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.





























































Feature TYLA Affiliate

Feature TYLA Affiliate

“¿Habla español?” – Want to learn? You can, over lunch! HYLA’s Spanish Class Program sets a language-learning precedent for lawyers across Texas
By:   Mike Springer

For over seven years, HYLA has offered a lunchtime Spanish class program, with overwhelming and consistent success. Over 500 lawyers have participated in the program, with classes forming regularly throughout the year.

The classes are taught by HABLA, a leading Texas-wide Spanish school based in Houston, specializing in Spanish classes for lawyers and other professionals. The classes are offered at least three times a year, with next round of classes starting in January (See www.hablahouston.com to register, or to get a program started).

Kim Diepraam, Director of HYLA, is proud of the program’s success, and has seen the program benefit members in their practices and in their personal lives. “Young lawyers have very busy schedules, and the classes permit them to enjoy this opportunity over their lunch hour. It is truly an important service we are offering our community, and we are so glad we started it.”

HABLA’s director, Diana Gruber,  wholeheartedly agrees. “As a Spanish instructor, this is what makes my job worth it! Knowing that HYLA and HABLA have helped make hundreds of lawyers bilingual is exactly why I started my school. We have so much fun with it, but more importantly, our students reach their goals. Many students come in at Beginner level, and keep taking our classes until they are completely fluent – often in less than a year. This is what we are all about, and we appreciate HYLA’s partnership in making this possible.”

As a student in several of these HYLA Spanish courses, I can speak first hand about the effectiveness of the program and the fun and relaxed nature of the classes.  I began with virtually no Spanish background.  I was surprised at how quickly I picked up useful words and phrases and about how much better I was able to follow Spanish speakers.  It’s also been a great way to meet young lawyers from other firms.  I’ve received and given referrals from people I met in my Spanish courses.

Classes in Houston meet for one hour a week over lunch, in a law firm which acts as a hosting partner. HYLA and HABLA are especially grateful to Haynes and Boone for having hosted the classes for several years running. Andrews Kurth Houston has also hosted the classes frequently, with potential involvement from the Dallas office coming soon. Baker Botts, Fulbright and Jaworski , and Greenberg Traurig have also graciously participated as hosts over the years.

In Houston, cost for classes is $225 - $275 for a 14-hour class, which covers one level. To create a program in your city, please contact HABLA. Pricing, times and locations can be set up according to your chapter’s needs. You can reach HABLA’s director, Diana, at 832-868-9473 or diana@hablahouston.com.

HABLA also works directly with HR and Attorney Development departments in law firms wishing to create in-house language classes for employees, as a company-sponsored benefit. Please also contact HABLA for this.

¡Buena suerte! HYLA wishes our fellow Texas Young Lawyers the best of luck in learning Spanish!