News From Around The Bar
September 2022

Texas Supreme Court Justice Brett Busby honored with Judicial Civic Education Award

Chris PopovThe American Lawyers Alliance, or ALA, named Texas Supreme Court Justice Brett Busby the 2022 recipient of its Judicial Civic Education Award. The ALA is an American Bar Association affiliate that supports law-related education, and the Judicial Civic Education Award honors judges for promoting civic education. Busby, known for his contributions to access to justice initiatives, helped found the Teach Texas Program, a judicial civics and court history project that teaches seventh graders about the judicial system and is based on the Taming Texas book series. Teach Texas is a partnership between the Texas Supreme Court Historical Society and the Houston Bar Association. For more information on the Taming Texas program and book series, go to

Former State Bar of Texas President Randy Sorrels named 2022 Trial Lawyer of the Year by Texas Chapter of ABOTA

Houston attorney Randy Sorrels was named the 2022 Trial Lawyer of the Year by the Texas Chapters of the American Board of Trial Advocates, or TEX-ABOTA. “This is one of the highlights of my career, and I am thankful to TEX-ABOTA, my partner and wife, Alex, as well as the other attorneys and team members at Sorrels Law,” said Sorrels, who served as 2019-2020 State Bar of Texas president and is the co-founder of Sorrels Law, in a press release. The award is presented to a lawyer who has shown excellence in advocacy, holds a superb reputation of ethics, has achieved outstanding recent results, maintains service to ABOTA, and exemplifies its ideals.

John Browning among 2022 winners of the American Bar Association Silver Gavel Awards for Media and the Arts

John Browning, a former justice on the 5th Court of Appeals in Dallas and a partner in Spencer Fane, is part of the Oklahoma Bar Journal team recognized as recipients of this year’s American Bar Association Silver Gavel Awards for Media and the Arts. The award recognizes excellent work that cultivates the public’s understanding of the legal system and has been presented annually by the ABA since 1958. Browning was honored for his role in writing much of the content for the Oklahoma Bar Journal’s May 2021 special issue devoted to Black legal history in Oklahoma. To see a list of all the 2022 winners, go to

Revisions to internal operating procedures of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit has voted to reinclude prior language regarding the Lawyers Advisory Committee in the Internal Operating Procedures. The language has been added to the section titled “Other Internal Operating Procedures.” To read the revised document, go to

Standing committee interest

Attorneys may express interest in serving on a standing committee by going to the State Bar website at

Texas Judicial Commission on Mental Health opens registration for 5th annual Judicial Summit on Mental Health

Registration is open for the 5th annual Judicial Summit on Mental Health, hosted by the Texas Judicial Commission on Mental Health, or JCMH, that will be held November 2-4, 2022, at the Great Wolf Lodge in Grapevine. The JCMH, a joint commission under the Texas Supreme Court and the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals, is hosting this year’s event in hybrid format. Participants will receive tools to help navigate complex mental health laws. For more information on the JCMH, the summit, hotel accommodations, or to register for this year’s event, go to

Texas Bar College honors five attorneys at summer school course

The Texas Bar College honored five distinguished lawyers at the Texas Bar College Summer School on July 21 at Moody Gardens in Galveston. Jerry D. Bullard, of Grapevine, was presented with the Franklin Jones Best CLE Article Award for his article, Looking over the 87th Lege: An Overview of Selected Bills That Passed and Those That Didn’t (But You Ought to Know About Anyway); J. Collin “Jay” Spring, of Dallas, received the Steven G. Condos Award for Outstanding New Member to the College; Amber Haney, of Austin, was presented with the Merianne Gaston Award for Excellence in Legal Support; Jennifer A. Hasley, of Houston, received the Jim Bowmer Professionalism Award; and Roland Love, of Dallas, was honored with the Patrick A. Nester Outstanding Achievement in CLE Award. For more information about the Texas Bar College, go to

ABA honors two Texas lawyers for pro bono work

The American Bar Association, or ABA, honored Texas lawyers Maddy Dwertman and Mark Melton with the Pro Bono Publico Award for demonstrating outstanding commitment to volunteer legal services for low-income and disadvantaged persons on August 5 during the ABA Annual Meeting in Chicago. Dwertman, of Baker Botts in Austin, has provided volunteer pro bono services for American Gateways, a nonprofit that provides legal services to immigrants, refugees, and low-income individuals. Melton, of Holland & Knight in Dallas, recruited more than 250 Dallas lawyers to help tenants navigate the legal process of eviction during the COVID-19 pandemic. For more information, go to


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