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

May 2009

Previous editions of Faculty Focus can be accessed here



Janet Beck is the author of an article titled “Immigration Law Myths and Realities” published in the March/April 2009 issue of the Houston Lawyer.


Raymond Britton authored an op-ed that was published in the March 18 Houston Chronicle. The article explains how securities law may apply in the Madoff and Stanford cases, with differing results.


Aaron Bruhl attended the Fifth Circuit Judicial Conference in New Orleans, Louisiana. A shortened version of one of his articles was published on the recently launched Legal Workshop website, an online legal magazine jointly produced by several leading law reviews. To read the article, see


Anne Chandler is a co-author of a book to be published by Stanford Press. The book is provisionally titled Migration, Society and the State: The Social Context of U.S. Immigration Law.  Prof. Chandler will write the “law part” while her co-authors, Prof. Nestor Rodriguez (University of Texas), Prof. Cecelia Menjivar (Arizona State University), and Charles Munnell (Center for Immigration Research) will address sociological issues. Prof. Chandler spearheaded the Joseph Vail Immigration Workshop at the University of Houston Law Center in April. The workshop involved 16 speakers in issues in immigration law and brought in about 100 attorneys and potential clients to learn in English, Spanish, Vietnamese, and Mandarin, about diverse immigration subjects. On May 1, Prof. Chandler trained the Department of Homeland Security’s Asylum Office on issues related to unaccompanied alien children. During April, she spoke at the Earl Carl Symposium at Texas Southern University, on “Myths and Realities of Immigration Reform”. On April 16, she appeared on “Progressive Forum” on Pacifica Radio to discuss educating the community on immigrant issues.


Seth Chandler led a conference on Public Health Law and Swine Flu at the Health Law and Policy Institute on Wednesday, April 29. Approximately 100 people joined the conference in person and by teleconference. Participants included attorneys representing area district and county attorney offices, local health authorities, school districts, hospitals and hospital districts, and public agencies involved in response to the disease outbreak. Research faculty members Patricia Gray and Ron Scott from the institute gave brief presentations on public health law and Dr. William Fitzgibbon, Dean of the College of Technology, briefed the participants on the mathematics of tracking an epidemic.


Brigham Daniels testified before both a Texas Senate and Texas House committee as a resource witness regarding a bill focused on state climate change policy.


Jim Hawkins will present a paper on May 28 at the Law and Society Association Annual Meeting as part of a panel on the “Commodification of Families and Home.”


Craig Joyce organized three days of events in Austin for retired Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, supporting enhanced research for the cure of Alzheimer’s disease and the advancement of women in law and leadership. Prof. Joyce’s class in the Justice O’Connor Seminar toured the state capitol and attended proceedings in the Senate chambers. In addition, Prof. Joyce was reappointed to the Board of Editors of the Journal of Supreme Court History, sponsored by the Supreme Court of the United States.


Dean Nimmer completed the fourth edition of his three-volume book, The Law of Computer Technology, as well as a revised Teacher’s Manual for his casebook on Modern Licensing Law.


Tom Oldham will be a visiting lecturer at Australian National University from May 6-12.


Michael Olivas published “Undocumented College Students, Taxation, and Financial Aid: A Technical Note” 32 Review of Higher Education, 407 (2009). He was invited to address the Council of the ABA Section on Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar, at a council workshop in Indianapolis. He will speak on demographic changes in legal education and accreditation standards. He was also re-elected to the Board of Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund (MALDEF), and was reappointed to the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) Legal Defense Fund. He consulted with the New Mexico State History Library on the acquisition of an 1834 legal text in Spanish and Latin, printed by Padre Antonio Martinez. He is in the early stages of a project to digitize and put into public domain the books printed by Padre Martinez, who operated the first printing press west of the Mississippi. A story on the project and the printing press appeared in the May 1, 2009 Santa Fe New Mexican.


Jordan Paust’s article “The Absolute Prohibition of Torture and Necessary and Appropriate Sanctions” is published in 43 Valparaiso Law Review 1535-1575 (2009). The article is based on Prof. Paust’s presentation at Valparaiso this spring. Prof. Paust was also a member of a panel on Litigation Against United States Officials during the 22nd Sokol Colloquium, Human Rights Litigation in U.S. Courts, at the University of Virginia School of Law on April 2. His online essay at Jurist The Second Bybee Memo: A Smoking Gun” is available at:



His op-ed “Rice, Waterboarding and Accountability” was published in Jurist on May 8 and is available at:



He also drafted the Amicus Brief on behalf of the Human Rights Committee of the American Branch of the International Law Association for the U.S. Supreme Court in Republic of Iraq, et al. v. Simon et al., March 25, 2009 (a case involving claims of former U.S. POWs and others against Iraq for unlawful treatment during the Gulf War era). He has drafted the Amicus Brief on behalf of the Human Rights committee of the American Branch of the International Law Association for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in Freund, et al. v. Societe Nationale des Chemins de fer France, May 1, 2009 (a case involving suits by Holocaust survivors and others against the French railroad).


Stephen Zamora hosted and moderated a program sponsored by the UH Law Center Leonard B. Rosenberg Professorship in cooperation with Ambassador Carlos Gonzalez Magallon, Consul General of Mexico in Houston, and the U.S. Mexico Bar Association. The luncheon presentation was titled “U.S.-Mexico Relations Under President Obama: Legal Challenges and Future Prospects”. Speakers were Joel Hernandez and Miguel Angel Gonzalez Felix, the current and former legal advisors to the Foreign Minister of Mexico. Gonzalez Felix is a Law Center alum (LLM 1986).



Helen Boyce, Editor