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.





























































March 2012

Editor's Column
Editor's Column

Thanks to TYLA!
By Brooke Ulrickson Allen, Attorney,  Brown Dean in Fort Worth

As I approached my last eNews publication, I began to think about my time as a Director of TYLA, and it has been a phenomenal experience. I have been honored to represent District 10 on the TYLA Board for the last four years and enjoyed every minute of this great organization. From the people I have met to the wonderful projects we have created, it has been an inspiring four years. I encourage everyone to become involved with TYLA whether you are on the Board, a committee member, or through your local affiliate and its great projects. Not only have I met friends, I’ve developed an extensive network of colleagues throughout Texas, as well as attorneys I can trust to take great care of my clients if their needs are beyond my expertise or in another area of the State.

Top Story
Top Story

TYLA eNews Q&A for President-Elect Candidates (2012)

Editors Note: During the month of April, you will be able to vote for the next TYLA President-Elect. We asked the two candidates to answer the same set of questions. We encourage you to visit the websites for Shivali Sharma and Kristy Piazza.

Feature TYLA Project
Feature TYLA Project

Young Texas Lawyers Give Back to the Community within Months of Passing the Bar Exam
By: Genie Hansen

Nicole Sallie Franklin, a graduate of Texas Wesleyan University, currently working as an IP Specialist at Facebook in Austin, and Todd Basile, a graduate of SMU Law School and currently an associate at Klemchuk Kubasta, LLP in Dallas are members of the State Bar of Texas Intellectual Property Law Section and its Public Relations Committee.

Feature TYLA Affiliate
Feature TYLA Affiliate

Generation Generosity: DAYL is Giving, Serving, and Leading!
By: Chip Brooker, Attorney, Haynes and Boone, LLP, Dallas

The Dallas Association of Young Lawyers (“DAYL”) is undertaking an aggressive, grassroots campaign in 2012 which aims to reset the conversation about lawyers by encouraging simple acts of generosity. Through Generation Generosity, DAYL is committed to helping impact the way lawyers experience their profession and, in turn, the way the Dallas community experiences lawyers. DAYL’s Generation Generosity campaign will empower attorneys to understand the incredible impact that simple acts of generosity will have on their community and the profession’s perception. To make Generation Generosity a success, DAYL is challenging its entire membership to participate in one of two ways.

Tips For Young Lawyers
Tips For Young Lawyers

Ten Notable Lessons from My (Almost) Two Years of Practice
By: Lené Alley DeRudder, Alley DeRudder Law, PLLC

My two-year anniversary as a lawyer is in May 2012. Learning to practice law has been much like drinking water from a fire hydrant. I have learned many invaluable lessons and I know there will be many more to come. Below are ten of my most notable lessons learned at this juncture in my career. I hope other young lawyers will find them beneficial, or at the least, entertaining.

Article of Interest
Article of Interest

Introduction to Business Visas
By: Alfonso Cabañas, Attorney at Law

The politics of immigration in the United States seeks to attract foreign investment and business development. As a result of the recent turmoil in Mexico, the United States has benefitted greatly from the brain drain and capital outflow it has received from its neighbor to the south.

ABA YLD Update
ABA YLD Update

2012 ABA YLD Mid-Year Meeting Report
Thursday, Feb. 2 – Sunday, Feb. 5
By: G. Jobe Rodgers, District 26, North & West Texas

We are fresh off one of the best conferences the ABA has ever delivered. I know what you are all thinking; “It’s hard to mess up a weekend in New Orleans,” and you are right, but the ABA YLD knows how to make sure you come away from one of their events as a more educated and better connected lawyer. Let me show what happened in New Orleans and what you can expect in the coming months from the ABA YLD.

Important Dates To Remember
Important Dates To Remember

March 9, 2012
TYLA Joseph M. Pritchard Inn membership application mailed to all past and present officers and directors of TYLA

March 15, 2012
TYLA deadline to receive completed nomination forms for the Minority At-Large Director Place 2 election

March 20, 2012
TYLA deadline to receive completed nomination forms for the ABA/YLD District 25 Representative election

March 23, 2012
TYLA ballots for the ABA/YLD District 25 Representative election mailed to all ABA/YLD District 25 affiliate presidents

March 23-25, 2012
TYLA National Trial Competition - Austin 

Take Note

View This Month's TYLA President-elect's Opinion
C.E. Rhodes

TYLA Needs Your Help Recruiting Judges and Witnesses for the 37th Annual National Trial Competition Championship Rounds in Austin!!!
In less than two weeks, 28 teams comprised of some of the best future trial lawyers around the country will be in Austin and are looking for your assistance. Each year, TYLA and the American College of Trial Lawyers host the National Trial Competition. The competition is the preeminent mock trial competition in the country. Over 160 law schools with more than 300 mock trial teams competed in 14 regional mock trial competitions held across the country and only the top 28 teams advance to the 37th Annual National Trial Competition Championship Rounds. These rounds will be held at the Capitol Extension in Austin on Thursday and Friday, March 22-24.

There are three preliminary championship rounds scheduled at the Capitol as follows:
(1) Round 1: 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. on Thursday, March 22;
(2) Round 2: 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, March 22; and
(3) Round 3: 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. on Friday, March 23.

TYLA needs a minimum of 56 attorneys to judge each of the rounds. If you are interested in serving as a judge in one or more of the rounds, please contact Chike Okpara at (512) 200-2059; or Priscilla Camacho at  (210) 734-7092, ext. 1114.  Or you can simply fill out this form and send it to the TYLA office.
TYLA looks forward to nurturing the careers of aspiring young law students who will soon join us as members of the Bar and TYLA. If you can help, please contact us as soon as possible.

How to Get a Job After Law School: The Unclassified Story
The TYLA Law Student Outreach Committee is pleased to announce that it will be holding its job-search seminar, How to Get a Job After Law School: The Unclassified Story, this spring at law schools across the state.  The purpose of the seminar is to give practical advice to students about finding a job.  Of note is the seminar’s focus on students who traditionally do not find employment through the on-campus interview process.  Student attendees will also receive the newly drafted TYLA “Tip Card” that contains advice on networking, interviewing, and building a job search strategy.  The Tip Card also contains information about non-lawyer jobs for lawyers.  Below is a list of dates and locations for the seminars.  For more information, please contact the TYLA office at tyla@texasbar.com or 800-204-2222, ext. 1529.
Texas Wesleyan University School of Law – February 23, 2012
TSU Thurgood Marshall School of Law – March 1, 2012
Texas Tech University School of Law – March 5, 2012  
University of Texas School of Law – March 6, 2012
SMU Dedman School of Law – March 6, 2012
St. Mary’s University School of Law – March 21, 2012
South Texas College of Law – March 22, 2012
University of Houston Law Center – March 29, 2012 
Baylor Law School, March 30, 2012

Oyez, Oyez, Oh Yay!

State Bar President Bob Black has worked with the State Bar Law-Related Education Department on Oyez, Oyez, Oh Yay! Civics Resources for Texas Students and Teachers, an interactive web-based project to assist Texas teachers and their students in preparing for the new Texas Essential and Knowledge Skills (TEKS) standards, which took effect Aug. 1, 2011. The website includes links to landmark court case decisions that students are required to study, as well as videos and other multimedia tools, and teacher resources. Toolkits are also available that include information on the new TEKS standards, as well as a sample case summary, sample teaching strategies, a list of online resources, and other curriculum ideas from Law-Related Education.  For a toolkit, which includes a video sample on Marbury v. Madison, contact Judy Marchman or call (800) 204-2222, ext. 1520.

Back-to-School Savings through the State Bar Member Discounts Program
Take advantage of the State Bar Member Discounts Program to save money on computers and books. Visit texasbar.beneplace.com for more great savings from dozens of retailers and service providers. State Bar Member Discounts — A new way for Texas lawyers to shop!

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 here.

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 here.

TYLA Annual Report 2010-2011
Want to know how TYLA is serving its members and the community? Then be sure to read the 2010-2011 annual report, which details the activities of TYLA during the 2010-2011 Bar year. Click here for a copy or call 800-204-2222, ext. 1529 and we'll send you a copy.