The Gift That Keeps on Giving

We may be young, but Texas young lawyers make a significant impact on a local, state, national, and even global level. We make an impact by our sheer presence—approximately 26 percent of all attorneys in Texas are also members of the Texas Young Lawyers Association. We make an impact by our contributions to the profession. We make an impact by our commitment to making a difference in our communities.

Sometimes I feel like I am on repeat, but TYLA and its members really are great. TYLA has been around (although it has had different names) since 1930, and it functions as the “public service arm” of the State Bar of Texas. This means that TYLA produces a majority of the State Bar’s public service projects. We operate with a staff of three amazing women and a board of about 40 comprising elected directors, officers, and liaisons to produce quality public service projects that fulfill the mission of the State Bar of Texas. We operate as a department of the State Bar of Texas and work within a budget that is approved by the State Bar board and the Texas Supreme Court.

To brag on TYLA a bit more, not only do we create public projects and resources that serve the profession and the community, but we also do a darn good job at it. TYLA, a leader among young lawyer organizations throughout the nation, has won national awards for its projects—including an Emmy. We have guided leaders toward a pipeline of success. Some of our initiatives include spotlighting and educating the public on pressing issues such as human trafficking, safety in schools, voting rights, what it means to be a lawyer, the importance of education, and this year, educating students on the rights and duties of being an American. We create resources for pro se litigants in almost every topic you can imagine. We also serve our profession by developing materials for young lawyers (and more seasoned attorneys) to guide them in the practice of law, including the Ten Minute Mentor, the practice series podcast, and most recently our Shero podcast. These projects have a lasting impact on the community and profession.

We also foster leadership. The TYLA president serves as a director of the State Bar of Texas as well as a liaison to other bar-affiliated organizations. These opportunities not only allow for young lawyers to have a voice within these organizations (without which, there would be minimal to scarce young-lawyer presence), but they also help train future leaders. TYLA has been the pipeline for national, state, local, and specialty bar leadership; partners in law firms; federal judges; district judges and other elected officials; and/or general counsels for major national corporations.

TYLA is one of the nation’s premier young-lawyer organizations, and I am proud to represent it for the 2018-2019 bar year. But I think it is important to remember that our legacy is long and truly is the gift that keeps on giving.


Texas Young Lawyers Association


TYLA in Action

Rob Contreras of Makes Media interviewed attorney Armin Salek, a naturalized citizen and high school educator, about the rights and responsibilities afforded to citizens in the Constitution for the upcoming TYLA project Proud to be an American (coming soon in spring 2019).

Actors for the reinvigorated project The Choice filmed portions of the video on November 20, 2018, in San Antonio.

TYLA President Sally Pretorius and TYLA Vice President Britney Harrison at the New Lawyers Induction Ceremony on November 19, 2018, in Austin.

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