TBLS INDUCTS ATTORNEYS, PARALEGALS The Texas Board of Legal Specialization swore in 267 newly certified attorneys and 22 paralegals from across the state at a ceremony on February 10 in Austin. Of the more than 100,000 licensed Texas attorneys, about 7,400 are certified in one of the board’s 22 specialty areas of law. The event in February included the first group of attorneys certified in construction law. To read Q&A’s with three board certified attorneys, go to blog.texasbar.com/2017/02/articles/tbls/being-board-certified/. TEXAS BAR COLLEGE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR HONORED FOR LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT Texas Bar College Executive Director Pat Nester received a Lifetime Achievement Award in January from the Association for Continuing Legal Education, the first such honor the association has bestowed. Nester, who is also deputy executive director of the State Bar of Texas, led the bar’s CLE efforts for nearly three decades and is considered a national leader in the CLE community. Attorneys honored at Austin Bar Foundation gala Five local attorneys were honored at the Austin Bar Foundation’s 14th Annual Gala on January 28. The Great Gatsby-themed event raised money for the foundation’s charitable initiatives and partners, including the Justice Mack Kidd Fund, free legal advice clinics for veterans, Austin Adoption Day, the Self-Represented Litigant Project, the Diversity Fellowship Program, and scholarships for LGBT law students across the state. Martha Smiley, of Enoch Kever, and David W. Hilgers, of Husch Blackwell, received Distinguished Lawyer Awards; Tony Nelson, of the Travis County Attorney’s Office, received the Joseph C. Parker Jr. Diversity Award; Jo Ann Merica, of McGinnis Lochridge, received the David H. Walter Community Excellence Award; and Dirk Jordan, of the Jordan Law Firm, received the Larry F. York Mentoring Award. Dallas campaign brings in $1.1 million for pro bono The annual fundraising campaign for the Dallas Volunteer Attorney Program brought in more than $1.1 million in donations, the Dallas Bar Association recently announced. The Dallas Bar Association and Legal Aid of NorthWest Texas’ Equal Access to Justice Campaign funds DVAP, which provides free civil legal assistance to more than 4,000 low-income families each year. “With over 600,000 people meeting legal aid’s financial guidelines for assistance, there is more work to be done in keeping access to the courts open in Dallas,” officials said in a press release announcing the fundraising total. “DVAP will focus its efforts on recruiting more volunteer attorneys to represent clients in more complex cases and contested family law cases.” Registration opens for Annual Meeting 2017 Registration for the State Bar of Texas Annual Meeting on June 22-23 at the Hilton Anatole—Dallas opened February 1. Get all of your continuing legal education for the year in just two days for one low cost, choosing the courses best suited to your practice, hearing dynamic keynote speakers, and meeting exhibitors and sponsors all in one place. For more information about registering online and making hotel reservations, go to texasbar.com/annualmeeting.
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