Executive Director’s Perspective: Ten Years in the Making – By Joseph A. Martinez


Thanks to our course directors Troy McKinney (Houston) and in particular Jimmy Gonzales (Edinburg), Public Defender Hidalgo County, we had 68 attendees at our Public Defender DWI seminar held in Edinburg. Special thanks to our speakers, Gary Trichter (Bandera), Bennie Ray (Austin), and Doug Murphy (Houston). Special thanks also to the National College for DUI Defense, co-sponsor for the seminar. This one of three co-sponsored seminars focused on providing public defenders in Texas with DWI training.

Special thanks to our course directors, Ed Stapleton (Brownsville) and Rick Wardroup (Lubbock), for our Capital Litigation for the Defense held in South Padre Island. Thanks to their efforts, we had 31 attendees.

John Ackerman (Sunrise Beach) is our course director for TCDLA’s first 4-day Psychodrama Program at the Round Top Festival Institute January 11–14, 2012. Only 60 lawyers will be accepted, and we are already almost full. Tuition is $750 per person. Public Defenders are 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.

On November 2 of this year, I celebrated 10 years as Executive Director for TCDLA. My wife Bertha and I are honored to have served the membership these past 10 years. I thank the presidents who I have served under. I thank the board of directors for their faith in me. I thank each and every member for their support. I thank the TCDLA staff—in particular Melissa Schank, Assistant Executive Director—for their dedication to TCDLA.

In my 10 years, I have come to a better understanding of the complexities of how to arrive at justice for those accused of a crime in Texas. I have a profound respect for our members who on a daily basis put all their intellectual, physical, emotional, and psychological capacities to defending their clients. I am humbled to say that I work for 3,200 soldiers in the army of justice. Bertha and I look forward to many more years in humble service to the TCLDA membership.

The 36th Annual Texas Criminal Trial College to 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, makes the decision on who is chosen to be a faculty member. The Texas Criminal Trial College application is on the TCDLA website and in this issue. The deadline is noon, January 20, 2012 .

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.” It is a cowboy theme. A fun run and other healthy life-style options will be available.

TCDLA wishes a happy and joyful Holiday Season to all of its members and their families.

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.
Previous Story

Editor’s Comment: 100,000 Views – By Greg Westfall

Next Story

President’s Message: Seminars Do Not Grow on Trees – By J. Gary Trichter

Latest from Columns