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November, 2021
Past Issues

A New Beginning - Baylor Law Participates in ‘Moana’-Themed Adoption Day

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On Friday, November 19th, 14 new families were legally formed and 20 former foster children were finally adopted into their new families. For the fourteenth straight year, Baylor Law faculty, staff, and students joined with members of the McLennan County Department of Families and Child Protective Services and the judiciary to celebrate McLennan County’s Adoption Day. . . Full Story


Baylor Law Honors Our Military Members on Veterans Day

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Baylor Law is always immensely proud of our veterans and service members throughout the year, but on Veterans Day, we publicly honor our military students and celebrate those who have dedicated their time and talents to protect and defend our Constitutional Republic and freedom across the globe. Baylor Law currently has 17 active, reserve, and veteran members of four different branches of the U.S. and Texas militaries. . . Full Story


Retired Army Officer and Baylor Lawyer Craig A. McNeil Shares His Insight on How to Become a Judge Advocate General

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Baylor Law students had a unique opportunity to hear from Major Craig A. McNeil, JD ’97, on his military service, how to become a Judge Advocate General (JAG), the differences between the military and civilian justice systems, and the daily life of a JAG.


The Texas Bar Foundation Has Awarded Baylor Law a Grant to Implement Robust Mental Health & Wellness Initiatives

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The Texas Bar Foundation recently awarded Baylor Law a grant of $6,500 to implement comprehensive and consistent mental health and wellness programming at the Law School. With assistance from the Texas Bar Foundation, under the banner of ‘Mind, Body, and Spirit,’ Baylor Law will execute a multi-faceted program to better support the mental health and wellness of its students. . . Full Story


Baylor Law Hosts Luncheon Focused on the Success of Women in the Legal Profession

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Hosted by a distinguished group of Baylor Law female faculty and alumnae, the “Off the Record” luncheon provided 3L Baylor Law students with insights to what it takes for women to succeed in the legal profession. . . More Photos


Baylor Law Veterans Clinic Recognizes Two Waco Attorneys for Their Pro Bono Service to Central Texas Veterans

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On Friday, November 5th, Baylor Law’s Veterans Clinic honored Waco attorneys Gavin Lane, JD ’16, and Darren Obenoskey, JD ’90, with its Advocate of the Year Awards. The annual awards are given to volunteer attorneys who go above and beyond in pro bono legal service to Central Texas veterans and their spouses in the past year. . . Full Story


Baylor Law Students Get Unique Access to Federal Judges During Judicial Clerkship Reception

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Baylor Law’s Annual Judicial Clerkship Reception is attended by judges from the federal bench and provides a unique opportunity for current Baylor Law students to interact and network with judges and their clerks. Special thanks to Judges Andrew Hanen, Ed Kinkeade, Amos Mazzant, Nicole Mitchell, and Chris Steger. . . More Photos


Baylor Law's 2021 Fall Commencement

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Congratulations to the Baylor Law graduates who officially became Baylor Lawyers during the 2021 Fall Commencement ceremony. Dean Brad Toben presided over the ceremony and conferred the degrees and Cristina Marie Vargas addressed the graduates as the highest-ranking student. Professor Matthew Cordon delivered an inspiring address and Dean Toben, Associate Dean Patricia Wilson, and Senior Assistant Dean Angela Cruseturner presented the diplomas. Professors Luke Meier and Rory Ryan hooded the graduates.
More Photos | Watch Full Ceremony


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Alumni Notes
Alumni Notes are published based on the information we receive from our alumni.
If you have been recognized or have other professional news to share, please e-mail law_alumni@baylor.edu for inclusion in a future issue of Rocket Docket.

John Penn, JD ’82, has received the American Bankruptcy Institute (ABI) 2021 Lifetime Achievement Award. This award recognizes John’s sustained and deep commitment to the leadership and governance of the organization in multiple leadership roles over many years. A former ABI president and chairman and an ABI member since 1988, Penn is the firm-wide chair of Perkins Coie’s Bankruptcy & Restructuring practice and is also a fellow in the American College of Bankruptcy. In addition to serving as ABI president during 2005–06, when the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005 became effective, Penn later served as its chairman and continues his service to the organization as a co-chair of the ABI Task Force on Veterans and Service-members Affairs.
Kyle Hooper, JD ’95, has joined Jackson Walker as partner in the Dallas office. Kyle represents clients in mergers, acquisitions, and divestitures, and he also provides guidance on corporate, partnership, and individual taxation issues at both the federal and state levels. He has been recognized as a “Rising Star” in Super Lawyers and was recently recognized as a 2021 Texas Super Lawyer by Thomson Reuters and Texas Monthly.
Tracy Wolf, JD ’97, has joined Husch Blackwell as partner in the Dallas office. She is working in their health care, life sciences, and education industry group.
Brian Hermes, JD ’98, has been appointed Chief Legal Officer of the Keystone Agency Partners with headquarters in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Brian will lead the legal and human resources functions and advise the Board and management team on complex legal, regulatory, and governance matters.
Chelsea Woods, JD ’12, is a Partner at Jackson Walker LLP in Fort Worth working with the Corporate and Securities group.
Arianna Smith, JD ’15, has joined Brousseau Naftis & Massingill in Dallas as an attorney handling civil litigation and family law matters. In addition to her legal work, Arianna volunteers with the Marbridge Foundation and provides pro bono services for the Texas Civil Rights Project.
William Gober, JD ’21, has joined Cantey Hanger in Fort Worth.
Preston Polk, JD ’21, has joined Cantey Hanger in Fort Worth.
In Memoriam
Eugene Z. Grenz, JD ’69, Full Obituary
Arthur David Courtade, JD ’70, Full Obituary

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Baylor Law, Alumni Relations, One Bear Place #97288, Waco, Texas 76798
254.710.8357 | baylor.edu/law/alumni

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