Faculty Focus is a monthly publication documenting the activities, accomplishments, and honors of the University of Houston Law Center Faculty.

Editor, Katy Stein Badeaux,

Previous editions of Faculty Focus can be accessed here.

March 2013


Michele Alexandre presented at Stetson University College of Law's 34th National Conference on Law and Higher Education on February 17 and 18.  Alexandre will also deliver a paper on April 19 at the University of Oregon Law Review's Volume 91 Symposium. The symposium is entitled: A Step Forward: Creating a Just Drug Policy for the United States.  Alexandre's presentation will be published in Oregon Law Review’s forthcoming symposium issue.


Janet Beck has been selected by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization (TBLS) to serve as a member of the Immigration and Nationality Law Exam Commission. 


Erma Bonadero was elected as Secretary for the Harris County STAR Drug Court Foundations’ Board of Directors.


Aaron Bruhl’s latest article, Hierarchically Variable Deference to Agency Interpretations, has been accepted for publication by the Notre Dame Law Review.


Seth Chandler testified in Austin on March 12 before the Senate Business and Commerce Committee on S.B. 18 and other bills relating to reform of the Texas Windstorm Insurance Association.


David R. Dow’s letter, When the U.S. Kills an American Citizen, was published in The New York Times on March 11th.  He was the Presidential Invited Speaker at the 50th annual meeting of the American Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences, and his plenary address on March 21 examined “How Significant is the Risk of Executing an Innocent Person?”  At the Glasscock school of Continuing Studies at Rice University, he delivered a lecture on February 21 titled, “The Origin of Our Rights:  Habeas Corpus, Trial by Jury, Search Warrants, and Cruel and Unusual Punishment.”   


Jim Hawkins spoke with researchers at the U.S. Government Accountability Office in March to advise them about their new research about college affinity credit cards which is mandated by the 2009 Credit CARD Act.  He also guest blogged in March at the popular legal blog The Faculty Lounge (


Geoffrey Hoffman has been invited to speak at TSU’s 2-day Immigration Symposium. Professor Hoffman will discuss plenary power the first day and issues related to 4th Amendment search and seizure the second day. Professor Hoffman has been invited by the Immigration and Human Rights Law Society to speak at a panel in the Law Center on March 25, relating to appellate immigration litigation and human rights.


Lonny Hoffman was selected to be the school's new associate dean on March 1, after Dean Alderman became the interim dean of the Law Center. Also in the month, Hoffman completed work on his article, Further Thinking About Vicarious Jurisdiction: Insights Into and Lessons From Goodyear Dunlop Tires Operations, S.A. v. Brown. The article was solicited for a symposium at the University of Pennsylvania Law School by its Journal of International Law. The article will be published later this year. He also completed another round of edits on his article, Rulemaking in the Age of Twombly and Iqbal (forthcoming 2013, U.C. Davis L. Rev.). During March, Hoffman also was active in his work as Reporter for the Fifth Circuit's ongoing project to revise its Pattern Jury Instructions. Finally, during the month, in his role as editor of The Advocate, the quarterly journal of the Litigation Section for the State Bar of Texas, he worked on the forthcoming Spring issue ("Best of" Litigation Update 2013) and Summer issue ("International Litigation in Texas Courts").


Craig Joyce submitted the manuscript of The Great Leap Forward: The Fourth Decade of Houston Law Review, the latest in his series of decade-by-decade historical essays on HLR’s first 50 years. 


Sapna Kumar's article, The Accidental Agency?, was published at 65 Fla. L. Rev. 229 (2013).


Jacqueline Lipton’s article, Speech for Sale: Commerce and Free Speech in ICANN’s new gTLD Process, was published at 87 Australian Law Journal 24 (2013).


Jessica Mantel's article Accountable Care Organizations: Can We Have Our Cake and Eat it Too? was published in the Seton Hall Law Review's symposium issue on accountable care organizations. Professor Mantel also served at the moderator for the Law Center's Legal Excellence Speaker Series “The Affordable Care Act: What It Means for Texas.”


Douglas Moll’s Concise Hornbook on the Law of Business Organizations (with Rich Freer) has been published.  Professor Moll has started work on a new West Business Torts casebook (with Colin Marks).  Professor Moll has also been invited to serve as a senior commentator at George Washington Law School’s Third Annual Junior Faculty Business and Financial Law Workshop.  He will be commenting on various papers, but will be focusing on closely held corporation papers by junior scholars. Finally, Professor Moll’s articles have been cited in recent decisions of the Superior Court of North Carolina and the Supreme Court of South Carolina.


Michael A. Olivas, at a conference at the University of Richmond, delivered a paper on the Keyes/Rodriguez/Lau cases and the role of minority lawyers in the cases (virtually none, surprisingly). An earlier version of the paper is appearing in the Denver University Law Review, following a recent conference there. He spoke on comprehensive immigration reform at a Boston College Law conference, and taught a Harvard Law School class on Deferred Action in immigration law, and a similar class at Arizona State, both by skype. He also published Ask Not For Whom the Law School Bell Tolls: Professor Tamanaha, Failing Law Schools, and (Mis)Diagnosing the Problem, in the Washington University at St. Louis 41 Journal of Law & Policy 1 (2013).


Jordan Paust spoke at Michigan State University’s College of Law on March 13th on “Some Seventy Years After Nuremberg: Laws of War and Human Rights Violations During the Bush-Cheney Era.”


Deana Pollard produced and hosted a 30-minute radio show that aired February 19, 2013 on Pacifica Radio, KPFT, about a book called Implicit Racial Bias Across the Law. Professor Danielle Conway from the University of Hawaii School of Law and Professor Pollard’s former student Jay Christian, who is an associate attorney at Vinson & Elkins, were her guests on the show. Conway and Professor Pollard were contributing authors of the book.


Jessica Roberts has accepted an offer from the Iowa Law Review to publish her article Healthism & The Law of Employment Discrimination.


Susan Sakmar submitted a Reply Brief to the US DOE on the controversial issue of US LNG exports.  Her reply comments were quoted and her forthcoming book, Energy for the 21st Century: Opportunities and Challenges for LNG, was mentioned in an article available at LNG World News, Professor Sakmar also received the coveted (but little known) “Distributor of the Month” award from the communications department for distributing about 80 brochures at the Careers in Energy Law event held in Tulsa, Oklahoma the weekend of March 2-3, 2013.   The event was a huge success for law students interested in energy law careers but also gave UHLC a chance to promote its fantastic energy law program, especially to prospective LL.M. students. The highlight of Professor Sakmar’s inaugural trip to Tulsa was a side trip to Cushing, Oklahoma, which is a major trading hub for crude oil and a famous price settlement point for West Texas Intermediate (WTI) on the New York Mercantile Exchange.


Sandra Guerra Thompson attended a meeting of the Board of Directors of the Houston Forensic Science LGC on March 13, 2013.  She was also quoted extensively in a story that appeared on February 19th on the website, regarding Dallas County D.A. Craig Watkins being called to testify in a prosecutorial misconduct hearing.  On February 20th, she judged a preliminary round of the Blakely-Butler Moot Court Competition sponsored by the Advocates.


Greg Vetter completed a year of service as the Chair of the Organizing Board for the Works-in-Progress Intellectual Property (WIPIP) Colloquium (, closing out that year in participation at WIPIP 2013 at Seton Hall University School of Law on February 22-23, 2013.


Stephen Zamora organized a “Mexico Briefing” (symposium) entitled “The New Politics of Mexico and the United States: A Forecast for Improved Bilateral Relations,” that was held Feb. 25, at the offices of Fulbright & Jaworski in Houston.  The event, organized by the Center for US and Mexican Law, featured U.S. Congressman Henry Cuellar (D-TX), Mexican Congressman (diputado) Agustín Barrios Gómez, and Mexican political analyst Dr. Luis Rubio.  The speakers analyzed the prospects for legislation coming out of the new Congresses that have been elected in both countries.  More information is available at On March 20, Stephen Zamora and Ignacio Pinto-León (Law Center adjunct professor, and Assistant Director of the center for U.S. and Mexican Law”) spoke at the First Annual Nuts & Bolts of International Law Seminar sponsored by the International Law Section of the Texas Bar and the Texas Young Lawyers Association.  The subject of their presentation was “U.S. – Mexico Relations,” with attention to NAFTA and to Mexican law and legal culture as it affects international business.