TYLA PRESIDENT’S PAGE
Summer 2020 is finally coming to an end. Many of us are beginning to return to the office for work under COVID-19 restrictions and deal with the return to actual “work clothes,” while others are having to make the impossible decision of whether to keep their children home for school or allow them to attend in person. It is a difficult choice, and I want to say to all parents out there: You are doing the best you can. Allow yourself and each other some grace. Know that you are not alone.
Over the summer, the American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division held its Virtual Annual Meeting. On July 30, the ABA YLD presented its Awards of Achievement. The Texas Young Lawyers Association received the following honors: Overall Comprehensive Award—State Division A; Diversity Award for the Retention Guide; and Service to the Bar Award for Breaking the Cycle: A Layered Approach to Attorney-Wellness.
I am extremely proud of the young lawyers who brought these projects to fruition. Under the leadership of TYLA Immediate Past President Victor A. Flores and with the assistance of Mindy Gulati, founder and CEO of Fundamental Advisory, TYLA created the Retention Guide to address the causes behind the lack of promotion and retention of women and people of color in law firms. Each year, women and people of color leave the lawyer ranks at law firms at a higher rate than other attorneys. Our guide aims to help managing partners and law firms to better understand the cause behind this problem and develop corporate strategies to retain a diverse and inclusive legal practice.
Additionally, TYLA created the Attorney Wellness HUB, which consists of true stories and helpful tips about living with anxiety, depression, addiction, and other mental health issues. Far too often we read an article about the loss of another fellow Texas lawyer to suicide. Our HUB aims to address these issues head on and provide resources for those in need. Attorney wellness is multifaceted and requires targeted approaches to achieving a culture of wellness in your workplace.
This year is no different in regards to the quality of projects and initiatives planned by TYLA. In June, TYLA announced the creation of the Racial Justice Committee, which is hard at work developing meaningful content and materials for the Racial Justice HUB. We aim to identify ways to effectuate actual change within our profession and move toward an anti-racism mentality.
In August, we launched the TYLA Virtual Triathlon, which encourages all to participate in different types of exercise activities during the months of August, September, and October. Participants are encouraged to join the TYLA Strava club to connect with other participants and enjoy a little friendly competition.
Finally, we also launched the Vote America expansion, Court the Vote. Through this initiative, TYLA disseminated information to the courts and other agencies to encourage citizens to learn how to register to vote, the requirements to vote, and also answer common questions about voting. Court the Vote continues TYLA’s commitment to producing quality, law-focused education programming for all.