Law Notes: St. Mary's University School of Law Newsletter Spring 2004

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Law Notes: St. Mary's University School of Law Newsletter Spring 2004


St. Mary's University School of Law


St. Mary's Law Journal Ranks as Fourth Most Cited Legal Periodical by State and Federal Courts, Center for Terrorism Law Housed at School of Law, Law Dean Bill Piatt ReAppointed to 3 Year Term, Message from the Dean, St. Mary's and Universidad de Valparai


St. Mary's University School of Law


St. Mary's University School of Law San Antonio Texas, St. Mary's University School of Law, Sarita Kenedy Law Library




Bill Piatt, Rob Leibold, Will Elliott, Karen Persyn, Melanie Rush Davis, Scott Schrader, Chris Gallegos


Law Notes: St. Mary's University School of Law Newsletter




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The St. Mary’s University School of Law Newsletter

Spring 2004

St. Mary’s Law Journal Ranks as Fourth Most Cited Legal Periodical by State and Federal Courts
The St. Mary’s Law Journal, now in its 35th year, tied for fourth in a list of American legal periodicals most frequently cited in state and federal court cases over the seven-year period 1996-2003, according to a survey taken by Washington and Lee University. During that time frame, the St. Mary’s Law Journal was cited 136 times – the same number as the Georgetown Law Journal – by courts in 31 states, the District of Columbia and two territories. Among those tribunals citing the work of the journal were 30 state supreme courts and three federal circuit courts. That number was surpassed only by the Harvard Law Review, Columbia Law Review and the University of Chicago Law Review. “This is another indication of the quality of our school and the dedication of our students who work on the law journal,” said Bill Piatt, dean of the School of Law. “This illustrates the importance of the work in which they are engaged. The quality of their work is recognized by attorneys and judges and will now help shape the future of the law.” This is the second year the law journal was ranked in the survey. Last year it was listed as the 10th most cited legal periodical by state and federal courts. Since 1995 the St. Mary’s Law Journal has been cited in more than 300 Texas decisions, but its influence is much broader, added Vincent Johnson, associate dean for Academic and Student Affairs and chair of the Law
Continued on page 6 ̈

Center for Terrorism Law Housed at School of Law

Center for Terrorism Law staff includes: (front row, left to right) Grace Uzomba, assistant director; Bob Summers, associate director; Alison McCall; (back row, left to right) Amar Barkat Ali; Jeffrey Addicott, director; Timothy Ward; and Nicole Lewis.
The new Center for Terrorism Law at St. Mary’s University School of Law is a research center dedicated to the study of legal issues associated with antiterrorism and counterterrorism, with particular emphasis on cyberspace and information assurance technologies. Jeffrey Addicott, assistant professor of law, is the director of the center, which examines current and potential legal issues related to terrorism in light of the challenge of achieving and maintaining a proper balance between global security and civil justice. To this end the center acts as a conduit for professional exchanges such as symposiums and consultations, and writing commentaries and informational materials. “We hope to increase the professional and public understanding of terrorism law and the balance between global security and protecting civil justice,” Addicott said. The center, housed in the Sarita Kenedy East Law Library, received a $190,000 grant through the University of Texas at San Antonio’s Center for Infrastructure Assessment and Security, which conducts research, exercises and analysis of
Continued on page 4 ̈

Law Dean Bill Piatt Re-Appointed to 3-Year Term
St. Mary’s President Charles L. Cotrell, Ph.D., has reappointed Bill Piatt to another three-year term beginning June 1, 2004, as dean of the School of Law. “Bill Piatt remains committed to the education and public service mission of the University as he continues to strengthen and develop a culture of student success,” Cotrell said. “Under his leadership several reforms have been initiated, aimed at providing students with a solid foundation in the study of law while continuing to offer ample opportunities for them to serve the community.”
Continued on page 4 ̈

Message from the Dean
Dear Alumni,
As you read this, we are putting the final touches on our entering class for fall 2004. By all accounts, the qualifications of our entering class improve each year. We are able to accomplish this feat as the result of your efforts, those of our admissions and recruitment staff, and with the help of involved faculty members. The applicant pool from which our incoming students will be selected appears to be the largest group of applicants ever in the history of our law school. This class will add to the academically enhanced environment here. As a result, we expect great things from our newly admitted class of 2007. Of course, the students that will graduate between now and then also reflect the increasingly talented group of students and future alumni at St. Mary’s. Another thing that has risen is our bar passage rate. We will continue to focus on improving the bar results, improving our teaching, and enhancing the length and complexity of the examinations we offer our students. Another thing that is rising, of course, is the cost of tuition. Our tuition next year will be $690 per credit hour. That figure represents a 3.5 percent increase from last year’s tuition. While that percentage increase is smaller than in recent years here, and much smaller than other comparable institutions, it nonetheless requires our students to incur substantial debt to obtain their degrees. I am always looking for additional resources for our students, and ask you to seriously consider assisting us in our scholarship efforts. Al Hartman, our director of Alumni Relations and Development, will be happy to discuss scholarship options with you. I want to thank you very much for the help that you have been providing our school. The board of the Law Alumni Association has taken a very active and positive role on your behalf and on behalf of our school. I am very grateful to Joe Casseb, president of the Law Alumni Association, and to the entire board for the help they offer in recruitment, fundraising, academics and in all other endeavors. To keep you informed and to assist the faculty in understanding the concerns of our

Bill Piatt, Dean and Ryan Professor of Law
former students, representatives of the Law Alumni Association Board of Directors now regularly attend our faculty meetings. The reason our law school exists is to produce alumni. Your success is central to our mission. On a personal note, I wish to thank President Charles L. Cotrell, Ph.D., for reappointing me to another three-year term as dean. While I am very pleased with the progress our school has made, there are many things left undone. I very much appreciate the opportunity to work toward those goals during my next term. If I can do anything to assist you, please let me know. My contact with you is one of the best parts of my job. s


Law Briefs
Law School’s Online Résumé Bank Helps Students Get Jobs
The Career Services office of the School of Law has instituted a new assistance program to pair legal employers with aspiring lawyers. The service – the online Résumé Bank – allows law students to post their résumés on the St. Mary’s University School of Law Web site where registered employers can peruse them to find qualified applicants to fill or meet their specific needs, said Annette Wilson, director of Career Services Office. “This is a benefit to both employers and the students. It gives the employer the ability to focus their search on those potential employees who have indicated interest in a specific area of law or on what year of school they are in,” she said. “It gives students the opportunity to put their résumé out there for a whole host of potential employers to consider. This makes it easier for an employer to view the credentials of our students.” The service was initiated in January by Wilson working with Web Director Tim Bowman and Applications Developer Jake Salazar. Already one St. Mary’s law student has been hired, according to Wilson. Second-year law student Mary Hazelwood is the first person hired through the résumé bank, and will be working with local practitioner John Resendez this summer. It took less then a month for her to get the job once her résumé was posted online, Wilson said. The résumé bank Website can be found in the Career Services section of the Student and Alumni Information area of the law school’s Web site at There are now nearly 70 résumés of St. Mary’s students online. At this time, only current students are allowed to post their résumé, Wilson said, adding that the service possibly could expand to alumni in the future. Wilson points out that the office will continue the traditional method of pairing students with potential employers, but that this service can shorten considerably the time it takes to locate a suitable employee. “We would get a number of calls from employers who would say, ‘I need some immediately.’ We have to post the job, wait for résumés to come in and refer qualified students to the employer. We’ll still do that, but with the résumé bank, an employer can search the databank at a time that is convenient for them and contact the candidate immediately for an interview,” she said. Potential employers have to register for the service, and because the service is so new, Wilson is working diligently to get the word to them. As more employers sign up, more of our law students will find meaningful jobs to help them in their careers. s

Officials from St. Mary’s University and the Universidad de Valparaíso in Chile gather to explain the new exchange agreement prior to its signing at the School of Law.

St. Mary’s, Universidad de Valparaíso Sign Academic, Cultural Exchange Agreement
St. Mary’s University and the Chilean Universidad de Valparaíso instituted a new collaborative program of faculty and student academic and cultural exchanges to foster a vision for excellence in international education. The agreement, signed Jan. 29 at St. Mary’s law school, will offer students of Valparaíso an opportunity to receive LL.M. degrees in American legal studies and extends St. Mary’s Southern Cone Studies business program to Valparaíso for the first time in 2004. “We share common interests and this agreement will address the means by which those interests converge in teaching, research, technological and societal outreach capacities,” said Charles L. Cotrell, Ph.D., president of St. Mary’s. “For St. Mary’s, it is essential to pursue new opportunities if the challenges of a dynamic and increasingly competitive global environment are to be met,” he said. In the first phase of the agreement, an alum of Valparaíso will attend St. Mary’s School of Law next fall to study for a LL.M. degree. “We will provide a scholarship with the understanding that when a Valparaíso student completes the LL.M. program here, he or she will return to the University of Valparaíso and teach at that law school,” said Bill Piatt, dean of St. Mary’s School of Law. “This agreement is the beginning to opening the doors to Latin America for our students as well as opening the doors to St. Mary’s to students from Latin America,” he added. s


Law Briefs

Piatt Reappointed
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Faculty, Staff Take Pro Bono Cases
More than 20 Texas licensed faculty and staff members of the law school have agreed to take part in the Community Justice Program, which assists low-income families with legal matters. The Community Justice Program is held twice a month, once at the Center for Legal and Social Justice and once at the Carver Center, where residents can apply for legal assistance. They must meet financial requirements and the cases must be agreed, in default or uncontested, said Ana Novoa, acting director of the center. At each session, on a yearly basis, a law firm or legal organization sponsors attorneys to take on the cases on a pro bono basis. The law school faculty and staff have signed up to sponsor the program in April, and expect to make it a yearly affair every April. The program will be held on April 13 in the Center for Legal and Social Justice and all faculty and staff who are licensed to practice in Texas have agreed to take a on a case. “This is a real help to the community, and is just one way we, as the only law school in the area, can help make a significant contribution to the residents of this area,” said Bill Piatt, dean. Novoa added that because the cases accepted into the program are generally not complicated, it frees up organizations such as Texas Rural Legal Aid and the center itself to assist low-income families who have more complicated legal matters. “All the cases will be screened and the initial documents are already prepared prior to the event, at least a first draft of the documents,” Novoa said. s

Piatt became dean of St. Mary’s law school in June 1998 after 10 years at Texas Tech University School of Law, where he taught immigration law, business entities, family law and law language policy. He was the first director of the school’s Center for Immigration Education. Cotrell noted that under Piatt’s tutelage, the law school has enacted stricter academic admissions standards and policies, and academic enrichment measures were created in collaboration with the faculty to ensure ultimate student success. The recent improvements in the bar passage rates, combined with the fact that applications have nearly doubled, are indications these reforms are working, Cotrell said, adding that one of his goals spelled out in his Vision 2006 Strategic Plan is that the bar passage rate meet or exceed the statewide average by the year 2006. Over the past six years, Piatt’s administrative efforts have included establishing the Academic Excellence Program, which helps students fulfill their academic and professional goals through bar prep courses, tutorials, mentoring, counseling and study skills workshops. Moreover, the school has expanded its information technology program, including online career services materials, three smart classrooms, and wireless connectivity to library holdings and resources. The School of Law has received national recognition for its service to Hispanics. Hispanic Business magazine ranked St. Mary’s among the top 10 law schools in the country for the fifth straight year (ranked No. 4 in 2003), and Hispanic Outlook for Higher Education ranked St. Mary’s second in its listing of the top 50 law schools granting law degrees to Hispanics. Additionally, the School of Law has been recognized over the past several years in regional and national competitions by winning: the 2002 National Championship at the ABA Appellate Advocacy Competition; the Texas Young Lawyers Association Moot Court Competition; the Regional Championship at the Mock Trial Competition; the ABA Regional Mediation and Negotiation Competition; and the Lone Star Classic National Mock Trial Tournament three years in a row. Also, the St. Mary’s Law Journal won the Texas Bar Foundation’s Outstanding Article Award several times. s

Dean Gives State of the Law School
Bill Piatt, dean, told a gathering of alumni and friends during his State of the Law School address that the school is on the right track toward excellence and he will continue his quest “until we have the best law school of its kind in the country.” As testimony to that, he said applications over the past two years are up considerably and are poised to surpass 2,140 for the 2004-05 academic year, the largest in the school’s history. He thanked alums for their generous support, both financially and professionally by getting the word about St. Mary’s out and helping graduates in their job search. s

Bill Piatt, dean, addresses alumni in update of the law school.

Center for Terrorism Law
̈ continued from page 1

terrorism to develop counterterrorism emergency plan models for municipalities. Bob Summers, professor of law, is the associate director, and the staff includes secondand third-year law students. On campus the center has hosted four distinguished speakers who shared their insights into current issues on terrorism and counterterrorism law with students. The speakers have included: Steven J. Morello, general counsel for the Department of the Army; Texas Congressman Jim Turner, ranking member of the House Select Committee

on Homeland Security; James Ho, chief counsel of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Property Rights, chaired by Sen. John Cornyn (J.D. ’77); and John Washburn, a career diplomat and convener of non governmental organizations for the International Criminal Court. Additionally, Cornyn will be on campus April 2 to help announce the opening of the center. Much of the activity of the center is actively chronicled on its Web site, which can be accessed at Click on Programs and Focus Areas to find the center’s Web site. s


Ana Novoa, law professor, receives Marianist Heritage Award from Charles L. Cotrell, Ph.D., president.

Professor, Student Receive Marianist Awards
Law professor Ana M. Novoa received the 2004 Marianist Heritage Award, which recognizes lay persons who exemplify the ideals of Blessed William Joseph Chaminade, founder of the Society of Mary, the religious order that governs St. Mary’s. She was one of two recipients of the honor, which has been presented annually since 1981 by the Marianist Forum and the office of University Ministry. Shane Keyser, a third-year law student, was the recipient of the Marianist Student Leadership Award. Since 1984, the student leadership award has been given to graduating students who express their faith through actions and whose leadership qualities attract others to community service. The two received the award during the Marianist Heritage Mass on Jan. 22 in Guadalupe Chapel. Their recognition for embodying the Marianist charism and advancing the educational mission of St. Mary’s occurs on Blessed Chaminade’s feast day. s

On break from their labors during Spring Break, the group posed at the Habitat for Humanity house they helped fix up.

Dean Leads Spring Break Trip to New Mexico
Bill Piatt, dean of the law school, led a group of undergraduate students and staff of the law school to Las Vegas, N.M., over Spring Break to work on three projects for Habitat for Humanity. This is the fourth year that Piatt, who originally hails from Santa Fe., N.M., has led a contingent of St. Mary's students and staff to work on projects for Habitat for Humanity. The group put up drywall and painted one house, demolished a dilapidated structure and repaired the roof of a mobile home during their weeklong stay. s

Novoa Gets Faculty Appreciation Award
Shane Keyser, third-year law student, receives the Marianist Student Leadership Award from President Chares L. Cotrell, Ph.D. Ana Novoa, law professor and acting director of the clinical program at the School of Law, was one of six faculty members honored for teaching excellence at the 21st annual Faculty Appreciation and Awards Dinner on Jan. 23. She is pictured here with staff members of the Center for Legal and Social Justice, which houses the clinical program. 5

Law Briefs

Law Briefs

Law Journal Ranks 4th
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Journal Faculty Committee. He noted that the highest court in New York cited six articles published in the law journal over the survey period in eight different cases. “The law journal’s high ranking reflects the priority that St. Mary’s places on preparing students to address issues that are at the center of contemporary litigation,” Johnson said. Additionally, Johnson noted, the St. Mary’s Law Journal has a long history of publishing articles of importance to the practicing bar and courts. A 20-year survey covering 1970 to 1989 in the Texas Bar Journal showed the St. Mary’s Law Journal was more frequently cited by courts than any law review published by a law school in Texas. The St. Mary’s Law Journal publishes articles on a wide range of legal topics, but has an especially strong reputation in the fields of trial and appellate procedure, legal ethics, tort liability, criminal law and evidence. The St. Mary’s Law Journal is published quarterly by students of St. Mary’s University School of Law, established in 1927. It has won numerous awards, including the Texas Bar Foundation’s Outstanding Article Award on several occasions. “I think the fact that courts are frequently using articles from our journal demonstrates that we are accomplishing our goal of being a widely read and influential legal publication,” said Jason Binford, the journal’s editor-in-chief and a third-year law student. Among the authors who have published in the St. Mary’s Law Journal are: William H. Rehnquist, Chief Justice of the United States; Carla Hills, a member of the Cabinet at the time; the Rev. Robert F. Drinan, S.J., a former member of the House Watergate Committee; Broadus A. Spivey, president of the State Bar of Texas; and numerous justices of the Texas Supreme Court and Court of Appeals. Three other Texas law schools were ranked in the survey’s top 12: Houston Law Review (6); Texas Law Review (9) and Baylor Law Review (12). s

Alumnus McGowan Receives MLK Award for Rights Work
San Antonio attorney Clarence McGowan (J.D. ’63) was honored with the 2004 MLK Distinguished Achievement Award for his 60 years of work on behalf of civil rights in San Antonio. McGowan, 82, was the first black municipal court judge in San Antonio. Over the years he participated in numerous civil rights activities, sit-ins, marches and demonstrations. He is the founder of the San Antonio Black Lawyers Association and served as counsel for the local chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. As an attorney, he practiced probate, family, oil and gas, and property law. “My favorite was property law,” he said, adding that over the years he also has purchased many properties in San Antonio for investment as well as social reasons. McGowan was a member of “Blockbusters,” a group of blacks who purchased homes in white neighborhoods after the 1964 court decision that prohibited race-based restrictions in real estate transactions. “Mainly my contribution to the civil rights movement was in the block busting activity,” he said. “We tried to get one white person to sell to us. When we did that, some of whites began to move out and other black families moved into the neighborhood.” McGowan was a teacher at Wheatley High School in the mid-1950s and then became principal at Dunbar Junior High on the city’s West Side before it closed. “When they decided to close the school, I decided it was time to practice law,” he said. During the day he worked as assistant principal at a now-defunct high school and attended law classes downtown at night. s

Homecoming Activities on Tap
A host of activities awaits alumni during this year’s Homecoming weekend celebration set for April 2-3. A full day of free continuing legal education courses kicks off our activities on April 2. More than 10 law professors will give alumni insight into some of today’s important legal issues. “The faculty members are not trying to teach them how to practice law but share with them the insights of productive scholarship that has a bearing on contemporary legal issues,” said Vincent Johnson, associate dean for Academic and Student Affairs. “This gives our alumni a window on what our faculty are doing, and in many cases, a practical background and a good overview of what academics are doing. Attendees will be able to receive six hours of CLE credit, including 1.5 hours of ethics credit. Topics include: “Prosecuting Terrorist Cases,” “Modern Slavery: Relief Available to Victims of Trafficking,” “Lawrence v. Texas and Its Aftermath,” “Transferred Intent in American Tort Law,” “Texas Supreme Court: Update and Trends,” “Developments in the Law and Ethics of Attorney-Client Confidentiality,” “Morals from the Courthouse: A Study of Recent Texas Cases Impacting Wills, Probate and Trust Practice,” and others. Attendees are invited to the Alumni Luncheon at 12:30 p.m. in the Alumni Athletics and Convocation Center. At the end of the day’s activities, don’t miss the Dean’s Homecoming Reception in the Alumni Room of the Sarita Kenedy East Law Library at 5:30 p.m. For more information or to register, contact the Law Alumni Relations Office at (210) 431-2136. s


Class Notes
s 1955 Charles L. Smith, J.D., San Antonio, and his wife, Ann, celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary June 13, 2003.

Park City Council. s 1974 Skip Simpson, J.D., Frisco, has received an appointment as Senior Fellow, Harvard Medical School program in psychiatry and the law, at the Massachusetts Mental Health Center in Boston. s 1975 Donald J. Maison, J.D., president and CEO of PWA Coalition of Dallas Inc., celebrated 15 years as executive director of the organization and was profiled in the Dallas Morning News. s 1976 James F. Pigg, J.D., B.A., ’69, Las Cruces, N.M., a civilian attorney working for the Army, practices environmental law at White Sands Missile Range. D Magazine has named Peter S. Vogel, J.D., a partner at Gardere Wynn Sewell LLP, to this year’s list of the Best Lawyers in Dallas.

II, J.D., judge of Bexar County Court at Law No. 9, has been deployed as an Army Reserve judge advocate general for the U.S. Special Forces Command. Hector E. Mendez, J.D., was in the 2003 class of Leadership San Antonio, a program for emerging community leaders conducted by the Greater San Antonio Chamber of Commerce and the San Antonio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

s 1963 Henry W. Christopher, J.D., B.B.A., a San Antonio attorney, has been inducted into the Harlandale Independent School District Hall of Fame. s 1965 Thomas S. O’Connell Jr., J.D., B.A., Plano, has retired as Collin County District Attorney after 30 years of service. s 1968 Alma L. Lopez, J.D., B.B.A., ’65, chief justice of the Texas Fourth Court of Appeals, has been inducted into the San Antonio Women’s Hall of Fame. s 1969 Martin D. Beirne, J.D., managing partner in the Houston law firm of Beirne Maynard & Parsons LLP, has been listed as “One of the Top Attorneys in the Nation to Call When Your Company is in a Pinch” by Corporate Legal Times magazine. Patrick T. McDermott, J.D., Huntington Beach, Calif., is an immigration judge for the U.S. Department of Justice.

s 1971 J. Robert Brown, J.D., president and chairman of Desert Eagle Distributing Co., has been elected to the board of directors of El Paso Electric. D Magazine has named Curtis L. Frisbie Jr., J.D., a partner at Gardere Wynn Sewell LLP, to this year’s list of the Best Lawyers in Dallas. s 1972 Jose J. Baca, J.D., has been elected judge of El Paso County Court at Law No. 7. s 1973 State Rep. John A. Longoria, J.D., B.A. ’67, San Antonio, received the Politics Award at the Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Awards Gala sponsored by La Prensa Foundation Inc. Sean P. Martinez, J.D., B.A. ’70, San Antonio, has been appointed interim mayor by the Hollywood

s 1977 U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, J.D., Austin, served as keynote speaker at the Celebrate Hispanic Grace Uzomba, a second-year law student, and Maggie Carr of the Heritage Awards Gala American Bar Association, peruse some of the books donated by sponsored by La Prensa students, faculty and staff of the law school and ABA members Foundation Inc. J. Alex during the ABA’s midyear meeting held in San Antonio Feb. 4-10. Huddleston, J.D., San The books were donated to area homeless shelters. Antonio, board certified in civil and personal injury law, was appointed executive partner at Holland & Knight LLP. Andrew D. Leonie III, J.D., Rowlett, is judge of the Lavon Municipal Court. s 1980 Scott McInnis, J.D., Grand Junction, s 1978 Gail Dalrymple, J.D., San Antonio, Colo., served as commencement speaker at is an attorney with Austin-based Clark, the University of Southern Colorado. Thomas & Winters PC. John E. Farrow, Robert E. Valdez, J.D., B.A. ’76, a partner J.D., an attorney in Albuquerque, has been at Ray Valdez McChristian & Jeans, has elected to the board of directors of the Road been appointed special counsel for the Runners Club of America. Debra Ullrich prosecution of cases before the Judicial Garcia, J.D., is owner of Garcia & Garcia, Conduct Commission. Attorneys at Law, in Conroe. John M. s 1981 Steven W. Bruneman, J.D., has Vaught, J.D., Denver, director at Wheeler opened his own law practice in Dallas. Trigg & Kennedy, has been named one of William L. Powers, J.D., is an attorney the city’s best business litigators by the with the San Antonio law offices of Glast, Denver Business Journal’s “Best of the Bar” Phillips & Murray PC. survey. s 1983 Phylis J. Speedlin, J.D., San Antonio, s 1979 Jane E. Bockus, J.D., San Antonio, is has been named to the Fourth Court of an attorney with Austin-based Clark, Appeals. Thomas & Winters PC. Wayne Christian



Class Notes
s 1984 Charles A. Stephens II, J.D., New Braunfels, has been appointed the first judge of a new Comal County Court at Law. s 1985 Scott D. Osborn, J.D., Dallas, is director/principal of Adair, Morris & Osborn. Christopher J. Volkmer, J.D., a shareholder at the Dallas offices of Winstead, Sechrest & Minick PC, practices business bankruptcy, reorganizations, and technology transfers. s 1986 Craig A.C. Chapman, J.D., earned a master’s degree from the Texas campus of Westminster Theological Seminary and is pastoral assistant at Trinity Presbyterian Church in Rye, N.Y. R. Christopher Clark, J.D., is an attorney with the San Antonio law offices of Glast, Phillips & Murray PC. s 1987 Barry G. Benton, J.D., is an attorney with the San Antonio law offices of Glast, Phillips & Murray PC. Jeff B. Frey, J.D., has joined the San Antonio law firm of Ball & Weed as counsel. W. Andy Taylor, J.D., has his own law offices in Houston. s 1988 Lori (Weldon) Hanson, J.D., San Antonio, is an attorney with Austin-based Clark, Thomas & Winters PC. Rose (Rivera) Vela, J.D., Corpus Christi, has been re-elected judge of Texas’ 148th District Court. s 1989 Michael D. Harbart, J.D., B.A. ’86, Vienna, W.Va., is an attorney-adviser with the U.S. Treasury Department. Cris A. Rasco, J.D., has been appointed as the second assistant city attorney by the Galveston City Council. Kenneth S. Saks, J.D., B.B.A. ’86, LL.M. ’03, partner in Oliva, Saks & Garcia LLP, has formed restaurant and investment partnerships with former San Antonio Spurs Avery Johnson and George Gervin.

Wideman Retires
After many years of extraordinary service to the University and the law school, Lucille Wideman, secretary to the associate dean for Academic and Student Affairs, retired at the end of January. Wideman worked for five different associate deans over the years including: (left to right) Vincent Johnson, David Dittfurth, Geary Reamey, and (not pictured) Victoria Mather and Jose Roberto Juarez. A celebration in her honor was held in the Atrium of the Law Administration Building on Feb. 13.
PC. James E. Satel, J.D., San Antonio, is an attorney with Bracewell & Patterson LLP. Rep. Teresa J. Waldrop, J.D., owner of a law firm in Houston, is president of the Association of Women Attorneys. s 1992 Nathan Moore, J.D., Flower Mound, is senior vice president, general counsel and secretary at Mary Kay Inc., in Dallas. Carlos I. Uresti, J.D., B.A. ’85, San Antonio, has been appointed chairman of the Texas House of Representatives’ Human Services Committee. s 1993 Kimberly Land Cormier, J.D., has opened her own law practice in Dallas. Catherine Douglass, J.D., Austin, is associate executive director of governmental relations for the Texas Association of School Boards. Melissa (Young) Goodwin, J.D., Austin, has been elected justice of the peace for southwest Travis County. s 1994 Evan R. Cliff, M.A., J.D., Dallas, is an associate attorney with Gagnon & Peacock. Elisabeth A. Earle, J.D., Austin, has been elected judge of Travis County Court at Law No. 7. Julia Wommack Mann, J.D., is a shareholder in the San Antonio law offices of Jenkens & Gilchrist. Edwin D. “Ned” Smith, J.D., is vice president of Principal Commercial Acceptance LLC, in Shawnee Mission, Kan. s 1995 Erika L. Bruce, J.D., Dallas, is a member at Glast, Phillips & Murray PC. Jesus Rogelio “Roger” Gonzalez, J.D., B.A. ’91, director of community relations at

s 1990 John D. Bray, J.D., San Antonio, has joined the business transaction practice group at Matthews & Branscomb. s 1991 Martin J. Cirkiel, J.D., municipal judge in Hutto and magistrate of the Mental Health Court and Probate Court No. 1 in Travis County, is chairman of the State Bar of Texas Disability Issues Committee. William L. Powers, J.D., San Antonio, is an attorney with Glast, Phillips & Murray


SER Jobs for Progress, won several awards from the National Association of Hispanic Publications as editor of La Prensa de San Antonio. Jon Todd Koenig, J.D., Houston, assistant vice president and trust officer at Merrill Lynch Trust Co. FSB, earned the master of laws degree from the University of Houston Law Center. D. Todd Smith, J.D., Austin, is a senior associate practicing appellate law at Fulbright & Jaworski LLP. s 1996 Larry E. Gee, J.D., San Antonio, board certified in labor and employment law, has been elected shareholder at Cox & Smith Inc. Phillip R. Hall, J.D., San Antonio, is an attorney with Glast, Phillips & Murray PC. Elizabeth Thomson Hetrick, J.D., M.B.A., staff attorney for Bexar County Probate Court No. 2, was in the 2003 class of Leadership San Antonio, a program for emerging community leaders conducted by the Greater San Antonio Chamber of Commerce and the San Antonio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Todd Kenneth Hulsey, J.D., M.A., Burke, Va., is a supervisory special agent assigned to FBI Headquarters in Washington, D.C. A. Federico Longoria III, J.D., B.B.A. ’91, M.B.A. ’94, has opened his own law practice in San Antonio. B. Neal Meinzer, J.D., Austin, is a partner with the law firm of Hohmann Taube & Summers LLP. Kelly Killian Satel, J.D., San Antonio, is an attorney with Bracewell & Patterson LLP. s 1997 Gregg R. Kosterlitzky, J.D., San Antonio, is in the tax practice group of Matthews & Branscomb. Sandra MooreDuarte, J.D., El Paso, is a senior associate with Neil & Strelitz PC. Walid K. Mughrabi, J.D., is counsel for the Halliburton Co., in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Karin (Crump) Samman, J.D., Austin, is an attorney with Martin, Disiere, Jefferson & Wisdom. Susannah Palacios Stinson, J.D., Austin, is an associate attorney with Allensworth & Porter LLP. Paul T. Wendland III, J.D., B.A. ’92, an assistant city attorney for San Antonio, was in the 2003 class of Leadership San Antonio, a program for emerging community leaders conducted by the Greater San Antonio Chamber of Commerce and the San Antonio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. s 1998 Erin A. McAuliffe, J.D., B.A. ’95, is director of education and human resources at Kindred Hospital San Antonio. Amy L.

Nelson, J.D., is assistant vice president and trust officer for Kanaly Trust Co. in Houston. Hussein Sadruddin, J.D., M.A., is a trafficking program specialist for the International Rescue Committee in Dallas. Jill Rotella Ysasaga, J.D., is an attorney with Cruse Scott Henderson & Allen in Houston. Michael A. Ysasaga, J.D., Houston, is an attorney with Shrader & Williamson. s 1999 Amanda J. (Tenpenny) Schulz, J.D., is a self-employed real estate sales consultant with Re/Max Professional Group in Houston.

s 2000 Rosendo Almaraz Jr., J.D., B.A. ’96, Weslaco, is a partner in The Huerta Law Firm LLP, with offices in Laredo, Weslaco and Corpus Christi. Pamela R. Craig, J.D., is an attorney with Heard & Smith LLP, in San Antonio. B. Scott Daugherty, J.D., is assistant general counsel for Texas Bankers Association in Austin. Laurel E. Lindsey, J.D., Seguin, is an assistant district attorney for Guadalupe County. Brian E. McClain, J.D., San Antonio, is an associate attorney in the motor vehicle accident department of WayneWright Lawyers. Manuel A. Pelaez, J.D., San Antonio, has been named in-house counsel for Toyota Motor Manufacturing Texas. Stephen R. Walker, J.D., Houston, is an associate attorney with Engvall & Hlavinka LLP. s 2001 Jenny L. Castillo, J.D., has opened her own law practice in Abilene. Alex R. Hernandez, J.D., San Antonio, is an associate attorney with Chaves, Gonzales & Hoblit LLP. Mary Ann Hisel, J.D., an

attorney with Bracewell & Patterson LLP, was in the 2003 class of Leadership San Antonio, a program for emerging community leaders conducted by the Greater San Antonio Chamber of Commerce and the San Antonio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Kathleen Yvon Reyes, J.D., is a partner in the Austin law firm of Frazier, Windel & Reyes LLP. Eric Dennis Torberson, J.D., is an attorney with O’Connor and Associates in College Station. Allen K. Trial, J.D., M.A., an attorney with Miller & Williamson LLC, in New Orleans, has earned an LL.M. degree from Tulane University. Theresa M. Vargas, J.D., M.B.A., project manager of the UTSA-San Antonio Urban Systemic Initiative, was in the 2003 class of Leadership San Antonio, a program for emerging community leaders conducted by the Greater San Antonio Chamber of Commerce and the San Antonio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. s 2002 Joanne Ericksen, J.D., Houston, is an associate attorney with Devlin, Naylor & Turbyfill PLLC. Zachary T. Moody, J.D., is a financial representative with Northwestern Mutual Financial in Dallas. Roxana I. Perez, J.D., B.B.A. ’98, Corpus Christi, is an associate attorney with Chaves, Gonzales & Hoblit LLP. Mynor E. Rodriguez, J.D., M.A., B.A. ’97, is chief committee clerk for the Texas House of Representatives’ Committee on Human Services. Cynthia E. Rosen, J.D., San Antonio, is in the litigation practice group at Matthews & Branscomb. Alex Wyatt Wright, J.D., has joined the San Antonio law offices of WayneWright Lawyers LLP, in their litigation department.

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Class Notes

Class Notes
Donato Ramos, J.D. ’71, B.B.A. ’68, to Sylvia DeSpain, Sept. 27, 2003. Dick Terrell Brown, J.D. ’72, to Lucinda A. Greenlee, March 30, 2003. Julie Anne Bradford, J.D. ’96, to Robert Griffith Hutchings, May 24, 2003. Susannah Palacios, J.D. ’97, to Evan Stinson, March 8, 2003. Elliott S. Cappuccio, J.D. ’98, to Amy Elizabeth Nelson, B.A. ’96, Aug. 30, 2003. Kelly Michelle Davis, J.D. ’99, to Stephen Lantz, Oct. 5, 2003. Alfred A. Cortez, J.D. ’00, to Sonia Elizabeth Tabares, June 28, 2003; Gwendolyn L. Pulido, J.D. ’00, to Raymond L. Telles, J.D. ’00, Nov. 16, 2002. E. Roselyn DuShane, J.D., M.A. ’02, to Robert Arthur Franke, April 5, 2003; Belinda Marin, J.D. ’02, B.B.A. ’92, to Keith Boling, Sept. 21, 2002; Todd Andrew Worrich, J.D. ’02, to Audra Lea Henderson, June 28, 2003. Charles E. Gold, J.D. ’03, to Tiffany D. Dixon, Sept. 13, 2003.

Pelaez First Person Hired by Toyota San Antonio
Alumnus Manuel Pelaez is the first person employed by Toyota in Texas for its San Antonio plant now under construction on the South Side. Pelaez (J.D. ’00) was hired as senior counsel for Toyota Manufacturing Texas Inc., and will oversee labor and employment matters for this plant and the one in Baja, Calif. “This is a great opportunity, and I feel extremely fortunate to be in Manuel Pelaez, senior counsel for Toyota Manufacturing Texas this position,” Pelaez said. “I Inc., was the first person hired by the company in Texas. owe a lot to St. Mary’s.” He credits adjunct professor Dan Toyota in August 2003. Naranjo with submitting his name to Toyota “So far, I’ve been doing a lot of for the position, as well as mentoring him in community affairs work. My job is to work the legal profession. with local governments and the community,” He also credits professor Charles Cantu, he said. who “I really look up to,” and Bill Piatt as When the Toyota plant opens here in great mentors. Piatt, he said, “is the kind of 2006 it will employ more than 2000 people, lawyer that a lot of people should aspire to mostly from San Antonio, he says, and be like.” another 4,000 people will be employed by After graduating, Pelaez set up a solo suppliers to Toyota. s practice for three years before moving to

Angelo to Elizabeth and Carman M. Garufi, J.D. ’83, Sept. 23, 2003. Alexandra Rae to Robin and William P. “Bill” Jensen, J.D. ’89, Feb. 4, 2003. Matthew John to Julie and Kevin M. Lippman, J.D. ’92, March 5, 2003; Thomas Claude to Elizabeth (Friday) Savage, J.D. ’92, and Michael T. Savage, J.D. ’92, June 23, 2003. Olivia Rose to Kimberly Land Cormier, J.D. ’93, and Philip A. Cormier, Oct. 14, 2002; Charles John to Cara and Fred Stuart Wilson, J.D. ’93, July 1, 2003. Avery Elise Leiessner to Elisabeth A. Earle, J.D. ’94, and Andrew Britton Leissner, June 21, 2002; Evan Daniel to Anita and Edwin D. Smith, J.D. ’94, June 8, 2003. Carlos James to Laura (Gutierrez) Tamez, J.D. ’95, and George Tamez, March 24, 2003. Lauren Ruth to Valerie Vance Locher, J.D. ’96, and Scott Locher, April 2, 2003; Gerald Glenn Staton II to Candace M. Taylor,

J.D. ’96, B.A. ’93, and Gerald G. Staton, J.D. ’96, March 1, 2003; Mariano Agustin to Anna (Gordon) Torres, J.D., M.A., ’96, and Rudy V. Torres Jr., B.B.A. ’90, June 14, 2002. Zachary to Laura and Steven J. Duskie, J.D. ’97, Nov. 11, 2002; Alexis Renee to Julie (Connell) Jared, J.D. ’97, B.B.A. ’94, and Larry R. Jared, May 30, 2002; Olivia Grace to Karen Lee (Johnson) Zachry, J.D. ’97, B.A. ’93, and David Steves Zachry, April 3, 2003. Benjamin Aaron to Jennifer (Meyer) Bankler, B.B.A. ’95, B.A. ’99, and Scott B. Bankler, J.D. ’98, Sept. 5, 2003; Maura Grace to Ashley Watkins McDowell, J.D. ’98, and Darren McDowell, July 8, 2003; Madison Catherine McClesky to Lori I.

Valenzuela, J.D. ’98, and R. Sean McClesky, J.D. ’98, July 8, 2002. Gabriel Aaron to Nicole and Matthew Cox, J.D. ’00; Issac Reed to Caroline NixonGarcia and Jaime Garcia, J.D. ’00, July 13, 2003. Jacob Robert to Cristina Cervetti Coleman, J.D. ’01, and Robert Coleman, June 8, 2003. s


Calendar of Events
The St. Mary’s University School of Law Newsletter

Friday, April 2: Homecoming CLE Program, Law Classroom Building Friday, April 2: Homecoming Reunion, Alumni Room, Sarita Kenedy East Law Library Saturday, April 3: Homecoming Oyster Bake Wednesday, April 14: Fiesta Farewell, Noon, Law School Plaza Friday, April 16: Law Journal 35th Annual Banquet Friday, April 16 and Saturday, April 17: Oyster Bake

Saturday, April 17: Barrister’s Ball

begin – Summer Session 2 Monday, July 5: Classes begin – Institute on World Legal Problems at the University of Innsbruck, Austria Tuesday, July 27 – Thursday, July 29: Texas Bar Exam

Friday, May 7: Baccalaureate Mass, 7 p.m., Bill Greehey Arena, Blume Academic Library Quadrangle Saturday, May 15: Law School Graduation, 1 to 3 p.m., Bill Greehey Arena. Speaker: Justice Karen Angelini, 4th Court of Appeals Monday, May 24: Classes begin – Summer Session 1

Friday, Aug. 8: MPRE Exam Monday, Aug. 23: Classes begin – Fall 2004

President Charles L. Cotrell, Ph.D. (B.A. ’62, M.A. ’64) School of Law Dean Robert William “Bill” Piatt Jr. Associate Dean for Student and Academic Affairs Vincent R. Johnson Associate Dean for Administration Bonita Roberts Editor Rob Leibold (M.A. ’03) Contributors Will Elliott, Karen Persyn Photography Melanie Rush Davis Scott Schrader Chris Gallegos
Articles and news from alumni should be sent to: St. Mary’s University School of Law Communications Office One Camino Santa Maria San Antonio, Texas 78228-8602 Web site: Phone: (210) 431-4374 Fax: (210) 431-4388 e-mail: LawNotes is published twice a year by the St. Mary’s University School of Law for alumni, friends and members of the community.

Friday, Oct. 15: Distinguished Law Graduate Award Dinner, 6:30 p.m., Westin Riverwalk Hotel, 420 W. Market St.

Thursday, July 1: Classes

What’s new? Let us hear from you!
Changed jobs? Been promoted? Received an award? Moved lately? Help keep us and alumni up-to-date on your accomplishments. You also can submit your information via e-mail to or fax (210) 431-4388. Spring 2004
PERSONAL INFORMATION Name: ________________________________________________ Class Year: ______________ Home Address: __________________________________________________________________ City, State, Zip: __________________________________________________________________ Telephone: __________________ Fax: ________________ E-mail: ________________________ EMPLOYMENT INFORMATION Employer/Firm Name:______________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________ Business Address: ________________________________________________________________ City, State, Zip: __________________________________________________________________ Business Phone: ______________ Fax: ______________ E-mail: ________________________ __________________________________________________________ Job Title: __________________________ Type of Business: ____________________________ __________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________ SPOUSE INFORMATION Spouse’s Name: ____________________________________________ Is your spouse a St. Mary’s graduate?:________ Year Degree:________ Job Title: ____________________ Employer: ____________________ CLASS NOTES INFORMATION Please indicate any information, such as name of new firm, significant verdicts, publications, awards, etc. __________________________________________________________

School of Law


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Completion of Legal Studies

A ceremony honoring the 14 students who received their juris doctorate and one who completed his LL.M. degree in December 2003, was held in the Atrium of the Law Administration Building. After the ceremony, graduates in attendance stood for a group photo with Bill Piatt, dean (bottom row, left) and Judge John Specia (far right), who congratulated them on their accomplishments and welcomed them into the Law Alumni Association.

Those completing their legal education included: (bottom row, left to right) Terry Canales, Marie Cortez, Ricardo Baca, Patricia Oviatt, and LL.M. student Jose Aldape; (back row, left to right) Jose Rodriguez, Daniel Esparza, Kirk Vandervoort and William Anderson. Others graduating, but not pictured, were: Josie Delaney, Jette Gale, Gilberto Juarez, Griselda Ponce, Bobby Porter and David Beck.



St. Mary's University School of Law, “Law Notes: St. Mary's University School of Law Newsletter Spring 2004,” St. Mary's Law Digital Repository, accessed May 23, 2019,

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