Members in the News
Are you a Hispanic Issues Section member that has:
- Recently moved jobs?
- Recently been named partner at a firm?
- Recently received a civic or other award?
- Been named to leadership of a local, state or national bar association?
We want to promote the wonderful achievements of our members! Email us today!
Judge Debra Ibarra Mayfield Appointed to 190th District Court
Governor Greg Abbott has appointed Debra Ibarra Mayfield as judge of the 190th Judicial District Court in Harris County for a term set to expire December 31, 2018, or until her successor shall be duly elected and qualified. Her appointment is effective November 1, 2017.
Judge Mayfield previously has served as judge of the 165th Judicial District Court and of Couty Civil Court at Law Number One in Harris County.
Congratulations Judge Mayfield!
HIS Past Chair Benny Agosto, Jr. Receives Humanitarian Award
Hispanic Issues Section Past Chair Benny Agosto, Jr. recently received the Humanitarian Award in the category of Male Philanthropist by the Latino Learning Center in Houston. Click here to read the press release. Congratulations Benny!
HIS Immediate Past Chair Benny Agosto, Jr. Discusses Recent Donald Trump Comments
Hispanic Issues Section Immediate Past Chair Benny Agosto, Jr. recently was interviewed by NBCNews.com, along with other notable Hispanic individuals, with respect to some recent comments from Republican Presidential nominee Donald Trump regarding Federal Judge Gonzalo Curiel. Click here to read the article.
HIS Member Carlos Soltero Discusses Supreme Court Nomination Process
HIS Council Member Judge Debra Ibarra Mayfield Named One of Houston's Most Influential Women
Judge Debra Ibarra Mayfield, HIS Council Member and recently appointed District Judge of the 165th Judicial District Court in Harris County, has been named one of Houston's 50 Most Influential Women by Houston Women's Magazine. A press release regarding the honor can be found here, and the the full list of honorees can be seen here. Congratulations Judge Mayfield!
HIS Member Sofia Adrogué Hosts Business Litigation CLE in Houston
HIS Member (and author!) Sofia Adrogué is hosting a CLE titled "The Art of Business Litigation" in conjunction with Texas Lawyer. Details:
Date: October 21, 2015
Time: 4:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
Location: River Oaks Country Club, 1600 River Oaks Blvd., Houston, Texas 77019
Click here for the flyer for the event. Sofia is the editor of "Texas Business Litigation," a comprehensive handbook for Texas litigators and transactional attorneys. A new 2016 edition of the book is available now!
HIS Member Ricardo Meza Reviews Entity Investigations and Deflategate
HIS Member Ricardo Meza, Officer with Greensfelder, Hemker & Gale, P.C. in Chicago, recently authored an interesting piece reviewing the need for any entity investigation to remain independent, using the recent and very public "Deflategate" case in the National Football League as a cautionary example. You can read the piece here.
HIS Immediate Past Chair Benny Agosto, Jr. Receives President's Award from State Bar
HIS Immediate Past Chair Benny Agosto Jr. is being awarded with the President's Award from the State Bar of Texas. The award is being presented today, June 19, 2015, at the General Session Luncheon at Annual Meeting. The award is one of the most prestigious presented by the State Bar, and recognizes exceptional service to the public and to the legal profession.
You can read more about Benny's numerous achievements in this press release from Benny's firm, Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Sorrels, Agosto & Friend.
HIS Immediate Past Chair Benny Agosto, Jr. Participates in Voter Turnout Event
HIS Immediate Past Chair Benny Agosto, Jr. participated in an event today hosted by the Houston Hispanic Chamber of Commerce encouraging professionals to help get out the vote. In the last presidential election, only 31% of eligible Hispanic voters cast their votes - 6.6 million votes out of 21 million eligible voters. According to a story by the Houston Chronicle on the event, fewer than 10% of eligible Hispanic voters have participated in Houston's last three municipal elections.
Photos from the event are below. Be sure to cast your votes in your local elections, and encourage our community to do so as well!
HIS Immediate Past Chair Benny Agosto Jr. Discusses New Texas Laws
HIS Immediate Past Chair Benny Agosto, Jr. recently visited the Univision TV regional morning show Primera Edición to discuss the effect of the laws recently passed by the Texas Legislature, most of which went into effect on September 1. Benny was interviewed by Univision anchor Karina Yapor.
Judge Debra Ibarra Mayfield Appointed to 165th Judicial District Court
Judge Debra Ibarra Mayfield, HIS Council Member and currently judge of Harris County Civil Court at Law Number One, has been appointed by Governor Greg Abbot as judge of the 165th Judicial District Court in Harris County for a term to expire at the next general election in November 2016.
Judge Mayfield has served in the Harris County Civil Court since 2011 and currently serves as Administrative Judge of the County Civil Courts. Included among her many accolades and achievements are her selection in 2013 as a "Woman on the Move" by Texas Executive Women, her service as a past president of the Mexican American Bar Association of Houston, her receipt of the 2014 "Public Service Award" from South Texas College of Law, and her service on the board of the Institute of Hispanic Culture.
Congratulations Judge Mayfield!
Justice Patricia O. Alvarez Receives Professionalism Award
HIS Immediate Past Chair Justice Patricia O. Alvarez is the recipient of this year's Jim Bowmer Professionalism Award from the Texas Bar College. The award is given to an outstanding member of the Texas Bar College based on achievement or contribution to professionalism, and is named in honor of Jim D. Bowmer, of Temple, Texas, the originator of the idea of the State Bar College and a co-founding father of the College.
Justice Alvarez received the award for her continuous efforts to teach civility to attorneys and law students. She has published papers and given numerous presentations on the topic of civility at seminars and at law schools across the state.
The Texas Bar College is an honorary society of lawyers who are among the best trained attorneys in Texas, and recognizes Texas lawyers who attend at least double the Continuing Legal Education (CLE) required by the State Bar of Texas. Click here for more information on the Texas Bar College awards.
Congratulations Justice Alvarez!
HIS Member Angelica M. Hernandez Recognized by Firm
HIS Member Angelica M. Hernandez was recently recognized by her firm, Linebarger Goggan Blair & Sampson, LLP, as their Attorney of the Year. Angelica was recognized both for her work for the firm, and her various community activities and accomplishments.
HIS Member Celeste Villarreal Appointed as HNBA Latina Commissioner
HIS member Celeste Villarreal has been appointed by HNBA National President Cynthia Mares to serve as a Commissioner of the HNBA's Latina Commission for 2014-2015. The Latina Commission's mission is to promote the advancement of Latinas in the legal profession, and the Commission conducts various activities such as Latina Commission Leadership Training. Congratulations Celeste!
HIS Chair Benny Agosto, Jr. Named 2014 TMCP Trailblazer
HIS Chair Benny Agosto, Jr. was honored as the 2014 Texas Minority Counsel Program Trailblazer for Outside Counsel of the Year. The award was presented at the TMCP's annual Keynote Awards Luncheon held in Austin at the Westin Hotel at the Domain on Friday, September 5, 2014. The Trailblazer Outside Counsel of the Year Award recognizes an outside counsel who has effectuated the promotion of diversity within the legal profession through hiring, retention and mentoring of diverse attorneys, partnering with minority and women owned law firms and involvement with Bar and/or community activities designed to promote diversity within the legal profession.
Click here to read a press release with additional information about the award. Congratulations Benny!
HIS Chair Benny Agosto, Jr. Named Hispanic Male Executive of Year by Houston Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
HIS Chair Benny Agosto, Jr. was recently named the Hispanic Male Executive of the Year by the Houston Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.
The award was presented at this year's Annual Awards Gala being held on Saturday, November 1, 2014 at the Hobby Center - Downtown Houston. The Houston Hispanic Chamber of Commerce described the event as follows:
The Houston Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (HHCC) honored Houston entrepreneurs, corporate executives and businesses for their leadership and impact on the Houston Hispanic business community during its Annual Awards Gala. Dr. Stephen L. Klineberg, Founding Director of the Kinder Institute for Urban Research, received the Houston Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Chairman’s Award for his outstanding contributions to the Houston community.
The Awards Gala took place on Saturday, November 1st, at the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts. The ceremony was attended by an estimated 1,200 guests. Dr. Stephen L. Klineberg highlighted the importance of the changing demographics of Houston and how these are a reflection of the future structure of the country. Dr. Laura Murillo, President and CEO of the Houston Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, said that “leaders at all levels need to look at Houston now to see what is coming to their local communities.”
The Awards Gala honorees included Benny Agosto, Jr, Hispanic Male Executive of the Year; Maria Borras, Hispanic Female Executive of the Year; Maximo Tejada, Hispanic Male Entrepreneur of the Year; Evelyn Fletcher, Hispanic Female Entrepreneur of the Year; and Regina Garcia, Emerging Hispanic Business of the Year.
Congratulations Benny! Pictures from the event are below.
HIS Chair Benny Agosto, Jr. Elected President of HNBA Legal Education Fund
The Hispanic National Bar Association Legal Education Fund (HNBA-LEF) recently elected HIS Chair Benny Agosto, Jr. as its President.
The HNBA-LEF Education Fund, the only 501(c)(3) charitable organization affiliated with the HNBA, provides law student scholarship funding, community outreach programming, a week-long law camp (LEAP Program) for high-school students of diverse backgrounds, and an annual publication, HNBA Journal of Law and Policy.
Please click here for the press release announcing the election. Congratulations Benny!
Judge Debra Ibarra Mayfield to be Honored by Alumni Association
HIS Member and Membership Committee Co-Chair Judge Debra Ibarra Mayfield will be honored by the South Texas College of Law Alumni Association with their Public Service Award at the association's Annual Meeting, to be held on October 10, 2014 at the Hotel Zaza.
Click here to read more about the event. Congratulations Judge Mayfield!
Carlos Soltero Appointed as Chair of Court Rules Committee
Hispanic Issues Section member Carlos Soltero has been appointed Chair of the State Bar of Texas Court Rules Committee for 2014-2015. Carlos has served on the committee for several years and is the current Vice Chair of the committee.
The Court Rules Committee reviews issues of civil procedure in Texas and proposes changes in rules and statues concerning civil procedure to the Texas Supreme Court and the state legislature. In the past several years it has proposed the use of unsworn declarations, a complete revision of the rules for justice courts, the revision of the special appearance rule, changes in the discovery rules, revisions to the jury shuffle, and various other potential changes.
HIS Chair Benny Agosto, Jr. Honored with ADL Civil Rights Medal
Update, November 15, 2014: Chair Benny Agosto, Jr. was honored by the ADL at its event this week. Please click here for a press release describing the award and event. A picture from the event, and the ADL Civil Rights Medal awarded, are below. Congratulations Benny!
Original Item, June 10, 2014: Hispanic Issues Section Chair-Elect Benny Agosto, Jr. will be honored by the Anti-Defamation League as a recipient of an ADL Civil Rights Medal at the upcoming 2014 Houston in Concert Against Hate: A Theatre Tribute to American Civil Rights on November 13, 2014 at the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts in Houston, Texas.
Here is the description of the event from the ADL: Houston In Concert Against Hate will be an inspirational evening of theatre honoring the progress of American civil rights over the last 50 years since the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was signed by President Lyndon Baines Johnson. Powerful stories of civil rights heroes from Houston and beyond will be presented along with a medley of musical and dramatic theatre vignettes, and will be woven into a compelling story, narrated by Academy and Emmy Award-winning actor Louis Gossett, Jr. The evening will spotlight Houston’s rich diversity and honor six Texans and Texas organizations that have made a difference in promoting and protecting civil rights for all.
Please click here for more information about the event. Congratulations Benny!
Justice Eva Guzman Honored by Women and the Law Section
Texas Supreme Court Justice Eva Guzman is the recipient of the Women and the Law Section of the State Bar of Texas’ Sarah T. Hughes Women Lawyers of Achievement Award! This award recognizes "women who have achieved excellence in their fields while paving the way for other women lawyers to be successful." Past recipients include Barbara Jordan, Patricia Diaz Dennis and Harriet Miers. The award will be presented on June 27 at the Women and Law Section’s meeting at the State Bar Annual Meeting.
Congratulations Justice Guzman!
Angelica M. Hernandez Recognized by State Bar of Texas
Hispanic Issues Section member Angelica M. Hernandez is one of this year's recipients of a State Bar of Texas Certificate of Merit. This is a prestigious award that is presented each year as part of the General Session luncheon, which will be held this year on Friday, June 27th during the State Bar Annual Meeting in Austin. Congratulations Angelica!
Angelica M. Hernandez Recognized by Houston Bar Association
Angelica M. Hernandez, member of the Hispanic Issues Section Council and co-chair of the CLE Committee, was recently honored as one of this year's recipients of the Houston Bar Association's President's Award. The award was presented at the Houston Bar Association's Annual Dinner Meeting on May 15, 2014, at the River Oaks Country Club. The award recognizes Angelica's continued contributions to her local bar association and community. Congratulations Angelica! Pictures from the ceremony are below.
Chair, Justice Patricia O. Alvarez, Honored by Laredo-Webb County Bar Association
Justice Patricia O. Alvarez, Chair of the Hispanic Issues Section, will be honored by the Laredo-Webb County Bar Association this week with its Liberty Bell Award at a luncheon to be held on May 2. Justice Alvarez also is being honored with the title of Chairman of Law Day. Congratulations Justice Alvarez! Read more here.
Chair-Elect Benny Agosto, Jr. Recognized by Philanthropy Organization, Featured in Hispanic Executive Magazine
Chair-Elect Benny Agosto, Jr. is going to be honored by the organization Hispanics in Philanthropy as an "HIP Giver" for his philanthropic work in many areas, particularly his work with the charitable foundations of the National Hispanic Bar Association and the Mexican-American Bar Association of Texas. The honor will be presented at Hispanics in Philanthropy's 30th Anniversary Gala Dinner in San Francisco on March 6, 2014. Benny also has been featured in a recent issue of Hispanic Executive magazine. Congratulations Benny!
Update: Here is a blog post from Hispanics in Philanthropy about the event. Also, you can now see the profile of Benny in the special publication "Hispanics in Philanthropy Celebrates 30 Portraits of Latino Giving & Leadership"--Benny's profile is on page 12.
Chair-Elect Benny Agosto, Jr. Delivers Commencement Address at South Texas College of Law
In December, Hispanic Issues Section Chair-Elect Benny Agosto, Jr. delivered the commencement address for the South Texas College of Law's December graduation ceremony. You can see more about the commencement address and Mr. Agosto's commitment with the South Texas College of Law here.
Chair-Elect Benny Agosto, Jr. Article Regarding Judicial Vacancies and the Need for Diverse Appointments
Hispanic Issues Section Chair-Elect Benny Agosto, Jr. recently wrote an article regarding the need for more diverse appointments on the federal bench, and discussing the current crisis of judicial vacancies nationwide. You can read the article in its entirety here.
Tina Torres Appointed Judge of Bexar County Court at Law No. 10
On November 19, Hispanic Issues Section member Tina Torres was appointed by the County Commissioners of Bexar County to serve as the new judge of County Court at Law No. 10. Judge Irene Rios recently stepped down in order to enter the race for a position on the the Fourth Court of Appeals.
Michelle Alcala Recognized by Employment Law Section of the Austin Bar Association
Michelle Alcala, Hispanic Issues Section member and a shareholder at Graves, Dougherty, Hearon & Moody, was recently recognized by the Austin Bar Association Labor and Employment Law Section for her outstanding dedication and service to the section for the past several years. The section chose to honor Ms. Alcala not only for not just her recently completed year of service as the section’s Chair for 2012-2013, but for her multiple years of service as an officer. Scott Agthe, the current section Chair and partner at Constangy, Brooks & Smith, LLP, praised Michelle's work: “Michelle is very dedicated and was an excellent leader, by example and as a director, and of course is a fine person and friend. She has been invaluable to continuing and building on the professionalism and collegiality that L&E lawyers enjoy at the Austin Bar.” Congratulations Michelle!
Justice Patricia O. Alvarez Named 2013 Angel of Hope Honoree
Hispanic Issues Section Chair and 4th Court of Appeals Justice Patricia O. Alvarez was named the 2013 Angel of Hope Honoree for the 2nd Annual Gala of the Angel of Hope - Posada En El Barrio event. The Angel of Hope - Posada En El Barrio organization raises funds for its annual Angel of Hope Christmas Program, which expects to distribute over 15,000 toys to nearly 3,000 children this year. The organization chose Justice Alvarez as its honoree in recognition of her tremendous career and commitment to her community. Congratulations Justice Alvarez!
Click here to read an excerpt from the Laredo Morning Times describing the event and containing an article about Justice Alvarez.
Angelica M. Hernandez Named Houston Bar Association Ambassador
Hispanic Issues Section Council Member Angelica M. Hernandez, a partner at Linebarger Goggan Blair & Sampson, LLP, has been selected as one of the Ambassadors of the Houston Bar Association by Houston Bar Association President David Chaumette. Across the 11,000+ member association, there are only 20 Ambassadors. Click here to see an article about the Ambassador program. Congratulations Angelica!
Charitable and Community Work of Frances Valdez Recognized in George Mason University Publication
So to Speak, a journal published by George Mason University, recently published an article describing the charitable and community work performed by Houston attorney Frances Valdez. Congratulations Frances!
Sofia Adrogue Publishes Law Review Article
The Hispanic Issues Section congratulates Sofia Adrogue on the recent publication of her article entitled "Recent Developments in Fifth Circuit Business Torts Jurisprudence" in the Texas Tech Law Review.
See the full article here! The citation for her article is Sofia Adroguѐ, P.C., Business Litigation, 45 Tex. Tech. L. Rev. 645 (2013).