TYLA Officers


Rebekah Steely Brooker, President


Dustin M. Howell, Chair


Sam Houston, Vice President


Baili B. Rhodes, Secretary


John W. Shaw, Treasurer


C. Barrett Thomas, President-elect


Priscilla D. Camacho, Chair-elect


Kristy Blanchard, Immediate Past President

TYLA Directors


Amanda A. Abraham, District 1


Sharesa Y. Alexander, Minority At-Large Director


Raymond J. Baeza, District 14

    Aaron J. Burke, District 5, Place 1

Aaron T. Capps, District 5, Place 2


D. Lance Currie, District 5, Place 3


Laura W. Docker, District 10, Place 1

    Andrew Dornburg, District 21
    John W. Ellis, District 8, Place 2
    Zeke Fortenberry, District 4

Bill Gardner, District 5, Place 4


Morgan L. Gaskin, District 6, Place 5

    Nick Guinn, District 18, Place 1

Adam C. Harden, District 6, Place 6


Amber L. James, District 17


Curtis W. Lucas, District 9

    Rudolph K. Metayer, District 8, Palce 1

Laura Pratt, District 3

    Sally Pretorius, District 8, Place 2

Baili B. Rhodes, District 2


Alex B. Roberts, District 6, Place 3

    Eduardo Romero, District 19
    Michelle P. Scheffler, District 6, Place 2

John W. Shaw, District 10, Place 2

    Nicole Soussan, District 6, Place 4
    L. Brook Stuntebeck, District 11

C. Barrett Thomas, District 15

    Judge Amanda N. Torres, Minority At-Large Director

Shannon Steel White, District 12

    Brandy Wingate Voss, District 13
    Veronica S. Wolfe, District 18, Place 2

Baylor Wortham, District 7

    Alex Yarbrough, District 16


Justice Paul W. Green, Supreme Court Liaison


Jenny Smith, Access To Justice Liaison


Brandon Crisp, ABA YLD District 25 Representative


Travis Patterson, ABA/YLD District 26 Representative


Assistant Dean Jill Nikirk, Law School Liaison


Belashia Wallace, Law Student Liaison


TYLA Office

Tracy Brown, Director of Administration
Bree Trevino, Project Coordinator

Michelle Palacios, Office Manager
General Questions: tyla@texasbar.com

Mailing Address

P.O. Box 12487, Capitol Station
Austin, Texas 78711-2487
(800) 204-2222 ext. 1529
FAX: (512) 427-4117

Street Address

1414 Colorado, 4th Floor
Austin, Texas 78701
(512) 427-1529


Views and opinions expressed in eNews are those of their authors and not necessarily those of the Texas Young Lawyers Association or the State Bar of Texas.





























































April 2011

Editor's Column
Editor's Column

Failing to Plan is Planning to Fail
By: Kenneth C. Riney, Hermes Sargent Bates, LLP, Senior Editor, eNews

Winston Churchill once said “let our advance worrying become advance thinking and planning.” There are many aspects of our lives as young lawyers that cause us to worry about the future. However, there are also many aspects of the lives of our loved ones, clients and members of our communities that cause them worry that we as young lawyers can help alleviate. If we think and plan now, we can help create futures without worry.

Top Story
Top Story

Exercise Your Right to Rock the State Bar Election Vote!
By: Shivali Sharma

If you justified squandering five minutes of your morning by promising yourself to be productive later, take this challenge to seize the day! Make a big impact in the 2011-2012 State Bar of Texas Election with a few clicks of your mouse. To get started, all you have to do is click here, enter your bar number, the last four digits of your social security number, your birth date, and vote now! Roughly 20,000 of the 80,000 attorneys eligible to vote cast a ballot. With your help, this fairly new online voting system will banish low voter turnout.

Feature TYLA Affiliate
Feature TYLA Affiliate

Cameron County Young Lawyers Association Lawyers Lending Hands Project
By:  Noemi Garcia

For a second year in a row, the Cameron County Young Lawyers Association participated in their Lawyers Lending Hands community service project. The goal of the project is to educate victims of domestic violence about their legal rights. Several volunteer lawyers visited the Cameron County Friendship of Women Shelter and Family Crisis Centers to educate the residents on what victims of domestic violence can expect when using the courts to obtain a protective order, temporary restraining order and a divorce.

Feature TYLA Project
Feature TYLA Project

Tools for Winning New Clients
By: Robert E. Booth, Attorney, Mills Shirley LLP

Even before Charlie Sheen was winning, the Texas Young Lawyers Association provided a torpedo of truth for young lawyers to develop new clients and build business.

In February, the Texas Young Lawyers Association launched a new project as part of its member services. Tools for Winning New Clients is a new resource for young lawyers to make contacts and build client relationships.

Tips For Young Lawyers
Tips For Young Lawyers

Money Tips for Young Lawyers
By:  Kimberly Palmer

It would be easy to assume that young lawyers have little to worry about when it comes to money. Recent law school graduates can command high salaries and they’ve studied contracts, estate planning, and other financial technicalities. Why, then, do young lawyers so often struggle when it comes to managing their own money?

Article of Interest
Article of Interest

Advance Directives Provide Valuable Insight Regarding Patient Wishes
By:  Kimberly Wilson

The January 8, 2011 shootings near Tucson, Arizona reminded many that the end of life can come sooner than expected when 19 people were shot in a grocery store parking lot and six were killed. The events that Saturday morning were likely followed by the struggles of family and friends of the deceased to determine what was wanted in terms of funeral arrangements and other important decisions. Though each individual’s situation is unique, promoting end of life planning through dialogue and legal documentation can assist all involved in making certain that the individual’s wishes are carried out in the final stages of life and beyond.

Access To Justice Commission Update
Access To Justice Commission Update

TYLA, SBOT, and Fourteen Local Bar Associations Speak Up for Legal Aid Funding
By:  Benet Magnuson

In a very broad and deep show of support for low-income Texans and the lawyers who support them, TYLA, the State Bar, and fourteen local bar associations passed resolutions this spring calling on the Texas legislature to fund basic civil legal services in Texas.

Important Dates to Remember
Important Dates to Remember

April 18
TYLA deadline to receive entries for the TYLA State Award of Achievement Competition.

April 21
TYLA Local Affiliate Grant Reports Due

April 25
TYLA deadline to receive fourth committee report

Take Note
Take Note

View This Month's TYLA President's Opinion

Jennifer Evans Morris
TYLA President 2010-2011

Registration is ready. Are You?
Where can you earn two full days of CLE all for one price? Why at the State Bar Annual Meeting of course! Join us in San Antonio June 23 – 24, 2011 (Thursday – Friday) for a variety of lectures, panels, and discussions on a wide range of topics by leading experts. From sessions on law practice management to ethics to legislative updates, there is something for everyone. For a program schedule and to register, visit www.texasbar.com/annualmeeting.

Sign up today for Partnering for Pro Bono and win an IPAD!
If you sign up on the website, find a partner and take a case by June 15, 2011, you will be placed into the drawing for an IPAD at the annual meeting. Plus, you can earn 5 hours of continuing education credit FREE while assisting with legal service to the poor. Many companies and law firms have already joined the cause and recently we invited more than 7,500 corporate counsel to participate. Currently, Texas attorneys are only addressing 25% of the legal needs of the poor - Partnering for Pro Bono is a great way to make a difference!  Click here for more information. 

2011 National Trial Competition
Congratulations to the 2011 National Trial Competition Champion, Northwestern University School of Law! Click here for a full list of the results.

TYLA Seeks Spanish Translators
Are you fluent in Spanish? Do you want to become more involved in TYLA? If your answer to both of these questions is “si,” TYLA is looking for your help. TYLA is currently in the process of translating several of our educational pamphlets into Spanish. These pamphlets are distributed throughout our communities and TYLA wants to expand the impact of these pamphlets to the Spanish-speaking communities. If you are interested in helping, please contact Michelle Palacios at mpalacios@texasbar.com.
TYLA Annual Report 2009-2010
Want to know how TYLA is serving its members and the community? Then be sure to read the 2009-2010 annual report, which details the activities of TYLA during the 2009-2010 Bar year. Click here for a copy or call 800-204-2222, ext. 1529 and we'll send you a copy.
TYLA Local Leader Directory
Please email the TYLA office if there are any changes to your local affiliates contact information.

If your affiliate has an upcoming event that you would like featured in eNews, please forward the information to Bree Trevino or contact eNews Co-Chairs Kenneth C. Riney or Brooke Ulrickson Allen.

Ten Minute Mentor

Ten Minute Mentor is a TYLA project that debuted in 2004 as a means for sharing concise and practical advice that is always accessible online. Since that time, it has proven its enduring appeal as one of TYLA's most successful projects. More than 50,000 people have visited the site, and we continue to average more than 2,000 segments viewed each month. You can visit the site at www.tenminutementor.com.

Support Pro Bono Legal Services and Let Everyone Know It!

The Texas Young Lawyers Association needs your help to support and promote free legal services for indigent Texans by purchasing a specialty license plate. The license plate proudly states that you support "Justice for All" and can be purchased for only $35.00 per year.
$25.00 from the purchase of each plate will be deposited into an account
supporting legal services to the poor. If you would like that plate personalized, you can get your plate for $70.00 per year. To purchase your plate today, simply fill out an
application and send your check, payable to the Texas Department of Transportation, to the following address:
Vehicle Titles and Registration Division (SPB)
Texas Department of Transportation
Austin, TX 78779-0001
To pay online click

Make New Connections with Texas Bar Circle
More than 14,000 of your peers have joined Texas Bar Circle - our social and professional network for Texas lawyers. Join today and reconnect with colleagues, find jobs, explore opportunities, and have fun. The power of Texas Bar Circle is in the connections you will make. Visit https://texasbar.affinitycircles.com/sbot/auth/login.
Member Benefits Program
Are you looking for ways to save this summer? Take advantage of exclusive money-saving offers from the State Bar of Texas Member Benefits Program. Bar members are eligible for discounts on products and services including car rental, clothing, computer hardware and software, office supplies, and more. For details on the State Bar Member Benefits Program, please click here.