The school year is well under way and it has been an exciting time for our students and alumni as we welcome our new dean, Leonard M. Baynes. Houston area grads gathered on Sept. 9 at Hotel ZaZa to hear Dean Baynes share his vision for the Law Center and the theme of his leadership-- “The Power of Legal Education.” Dean Baynes highlighted his priorities, which include expanding career placement efforts, improving Law Center rankings, maintaining high admission standards, and supporting construction of a new building. Receptions followed in Austin, San Antonio and Dallas and will soon be held in New York, Washington, D.C., and South Texas. Dean Baynes says, “Wherever there are Law Center alums, I will go.”
The meet and greet receptions brought out an array of distinguished alums, including judges, current and former elected officials, general counsels, and leaders in education and government. Dan Byrne ’83 and The Honorable Darlene Byrne ’87 co-hosted the reception in Austin at the offices of Fritz, Byrne, Head & Harrison, which offered a spectacular 20th floor view overlooking Lady Bird Lake and the Texas Hill Country. Also attending were The Honorable Cathy Cochran ’84, state Senator Rodney Ellis, and former state legislators Debra Danburg ’79 and Clint Hackney ’77. The Dallas reception was hosted by Joy and Billie Ellis ’78, a partner with Locke Lord, at their beautiful home in Highland Park. Most recently, our young alumni leaders hosted a breakfast for Dean Baynes, which provided many of our newest alums the opportunity to visit with our new dean.
Speaking of fabulous events, the 39th Annual Law Auction and Gala will be held on March 6th at the River Oaks Country Club. Last year’s Gala was the best one in recent memory thanks to the tireless efforts of Bill (’92) & Shawn Jackson who hosted a wonderful evening for all of us. You won’t want to miss the party this year as it promises to be even better! Many thanks to UHLC graduate Susan Bickley ’84 and her husband, Bob Scott, who have graciously agreed to host this year’s big event. A special thanks also goes out to Brittany Sakowitz ’10, who will pick up the torch from Cynthia Mabry ’10 and chair a great auction again this year. I’ll be bringing you more details about this evening of fun and fundraising in future letters.
None of our activities and events would be possible without the continued financial support of our alumni. This support was underscored once again with the success of this year’s 100% Challenge campaign led by incoming Alumni Association President Richard Whiteley ’99. This year over 100 firms, companies, and organizations participated in the challenge and 59 of those reached 100% participation! Over $300,000 was raised through the gifts of 1042 different alums. Thanks to all of you who participated and to Richard for another year of hard work on this very important program. Thanks also to the Law Center faculty who participated in the program, reached 100%, and raised almost $25,000!
Finally, our alumni organization is proud to provide mentoring to our 2L and 3L students. A kick off reception for the second year of this highly successful program was held Sept. 29 at the Law Center. The program matches second- and third-year students with lawyers in the community. Attorney mentors help students by offering professional advice and insights about how to best make the transition from law student to lawyer. This year, more than 50 attorneys will participate in this important program.
It’s going to be an exciting year for our alumni. The next young alumni breakfast is scheduled for November 19th. Other future events include the annual wine tasting, a family day, Holiday Coffee, and other great events and programs. Be sure to check the Alumni Association calendar frequently.
Thank you for your support of the Law Center. I hope to see you at an alumni event soon!
Tom Hetherington ’98
UH Law Alumni Association President
Partner, Edison, McDowell & Hetherington LLP
Thank you for staying connected! We hope that each time you visit this website you will learn something new about the University of Houston Law Alumni Association, the Law Center, your former classmates and our faculty.
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You can take pride in knowing that as alumni, you are graduates of a leading law school and you automatically belong to the University of Houston Law Alumni Association upon graduation. You also have access to the growing Global Law Alumni Network.
The University of Houston Law Alumni Association is dedicated to helping alumni connect with each other and remain in contact with the Law Center. Our Law Alumni Association Board is committed to providing programs and services that are interesting and helpful to you. We are constantly working to develop additional programming and events designed to increase networking, CLE and social opportunities for our alumni. We update the Alumni Calendar to reflect upcoming activities and events. Please contact us if you want to get involved with our events or have ideas for upcoming programs. We are here to serve you!
It is my privilege to play a role in our alumni network and to continue to build on the successes of the Alumni Association. I look forward to seeing you at upcoming events!
Tom Hetherington '98
2013-2015 UH Law Alumni Association President, University of Houston Law Alumni Association
Partner, Edison, McDowell & Hetherington LLP