1 Page 2: Dallas Diversity Page 5 & 6: Bedford Memorial Page 19: 2014 Gala
2 JLTLA The Express Newsletter.:. December 2014 Issue.:. Page A YEAR IN REVIEW By Tatiana Alexander Waits JLTLA President Dear J.L. Turner Legal Association ( JLTLA ) members and supporters: Wow has it been a year already? In all seriousness, it has been my extreme honor to serve as President of the JLTLA this year has certainly been a dynamic year advancing JLTLA s mission and critical initiatives. As I reflect back on 2014, it is clear that the Board certainly could not have achieved this level of success without the support of JLTLA s members. The future of JLTLA looks bright and promising and the organization s upcoming leaders are enthusiastic, energetic, creative and innovative. Again, I thank you for the opportunity to serve and all of your support during this extremely successful year. Please enjoy this 2014 Year-In-Review edition of JLTLA The Express Newsletter and join me in thanking the 2014 Board for its dedication and service BOARD OF DIRECTORS Vice President: Tramaine Scott President-Elect: Ebony Rivon Treasurer: Angel Brown Parliamentarian: Dash Cooper Corresponding Secretary: Amber Hamilton-Gregg Recording Secretary: Rachel Lindsay Director: Mandy Price Director: Kandace D. Walter
3 JLTLA The Express Newsletter.:. December 2014 Issue.:. Page 2 DALLAS DIVERSITY TASK FORCE Chair: Keron Wright As the 2014 Chair of the Dallas Diversity Task Force ( Task Force ), I was amazed at how the member organizations came together to create the 2014 Dallas Diversity Task Report ( the 2014 Report ). As you may know, the report s primary purpose is to provide a snapshot of the diversity of lawyers practicing at the 20 largest law firms in Dallas County. This year, the 2014 Report was expanded to include matrices related to women and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender ( LGBT ) lawyers. Like previous years, the 2014 Report provides composite scores that measure racial or ethnic minority attorney representation at the surveyed firms, and starting this year captured each firm s efforts related to women and LGBT lawyers. With nine years of data on racial and ethnic minorities, the 2014 Report provides an opportunity to evaluate Dallas firms progress over time, but also sets a starting point for evaluating Dallas firms efforts in recruiting, retaining, and promoting women and LGBT lawyers. The Task Force surveyed the 20 largest law firm offices in Dallas County, Texas, and came to the conclusion that although there has been improvement in the past years, there is still much work to be done. There were a number of notable developments this year. First, nine firms improved their composite scores from 2013 to Many of the firms reported interviewing at racial or ethnic minority job fairs and half the firms reported interviewing at LGBT job fairs. Over 80 percent of the participating firms reported providing same-sex benefits on par with the benefits offered to traditional marriages. Each firm s efforts in hiring, retaining, and promoting lawyers was also measured through a series of questions related to the firm s strategies and plans for enhancing its diverse attorney population. Revamping the Efforts Checklist, a critical part of the report which gauges a firms efforts on the diversity front, was a hefty task. However, the information gleamed from the responses is important to show how Dallas firms are measuring up. My personal opinion is if the firms efforts remain true and constant, it is only a matter of time until we begin seeing an upward shift in the numbers. Although the 2014 Report can be viewed as a report card of the Dallas Firms diversity efforts and results, the 2014 Report serves another equally important purpose: assist firms in identifying areas in which they can improve their recruitment, retention, training, and promotion of diverse lawyers. One of the purposes of the Task Force is to open the doors of communication between the Dallas firms so that each firm learns from the other. The 2014 Report serves this purpose. I enjoyed my experience chairing the 2014 Task Force and am happy to have worked with each member of the Task Force for the past three years. I applaud each participating firm for facing the challenges presented and for cooperating with the Task Force to complete the 2014 Report. I hope that those firms that did not participate this year rejoin the effort so the Dallas legal community can become a shining example of diversity in the legal field. Keron Wright 2014 Dallas Diversity Task Force, Chair
4 JLTLA The Express Newsletter.:. December 2014 Issue.:. Page 3 PROTECTING THE RIGHT TO VOTE: A Community Perspective As lawyers practicing in Dallas, Texas, we have an acute awareness of the importance of voting rights and the affect voters have on our practice and our community as a whole. That awareness in no way compares to experiencing first-hand our community response surrounding the right to vote. Working with the J.L. Turner Legal Association Public Policy Committee, I was afforded two significant opportunities to interact with voters preparing for the 2014 mid-term elections. In conjunction with the J.L. Turner Legal Association Paralegal Section, I spent a morning at the DeSoto Public Library conducting a voter registration drive. The most surprising part of this experience was that there was very little opportunity to sign up voters. Most every person we encountered was already registered to vote and quite proud of that fact. Perhaps they were Democrats or Republicans or Independent, and a few made statements in support of their political beliefs, but the overwhelming sentiment was that they had a voice. On Election Day, I not only spent the morning fielding inquiries from voters throughout Dallas and the surrounding counties, but also spent my evening as a poll watcher for one of the voting precincts in South Dallas. The morning callers not only questioned their individual ballots, but the systems in place at the voting polls clearly concerned about protecting not only their own rights, but the rights of others. In the evening, while poll watching at an understaffed location, I encountered voters who stood in line for sometimes over an hour coming in from the pouring rain just to cast their ballots. Sometimes frustrated by the long line, with children in tow, I did not once see an individual get out of line or leave the precinct without casting their vote. This wonderful experience was truly an affirmation of the spirit of our Texas voters. Perhaps this was an election with low voter turnout, but those who came out were not deterred by voter ID laws or re-districting. These voters took the opportunity to allow their voice to be heard, and I am so proud of the J.L. Turner Legal Association and its role in supporting voting rights. Erin Anderson Nowell JLTLA member, 2015 Treasurer
5 JLTLA The Express Newsletter.:. December 2014 Issue.:. Page 4 VOTING RIGHTS & ELECTION SERVICE: WHY WE SERVE The Fifteenth Amendment is one the most significant achievements of Reconstruction. In one fell swoop, the federal government affirmed its commitment to fully embrace, at least in concept, the notion that men formerly enslaved could exercise the vote in hopes of advancing other basic freedoms. Its language is succinct, yet profound: The rights of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be abridged on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude. This Amendment formed the basis of further expansions of the franchise to women, other people of color and young people, along with a constitutional prohibition of the poll tax. To the Fifteenth Amendment s opponents, however, as Eric Foner, author of the seminal work Reconstruction: America s Unfinished Revolution ( ) 446 (2002), noted: the Fifteenth Amendment seemed the most revolutionary measure ever to receive Congressional sanction, the crowning act of a Radical conspiracy to promote black equality and transform America For almost one hundred fifty years, the fears underlying opposition to the Fifteenth Amendment have been at the core of almost every effort since its adoption primarily in the South to erect barriers to voting. In few places has this phenomenon historically been more apparent than in Texas. The voting rights jurisprudence arising from Texas is legion, and beyond the scope of this short comment. However, the early adoption of literacy and secret ballot restrictions included in the Terrell Election Law; the imposition of poll taxes and understanding clauses ; the establishment of the all-white primary, later ruled unconstitutional in Smith v. Allwright, 321 U.S. 649 (1944); lengthy battles over at-large election schemes in municipalities across this state; endless redistricting litigation spawned by the gerrymandering of political districts; and the historical use of voter intimidation and outright violence all teach that vigilance is necessary to ensure that all Texans whatever their station in life have an opportunity to meaningfully participate in the political process. The adoption of voter identification requirements in Texas, and across the country, is merely the latest effort to reshape the electorate. The federal mid-term and gubernatorial elections of 2014 may have settled, for the time being, the question of SB 14 s viability. However, what cannot be discerned is the extent to which SB 14 discouraged, and outright precluded, voters from participating in-person at the polls. And how many Texas voters cast provisional ballots, which were later invalidated due to the lack of SB 14-sanctioned identification, also remains unclear. While the recent elections mark a significant shift in political power between the national parties, and a further entrenchment of one-party dominance in Texas, the debate will continue to rage regarding what many perceive to be the latest in a series of efforts to nullify the voting rights amendments. Almost fifty years after the passage of the Voting Rights Act, lawyers in this Association are uniquely positioned to weigh in on this debate, and to engage the public on an issue of critical importance to underserved communities. This is why we participate in Election Protection. We do not do this work in a vacuum; rather, we form part of a continuum of those who have worked tirelessly, and sacrificed much, since the passage of the Fifteenth Amendment to ensure that each of us has a voice at the polls. Simply put, we are building on the work of others, and that work must continue to protect over a century of measurable progress in broadening the franchise. Frederick Barrow Mandy Price Art Anthony J. L. Turner Legal Association Public Policy Committee, 2014
6 JLTLA The Express Newsletter.:. December 2014 Issue.:. Page 5 MEMORIAL SERVICE FOR JUDGE L.A. BEDFORD May 1, 2014 at Belo Mansion JLTLA hosted A Celebration of His Life and Legacy: Memorial Service for the late Judge Louis A. Bedford ( ) on May 1, 2014 at the Belo Mansion. Resolutions were read by representatives from State Bar of Texas/African- American Lawyers Section, J.L. Turner Legal Association, City of Dallas, and Dallas Bar Association. Tributes and Expressions were presented by TJ Johnson, DeMetris Sampson, Thelma Clardy and Paul Stafford. Numerous past presidents of JLTLA were in attendance in addition to attorneys and legal professionals from the Dallas area. Dr. Frederick Lewis led the prayer service. Louis Arthur Bedford, Jr., was born in Dallas and graduated from Booker T. Washington High School and Prairie View A&M University. Due to the segregation laws in Texas, Mr. Bedford attended and graduated from Brooklyn Law School. Mr. Bedford returned to Texas to begin his law practice. Mr. Bedford was a dedicated advocate for justice and civil rights and worked along Thurgood Marshall, who was then chief NAACP staff attorney. Mr. Bedford became the first African-American Judge in Dallas County, serving from 1966 to Judge Bedford co-founded the J. L Turner Legal Association, the Dallas affiliate of the National Bar Association, in 1952 and served as the Historian. Judge Bedford also previously served on the Board of Directors for the Dallas Bar Association and Southwest Legal Bar Association and was a member of numerous professional, civic, and social organizations including Omega Psi Phi fraternity, Inc. The awards, honors, and distinctions bestowed upon Judge Bedford are numerous and plentiful. J.L. Turner Legal Association encourages interested parties to read Judge Bedford s biography, Quest for Justice: Louis A. Bedford, Jr. and the Struggle for Equal Rights in Texas for additional information on our local legend. Judge Bedford leaves behind family, friends, and colleagues who will forever be in awe of his accomplishments and contributions to our community. J.L. Turner Legal Association acknowledges their continued appreciation for the numerous contributions of Judge L.A. Bedford to the Dallas legal community. He served as a leader, mentor, trailblazer and icon for decades in this community. His guidance and inspiration will be sorely missed by current and future attorneys and the community at large. Rest in Peace, Judge Bedford.
7 JLTLA The Express Newsletter.:. December 2014 Issue.:. Page 6 A LEGEND REMEMBERED...
8 JLTLA The Express Newsletter.:. December 2014 Issue.:. Page 7 PLATINUM SPONSOR SPOTLIGHT Uptown Tower 4144 N. Central Expressway, Suite 300 Dallas, Texas 75204
9 JLTLA The Express Newsletter.:. December 2014 Issue.:. Page 8 SISTER BAR EVENTS Special Tribute to ADELFA CALLEJO The JLTLA is saddened by the loss of legendary Hispanic civil rights activist, Adelfa Botello Callejo earlier this year. Adelfa was an exemplary legal advocate and opened doors for so many of us. Although we will miss her, her legacy of commitment to human kindness and justice will remain with us forever. Dallas Asian American Bar Association Solo/Small Firm Panel: So you ve decided to go out on your own or start at a small firm: How to Build and Grow your Practice; hosted by JLTLA, DAABA, DAYL, DHBA on August 26. Speakers: Kandace Walter, Rachel Li, Vishal Chandler, Victoria Neave DHBA & JLTLA Pro Bono Week CLE: Dallas Hispanic Bar Association and JLTLA joined forces to present: The Basics of Representing Minors in Court - Issues of Immigration & Family Law on October 21, 2014; Ebony Rivon, Family Law Attorney, spoke on family law matters on behalf of J.L. Turner. Monica Lira Bravo and Belinda Arroya represented the Dallas Hispanic Bar Association and addressed immigration issues. Carter Work Project with Habitat for Humanity An important aspect of JLTLA s mission is to support initiatives, activities or efforts involving issues impacting the African-American community in Dallas County and surrounding communities in North Texas which require the use of legal services. This year, JLTLA did this in part by supporting the Habitat for Humanity Rosalind and Jimmy Carter Work Project (CWP). CWP focused on building a number of affordable housing in the Oak Cliff section of Dallas, an area with a substantial African American community. By doing so, the CWP hopes to leave a lasting mark on the community both practically and aesthetically. CWP is making affordable house a reality. This perpetuates family stability, community pride and ultimately collective progression. One home at a time, CWP will be helping to lay the foundation for a bright future for the communities involved. JLTLA volunteers worked the CWP event and the JLTLA Foundation awarded CWA a grant to support its initiatives. Specifically, the funds were used to purchase materials needed to build homes including, but not limited to: siding sheetrock; floor covering; appliances; landscaping materials; paint; windows; doors, etc. The funds were also used to support labor costs associated with building a home, beyond that which is provided by volunteers.
10 JLTLA The Express Newsletter.:. December 2014 Issue.:. Page 9 JLTLA PARALEGAL SECTION 2014 HIGHLIGHTS JLTLA Paralegal section had a typically busy and productive year... The success of the Paralegal Section this year would not have been possible without the tremendous and collective efforts of the Paralegal Section s Officers and Board of Directors: 2014 OFFICERS Shelia K. Jones, CP, TBLS - President & Chair Nakisha L. Lewis - Vice President/President Elect Mary McDonald - Secretary Zaporra Gonzales - Treasurer Clarence Evans Jr. - Parliamentarian LaNita Pitts - Historian Katrina L. Lea - Events Planning/Fundraising Monique Scott - Membership Chair Toya J. Walker - NALA Liaison LaKisha G. Camese, CRP - Director 2015 OFFICERS Nakisha L. Lewis President & Chair Clarence Evans Jr. - Vice-President/President Elect Monique Scott Secretary Temica Stewart Treasurer Lamont Aldridge Parliamentarian Cynthia Jones Historian Katrina L. Lea Membership Chair Denisha Adams Events Planning/Fundraising Toya J. Walker NALA Liaison LaKisha G. Camese, CRP Director Shelia K. Jones, CP, TBLS Director
11 JLTLA The Express Newsletter.:. December 2014 Issue.:. Page 10 ANOTHER SPARKLING YEAR THE DBWA S 2014 HIGHLIGHTS The Dallas Black Women s Association (DBWA) was started in March 1983 by Thelma Sanders Clardy and Jessica Alexander, two attorneys who recognized a need to address the uniqueness of being an African-American female attorney in Dallas, Texas was an incredibly active and impressive year for DBWA under the phenomenal leadership of co-chairs LaKeisha Forté Wells and Letetia Patin. In fact, DBWA hosted several signature events, including, the following: Rock climbing & Yoga Event: DBWA Climbed! We stretched our limits and participated in a Rock Climbing and Yoga event at the Summit Dallas. Big Hat Brunch: We celebrated Mother s Day with our mothers, daughters, and sisters while in our big hats at our Big Hat Brunch at 303 Grill in the Bishop Arts District. DBWA Runs: In August we organized our third Couch to 5K Learn to Run program at Katy Trail. The run prepares us for our Race For the Cure - Susan G. Komen 5k Run. Sparkler: We Sparkled at our DBWA Sparkler Tea, held at the Adolphus Hotel on October 11, At this DBWA signature annual event, members celebrate mentoring, sisterhood and personal and professional achievements (or Sparkle Moments) for the year. Attorneys, Judges, Professors, Law Students were in attendance. Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure: We were so pretty in pink on October 18, 2014 as we ran/walked/skipped for a cure in the Susan G. Komen 5 K Run.
12 JLTLA The Express Newsletter.:. December 2014 Issue.:. Page 11 ANNUAL TRIAL ADVOCACY CLE Hosted By: The Honorable Eric Moyé February 2014: A Conversation with the Judges on Effective Trial Advocacy ; Judge Sam A. Lindsay, Judge Tonya Parker, and Judge Ernest White served on the panel with Judge Eric Moye moderating. March 2014: Voir Dire: Presenters: Gerald Roberts, Founding Shareholder, Roberts Law Firm, PLLC and Ezekiel Zeke Tyson, Jr., Managing Partner, Tyson Law Firm, PLLC. April 2014: Effective Trial Practices - Opening Statements, Presenters: Nolan Knight, Shareholder, Munsch Hardt Kofp & Harr, PC and Camille Stearns-Miller, Partner, White & Wiggins, LLP. May 2014: Effective Trial Practices - Direct Examinations, Presenters Arthur E. Anthony, Partner, Locke Lord LLP, and Victor D. Vital, Shareholder, Greenberg Traurig, LLP. June 2014: Cross-Examination-Presenters A. Shonn Brown, Partner, Gruber Hurst Johansen Hail Shank LLP, and William M. Toles, Partner, Fee, Smith, Sharp & Vitullo, LLP. August 2014: Evidence, Use of exhibits and Objections - Presenters - Michael Coles, Shareholder, The Coles Firm, P.C. and Raquel Jones of the Dallas County District Attorney s Office. September 2014: Expert Witnesses: Presenters - Buena Vista Lyons, Partner, Ford Harrison, LLP, and Erin Anderson Nowell, Senior Attorney, Simon Greenstone Panatier Bartlett, PC. NEW MEMBER SPOTLIGHT: Phillip Ragler 2013 was the year I graduated from University of Tennessee School of Law and later passed the Texas bar. I m very excited about my return to Texas and starting my legal career. My internship for the Honorable Judge Martin Hoffman has been an amazing experience, in which I have had the opportunity to draft memoranda, conduct research, and observe many hearings and trials. Judge Hoffman has been an excellent mentor and this internship has given me tremendous networking opportunities. In fact, one of the best networking opportunities for me has been attending the JL Turner Foundation gala for the past two years. J.L. Turner members were so welcoming to me at the gala that I decided to join the organization. I m glad to have discovered all the opportunities that JL Turner has to offer. For example, I found the Trial Advocacy Series to be very helpful to me as a young attorney as I was able to obtain invaluable advice from judges like the Honorable Sam A. Lindsay the Honorable Judge Eric V. Moyé. The judges and lawyers I have met are excellent mentors to me as I ve made the transition to the practice of law in Dallas. I m looking forward to becoming more involved with JLTLA and have even been appointed as co-chair of the Street Law Committee. I m grateful for the opportunities I have been afforded through JLTLA thus far, and I m looking forward to the future.
13 JLTLA The Express Newsletter.:. December 2014 Issue.:. Page 12 PLATINUM SPONSOR SPOTLIGHT EMPLOYMENT LAW COMMERCIAL LITIGATION CONSUMER DISPUTES Karen D. McCloud. P.C Maple Avenue Suite 400 Dallas, Texas (fax) Ad was designed by featured company and not a creation of Caldwell Creative.
14 JLTLA The Express Newsletter.:. December 2014 Issue.:. Page 13 THE BIG GIVE BACK On August 9, 2014 JLTLA hosted The Big Give Back at the Hampton/Illinois Dallas Public Library. The Big Give Back was a collaboration between JLTLA and various other sister bar organizations, including the Dallas Hispanic Bar Association, Dallas Asian American Bar Association, Dallas Association of Young Lawyers, Dallas Women Lawyers Association and Dallas Gay and Lesbian Bar Association. Our mission was simple: provide free legal advice to targeted areas in our local community. As a part of this collaboration, each member organization targeted the areas of town and the demographics of people who typically may not have access to legal services. DHBAs targeted Pleasant Grove, where they hosted Conozcan Sus Derechos at Eastfield Community College. DAABAs targeted North Dallas, where they hosted the legal clinic at the Buddhist Center. JLTLAs targeted Oak Cliff. The remaining sister bars provided volunteers to help counsel the participants. JLTLA s program consisted of both one-on-one counseling and legal seminars that were open to the public. We had some dynamic members of JLTLA lead these seminars. Kathy E. Roux gave a seminar on Probate/Wills & Estates, Twana Allen s seminar focused on Family Law, Avia Rice Gauthier s seminar focused on Bankruptcy, JLTLA s own current president Tatiana Waits gave a seminar on Foreclosures, Past JLTLA President Karen McCloud s seminar covered employment law related topics and David Patin gave a seminar on Expunctions. JLTLA had over 20 lawyer/paralegal volunteers participate in the event. In summary, The Big Give Back helped over 100 people, with JLTLA responsible for assisting over 40 participants. JLTLA thanks its community partners and member volunteers. Special thanks and recognition to Tramaine Scott, 2014 JLTLA Vice President who coordinated JLTLA s participation in this memorable and impactful program. THE MENTORING COMMITTEE Judge Winifred Cannon again served as Chair of the Mentoring committee. Under her leadership, the committee accomplished several goals, including: Serving law students as well as newly licensed attorneys throughout the year; Advertised judicial clerkship opportunities to law students, wherein the applications of several mentees were accepted; Facilitated legal internships in private sector for mentees; Posted on SMU website for Minority Student Services; In January, hosted networking event at Pappadeaux s for Texas A&M BLSA and JLTLA Mentors; Hosted Mentoring Event at Texas A&M and another Mentoring Event at Bandito s for SMU BLSA students; Several members also participated in the new mentoring opportunities coordinated by University of North Texas School of Law.
15 JLTLA The Express Newsletter.:. December 2014 Issue.:. Page 14 KNOW YOUR RIGHTS TOWNHALL MEETING On September 11, 2014 JLTLA and the National Bar Association presented a special community outreach and education program at Friendship West Baptist Church. In light of the death of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri and the series of officer involved shootings of unarmed African-American males in our communities, the NBA along with JLTLA felt it appropriate to hold a Know Your Rights Town Hall to education citizens on critical issues. The Honorable Craig Watkins, District Attorney of Dallas County, Dallas Police Chief David Brown and Sheriff Lupe Valdez were in attendance to answer questions and discuss plans of actions to address police officer misconduct. Pastor Frederick Haynes moderated the panel discussion. Criminal Justice Symposium: Reform and Reintegration The Challenge for America s Cities On June 20, 2014, the J.L. Turner Legal Association convened a symposium exploring issues critical to criminal justice administration in America s cities. The symposium featured Texas state and local officials, along with leaders on the front lines of criminal justice reform, recidivism management and reduction, and ex-felon re-integration. Discussions took place in the form of two dynamic panels: Panel I: Moderator Defense Attorney Ezekiel Tyson, Best Practices Regarding Exonerations and Criminal Justice Reform: Lessons from Dallas County featuring: Christopher Scott, House of Renewed Hope; Rafael Anchia, House of Representatives; The Honorable Craig Watkins, District Attorney of Dallas County Panel II: Moderator Defense Attorney Sherrod Edwards, Reintegration of Ex-Cons: Voting, Employment and Reducing Recidivism featuring: Former Judge John Creuzot, DIVERT Program; Wilbert Peter, Prison Entrepreneurship Program; Richard Miles, Miles of Freedom Carter Ghanaian Work Lawyers Project and with Habitat Judges for visit Humanity Dallas Through a winning proposal to the U.S. State Department, the North Texas Council for International Visitors (NCTIV) hosted several Ghanaian judges and lawyers in Dallas. NTCIV invited JLTLA to participate in this effort. Members Joel Winful and LaKeisha Forte Wells hosted intimate dinner parties in their homes for our Ghanaian visitors. JLTLA members Amber Gregg and Kandace Walter also participated in the dinner parties.
16 JLTLA The Express Newsletter.:. December 2014 Issue.:. Page 15 MEMBERSHIP Chair: Markena Peavy January Happy Hour at J. Black s February Unsung Changemakers A Black History Month Art & Film Exhibition March March Madness Happy Hour with National Bar Association April Jazz in the Atrium May Veritas Wine Room June Third Annual Affinity Happy Hour co-hosted by the National Black MBA Association, CV Roman Medical Association, the Black Chamber of Commerce, Urban League of Greater Dallas Young Professionals, and National Black Accountants DFW Chapter JLTLA extends special thanks and recognition to Hiram McBeth, Attorney at Law at for sponsoring this event for the second year in a row! August - JLTLA Day at the Arboretum September Happy Hour at Hi Line sponsored by The Allan Bailey Group, LLC and TreCo Investments. October Happy Hour at Sambuca with Dallas Black Criminal Bar Association
17 JLTLA The Express Newsletter.:. December 2014 Issue.:. Page 16 CRIMINAL LAW COMMITTEE The Criminal Law Committee was recently reactivated and hosted several events to bridge the gap between criminal and civil attorneys in JLTLA. This year of dynamic programing consisted of the following: CLE at the Frank Crowley Courthouse in Judge Ernest White s courtroom on the topic of The Michael Morton Act and Ethical Obligations Criminal Meets Civil Mixxer at Pier 247 in Bishop Arts, which was sponsored by Ezekiel Tyson of The Tyson Law Firm and First ever Criminal vs. Civil Picnic, where family members and friends enjoyed bounce houses, face painting, and volleyball games. This enjoyable family event was sponsored by Kenneth Weatherspoon and Michael Todd, Dallas Defense Lawyers. The Criminal Law Committee also assisted the Public Policy Committee in coordinating a panel discussion on Exonerations and The Criminal Justice System. All of these events helped to foster a better membership base from the African American Criminal Lawyers in our community. Special thanks and recognition to the Criminal Law Committee Co-Chairs: Amber Gregg and Shawnkeedra Martin.
18 JLTLA The Express Newsletter.:. December 2014 Issue.:. Page 17 JLTLA 2015 MEMBERSHIP ENGAGEMENT OPPORTUNITIES Impressed by JLTLA s 2014 activities and looking for a way to get more involved with JLTLA in 2015? We can do even more with your help and, as such, we encourage you to consider getting involved with one of JLTLA s Committees. Read below for information on these Committees. Additional information is also available on the website: MEMBERSHIP Help plan social events aimed at increasing membership numbers and fostering relationships between current members and prospective members. COMMUNITY OUTREACH Work with others to develop programs aimed at making a positive impact on our local community. CORPORATE COUNSEL Interested in networking with other attorneys who practice in the corporate sector and/or discussing and learning about key corporate substantive developments? This is the committee for you! DALLAS BLACK WOMEN S ATTORNEYS Help to foster mutually beneficial relationships among African-American women in the Dallas legal community. Please for additional information. MENTORSHIP This committee strives to provide guidance, advice and inspiration to local law students and new attorneys. CRIMINAL LAW This committee represents the interests of attorneys practicing in all aspects of criminal law, including defense attorneys as well as prosecutors, primarily by developing and presenting informative CLEs and other events. A History of Distinction PAST PRESIDENTS J.L. Turner, Jr C.B. Bunkley Cleo Steele, Jr Jasper Rowe James Anderson Ms. Joan Sessoms Ford 1980 Sam Biscoe 1981 Larry Baraka Lorenzo Brown 1984 Walter Sutton 1985 Donald Hill 1986 Joe N. Wright Ms. Thelma Sanders Andrew Dunlap Ms. DeMetris Sampson Royce West Ms. Rhonda Hunter Rick Jordan Ms. Josephine Dye 1995 Kenneth Walker 1996 A. Nick Pittman 1997 Stanley Mays 1998 Marlon Frazier 1999 Ms. Sonya D. Hoskins 2000 Ms. Monica McCoy Purdy 2001 Clement Osimetha 2002 Paul K. Stafford 2003 Joel K.B. Winful 2004 Daryl K. Washington 2005 Ms. Buena Vista Lyons 2006 Frederick J. Barrow 2007 Ms. Vicki D. Blanton 2008 E. Steve Bolden, II 2009 Art E. Anthony 2010 Karen McCloud 2011 Eric Blue 2012 Lori Hayward 2013 Mandy Price 2014 Tatiana Alexander Waits DON T ASK WHAT JLTLA CAN DO FOR YOU
19 JLTLA The Express Newsletter.:. December 2014 Issue.:. Page GET INVOLVED!! WEBSITE Do you have an inner creative side that s dying to come out? Well, volunteer for this committee and help manage a key aspect of JLTLA s brand the website which also serves as a resource about past and current activities of the organization. SCHOLARSHIP This committee works with the Foundation and other key JLTLA civic and charitable partners to raise funds for law student scholarships in an effort to increase the number of attorneys of color in the work force. PARALEGAL The purpose of the JLTLA Paralegal Section is to promote and encourage its members professional development in all areas of the law and to ensure equal justice in the community through education, scholarship and service. PUBLIC POLICY Help JLTLA respond to and formulate strategic action plans with respect to key legal, civic and political issues impacting the organization and its key constituencies. BYLAWS Play a critical role in JLTLA s governance structure by helping to maintain the organization s bylaws and other governing documents. ASK WHAT YOU CAN DO FOR JLTLA!
20 JLTLA The Express Newsletter.:. December 2014 Issue.:. Page FOUNDATION SUMMARY By Wesley Terrell, 2014 JLTLA Foundation Chair The Foundation hosted a local Martin Luther King, Jr. Drum Major for Justice Oratorical & Writing Contest for high school students who wrote and spoke on the Voting Rights Act case, Shelby County v. Holder, which struck down part of the VRA. A scholarship was awarded to the winner of the contest. The Foundation awarded merit stipends to 14 African American judicial interns working in the Dallas state courts. Judge Moyé s efforts with this initiative were critically important. The Foundation sponsored several high school students in a mock trial and mock legislature that included a trip to Austin where they occupied the Texas legislative chamber for their debates. The Foundation held its 62nd Anniversary Scholarship and Awards Gala on November 1, 2014 and awarded merit and need based scholarships to several African American law students with a Dallas connection. The Gala was supported by the generous donations of firms, corporations and individuals of the greater Dallas legal community The Foundation launched its new website located at The website is content rich with information on the grant process, application procedures and timing for application submissions JLTLA-Foundation Scholarships Recipients Abel Mulugheta, Southern Methodist University School of Law, Judge s Scholarship John Conrad, Thurgood Marshall School of Law, Fred Finch Scholarship Kayla Davis, University of Texas School of Law, Barbara Jordan Scholarship Camille Powell, Southern Methodist University School of Law, Marie Trahan/Susman Godfrey Scholarship Thelma Anderson, Thurgood Marshall School of Law Anthony Brown, Thurgood Marshall School of Law Laurin Compton, Thurgood Marshall School of Law Eric Durojaiye, Thurgood Marshall School of Law Michelle Gunter, Texas A&M University School of Law Jade Mens, Southern Methodist University School of Law LaCrecia Perkins, Thurgood Marshall School of Law 2014 JUDGE S SCHOLARSHIP: JUDGE ELIZABETH FRIZZELL-CHAIR The Honorable D Metria Benson The Honorable Phyllis Lister Brown The Honorable Julia Hayes The Honorable King Fifer The Honorable Angela King The Honorable Mark Greenberg The Honorable Martin Hoffman The Honorable Peggy Hoffman The Honorable Tonya Parker The Honorable Eric Moyé The Honorable Monica McCoy Purdy The Honorable Dale Tillery The Honorable Emily Tobolowsky 2014 FOUNDATION BOARD Chair: Wes Terrell Treasurer: Kandace D. Walter Secretary: Carla Dennis Gala Chair: Audrey Moorehead Tatiana Waits Ebony Rivon Dash Cooper E. Steve Bolden LaToyia Watkins Pierce