News From Around The Bar
Victor A. Flores receives IMLA Daniel J. Curtin Public Lawyer
The International Municipal Lawyers Association recognized Victor A. Flores, immediate past president of the Texas Young Lawyers Association and an assistant city attorney in the McAllen City Attorney’s Office, as a recipient of the Daniel J. Curtin Young Public Lawyer Award during the IMLA virtual Annual Conference on September 29. “[Flores] is an extremely talented municipal lawyer,” Paige Mims, city attorney of Plano, said in a press release. “However, his reputation in Texas and across the country is recognized for his passion and humility in serving others, history in cultivating new leadership roles for younger attorneys, and loyalty towards his family and friends.” The Curtin Award recognizes a public law practitioner who has provided outstanding service to the public and who possesses an exemplary reputation in the legal community, the highest ethical standards, and who revels in maintaining a life that balances a passion for professional excellence and the joy of family and friends. The award also recognizes a person who exhibits the qualities of openness and humility coupled with a sincere concern for the interests of others, including the professional development of newer practitioners. For more information on the IMLA, go to imla.org.
Local Bar Leaders Conference Speaker Series: Judge Audrey Moorehead
gives presentation on implicit bias
Judge Audrey Moorehead, of Dallas County Criminal Court 3, spoke about racism, prejudice, and unconscious and implicit biases as part of the State Bar of Texas Local Bar Leaders Conference Speaker Series on September 18. After explaining the pervasiveness of implicit bias, Moorehead outlined a number of things that can be done to combat it, including looking for bias in your own life; consciously evaluating people as individuals; seeking diversity at every opportunity; seeking a cultural mentor; and conducting a racial and bias audit. The State Bar is offering the ongoing speaker series to local, regional, and specialty bar leaders who would have attended the Bar Leaders Conference, which is typically held each summer in Houston but was canceled in 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Tarrant County Bar hosts discussion on race and racism in the
practice of law
The Tarrant County Bar Association Diversity Committee hosted “Let’s Talk About It: Race and Racism in the Practice of Law – Part 1,” on September 24 via Zoom as part of the SIDE (Striving for Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity in the Bar) Bar Conversation Series. The conversation explored experiences of people of color in legal careers, addressing concepts like microaggressions, code-switching, and unspoken requirements of cultural assimilation; a discussion of the current forms of racism in the legal system, including the impact of past racism on the present; and the role of white privilege in legal education, hiring, business development, and practice. The discussion also addressed how lawyers of the majority community can play a role in the dynamics discussed. The event was cohosted by the L. Clifford Davis Legal Association and the Black Women Lawyers Association.
Meca Walker begins service as Texas Bar College board
Meca Walker is the 39th chair of the Texas Bar College Board of Directors and the second African American to serve as chair. Her term began on July 15 and will end on the same day in 2021. The Texas Bar College is an honorary society of lawyers, judges, and paralegals who are leaders in the Texas legal community and champions of legal education. “It’s truly an honor to rise in the ranks of this wonderful organization, to become a member of the board and eventually the chair,” Walker said in a press release. “This is not a position that I take lightly and I am committed to continuing to serve our legal community in a way that will make my ancestors proud.” Walker is a full-time mediator and arbitrator for family law matters in Harris and contiguous counties and a former associate judge of Texas’ 311th and 247th district courts.
State Bar accepting Expressions of interest for 2021-2022
The State Bar of Texas is accepting expressions of interest to serve on committees for the upcoming bar year, which begins June 1, 2021. The survey form to express interest is available at texasbar.com/committeeform and is due December 1. Information provided will be submitted to the president-elect for consideration. Standing committees are established by the board of directors, and members are appointed by the president-elect to consider matters of interest to the bar membership, update professional materials, recommend changes to policies and procedures, and study legal issues affecting the legal profession and the public. For the list of committees and their roles, go to texasbar.com/committees.
Nina Totenberg Speaks as PART of the Dallas Bar Association
Women’s Equality Day Event
Nina Totenberg, a legal affairs correspondent for National Public Radio, sat down virtually with Judge Tonya Parker, of the 116th Civil District Court of Dallas County, to discuss the current state of voting rights on the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment on Women’s Equality Day on August 26. Totenberg provided some history on the passage of the 19th Amendment and its effect on the later passage of the 1965 Voting Rights Act. She also discussed the effects of the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2013 decision in Shelby County v. Holder on voting rights today. For more information about the Dallas Bar Association, go to dallasbar.org. TBJ