Faculty Focus is a monthly publication documenting the activities, accomplishments, and honors of the University of Houston Law Center Faculty.


February 2014


Editor, Katy Stein Badeaux, kastein@central.uh.edu


Previous editions of Faculty Focus can be accessed here.


Janet Beck has been invited to speak at the American Psychological Law Society in New Orleans on mental competency in immigration court proceedings.  She also has been invited to be a Discussion Leader for a panel on Asylum at the American Immigration Lawyers Association annual conference.


Erma Bonadero is now a certified MBTI practitioner after recently completing the Myers-Briggs Training Indicator program.


Aaron Bruhl’s article on Hierarchically Variable Deference to Agency Interpretations is now available in the latest issue of the Notre Dame Law Review.  Last month, Professor Bruhl and Judge Lee Rosenthal, who are co-teaching Federal Courts, hosted Judge Jennifer Elrod of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit as a guest speaker in their course.


Marcilynn Burke was named Faculty of the Year by the University of Houston Black Law Students Association this fall.  She also was a speaker at the Renewable Energy Law & Policy Summit at the University of Denver Sturm College of Law, where she spoke on the future of renewable energy development on federal public lands.  Professor Burke began the year being selected for the executive committee of the Association of American Law Schools’ Natural Resources Law Section.  She then opened the Brigham Young University Law Review Symposium on “The Global Commons” with her presentation, “Davids and Goliaths Managing Public Lands.”  In March, Professor Burke will make three presentations on public lands and/or waters.  First, she will present at a symposium co-sponsored by the Law Center and the George Washington University Law School.  She will then proceed directly to the NACLE workshop for 2014, “Re-energizing North America: Pipelines and Policy,” in Vancouver, led by Professor Steve Zamora.  The following week she will be the keynote speaker at the Offshore Energy in the Southeast Conference, sponsored by the N.C. Coastal Resources Law, Planning, and Policy Center; the University of North Carolina School of Law’s Center for Law, Environment, Adaptation, and Resources; and the University of North Carolina – Wilmington. 


The past few months, Darren Bush has been busy. Along with Harry First, he completed the 7th Edition of Free Enterprise and Economic Organization: Antitrust, a casebook for Foundation Press.  Professor Bush appreciates the great opportunity for such scholarly collaboration. In addition, he gave a talk in September before the National Association of Attorneys General reviewing “The Ten Most Awesome Events in Antitrust Enforcement in 2013.”  As Chair of the AALS Antitrust and Economic Regulation Section, he hosted a panel in January at AALS celebrating 100 Years of the Federal Trade Commission (fellow panelists included Bill Kovacic, Hillary Greene, Jack Kirkwood, and Andy Gavil. Professor Bush also participated in the 4th Annual “Lone Star” Chinese Martial Arts Championship in January. He continues to work in his spare time on his double-edged sword form (when he isn’t working to complete his follow-up article on the D.C. Circuit’s misuse of the Tunney Act).


Barbara Evans addressed the Institute of Medicine’s Committee on Strategies for Responsible Sharing of Clinical Trial Data in Washington on February 4. The talk was webcast to scientists and regulators around the world that are working together to develop legal and informational infrastructure for sharing data from clinical trials. Professor Evans has two law review articles and a co-authored medical journal article set to appear in print this month.  


Tracy Hester participated in the winter meeting of the ABA's Council for the Section on Environment, Energy and Resources at Phoenix, Arizona on January 24-25. He was reappointed to another term as vice-chair of the Greater Houston Partnership's environmental policy advisory committee. On February 14, he hosted Texas Representative Sarah Davis and House Parliamentarian Chris Griese for a special class session on Statutory Interpretation and Regulatory Practice.

Geoffrey Hoffman travelled to San Francisco and argued an immigration case before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. The case involved a claim of asylum, past persecution, and a well-founded fear of persecution, as well as issues of waiver, Convention Against Torture and humanitarian asylum. Professor G. Hoffman was acknowledged by Professor Victor C. Romero in Reading (into) Windsor: Presidential Leadership, Marriage Equality, and Immigration Policy, an essay appearing in the Southern California Review of Law and Social Justice, Vol. 23, No.1, Fall 2013.


Craig Joyce was reappointed to the Editorial Board of H-LAW. H-LAW is a vehicle of the American Society for Legal History, advancing the discussion network of Humanities Social Sciences On-Line.


Sapna Kumar presented an early draft of her work Public Law, Standing, and the Federal Circuit at the Works In Progress in Intellectual Property conference in San Jose. She has also been invited to speak at American University’s Patent Administrative Law Symposium.


Jacqueline Lipton presented "A Taxonomy of Borrowing" as part of the Mercer Law School Faculty Colloquium series on February 11.


Michael A. Olivas delivered a lecture and a series of workshops at the University of Kentucky. He also conducted a legal workshop for the UH College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences (CLASS), for its program directors, senior program administrators, and department chairs. He also had his first series of “The Law of Rock and Roll” NPR radio show appear on KANW, 89.1 and our FM dial, in Albuquerque, NM. It appears at 8:20 a.m. on Fridays on KANW, and will be licensed to other stations: http://kanw.com/programs/law-rock-and-roll.   


Spencer Simons organized and spoke on January 3 in the program “The Law Library: Creative and Strategic Innovation in the Midst of Change,” presented at the AALS annual meeting in New York City. The program was sponsored by the AALS Committee on Libraries and Technology, of which Spencer was the 2013 Chair.


Sandra Guerra Thompson presented a chapter of her forthcoming book on police crime labs at the SMU Criminal Justice Colloquium at SMU Dedman School of Law in Dallas on January 22nd.


Greg Vetter presented Deleveraging the Software License in Health Information Technology at the 2014 Works in Progress in Intellectual Property (WIPIP) event held at Santa Clara University School of Law on February 8-9, 2014.  Professor Vetter is a member of the WIPIP Organizing Board (www.wipip.info).


Jacqueline Weaver moderated a panel at the Andrews Kurth Moot Court Symposium on January 23. The topic was: “Fracking: The Cost of Energy Independence." The panelists consisted of two scientists (a petroleum engineering professor and a professor of ecology from Cornell), William Wood (an alum who is now at Norton Rose Fulbright), and an attorney with the Natural Resources Defense Counsel. Brad Aiken, one of our alums, and Jim Lawrence pulled this incredible panel together. The diverse perspectives of the speakers created much dialogue among the panelists and with the audience, which included lawyers, law students, and scientists. 


Bret Wells served as the panel moderator where he gave a presentation on the OECD’S Initiative to Combat Base Erosion & Profit Shifting at a meeting of the Houston Chapter of the International Fiscal Association (February 5, 2014).