The Houston Bar Association (HBA) received the Stars of Texas Bars Partnership Award during the State Bar of Texas Annual Meeting held in mid-June in Fort Worth. The HBA's magazine, The Houston Lawyer, also earned recognition.
The Partnership Award honored the HBA for its collaboration with Communities in Schools (CIS) Houston on the Summer Legal Internship Program, an initiative of 2009-2010 HBA President Barrett Reasoner of Gibbs Bruns LLP. CIS students are high achievers who have completed their junior or senior year of high school, but who come from school or family situations that place them in an at-risk environment. The HBA/CIS Summer Legal Internship Program gives them the opportunity for a paid, eight-week internship in a professional environment, as well as enrichment programs and mentoring opportunities. The HBA recruited law firms, corporate legal departments, courts and legal agencies to participate. In its initial year the program placed 48 students; this summer 60 students are working through the HBA/CIS partnership.
The HBA's bimonthly magazine, The Houston Lawyer, was named best publication, and two articles received special recognition. The Best Feature Story Award went to "The Lobbyist," a firsthand account of what they actually do by attorneys Jim Grace and Luke Ledbetter of Baker Botts L.L.P. The Best Human Interest Story Award went to Keri D. Brown of Baker Botts L.L.P. for her column,"Racing a LeMon," which profiled a Houston attorney who competes in a circuit where the cars cannot cost more than $500.
The 11,600-member Houston Bar Association won the awards in the category of bar associations with more than 5,000 members.