Haynes and Boone, LLP Managing Partner Tim Powers spoke to the International Bar Association for a podcast that explored the responsibility of lawyers to uphold the rule of law at a time of deep political divisions and upheaval, both in the United States and abroad.
In the podcast, hosted by the IBA’s U.S. Correspondent Michael Goldhaber, Powers said his concern about a growing lack of civility worldwide has prompted him to speak to lawyers at Haynes and Boone about their duty to preserve the rule of law.
“It’s a time in our society right now where the distrust and the lack of [civil] communication could be the very thing that tears down the foundational values of our country,” Powers said. “If you look historically at who has built those values, instilled those values, and ensured throughout our history that those values have been upheld, it is the lawyers.”
In an accompanying article in September on the rule of law, the IBA reported that President Donald Trump’s travel ban, along with his criticism of judges and plans to scrap legal aid funding, have caused widespread concern in the legal profession.
The article noted that Powers received a positive reception this year when he told his fellow partners, at Haynes and Boone’s annual partnership retreat, to “take a ‘leadership role with our clients and in our communities – to protect the rule of law.’” Powers expressed a similar sentiment in a message this year to Haynes and Boone’s clients.
The International Bar Association, established in 1947, has a membership of more than 80,000 lawyers and is the world's leading organization of international legal practitioners, bar associations and law societies, and is widely recognized as “the global voice of the legal profession.”
Powers is president of the IBA Foundation, which was established in 1986 with a mission to engage in a wide variety of charitable endeavors related to the rule of law.
To listen to the podcast, click here.