award for Achievement in Diversity and Inclusion. This is her story.
(Editor’s Note: This article has been updated to include comments from a law student mentored by Chen).
Your new year’s resolutions may no longer be intact, but hopefully your will to improve your life and those around you is. To kick off the first public service column of 2024, Natalie Posgate looks back on the 10 most important pro bono and diversity stories of 2023. So slice a piece of that cake that 2024 you said you would avoid and settle in.
The Association of Corporate Counsel’s DFW Chapter and The Texas Lawbook received dozens of nominations for the 2023 DFW Corporate Counsel Awards, which recognize the successes and leadership demonstrated by in-house counsel in North Texas. ACC-DFW and The Lawbook put together an independent group of judges to review the nominations and select the best of the best in 13 categories. During the next 10 days, The Lawbook and ACC-DFW will announce the finalists for GC of the Year, Senior Counsel of the Year, Rookie of the Year, Business Litigation of the Year, M&A Deal of the Year, Corporate Secretary/Legal Advisor of the Year and Lifetime Achievement.