Bice Announces Retirement As General Counsel

  • News Photo 3036
    Noley Bice
  • News Photo 3037
    Charlie Beckenhauer
July 20, 2005

Noley R. Bice Jr., general counsel at Baylor University since 1998, has announced that he will retire as the university's chief legal adviser on Sept. 1. Interim President William D. Underwood has appointed Associate General Counsel Charles Beckenhauer to succeed Bice as interim general counsel.

Following his retirement, Bice will continue to serve in the position "of counsel" to Baylor. In addition, he will office at Baylor Law School, where he will assist with the trial advocacy program and other curriculum, as needed.

"Noley Bice is a close personal friend of mine and has been a pillar of strength at Baylor. Throughout his tenure as general counsel, Noley has represented the highest standards of professional competence and integrity," Underwood said. "His wise counsel has guided Baylor through stormy seas and he will be greatly missed in his capacity as general counsel. I am pleased that Noley has agreed to remain at Baylor in an 'of counsel' capacity and that he will be available to work with me in the advocacy program at Baylor Law School. Charles Beckenhauer has many of the same qualities that have made Noley Bice so effective, and I am gratified that he is willing to take on the responsibilities of general counsel on an interim basis."

"After 37 years of litigation practice and mediation service, followed by seven years as general counsel of Baylor University, my family and I have decided that we are ready to enjoy some leisure time," Bice said. "Although I will be moving toward retirement gradually, I am looking forward to continuing my association with the Office of General Counsel on an 'of counsel' basis.

"I am grateful to Chancellor Robert Sloan, Interim President Bill Underwood, Dean Brad Toben and Baylor Law School Professor David Guinn for having the confidence that I could handle the general counsel responsibilities, and for encouraging me in 1998 to make the move back to Baylor, where I studied law long ago. I treasure the deep friendship I have with each of these men, and I thank them for the total support they have always given to our office, and to me, personally."

Bice joined Baylor as general counsel in September 1998 after serving as a named partner and shareholder for many years in the Waco law firm of Fulbright, Winniford, Bice & Marable. Before coming to Baylor, he specialized in civil trial law throughout the Central Texas area and also had extensive experience in mediation and arbitration.

A native of Tyler, Bice attended the University of Texas and earned his law degree from Baylor Law School in 1961. He served as president of the Waco-McLennan County Bar Association from 1976-77 and was president of the Waco-McLennan County Young Lawyers Association from 1966-67. He has been a director of the Texas Young Lawyers Association and is former chairman of the District 8-B Grievance Committee for the State Bar of Texas.

Bice is a member of the American Bar Association, Federal Bar Association and the Texas Association of Mediators. He is a subscriber of the American Trial Lawyers Association, a Fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation, and Master of the Bench for the Judge Abner V. McCall American Inn of Court. He has served as a faculty member and panelist for the American Bar Association Advanced Mediation Symposium, and the McLennan County Dispute Resolution Center.

Beckenhauer earned his bachelor's degree magna cum laude from Kansas State University in 1971 and his law degree with honors from the University of Texas at Austin in 1979. He also earned a master of laws degree in labor and employment law with highest honors from George Washington University in 1983.

Beckenhauer served for 22 years in the U.S. Air Force, retiring as a colonel. He served as a meteorologist and judge advocate general, specializing in labor and employment litigation in matters involving non-military employees. His cases involved union representation, unfair labor practices, grievance arbitration, labor standards, discipline cases and employment discrimination throughout the nation. He handled approximately 200 cases and ultimately supervised 11 attorneys with more than 300 employment cases in federal courts pending at any one time. He also spent an additional six years as a criminal prosecutor or supervising prosecutor, disposing of about 300 cases per year with about 30 going to jury trial per year.

Before joining Baylor's general counsel's office in 1993, Beckenhauer served as deputy director of legislative and legal policy within the Office of the Secretary of Defense, where he worked on legislative, legal and policy matters relating to civilian and military personnel during the Bush and Clinton administrations.

At Baylor, Beckenhauer has served as assistant and associate general counsel, and has concentrated on employment matters involving immigration law, affirmative action and employment discrimination, labor standards, Title IX compliance, litigation support and oversight, construction contracts and disputes, and study abroad programs. He also served as an instructor in employment relations at Baylor Law School.

"I am honored to have this opportunity to continue service to Baylor University in this new capacity," Beckenhauer said.

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