The Big Event Is Here! The Annual Grants and Awards Luncheon is May 13
Our biggest event of the year is just around the corner! On May 13th TCWLA partners with the Travis County Women Lawyers’ Foundation to honor local attorneys and provide grant funding to local non- profit organizations. Please join us at our annual luncheon and charity raffle at the Hilton Hotel. We have put together some very nice gift baskets filled with items donated from local businesses that we will raffle off (you can buy your tickets at the door). Our emcee this year is Mary Gordon Spence. I’m sure many of you are familiar with her from her articles in the Austin American Statesman or her appearances on KUT. Now is your chance to see and hear her in person.
Please see the other pages of this newsletter for information about this year’s award winners and grant recipients. I hope to see you all at the luncheon.
This will be my last letter! I can’t believe this year has flown by so fast. I have had a wonderful time as the president of TCWLA and look for- ward to serving on the board again next year as Past President. Before I sign off, I would like to thank every member of the TCWLA board. We have had a great year filled with wonderful events and fantastic CLE.
The board will continue to provide all the things you enjoy about TCWLA in the 2010-2011 year. If you have ideas for improving our program- ming or just want to see what’s on the horizon for next year, please join us at our June 16th general membership meeting, when we will also vote on next year’s board.
2010 TCWLA Award Recipients
Each year at the annual Awards Luncheon, TCWLA recognizes women attorneys making significant contributions in the law and presents scholarships to a female UT Law Student who has found success in the face of adversity. The award winners at this year’s luncheon include:
Public Interest—Andrea March
Andrea March has practiced law in Travis County for 21 years. The majority of her impressive career has been in the nonprofit sector providing pro bono representation to the neediest around the state. Many years ago she founded, developed, and grew the Assisted Pro Se Project for the Women’s Advocacy
Project. Through this Project, thousands of women in rural Texas learned the skills they needed to face their abusive partners and an often insensitive judiciary to protect themselves and their children. Through the success of this project, she has become recognized as an expert nationally in the area of pro se representation. She is currently at Texas Rio Grande Legal Aid where she developed a similar program for that agency as well as providing direct representation to low income residents of Travis County.
Contribution to Minority Community—Kate Lincoln-Goldfinch
Kate Lincoln-Goldfinch is an attorney and Pro Bono Coordinator with American Gateways, a legal organization benefitting clients from all over Central America as well as people from such diverse countries as Bangladesh, Brazil, Russia, Vietnam and Nigeria. Kate attended the University of Texas School of Law and is the recipient of an Equal Justice Works Fellowship sponsored by Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld. She demonstrated early on a deep commitment to public interest law through an internship with the Women’s Advocacy Project. Now, she educates her immigrant clients, the legal community, law enforcement, and other advocates on how to use social and legal resources to uphold the law, and she provides representation and rights presentations to the immigrant women detained at the T. Don Hutto Detention Center in Taylor, Texas. While her keen mind and vivacious personality would serve her well in any legal setting, Ms. Lincoln- Goldfinch chooses to use her career in the service of some of the neediest in our state. And she does so with an open heart and true compassion for her clients.
Government Service—Rosemary Lehmberg
Rosemary Lehmberg joined the Travis County District Attorney’s office in 1976, where she began working with the Grand Jury and then as a trial attorney in the 167th District Court. She later became chief of that court and then the chief of the trial division. She has also served as the chief of the career criminal, major crimes and public integrity divisions. In 1988, Rosemary became director of the Family Justice Division. While director, she was a founder of the Travis County Children’s Advocacy Center, now the Center for Child Protection, which opened its new campus in September 2008. During her tenure with the Family Justice Division, the Austin Chronicle named Rosemary the Best Lawyer for Children’s Issues. Rosemary served as First Assistant District Attorney from 1997 until 2008, when she was elected District Attorney. She took office in January 2009, the first woman District Attorney in Travis County history.
Pro Bono—Mary Evelyn McNamara
Mary Evelyn McNamara is an associate with Brown McCarroll, LLP and is board certified in Family Law. For the past three years, she has coordinated the firm’s participation in the Volunteer Legal Services of Central Texas (VLS) Family Law Clinic, matching pro bono cases with attorneys in the firm and assisting the attorneys with questions about their cases. She has also handled many pro bono family law cases herself and has been a recipient of the Judge Suzanne Covington pro bono service award. She participated in the 2009 and 2010 AYLA Women’s Resource Fairs, giving legal advice on family law matters. Mary Evelyn recently joined the VLS board of directors and looks forward to continued service in helping low-income people to have access to our civil justice system.
Meet Your Board Member Natalie Niles Argüello
Natalie Niles Argüello joined the Board this year as publicity co-chair. Natalie has focused her career on the causes of justice and equality for more than 15 years. In- formed by an early career as a news reporter for CBS in Houston followed by a number of years as Communications Director of the National Domestic Violence Hot- line, she practices law with approachability and an easy communication style. She is a civil attorney practicing primarily in the areas of business development and trans- actions, school law, real estate, wills and estate planning, and mediation with the Fowler Law Firm, PC.
Natalie is a native Texan, born in Corpus Christi, and raised in Sugar Land. She spent her summers singing opera at the Macaroni Grill and her undergraduate school days at Trinity University in San Antonio where she received a B.A. in Communication with minors in both Spanish and music. Her junior year, she studied abroad in Sevilla and Madrid, Spain, and took classes at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid. During her career in the field of communication, she had the opportunity to speak publicly to small town audiences and inter- national audiences alike on topics such as legislative advocacy, entrepreneurship, media, public education, mediation, social change, free speech, and emerging technology. This taste of advocacy led her to the decision to attend the University of Texas School of Law.
At UT, she was selected to represent the school in the prestigious UT Democratization Project in Honduras. She wrote a guidebook and con- ducted seminars in Span- ish for the National Conference in Honduras on governmental oversight and the use of communication tools to influence social change. Natalie graduated in 2002 and began a solo practice in family law and small business development. Her commitment to pub- lic service is best exemplified by her tenure as Director of Legal Hot- lines at the Texas Advocacy Project, where she and her team provided free legal advice to low income Texans in both Spanish and English, and where she was nominated for the Outstanding Lawyer Award by the Williamson County Crisis Center in 2007.
Natalie’s mediation practice is grounded in her training by pioneers in the field at the Alternative Dispute Resolution Graduate Portfolio Pro- gram at the University of Texas School of Law. Her traditional law practice is punctuated by a commitment to personal and high quality representation distinguished by her time 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. Natalie is proud to be raising two beautiful daughters and to call Austin home.