Allan K. Dubois 2015-12-24 04:52:20
I am looking forward to all of 2016 and the opportunity to continue the projects expressed last June when I was sworn in as State Bar of Texas president. It seems like yesterday—watching my grandchildren recite the Pledge of Allegiance and listening to my granddaughter Megan sing “The Star-Spangled Banner” a cappella. After taking the oath of president, I talked about my story and what being State Bar president means to me. I expressed my gratitude for the opportunity of serving in this capacity. My programs include outreach to senior attorneys; increased opportunities for access to justice, especially for Texas veterans; and a focus on the services provided by the Texas Lawyers’ Assistance Program, including increased funding for the Sheeran-Crowley Memorial Trust. I have received many gifts during the first half of my presidential term, including mentorship from Lisa M. Tatum, Trey Apffel, and Frank Stevenson; fellowship from our diverse and talented board of directors and State Bar staff; congeniality with lawyers throughout Texas; contributions to the Sheeran-Crowley Trust; inspiration as newly licensed attorneys pledged the new civility and integrity oath; and travel throughout the Lone Star State. The one gift that I did not expect during my presidential term has been the reaction to a video by the State Bar staff titled Courage, Hope, Help—TLAP Is There. Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice Nathan L. Hecht introduces the film, emphasizing the importance of the subject matter. Three Texas attorneys who are successfully recovering from addictions and/or depression with the help of TLAP share their experience, strength, and hope. The significance of this video is demonstrated by the response of those who have viewed it. Feedback has included these comments: Impressed with the courage and selflessness of the attorneys’ testimonials. I wish them all the best— and thanks for sharing their stories. Truly excellent. Very moving and life-affirming to hear the attorneys speaking about their personal experiences. Thanks to all involved. It is so good to know the profession has this built-in mechanism for help for mental health and substance issues. The profession is sometimes a lonely one where you do often feel the need to keep your “game face” on, and the existence of a safe forum to reveal vulnerability and the need for help is reassuring and very positive…. This should be required viewing for all Texas lawyers and law students. Thank you for teaching me more about how to help my colleagues and our profession. This was the most powerful 30-minute seminar I have ever watched. Please view the video at texasbar.com/tlap. You may be the one person who can extend a helping hand. You may also be inclined to make a contribution to the Sheeran-Crowley Trust. Since June, Texas lawyers have funded $365,575 to this cause—putting us almost three-quarters of the way to our $500,000 goal. Over the past six months, I have made presentations on these projects in Austin, Houston, Dallas, Fort Worth, Del Rio, Galveston, Corpus Christi, McAllen, Tyler, Boerne, Temple, and Waco. Anticipating the remainder of my presidential term, I sincerely hope that my calendar is filled with opportunities to travel to your towns and visit with you. I look forward to participation at veterans’ clinics and other pro bono clinics and to developing strategies to engage senior attorneys. I relish every chance to work with Texas Young Lawyers Association President C. Barrett Thomas and the TYLA Board of Directors as well as the LeadershipSBOT class that mentors up-and-coming young lawyers. I will enjoy every day of the second half of my presidential term. Happy New Year!
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