Executive Director’s Perspective: Summer Schooled – By Joseph A. Martinez


TCDLA is looking for members who are interested in serving on the TCDLA board. Lydia Clay-Jackson, President-Elect and chair of the TCDLA Nominating Committee, is encouraging TCDLA members to submit their applications. The application can be found in this issue of the Voice or can be downloaded from the TCDLA website. Members can also contact the nominating committee member from their district for an application. TCDLA will be sending the application to the presidents of all local criminal defense bars and Public Defender offices as well as all TCDLA members. Please call the home office (512-478-2514) if you do not receive the application, and a copy will be sent to you.

There are a total of 15 board and 16 associate board slots that need to be reappointed or filled, as well as the officer position of Secretary. The deadline for submitting an application is 12:00 pm on Tuesday, November 1, 2011. The nominating committee will meet on Saturday, December 3, 2011, in Houston to determine who will be the 2012–2013 board nominees. The TCDLA members present will vote on the nominees at the TCDLA Annual Meeting on Saturday, June 9, 2012, in San Antonio.

TCDLA and Criminal Defense Lawyers Project (CDLP) conducted 7 seminars and trained a total of 932 attendees (244 TCDLA/688 CDLP) in the month of August 2011. These seminars would not have been possible without the contributions and support of the course directors, speakers, and TCDLA members who help promote and attended the seminars. A special thank you to the TCDLA staff, who provided exceptional support to the seminars. This was truly a TCDLA team effort for justice.

Thanks to Lance Platt (Bryan), course director and instructor, we had 32 attendees at the NHTSA Standardized Field Sobriety Test (SFTS) Refresher Course held in Houston. Platt & Associates were co-sponsors of this seminar.

Thanks to Danny Easterling (Houston), Grant Scheiner (Houston), and Earl Musick (Houston), President of Harris County Criminal Lawyers Association (HCCLA), our course directors for the 9th annual Top Gun DWI—Blood, Breath & Beyond seminar held in Houston, we had 212 attendees. Very special thanks to Earl and the HCCLA leadership and HCCLA members who joined TCDLA in co-sponsoring the seminar. Special thanks to Christina Appelt, HCCLA Executive Director, who provided support. TCDLA looks forward to a continued successful partnership with HCCLA.

Thanks to Jeff Blackburn (Lubbock), Jani Maselli (Houston), and Gary Udashen (Dallas), course directors for “Innocence Work” in the Real World for Real Lawyers held in Austin, we had 93 attendees. Special thanks to Mr. Anthony Graves, recent Texas exonoree who spoke at the seminar.

Thanks to Allen Place (Gatesville), our course director and speaker for the 2011 Legislative Update conference call, we had 280 participants.

Thanks to Jeanette Kinard (Austin), David Moore (Long­view), and Derick R. Smith (Stafford), our course directors for Trial Tactics: The Art of War seminar held in Sugarland, we had 124 attendees.

Thanks to the Honorable Judge Herb Evans, Justice of the Peace Precinct 5 (Austin), and Carlos Garcia (Austin), our course directors for Best of the Best IV: Forensics, Science and Innocence Lost seminar held in Austin, we had 148 attendees.

Thanks to John Bonilla (Corpus Christi), Jeanette Kinard (Austin), and David Moore (Longview), our course directors for Trial Tactics: The Art of War seminar held in Corpus Christi, we had 43 attendees.

TCDLA has received notice from the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals (CCA) of its FY 2012 award of $63,000 for Actual Innocence training. This brings the total amount of grants awarded by the CCA to TCDLA to $1,017,962 for FY 2012. This includes previous grant awards of $926,628.00 for CDLP and $28,334 for the Public Defenders Travel Stipends. TCDLA and CDLP are most appreciative of the entire CCA’s continued support providing quality indigent defense continuing legal education to criminal defense attorneys and other court personnel. TCDLA and CDLP are also appreciative of the CCA grant staff, which has provided so much help and support during the past year.

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

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 our associate course directors Sharon Curtis, Sarah Roland, and Marjorie Bachman.

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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