Vol. 27, No. 2 THE
The Docket NAWL Sponsors February Social
by Carolyn Chinn
February 9 (Tuesday)
DAYL Equal Access to Justice Committee Meeting oin the DAYL and the Na- ing in the surface lot at Field and Munger.
Noon, Belo Mansion tional Association of Women For those coming from the Fairmont, there is
February 9 (Tuesday) Lawyers (NAWL) along with tunnel access, as well. This is a unique location
Career Challenges Breakfast the Texas Young Lawyers As-
7:30 a.m., Dream Cafe in Addison
and promises to be a night to remember!
sociation (TYLA) for a Cocktail Reception The event is planned to coincide with
February 9 (Tuesday)
DAYL Ask-A-Lawyer Committee Meeting
on Thursday, February 25, 2010 from NAWL’s national conference being held in
7:00 p.m., Cafe Express Mockingbird Station 5:30 - 8:00 p.m. (note we are starting things downtown Dallas February 24 -25, 2010. To
February 10 (Wednesday)
a little early!). The event will take place at register to attend the conference, go to
Lunch and Learn - Discovery Avanti Fountain Place. Avanti is next door www.nawl.org. A calendar including speakers
Noon, Belo Mansion
to the Fairmount Hotel at 1445 Ross Av- and honorees can also be found at this website.
February 10 (Wednesday) enue at Field Street. This is an exciting networking opportu-
DAYL Judiciary Committee Meeting
Noon, Belo Mansion The cost is $3 for DAYL members and nity for members of DAYL, NAWL and
$5 for non-members and there is free park- TYLA and we hope to see you there.
February 11 (Thursday)
DAYL Barristers for Babies Committee Meeting
11:30 a.m., Belo Mansion
February 11 (Thursday)
DAYL Freedom Run Committee Meeting
Noon, Belo Mansion
February 11 (Thursday)
DAYL Program at SMU on Business Correspondence
February 12 (Friday)
Trivia Bowl Registration Deadline “Career Challenges” Breakfast Discussion
by Alyson Vrana
February 15 (Monday)
Judicial Intern Application Deadline oin DAYL on Tuesday, understand the current career challenges.
February 16 (Tuesday) February 9, 2010 at 7:30 Attendees will also have the opportu-
DAYL Elder Law Committee Meeting – 9:00 a.m. for an infor- nity to offer suggestions on how DAYL
Noon, Belo Mansion
mal breakfast discussion can further aid its members in meeting
February 16 (Tuesday)
DAYL Animal Welfare Committee Meeting
group on career challenges currently the challenges of the current job market.
Noon, Belo Mansion facing attorneys. The event will be at Additionally, Shari Keely of the recruit-
February 18 (Thursday)
the Dream Café in Addison at 5100 ing firm Newhouse, Noblin, and Highley
DAYL Food for Thought Committee Meeting Beltline Rd., Dallas, TX 75254, will provide a brief overview of the cur-
6:00 p.m., The Tower Club
972.503.7326 rent legal market
February 23 (Tuesday) ( w w w. t h e d r e a m Calling all in Dallas to kick-
DAYL Program at SMU - Success without Strong Grades
cafe.com). off the conversa-
12:30 p.m., SMU Dedman School of Law
Come exchange unemployed, tion.
February 25 (Thursday)
DAYL Social infor mation with recently employed, Attendance is
6:00 p.m., Avanti others who under- underemployed, free of charge,
stand the unique chal- but breakfast
DAYL ONE TO WATCH
DA TO WA lenges many attor- will be ser ved
neys are facing now contract attorneys! off the regular
Katie Lewis has been selected as and talk about the im- menu at your
the February 2010 DAYL One to pact of the current state of the legal own cost. Feel free to contact Cherie
Watch! To find out why, visit market in Dallas. Discussion may assist Harris at firstname.lastname@example.org for more
www.dayl.com. your or others in the job search pro- information or to RSVP to this great
cess and connect you with people who program.
Page 2 THE DICTA February 2010
From the President
Meyling Ly, Editor
Our “To Do” List
Published monthly by the
DALLAS ASSOCIATION OF YOUNG LAWYERS
2101 Ross Avenue for 2010
Dallas, Texas 75201
214-220-7420 l 214-220-7422 fax
www.dayl.com Jennifer D. Edgeworth
Executive Director admit it. I’m addicted to “To ready taken place. We have also sched-
Do” lists. I have them every- uled a joint meeting with representatives
DAYL BOARD OF DIRECTORS where – in my Outlook cal- from all of the education based commit-
endar, written in little note- tees including Law Student Assistance, Ties
Jennifer Duncan Edgeworth, President
Penelope Brobst Blackwell, President-Elect books I carry around in my purse, even that Bind, E-Mentoring, Young Voters,
Chip Brooker, Vice President and written on the back of junk mail. My lists Teen Leadership, and LISTA (Lawyers
ABA/YLD Representative reflect my goals, both short and long Influencing Students to Achieve).
Sarah Kownacki, Treasurer and
TYLA Director term. And I think goal setting is that es- Fourth, we have created a technology
Meyling Ly, Secretary sential compass that helps guide us all to committee led by Chip Brooker,
Dena DeNooyer Stroh, Imm. Past President achievement. As Yogi Berra once stated, Jonathan Childers, Dustin Paschal,
DIRECTORS “If you don't know where you are go- and Penny Blackwell. This committee
Margaret Allen will evaluate ways to improve our website,
ing, you'll end up someplace else.”
Bill Gardner At the DAYL Board of Directors re- and will also search for a new webmaster
Steven C. Hill treat held recently, the Board set its goals to maintain the website.
Manson Ho, DAABA Representative for the year. The following reflects some Finally, we want to do a better job of
Becky Niederstadt of the main initiatives on our “To Do” publicizing all of the incredible ways that
Dustin Paschal list for 2010. the membership of DAYL serves the
Bryan Snoddy, JLTLA Representative First, we recognize that even though Dallas Community. To that end, I have
Elisabeth A. Wilson, DHBA Representative
Kimberly Wilson the economy is allegedly getting better, appointed a historian this year, Eric
there are still many attorneys looking for Walker. Eric will not only work with the
EX OFFICIO a job, or that want to change jobs. Board and co-chairs to help publicize all
Alyson Vrana, DWLA Liaison
David Anderson, TYLA Chair-Elect Elisabeth Wilson and Alyson Vrana of the time and service given by our
Kelly Burris, TYLA Director have volunteered to assist with the explo- membership, but will also update the His-
Gemma Galeoto, Southern Methodist ration of ways to provide programming torical Affidavit at the end of the year.
University Law Student Liaison
Cheryl C. Camin, Chair, and resources for attorneys searching for If you are interested in helping out
DAYL Foundation Fellows employment. We are also evaluating the with these initiatives, please feel free to
Dana Brown, Texas Wesleyan University best method for obtaining and present- contact any of the individuals mentioned
Law Student Liaison
Jennifer Evans Morris, TYLA President-Elect ing current job listings on our website in this article, or you can also contact
Ken Riney, TYLA Director and/or in this newsletter. Cherie Harris or me. Let’s get done
Second, we would like to provide what we have set out “to do!”
more programming and resources for
Copy Deadline for March Issue:
February 10, 2010
transactional attorneys. Becky DAYL Gives a
Niederstadt and Mark Melton are as-
Phone: 214.350.1395 sisting with this initiative. Special Thanks to
Email: email@example.com Third, we plan to facilitate more inter- the City Club for
action and communication among the dif-
ferent committees so that DAYL co- Sponsoring the 2010
The views expressed in The chairs can share resources and ideas. A
Dicta do not necessarily reflect joint meeting with representatives from
the views of the Dallas the Lawyers Against Domestic Violence, Chair Orientation
Association of Young Lawyers. Animal Welfare, Barristers for Babies, and
Aid to the Homeless Committees has al- Dinner
February 2010 THE DICTA Page 3
Back to the DAYL Future by Dustin Paschal
n December 10, 2009 at the his- premiere! Document Services for providing the many
toric Lakewood Theater, the After some hilarious “Coming Distrac- copying needs for the evening. Additionally,
DAYL celebrated its storied tions,” which included a few classic movie DAYL would like to thank Teris for sponsor-
past and looked forward to an spoofs, DAYL premiered a documentary in- ing the event, Misha Nikole Photography,
exciting future. Current and former DAYL cluding interviews with past DAYL presidents and the following “Friends of DAYL” for
members attended “Back to the DAYL Fu- and other active DAYL members past and their contributions, which helped raise more
ture,” the red-carpet premiere of a new DAYL present. The film was a huge success and is money for the DAYL Foundation: Margaret
documentary and the debut of an updated destined to become a cherished part of DAYL’s Allen, Penny Blackwell, Chip & Rebekah
DAYL Historical Affidavit from the newly storied legacy. Everyone in attendance appre- Brooker, Cheryl S. Camin, Jonathan
reinstituted Historical Committee. ciated the opportunity to hear from these great Childers, Christina Melton Crain, Hon.
The Historical Committee picked up where individuals as they recounted the ideas, events, Kenda Culpepper, Lacy Durham, Jenni-
the 1977 Historical Committee left off and and stories that make DAYL what it is today. fer Duncan Edgeworth, Michael K.
completed the DAYL’s written history from The night ended with a champagne toast Hurst, Christy Jump, Sarah Kownacki,
1977 to the present. If you have not had a led by our outgoing President and the driving Mey Ly, David R. McAtee II, Karen
chance to read this outstanding description of force behind “Back to the DAYL Future,” McCloud, Tim & Janet Mountz, Mark
DAYL’s successes and achievements through- Dena DeNooyer Stroh. Sales, Mark Shank, Barry Sorrels, Dena
out the years, you really must get a copy of We want to thank all those individuals DeNooyer Stroh, Brad Weber, Kimberly
this Affidavit as soon as possible! who helped make the evening a success Wilson, and Elisabeth Wilson.
The evening started with DAYL’s own Joan for both the DAYL and the DAYL Foun- An extra big thank you goes to Bill
Rivers, former DAYL President Karen dation, our beneficiary for the evening. Bourland with Carrington Coleman for his
McCloud, interviewing guests as they arrived It is members like these that make us cer- time not only interviewing over 20 past presi-
on the red carpet. In tandem with Karen, our tain the DAYL will continue on into the dents and other individuals for the video, but
emcee for the evening, PJ Dunn, warmed up future as strong as ever. for donating his skills and talent to edit the video
the crowd and got everyone ready for the big DAYL would like to thank IKON Legal into final form.
Cherie Harris, Karen McCloud, and Lacy Durham at the Back to the Brad Weber, Christina Melton Crain, and
Future Event. Sherri Evans share memories of the past.
Stephen Liu, Mey Ly, and Elisbeth Wilson enjoy an Travis Gray, Bill Gardner, Dustin Paschal, and Paul Simon
evening of good times. look forward to the future.
Page 4 THE DICTA February 2010
What Every Young Lawyer Should Know About . . . Discovery
by Heather Long
oin DAYL for a free CLE sociate Judge Teresa Snelson (Dallas no charge for DAYL members to attend.
on Wednesday, February County Courts), Melanie Okon (Tabor Non-members will owe a $10 fee. Lunch
10, 2010, from 12:00-1:00 Estes Thorne & Carr, PLLC), and An- is available for purchase.
p.m. at the Belo Mansion for drew Payne (Payne Mitchell Law This program has been approved for
a panel discussion on the practical aspects Group). The program will be moder- 1.0 hour of CLE credit by the State Bar
of the discovery process. The panel will ated by Heather Long. This discussion of Texas. For more information, or to
consist of Judge James M. Stanton will be geared towards young lawyers RSVP, contact Cherie Harris
(134th Dallas County District Court), As- dealing with discovery issues. There is (firstname.lastname@example.org).
ASSOCIATION YOUNG LAWYERS
D ALLAS ASSOCIATION OF YOUNG LA WYERS
2010 SUMMER JUDICIAL INTERN PROGRAM
The Dallas Association of Young Lawyers invites first and second year law students to apply for this summer’s
Judicial Intern Program. Judges from Dallas-area civil, criminal, probate, family and appellate courts will be
participating. Applicants must have completed first-year civil procedure and legal writing courses before June
2010. Courses in evidence and criminal or appellate procedure are helpful but not required.
Internship selections will be made by the participating judges starting in March. Applicants must be willing to
commit to a six-week, full-time voluntary internship during the summer months and are expected to honor any
commitments made to the judges. The internship is unpaid, and individual schedules will be determined by the
judges. Students selected to participate in the program must attend a mandatory orientation taught by participat-
ing judges. The location and time of the orientation will be provided at a later date.
For more information, visit www.dayl.com/pdf/judicial_intern.pdf.
Check out these tips to stay warm and be
green at home this winter:
Change your air filter - A dirty air filter can increase your
energy costs and lead to early equipment failure. Also, have
your equipment checked seasonally to make sure it’s operating
efficiently and safely – check-ups can identify problems early.
Seal up your home - Hidden gaps and cracks in a home
can add up to as much airflow as an open window. The
more heat that escapes, the more cold air enters, causing
your system to work harder and use more energy. Home
Sealing can improve your home “envelope” – the outer walls,
ceiling, windows and floors -- and can save up to 10 percent
in energy costs!
Tighten your ducts – If you have a forced air furnace or
heat pump, then a duct system is responsible for circulating
warm air throughout your home. Leaky ducts can reduce
your system’s overall efficiency by 20 percent. Sealing your
ducts can save up to $140 annually on energy bills and help
you consistently heat every room.
For other useful tips, visit http://www.epa.gov/Region3/winter/
February 2010 THE DICTA Page 5
Becky Niederstadt and Sharon Kolbet
welcome co-chairs to the annual Orientation.
Erin Mitchell and Tamaron Houston at the Social Co-Chairs Kate Kilanowski and
DAYL Committee Chair Orientation. Carolyn Chinn
Excellent Rates for all DAYL Members
2010 Board Retreat at WB Ranch. Front row: Sarah Kownacki, Jennifer Duncan Edgeworth,
Jennifer Duncan Edgeworth and Damien
Penny Blackwell, Dustin Paschal. Middle Row: Jonathan Childers, Bill Gardner, Cheryl Camin,
Falgoust at the January Social.
Margaret Allen, Kimberly Wilson, Cherie Harris, Alyson Vrana, Bryan Snoddy, Manson Ho.
Back Row: Liz Wilson, Becky Niederstadt, Rachel Mascorro, Mey Ly, Steven Hill.
Martha Newman, Meggan Burchfield, Elizabeth Elkins, Liz Wilson, Rachel Mascorro, Alyson Vrana, Kimberly Wilson, Bill
Colleen McCoy, Sarah Duff, and Lauren Farkas at the Client Gardner, Kelly Burris, Steven Hill, Jennifer Duncan Edgeworth, Mey
Development Seminar. Ly, and Dustin Paschal brave the cold at the 2010 Board Retreat.
Page 6 THE DICTA February 2010
DAYL Accepting Nominations for Prestigious Awards
AYL is accepting nomina- The Liberty Bell Award recognizes an must be licensed to practice law in Texas,
tions for its Outstanding outstanding non-lawyer who has made a have paid membership dues prescribed
Young Lawyer Award, the selfless contribution to the community by by the Supreme Court of Texas and be
Liberty Bell Award, and strengthening the effectiveness of the members in good standing of the State
the Outstanding Mentor Award. The American system of justice. The catego- Bar. The Awards Committee will con-
recipients will be presented with their ries of community service to be consid- sider all outstanding qualities of a nomi-
awards at the DBA Annual Law Day Lun- ered include activities that (1) promote a nee, including (1) service as a role model to
cheon on May 7, 2010. Each winner will better understanding of our form of young lawyers in the legal community; (2)
then be submitted to the Texas Young Law- government, especially the Bill of Rights; fostering the development of young law-
yers Association for statewide consideration. (2) encourage greater respect for the law yers; and (3) significant contributions to the
To be eligible for selection as the and the courts; (3) stimulate a deeper sense profession and/or the community.
DAYL’s Outstanding Young Lawyer, of individual responsibility; (4) contrib- Nominations for these awards may be
nominees must have been 36 years of ute to the effective functioning of our made by individuals, groups of individu-
age or younger as of June 1, 2009. In institutes of government; and (5) instill a als, or organizations. If you would like to
addition, nominees must be licensed to better understanding and appreciation of nominate someone for either award, con-
practice law in Texas and be members in the rule of law. Non-lawyers of any age tact Penelope Brobst Blackwell
good standing of the State Bar. The are eligible to receive this award. (email@example.com or 214.665.3661).
Awards Committee will consider all out- The DAYL Outstanding Mentor The deadline for submitting nomina-
standing qualities of a nominee, includ- Award is awarded to a lawyer in Dallas tions is March 5, 2010. DAYL mem-
ing (1) exemplified professional profi- who has consistently demonstrated a com- bers interested in serving on the Awards
ciency; (2) service to the profession; and mitment to mentoring young lawyers in Committee are encouraged to contact
(3) service to the community. his or her legal community. Nominees Penny by February 26.
DAYL Trivia Bowl Registration Deadline is February 12
he 2010 Trivia Bowl season Fo r i n f o r m a -
kicks off the first week in tion about the
March and runs through the
Trivia Team Registration Form
2010 Trivia Bowl Team Registration Form
Trivia Bowl sea-
end of May when the Trivia son, contact Team Name: _____________________________________
Bowl trophy will be up for grabs. Cherie Harris Captain: ________________________________________
Each team may consist of up to six (firstname.lastname@example.org). Telephone No.: ___________________________________
players (all players must be members DAYL is looking Firm Name: _____________________________________
of DAYL), with a maximum of three for volunteers to E-Mail Address: __________________________________
players competing at any one time. The help moderate
(Note: Teams may consist of a maximum of six (6) members, with
matches will tentatively be held on Tues- the matches as no more than three (3) playing at one time and a minimum of one
day nights, with each match lasting a maxi- official readers (1) player. No player may play for two teams during the season.)
mum of 30 minutes. The regular season and scorekeepers.
will culminate with the Trivia Bowl play- If you are inter- TEAM ROSTER
offs to be held in June. ested in helping (all players must be members of DAYL)
Trivia Bowl Rules are available out, please con-
through the DAYL office. The reg- tact Cherie. 1. _____________________________________________
istration deadline is Februar y 12, 2. _____________________________________________
We hope you
2010 and this year there will be a will come out to
maximum of 24 teams. Registra- DAYL Trivia Bowl 5. _____________________________________________
tions will be accepted on a first- on Tuesday nights 6. _____________________________________________
come, fir st-ser ve basis, so get to watch the com-
your entry fee and payment in as petition, cheer on Please return completed roster and $100.00 payment (payable to
soon as possible. A registration the teams, and share Harris,
DAYL) to Cherie Harris DAYL Executive Director, 2101 Ross
form is available to the right. The Avenue, Dallas TX 75201, by February 12, 2010. Contact
good times with
Cherie (email@example.com) for additional information.
entry fee is a low $100.00 per team. friends.
February 2010 THE DICTA Page 7
Beyond the Essential Elements: Provisions to Protect your Client
by Bill Gardner
famous film magnate once Not only will this provide certainty for corded agreements with a provision stat-
proclaimed that a verbal your client by dispelling any confusion ing that the agreement is completely inte-
contract isn’t worth the pa- about where suits emerging from a con- grated. Language stating that the agree-
per that it is printed on. tract must be brought and defended, a ment sets forth the final, complete and
Practice shows, however, that a poorly forum selection clause can save your cli- entire agreement of the parties and su-
drafted written contract is not much of ent money by avoiding travel to distant persedes any prior agreement or under-
an improvement. Drafting a sound con- locations to litigate. Contractual forum standing can be used to bar the introduc-
tract – one that protects your client’s in- selection clauses are prima facie valid and tion of preliminary terms that vary from
terests and provides value – goes far be- must be enforced unless the party oppos- the contract in its final form.
yond the essential elements of a valid con- ing enforcement of the clause can clearly • Dispute Resolution
tract; it should establish the ground rules, show that (1) enforcement would be un- Those who appreciate the speed, relaxed
encompass the entire agreement, and pro- reasonable or unjust, (2) the clause is in- rules of procedure and evidence, and
vide the agreement with teeth. valid for reasons of fraud or overreach- ability to resolve a dispute outside the ju-
After litigating contracts, both the skill- ing, (3) enforcement would contravene a dicial system, should include a mandatory
fully tailored and the abominable, the util- strong public policy of the forum where mediation or arbitration clause in the con-
ity of certain contract provisions becomes the suit was brought, or (4) the selected tract. This clause should call for the sub-
readily apparent. Whether a clause is con- forum would be seriously inconvenient mission of any disputes arising under the
sidered as essential will vary depending for trial. contract to mediation or arbitration.
on each contract’s specific purpose, but • Choice of Law Provisions There is no special language required when
each of the following provisions should While a forum selection clause may be including mediation or arbitration clauses
be considered when drafting your next used to keep litigation in a particular fo- as the general rules of contract interpre-
contract. rum, a choice of law provision deter- tation will govern any dispute resolution
• Scope of Service mines the substantive state law used clause. In some consumer transactions,
If the contract is for the provision of in that chosen forum. Choice of law however, it is required that mediation and
services, provide a specific description of provisions provide predictability by arbitration clauses be conspicuously
the number and type of services that will allowing parties to choose familiar printed.
be provided under the contract. By spe- and favorable laws to govern a trans- • Limitation of Liability
cifically delineating the services provided action. Choice of law concerns Limitation of liability provisions are of-
under the contract, your client’s exposure emerge whenever a cause of action ten included in design and construction
to liability will be limited for acts or omis- has a significant relationship to more contracts to manage risk by limiting the
sions that fall outside his or her scope or than one state or nation. Texas law recoverable damages. Limitation of li-
services. allows parties, within limits, to ability clauses limit damages to a prede-
• Third Party Beneficiaries specify in their agreement that the law termined dollar amount. Historically, these
The names of the parties – including any of a specified jurisdiction will apply clauses have generally been upheld, par-
intended third party beneficiaries – should to their agreement. ticularly when the contracting parties are
be clearly stated. Generally speaking, • Merger Clauses both sophisticated entities. Texas courts
persons not in privity to the contract Parties to a contract frequently make pre- typically uphold limitations of liability
are not proper parties for litigation. liminary oral agreements that they intend provisions if they are conspicuous and
A court will not imply third party to reduce to a written contract. These there is nothing otherwise unconscionable
beneficiary status; an agreement must preliminary terms often differ from the about the contract. Note, however, that
clearly and fully express an intent to terms contained in the final agreement. the Texas DTPA contains an explicit “no
confer a direct benefit to the third A "merger clause" is a contractual provi- waiver” provision that may limit the ef-
party. If it is your intent to confer sion mandating that the written terms of fectiveness of limitations of liability pro-
benefits on a third party, include clear the contract may not be varied by prior visions in transactions involving a con-
and concise language doing so. agreements because all such agreements sumer.
• Forum Selection Clauses have been merged into the new docu-
A forum selection clause allows the par- ment. Avoid the unexpected merger of Bill Gardner is a business and construction trial
ties to agree to initiate any litigation aris- prior terms or the introduction of ex- lawyer at Milby, PLLC. He may be contacted
ing from a contract in a specific forum. trinsic evidence to prove prior, unre- at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dallas Association of Young Lawyers
2101 Ross Avenue
Dallas Texas 75201
The Dallas trial law firm of Rose•Walker, L.L.P announced the
firm’s continued expansion with the addition of Christina Wade
Perrone Christina is an associate in Rose•Walker's litigation
Kendal Reed (Anderson + Jones) and Christine Reed are proud
to announce the birth of Parker William Reed, born December
Chip Brooker (Haynes and Boone), Rebekah Steely Brooker
(Passman & Jones), and big brother Hutch are proud to an-
nounce the birth of Pearson MacDonald Brooker, who was born
on December 27, 2009.
The law firm of Hermes Sargent Bates is pleased to announce
the hiring of Barrett C. Lesher and Natalie Butler Barrett's
practice is devoted to transportation and commercial litigation.
Natalie's practice is devoted to commercial litigation, construction
defect, personal injury, professional liability and premises liability.
DAYL members are encouraged to send their an-
nouncements to Cherie Harris (email@example.com)
for inclusion in a future issue of The Dicta .