Board Approves Budget Publication, Resolution in Support of Remote Proceedings

Written by TBJ Staff

The State Bar of Texas Board of Directors held its quarterly meeting on January 27. Highlights of the meeting appear below. You can watch video of the meeting and read the agenda and meeting materials at

Finance and budget.
The board approved the State Bar of Texas fiscal year 2022-2023 proposed budget for publication in the Texas Bar Journal (see pages 182-187). A more detailed breakdown of expenditures by category is available at The State Bar will hold a public hearing on the budget on April 11. The final step in the bar’s budgeting process will be to present it to the Texas Supreme Court for consideration. Also, the State Bar received an unmodified, or “clean,” opinion for its 2020-2021 fiscal year financial audit.

Remote court proceedings.
The board approved a resolution supporting efforts of the Texas Supreme Court and its Remote Proceedings Task Force to remove impediments to remote court proceedings, including the adoption and implementation of rule amendments. Before adopting the proposed resolution, the board agreed to add a clause stating: “Whereas the Board of Directors still acknowledges the importance of in-person proceedings, it hereby wishes to preserve the option of remote proceedings where appropriate.”

Diversity, equity, and inclusion issues.
The board referred the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Task Force’s proposed changes to the Texas Lawyer’s Creed to the board’s Administration Committee for further study. The board also referred a task force recommendation regarding the creation of a State Bar diversity council to the board’s Policy Manual Subcommittee for consideration.

Ombudsman report.
Stephanie Lowe, ombudsman for the attorney discipline system, discussed her office’s annual report, which is available at

Board chair election.
The board heard presentations from four candidates for 2022-2023 chair of the board: Chad Baruch, of Dallas; David N. Calvillo, of Houston; Lucy Forbes, of Houston; and D. Todd Smith, of Austin. The board will vote in April to elect the new chair.

President Sylvia Borunda Firth presented resolutions honoring late past State Bar Presidents Charles F. “Charlie” Aycock and Allan K. DuBois and the Texas Bar College, which recently celebrated its 40th anniversary. State Bar Executive Director Trey Apffel presented a Staff Excellence Award to Laurie Owen, of the membership department.

Looking Ahead

The next board meeting is scheduled for April 29 in El Paso. If you have comments for the board, email them to To find your district directors, go to and click on “Board Members.”TBJ


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