Executive Director's Perspective: Quarterly Report - By Joseph A. Martinez

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Saturday, September 30th, 2017

TCDLA under David Moore’s leadership has initiated the Hurricane Harvey Lawyers Relief Fund Committee, chaired by Danny Easterling (Houston) with other members on from the affected area. Donations are being accepted and will be used to alleviate some of the burdens that this historic storm has placed on our fellow criminal law practitioners. Please consider making a contribution. Please go to our website for more information or go directly to the donation page (www.tcdla.com/harvey).

Please help us promote TCDLA membership, which means getting lapsed members to rejoin as well as recruiting lawyers to join. Please go to our website for the new membership form. Please also help us promote our future TCDLA CLE. The annual schedule of all future TCDLA CLE can be found on the website.

TCDLA received notice from the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals of the following grant awards for fiscal year 2015 (September 1, 2017 through August 31, 2018).

Criminal Defense Lawyers Project $1,330,721
Innocence $100,000
Public Defenders $33,333
TCDLA through our Criminal Defense Lawyers Project (CDLP) will maximize these grants and conduct 109-plus seminars in the coming year: 34 will be held in cities across Texas, 75 will be online on our TCDLA website. Working together with our public defender offices and our local criminal defense bars, we project we will train 2,300 lawyers, students, and staff in fiscal year FY 2018.

We thank the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals for having the trust and confidence in TCDLA to provide quality continuing legal education to criminal defense lawyers, students, and staff across Texas. We thank, in particular, Judge Barbara Hervey, who is judicial oversight for the entire $12,624,865 Court Personnel Grant.

We thank Don Flannery, president of the San Antonio Criminal Defense Lawyers Association (SACDLA), for allowing TCDLA/CDLP to co-sponsor their Against All Odds CLE held in San Antonio in August. Thanks to their efforts we had 41 attendees.

We thank our course directors, Grant Scheiner (Houston) and Danny Easterling (Houston), for the Top Gun CLE held in Houston in August. These two dedicated TCDLA members have been putting on Top Gun for last 15 years. They and the speakers they have chosen have trained over 2,600 lawyers over those 15 years. This year we had 157 attendees.

We thank Sarah Roland (Denton) and John Hunter Smith (Sherman), course directors for the Successfully Defending Child Physical Abuse & Child Death Cases seminar held in Fort Worth in September. Thanks to them and the speakers they selected we had 94 attendees.

TCDLA will have Shea Place in addition to Allen Place representing TCDLA in the off Legislative year. She will attend any committee hearings, commission hearings, and other appropriate state agency hearings held 2017–2018.

The TCDLA Annual report was presented to the TCDLA Board on Saturday, September 16, in Fort Worth.

Executive Director's Perspective: Quarterly Report

Do you need CLE credit and can’t attend our seminar training? Please call the Home Office (512-507-4244) for a list of the DVDs and accompanying CLE credit.

Does your local criminal bar need a speaker for your lunch meetings? Please call Melissa Schank (512-478-2514) at the Home Office. CDLP has funds to provide a speaker and pay up to $500 for lunch costs.

Don’t have a local criminal defense bar in your area? Would you like to re-energize or jump-start your organization? Are you interested in forming a local criminal defense bar? Need help getting organized? Please contact Susan Anderson (Dallas), seapd@aol.com, Laurie Key Lubbock, lauriekeylaw@gmail.com, or Carmen Roe (Houston), carmen@carmenroe.com, co-chairs of the TCDLA Affiliate Committee.

Good verdicts to all.