Executive Director’s Perspective: Giving Thanks – By Joseph A. Martinez


Very special thanks to our course directors, Troy McKinney (Houston) and Doug Murphy (Houston), and associate course directors John Fox (San Antonio) and George Scharmen (San Antonio) for the 8th Annual Stuart Kinard Memorial Advanced DWI Seminar held in San Antonio. Thanks to their efforts we had 127 attendees.

Special thanks to George Altgelt (Laredo), President of the Webb County Bar and TCDLA member. George asked TCDLA to co-sponsor the Criminal Defense seminar held in Laredo. George also served as course director for the event. There were 37 attendees.

Special thanks to course directors Philip Wischkaemper (Lubbock), Larry Renner (Albuquerque), Rob Cowie (Lubbock), Rick Wardroup (Lubbock), and E. X. Martin (Dallas) for the 9th Annual Forensics seminar. This year’s event started with an actual crime scene re-creation with Detective Robert Quirk and Andra Lewis-Krick, Crime Scene Specialist, both of the Dallas Police Department.

Special thanks to Michael Gross (San Antonio) and the San Antonio Criminal Defense Lawyers Association for allowing TCDLA/CDLP to co-sponsor their annual Jim Greenfield Memorial Nuts and Bolts seminar held in San Antonio at the Bexar County Central Jury Room. Thanks to everyone’s efforts we had 223 attendees.

The 36th Annual Texas Criminal Trial College will be held in Huntsville March 18–23, 2012. We encourage lawyers with fewer than 5 years of criminal trial experience to make application. There will be 80 lawyers accepted. Lydia Clay-Jackson, Dean of Students, will make the admission decisions. Tim Evans, Dean of Faculty, determines who is chosen to be a faculty member. The Texas Criminal Trial College application is on the TCDLA website and in this issue of the Voice. The deadline is noon, January 20, 2012.

TCDLA has purchased Droid phone apps that are available for judges in Texas. Please ask the judge to call the home office, and we can walk the judge through the process.

We had a meeting with the Court of Criminal Appeals related to the recent grant award from the Department of Justice, Capital Case Litigation Initiative. We anticipate a three-day seminar to be held in Houston sometime in fall 2012 and a second CLE on the web in 2013. More details to follow.

TCDLA would like to congratulate James Bethke, Executive Director of the Texas Indigent Defense Commission and member of TCDLA. The commission had its annual Indigent Defense Symposium at the State Capitol. This is the 10th year of the symposium.

John Ackerman (Sunrise Beach) is our course director for TCDLA’s first four-day Psychodrama Program at the Round Top Festival Institute January 11–14, 2012, with attendance limited to 60 spots. Tuition is $750 per person. Public Defenders registration is covered by the CDLP grant. TCDLA, CDLP, and TCDLEI are all providing funds for this unique training event. There will be no onsite registration. Please see our website for more information.

All TCDLA members are cordially invited to attend your next TCDLA Board of Directors Meeting, to be held in downtown Houston on Saturday morning, 10:15 am, December 3, 2012, at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, 1700 Smith Street.

Please save the date to join us at the 25th Annual Rusty Duncan Advanced Criminal Law Course, June 7–9, 2012. Our course directors will be Troy McKinney, Stephanie Stevens, and Doug Murphy, with associate course directors Sharon Curtis, Sarah Roland, and Marjorie Bachman. The theme will be “Ridin’ for Justice—Celebrating 25 Years,” a cowboy theme. A fun run and other healthy lifestyle options will be available.

As we approach the Thanksgiving holiday, we want to give thanks to our TCDLA members, who have consistently supported their association over the last year. TCDLA is a strong, effective advocate for justice in Texas. We also thank our leadership, Gary Trichter, President, the TCDLA officers, and board members for their guidance.

The very best to each of you and your family. Have a safe and enjoyable Thanksgiving holiday.

Good verdicts to all.

Joseph A. Martinez
Joseph A. Martinez
Joseph A. Martinez is the former long-time Executive Director of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association.
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