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April 23, 2024
Contact: Rebecca Johnson
Public Affairs Director, State Bar of Texas

Keynote speakers announced for 2024 State Bar of Texas Annual Meeting in Dallas

AUSTIN—NBC News legal analyst Camille M. Vasquez, law professor and ethics authority David A. Grenardo, and 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Irma Carrillo Ramirez will be keynote speakers at the 2024 State Bar of Texas Annual Meeting in Dallas. The annual meeting attracts hundreds of attorneys from across the state and beyond for two full days of continuing legal education and networking. This year’s conference will take place June 20-21 at the Hilton Anatole in Dallas. 

Vasquez, a litigator and partner at Brown Rudnick, will deliver the keynote address at the Bar Leaders Recognition Luncheon on June 20. Grenardo, professor of law and associate director of the Holloran Center for Ethical Leadership in the Professions at St. Thomas University School of Law (Minneapolis) will speak at the Bench Bar Breakfast on June 21. And Judge Ramirez will speak at the General Session Luncheon on June 21, which also will feature the swearing in of 2024-2025 State Bar of Texas President Steve Benesh.  

The annual meeting offers an engaging way for attorneys to earn a year’s worth of continuing legal education in just two days, and nearly every practice area is represented in the diverse programming schedule. Early bird registration is underway through May 21 at 


CamilleVasquezAs an NBC News legal analyst and renowned attorney, Camille Vasquez is sought after for her critical insights and perspective on today’s most high-profile legal cases.  

Many people around the world were consumed by the high-profile nature of the Johnny Depp defamation case, but it’s the behind-the-scenes stories that are both riveting and enlightening. Audiences will hear how members of the unique legal team were chosen, gain insights into their months of preparation and discover how—after more than 100 hours of testimony—the jury was convinced to rule in their favor. 

A rising star even before she joined Brown Rudnick, Vasquez was named “One to Watch” by Best Lawyers in America for 2021-22. She has extensive experience handling reputation management and crisis communications, and more than 10 years of experience as a trial lawyer in high-stakes disputes, including other defamation cases. 

A first-generation American born in San Francisco, she is the daughter of Latino immigrants—her mother is from Cuba and her father is from Colombia. Vasquez graduated magna cum laude from the University of Southern California where she studied communications and political science. She received her Juris Doctor from Southwestern Law School. 


DavidGrenardoDavid A. Grenardo is a professor of law and associate director of the Holloran Center for Ethical Leadership in the Professions. He joined St. Thomas Law (Minneapolis) in 2022. Grenardo was previously a professor at St. Mary’s University School of Law (San Antonio). 

Grenardo earned the prestigious Warren E. Burger Prize awarded by the American Inns of Court for his article “Debunking the Major Myths Surrounding Mandatory Civility for Lawyers Plus Five Mandatory Civility Rules That Will Work.” He received the national award and made his acceptance speech at the Supreme Court of the United States on October 28, 2023. 

He has presented on professionalism and ethics locally, statewide, and nationally, including at the American Bar Association’s Annual Meeting and the ABA’s Annual National Conference on Professional Responsibility. He practiced law in California and Texas for three large law firms before joining the legal academy in 2011. 

Grenardo represented clients in a wide variety of complex commercial litigation matters, including contract, tort, and product liability cases. He dedicated a significant part of his practice to pro bono work for which he has received numerous awards. His scholarship focuses on professional responsibility, sports law, legal pedagogy, and the practice of law.  

Grenardo has been quoted in multiple articles on sports law, including by the New York Times. His op-eds on sports (as they relate to business and society) have appeared in Fortune Magazine and other publications. He earned his B.A. from Rice University where he played football and was a four-year letterman. He earned his J.D. from Duke University School of Law. 


IrmaCarrilloRamirezIrma Carrillo Ramirez was sworn in as judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit on December 11, 2023. She had previously served as a United States magistrate judge for the Northern District of Texas, Dallas Division, since 2002. 

Prior to her judicial service, she was an assistant U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Texas, Dallas Division, where she spent time in both the criminal and civil divisions, and an associate attorney in the general commercial litigation section of the law firm of Locke Purnell Rain Harrell LLP.  

She received her law degree from Southern Methodist University School of Law, Dallas, Texas, where she was a Sarah T. Hughes Diversity Fellow, and a Bachelor of Arts degree from West Texas State University, Canyon, Texas. 

Judge Ramirez has received the State Bar of Texas Hispanic Issues Section Judge of the Year Award, the Dallas Women Lawyers Association’s Louise B. Raggio Award, the Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law’s Distinguished Alumni Award for Judicial Service, the Dallas Hispanic Bar Association’s La Luz Achievement Award, the SMU Women in Law Distinguished Alumna Award, a Federal Executive Board Public Service Award, the Dallas Association of Young Lawyers’ Outstanding Mentor Award, and the SMU Law School Board of Advocates Coach of the Year Award. 

She is a member of SMU Dedman School of Law’s Executive Board and the SMU Law Review Association Advisory Board, and she has previously served two terms on the Board of Trustees for the Texas Center for Legal Ethics, including as the chair in 2019. She is a fellow of the American Bar Foundation and the Dallas Hispanic Law Foundation; a sustaining life fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation, the Dallas Bar Foundation, the Dallas Association of Young Lawyers; a master in the William “Mac” Taylor Inn of Court; an SMU community fellow; and a member of the American Bar Association, the State Bar of Texas, the Dallas Bar Association, the Dallas Chapter of the Federal Bar Association, and the Federal Magistrate Judges Association.

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Note to editors: Images of the keynote speakers are available on request. 

The State Bar of Texas is a public corporation and an administrative agency of the judicial department of state government that provides educational programs for the legal profession and the public, administers the minimum continuing legal education program for attorneys, and manages the attorney discipline system. For more information, follow us on X (formerly Twitter) and Instagram @statebaroftexas, like us on Facebook at, or visit

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