Feb. 21, 2018 — The red and white wine was flowing Saturday night (Feb. 17) as the University of Houston Law Center held its 42nd Annual Law Gala and Auction at the Hilton Americas with the theme "A Night in Napa."
More than 500 guests filled the hotel's Ballroom of the Americas, bedecked with sumptuous bordeaux and champagne colored linens surrounded by fresh flowers and soft lights. Thomas F. A. Hetherington, a partner in the firm of Edison, McDowell, & Hetherington LLP, chaired the event with his wife, Eyvette.
Dean Leonard M. Baynes took the opportunity to talk about the success of the Law Center and announced that thanks to the generosity of early investors, $4 million has been raised to support phase one of the Law Center's New Building Campaign's $10 million goal.
UH System Chancellor and UH President Renu Khator took the stage to echo the dean's remarks about the need for a new Law Center building and pledge the support of the UH System to bring the vision to reality.
The UH Law Alumni Association honored outstanding faculty and alumni of the Law Center, including The Honorable Alvin L. Zimmerman, the late Dean Emeritus and Professor Raymond T. Nimmer, Professor David R. Dow, John T. Unger, Susan L. Bickley, Michele Pilibosian, Thomas F. A. Hetherington, Meredith Atwell Baker, The Honorable Ken Wise, Staci Wilson, Harve Truskett, Rehan Alimohammad, Richard F. Whiteley, and Richard Craig Smith.
Auctioneers Stephen and Colette Mayers, performed a lively "Paddles Up" speed fundraiser during which attendees were encouraged to donate on the spot to support student scholarship. The "Paddles Up" and live and silent auctions raised more than $125,000. The auction was co-chaired by Michelle Gray and DeDe Davenport. The overall event raised nearly $500,000, which will fund scholarships, advocacy programs, faculty research, student organizations, library acquisitions, technology advances, student recruitment, and other student activities at the Law Center.
Following the auction, attendees enjoyed an after party and danced until midnight to the musical stylings of Nice Vibe DJs.