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Alumni Notes

In Memoriam


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Alumni Notes are published based on the information we receive from our alumni. To have your professional news published, please e-mail the news to Berkley Knas, Director of Alumni Relations.


Carmen Eiker (JD '78) of Carmen Eiker Law PC in Dallas has been named to the following lists for 2014: Texas Super Lawyers, Top 100 Texas Super Lawyers, Top 100 Dallas-Fort Worth Super Lawyers, and Top 50 Women Super Lawyers.

Marilea Lewis (JD '78) of Godwin Lewis PC has been named to the following lists: Texas Super Lawyer 2014, Best Lawyers in America 2014, Top 100 Lawyers in Texas, Top 100 Lawyers in Dallas-Fort Worth, and Top 50 Female Lawyers in Texas


Liz Fraley (JD '88) of Fraley & Fraley, LLP in Dallas has been named to the following lists: 2014 Texas Super Lawyers for the 11th consecutive year and 2014 D Magazine Best Lawyers.

John Ginn (JD '89) of Smith, McDowell, Ginn in Sulphur Springs was named to the 2014 Texas Super Lawyers list for the 10th consecutive year.

Michael Johnston (JD '80) of the Johnston Legal Group PC in Fort Worth is one of 15 Texans who received a Heroes for Children Award from the Texas State Board of Education. The award honors Texans who provide hundreds of volunteer service hours to Texas public schools. Johnston received the award for his work with the Fort Worth - SBOE District 13. Johnston also has been included on the following recognition lists: 2014 Texas Super Lawyer (10th consecutive year), 2014 H-Texas Magazine Top Lawyer, and 2013 Fort Worth Texas Magazine Top Attorney.

Laura Sharp (JD '86) of the Austin-based The Sharp Firm, has been appointed to the board of directors of the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. "New to TBLS, Laura brings fresh ideas and an outside perspective to our board," said Gary McNeil, Executive Director of TBLS. "Coupled with her multiple affiliations with local, statewide and national groups, her contributions will be valuable to our organization's continued growth."

Established by the Supreme Court of Texas, TBLS certifies attorneys in 21 specific areas of law. Sharp will be working with the TBLS board in overseeing the organization's finances, enhancing the value of certification and increasing public awareness of TBLS.

Sharp currently serves on the Medical Professional Liability Standing Committee for the American Bar Association and is a Board of Trustees Director for the National Conference of Bar Foundations. Sharp was a member of the State Bar of Texas Board of Directors and is an active member of the Court Rules Committee. She served as President of the Austin Bar Association and Chair of the Austin Bar Foundation.

John Sloan (JD '80) of Sloan, Bagley, Hatcher & Perry Law Firm in Longview, has been elected to the presidency of the Gerry Spence Trial Lawyers College. Located in Dubois, Wyoming, the Trial Lawyers College is a nonprofit organization dedicated to training and educating lawyers and judges who are committed to the jury system and to representing and obtaining justice for individuals who are oppressed by government and corporate interests.


George E. Crumley (JD '93) of Pittenger, Paxton, Nuspl & Crumley in Allen has been named to Super Lawyers Top 100 Attorneys in Dallas-Fort Worth for 2014.

Brad Lowry (JD '92) has been named partner in the Dallas office of Jackson Walker L.L.P.

David Luna (JD '92) has been appointed an assistant United States Attorney in the office of the United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri. He is assigned to the Cyber Crimes and Child Exploitation Unit of the office.

Michelle May O'Neil (JD '91) of Godwin Lewis PC has been named to the following lists: Top 100 Lawyers in Texas, Top 100 Lawyers in Dallas-Fort Worth, and Top 50 Female Lawyers in Texas.

Lyn Robbins (JD '90) has been named president-elect of the National Association of Railroad Trial Counsel. The NARTC is a 60-year-old organization made up of approximately 1,100 outstanding railroad trial attorneys from across the United States and Canada. Membership in NARTC is limited to lawyers who handle litigation and/or related matters for railroads or their affiliated entities, or who handle litigation or other legal matters directly affecting railroads. NARTC is the leader in educating, training, and assisting trial lawyers who represent railroads in litigation.

Since 2003, Lyn has been senior general attorney for BNSF Railway Company, primarily responsible for BNSF personal injury claims litigation and major damage collection litigation, with additional responsibilities for appellate matters, commercial dispute resolution, arbitration, and some employment issues. He is an adjunct professor of law at Baylor School of Law, teaching Advanced Trial Advocacy Skills and a faculty member of the NARTC College of Trial Advocacy. From 1990 - 2003, he practiced with Gullett, Sanford, Robinson & Martin, PLLC in Nashville, Tennessee, litigating thousands of cases, trying dozens of cases to verdict, and handling multiple appeals. He has argued before state supreme courts, federal courts of appeal, state courts of appeal, regulatory agencies, arbitration panels, and trial courts in a number of states, and he has briefed matters before the United States Supreme Court and various state supreme courts.

He received his J.D., cum laude, 1990 from Baylor School of Law, where he was a Leon Jaworski Scholar and the Lead Articles Editor of the Baylor Law Review.

Michele Yennie Smith (JD '92), a MehaffyWeber shareholder, was recently selected as 2015 "Lawyer of the Year" by Best Lawyers in America for Product Liability Litigation-Defendants, Beaumont, Texas. Only a single lawyer in each practice area and designated in a metropolitan area is honored as Lawyer of the Year. Michele will serve as President of the Texas Association of Defense Counsel for the term of 2014-2015.


Marybeth Conlon (JD '04) of the Conlon Law Firm, P.C. in Dallas was elected for inclusion in Rising Stars in Texas Super Lawyers 2014 by Thomson Reuters, and also was recently selected to serve a three-year term as a Barrister of the Patrick E. Higginbotham American Inn of Court.

The following recognition lists are published based on information we receive from our alumni. If you have been named to a recognition list, please e-mail Berkley Knas, Director of Alumni Relations at

2014 Texas Super Lawyers

Debbie Alsup (JD '82), Thompson & Knight LLP
Ted Benn (JD '86), Thompson & Knight LLP
Nick Bettinger (JD '91), McDonald Sanders
Bryan Blevins (JD '90), Provost Umphrey
Darren Brown (JD '91), Provost Umphrey
Rory Divin (JD '81), McDonald Sanders
Jeff Domen (JD '00), Goranson Bain, PLLC
Carmen Eiker (JD '78), Carmen Eiker Law PC
Liz Fraley (JD '88), Fraley & Fraley, LLP
John Ginn (JD '89), Smith, McDowell, Ginn
John L. Grayson (JD '83), Cokinos Bosien & Young
Michael Johnston (JD '80), Johnston Legal Group PC
Marilea Lewis (JD '78), Godwin Lewis PC
Thomas Hunter Lewis (JD '10), Kinser & Bates, L.L.P.
Don Martinson (JD '73), Fanning Harper Martinson Brandt & Kutchin, P.C.
Michelle May O'Neil (JD '91), Godwin Lewis PC
Elizabeth Pratt (JD '87), Elizabeth Pratt PLLC
David A. Skeels (JD '03), Friedman Suder & Cooke
Ryan J. Tucker (JD '01), David, Cedillo & Mendoza, Inc.
Walter Umphrey (JD '65), Provost Umphrey

2014 Rising Stars by Texas Super Lawyers

Michael N. Blue, (JD '05), Blue Rhodes, PLLC
Marybeth Conlon (JD '04), Conlon Law Firm, P.C.

2014 Best Lawyers in America

Marilea Lewis (JD '78), Godwin Lewis PC
Elizabeth Pratt (JD '87), Elizabeth Pratt PLLC

2015 Best Lawyers in America

Debbie Alsup (JD '82), Thompson & Knight LLP
Ted Benn (JD '86), Thompson & Knight LLP
Bryan Blevins (JD ’90), Provost Umphrey
Joseph E. Broussard IV (JD '88), MehaffyWeber
George Carlton (JD '75), Godwin Lewis PC
Georgia N. Crump (JD '78), Lloyd Gosselink Rochelle & Townsend, P.C
Jeff Domen (JD '00), Goranson Bain, PLLC
Craig Florence (JD '87), Gardere Wynne Sewell LLP
Geoff Long (JD '89), Thompson & Knight LLP
Neil Martin (JD '67), Gardere Wynne Sewell LLP
Don Martinson (JD '73), Fanning Harper Martinson Brandt & Kutchin, P.C.
Matthew Matheny (JD ’03), Provost Umphrey
Michael Moran (JD '97), Jackson Walker L.L.P.
David Oliver (JD '86), Vorys, Sater, Seymour and Pease LLP
Andrew Payne (JD '94), PayneMitchell Law Group
P. Bane Phillippi (JD '98), Weisbart Springer Hayes LLP
Terry Simmons (JD '78), Thompson & Knight LLP
Michele Yennie Smith (JD '92), MehaffyWeber
Jerry L. Stovall Jr. (JD '89), Breazeale, Sachse and Wilson, L.L.P.
Walter Umphrey (JD ’65), Provost Umphrey

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