The Board of Directors directs and manages the affairs of the Foundation and controls the disposition of its funds, primarily through grants to local non-profit organizations that protect the legal rights of women and children in Central Texas. The Board is composed of up to 14 directors. Four of these directors are permanent directors: Past President, President, and President Elect of the Travis County Women Lawyers’ Association and Past Chair of the Foundation. The remaining directors are non-permanent and each serve two –year terms. The officers of the Foundation are the Chair, the Chair-Elect, the Secretary, and the Treasurer. The current Board is:
Natalie Niles Argüello, past President of TCWLA and current Chair of the Foundation, has focused her career on the causes of justice and equality for 20 years. She has worked for and lead multiple nonprofit organizations giving her insight into the organizations the Foundation supports. Informed by an early career as a news reporter for CBS in Houston followed by a number of years as Communications Director of the National DomesticViolence Hotline, she practices law with approachability and an easy communication style. She is a civil attorney practicing primarily in the areas of wills, estate planning, probate, family law, general civil litigation, small business development, real estate, and mediation. Her mediation practice is grounded in her training by pioneers in the field in the Alternative Dispute Resolution Graduate Portfolio Program at the University of Texas School of Law. Her traditional law practice is punctuated by a commitment to pro bono representation distinguished by her time as Director of Legal Hotlines at the Texas Advocacy Project, membership in the Pro Bono College, court appointments to child protective services cases in Travis County, and collaborative work with non-profit organizations both in Texas and in Central America.
Immediate Past Chair
Lisa Bowlin Hobbs is a board-certified Civil Appellate lawyer and Founding Member of the
premier appellate boutique, Kuhn Hobbs PLLC.
Lisa became known across Texas when, at the age of 30, she was picked by the Texas Supreme Court as its first ever General Counsel. In this capacity, she provided legal advice to Texas’ highest civil court on a broad range of matters and held primary responsibility for the Chief Justice’s administrative duties. Prior to serving as General Counsel, she was the Court’s Rules Attorney.
These unique experiences within the Texas judiciary are apparent in Lisa’s work in private practice. She prides herself in her judicial-centered approach to appellate advocacy. And her insight into the judicial process allows for innovative appellate strategy that makes clients return to her for advice again and again.
Lisa is a member of the Texas Supreme Court Advisory Committee and serves on the editorial board of The Advocate, a quarterly publication of the Litigation Section of the State Bar of Texas. Lisa also has taught Texas Civil Procedure at the University of Texas School of Law, and Media Law at Houston Baptist University.
Lisa was recently named a “Legal Leader on the Rise”—one of the top 25 lawyers in Texas under the age of 40—by Texas Lawyer magazine. After deeming her a “Rising Star” in appellate law since 2006, that same publication finally in 2013—at only 37 years old— recognized her as a “Super Lawyer.” Less than 5% of all Texas attorneys receive this honor.
Lisa previously practiced at in the appellate section at Vinson & Elkins LLP. She is an honors graduate of The University of Texas School of Law and graduated summa cum laude from Houston Baptist University. Lisa began her legal career as a law clerk for the late Texas Supreme Court Justice James A. Baker.
Sue Ayers is a partner in the trial department of Jackson Walker L.L.P. During the first several years of her law practice, Sue developed broad trial and appellate experience in state and federal courts in cases involving personal injury, wrongful death, toxic tort, and free speech, and represented the court-appointed Receiver in one of the largest Ponzi scheme cases ever filed by the Securities and Exchange Commission. As part of Jackson Walker’s eminent domain practice group, Sue has developed expertise in land acquisition, including the negotiation of easements and crossing agreements, the purchase of property in fee simple, and condemnation. Sue assisted with all aspects of the acquisition of right-of-way for an electric transmission line project selected as one of the Top 10 Infrastructure Projects in the nation in 2013 by the International Right of Way Association.
Before law school, Sue was a high school English teacher for nine years. As an attorney, her community service has included membership on the Walnut Creek Elementary Campus Advisory Council and the Development Council for A Community for Education (“ACE”). Sue is a Fellow and a Board Member of the Travis County Women Lawyers’ Foundation and is beginning her first year as Secretary of the Board.
Lee A. DiFilippo is a corporate transactional attorney, certified public accountant and has a passion for servicing Austin small businesses and impacting communities. She has spent many years providing corporate transactional services to all types of businesses from private start-ups to large public companies, specializing in corporate formations for asset protection and tax efficiency. Her mission is to use her professional skills to help Austin small businesses grow and thrive.
Lee also provides legal services to indigent litigants who encounter difficulties accessing the judicial system and to immigrant children crossing the border seeking refuge in the United States.
Lee graduated cum laude from American University Washington College of Law in 1997 and is licensed to practice law in Maryland, District of Columbia, Virginia, Massachusetts and Texas. She is also a licensed certified public accountant in Massachusetts and Texas.
Board Members At Large
Lessie Fitzpatrick, TCWLA President-Elect
Tracy Kasparek Elaguizy, TCWLA President
Diana Reinhart, TCWLA Past President