Here is an excerpt:
When President-Elect Jennifer A. Hasley becomes president of the Houston Bar Association next year, she will be only the fifth woman to hold that position in the HBA’s 150-year history. The first woman elected to the HBA presidency, Haynes and Boone Partner Lynne Liberato, won the position in 1993, less than 20 years ago. At the time, her candidacy faced strident opposition. But she felt that “by 1993 it was time” for a woman to hold this position.
Prior to running for HBA president, Liberato had served as chair of the HBA Campaign for the Homeless, editor of The Houston Lawyer, and chair of the HBA Continuing Legal Education Committee, in addition to participating in State Bar of Texas committees. This demonstrated commitment to the HBA led to Liberato’s election as president, despite opposition.
“I believe that I broke the barrier of all-male presidents because lawyers knew that I worked hard in the trenches doing bar work and that I loved working with so many of them for the good of the profession,” Liberato said. “Courage and encouragement caused me to enter the race. Without the encouragement of men, especially Judge David Hittner and Joel Androphy, I would have never had the courage to run for Bar president in the face of withering criticism.”
Readers who have served on HBA committees or in board positions will recognize the value Liberato places on her experience as HBA president. “Being Houston president was pivotal in my career and to my world view,” she said. “While we take the value of diversity for granted, I learned how important it was to have diverse leadership of any organization and how it was critical to decision-making.” Liberato’s term as president of the HBA also helped her go on to serve as president of the State Bar of Texas.
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