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

November, 2006

Darren Bush, as a consultant to the Antitrust Modernization Commission, attended the Commission’s hearings regarding the McCarran-Ferguson Act and the Shipping Act.  His statutory supplement with John J. Flynn and Harry First titled ANTITRUST: STATUTES, TREATIES, REGULATIONS, GUIDELINES, AND POLICIES (2007-2008) is now published by Foundation Press.  He has also been invited to present a paper on the use of market power screens in electricity markets for the Review of Industrial Organization, one of the leading peer-reviewed industrial organization economics journals.  He has also been invited to comment on a paper by Larry Sullivan and Warren Grimes in a February 2007 symposium at Southwestern Law School honoring Larry Sullivan entitled Antitrust and Intellectual Property in Global Context.


Seth Chandler presented his paper “Using Genetic Programming to Improve Liability Insurance Contracts” to the Wolfram Technology Conference in Champaign, IL.


Anne Chandler delivered a talk on October 29th, “Anti-Immigration Legislation: Local and State Creativity in Times of Federal Inaction”, to Mexican Consular Officials from across the United States at the Mexican Foreign Service Conference on New Consular Protection, Immigrant Legislation, and the Death Penalty.


Tony Chase was recently selected Honorary Consul in Houston representing the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. He was also reappointed Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve Bank of the United States.


Victor B. Flatt did a presentation at the University of Arizona’s faculty enrichment series in October.  In November he will be presenting at a conference on federalism and environmental law at Duke University Law School, sponsored by the American Constitution Society, Duke University, and the Center for Progressive Reform.  Professor Flatt will also be one of the featured speakers in Georgia State University’s series on solving municipal environmental problems.  He will also represent the University of Houston in the programmatic discussion, with the United Kingdom’s Lady Blackstone, of the Marshall Scholars program recipients in Texas.


Gidi participated in an international conference on comparative civil procedure in Malaga, Spain.


Lonny Hoffman spoke at a program on the jury hosted by the National Center for State Courts on October 4th.  On a panel with Professor Stephen Landsmann (DePaul) and Justice Scott Brister, Professor Hoffman spoke about the vanishing jury phenomenon and focused specifically on the state court experience in Texas.    On October 6th, he was in Austin for a Supreme Court Jury Task Force on Assembly and Administration meeting.  On October 13th-14th, he was in West Texas for the quarterly meeting of the Litigation Council for the Litigation Section of the State Bar of Texas where he reported on the status of The Advocate, the quarterly journal for the Litigation Section for which he serves as editor.   On October 20th he was back in Austin for a Supreme Court Advisory Committee meeting. 

Working pro bono on behalf of a lawyer who has been indicted under the Texas Penal Code, Professor Hoffman assisted throughout October in preparing a petition for discretionary review which the lawyer then filed with the Court of Criminal Appeals.  Separately, he wrote an amicus brief supporting the petition for discretionary review.  The amicus brief was filed on behalf of the Litigation Section for the State Bar of Texas, LULAC (Texas chapter), NAACP (Texas State Chapter), the Texas Trial Lawyer's Association, and Texas Criminal Defense Lawyer's Association.  The amicus brief was filed on November 1st.  He received excellent assistance in this work from Sean McCarthy and Brad Hartz. Professor Hoffman was quoted on October 30th, in the Texas Lawyer in an article about the In re Hecht decision by the Special Court of Review. 

He also was involved in the following school activities in October: met with his student mentee group to discuss exam preparation; met with Pete Egler to discuss a new scholar in residence initiative; arranged two Monday lunch faculty speaker talks; hosted the monthly Scholarship Workshop Luncheon series; and attended the state department program organized by Steve Zamora.


Peter T. Hoffman published the third edition of The Effective Deposition:Techniques and Strategies That Work. He received a Fulbright Senior Specialist Grant to work with the Chinese University Law School in Hong Kong to develop an advocacy course for its post-degree certification program for barristers and solicitors.  Professor Hoffman worked in Hong Kong on the project for two weeks during the fall semester and will be returning again for another two-week stint in the spring of next year. He has also been named the program director for the National Institute for Trial Advocacy’s (NITA) 2006 National Trial Program for Public Service Attorneys to be held at the NITA’s National Education Center in Colorado on November 13th-17th.  He was also named to be program director of NITA’s Advocacy in Mediation Program.  The program will be inaugurated on December 15th-17th in San Diego and will be offered at several locations around the country. Professor Hoffman will be team leader for the following NITA programs: Trial Program for Public Service Attorneys, Louisville, CO, July 31st-August 4th; California Coast Deposition Skills Program, Chapman University, Orange, CA, August 10th -12th.


Steve Huber just sent the final and complete draft of CONSENSUAL DISPUTE RESOLTION PROCESSES: NEGOTIATION AND MEDIATION to LexisNexis.  Wendy Trachte-Huber is the co-author.  This book is a companion to ARBITRATION: CASES AND MATERIAL (2d ed. 2006), also published by LexisNexis. Steve’ co-author on that book is Professor Maureen A. Weston from Pepperdine Law School.


Craig Joyce published the Seventh Edition of Copyright Law, the most widely adopted casebook in its field, from LexisNexis.


Gail Lutz, juvenile clinic supervising attorney will give a presentation at the Texas Criminal Defense Attorney Association CLE Conference “Defending Juveniles” in Galveston, Texas on December 7th-8th.


Ellen Marrus did a presentation about representing children in delinquency and abuse cases for approximately 150 lawyers and mental health professionals in McAllen, TX.  She also did a session at the People’s Law School on the Rights of Juveniles.  Professor Marrus also received the Children’s Empowerment Award from Kid’s Day America/International for her outstanding commitment and dedication to children.


Douglas Moll spoke at faculty workshops at the Universities of Arizona and Oregon about Minority Oppression and the Limited Liability Company.  He also signed a contract with West Publishing as a co-author on a student study aid for Secured Transactions.  Finally, Professor Moll’s article, Shareholder Oppression in Texas Close Corporations:  Majority Rule Isn’t What It Used to Be, 1 Hous. Bus. & Tax L. J. 12 (2001), was solicited for republication and translation into Chinese for a Chinese legal journal.  (Like David Hasselhoff in Germany, Professor Moll is quite a big deal in China).


Tom Oldham attended the ABA Family Law Section meeting in Santa Fe during the last week of October, and met with the Board of Editors of the Family Law Quarterly to plan upcoming issues. He I has been involved in planning family law panels for the SEAALS conference in Florida in July 2007.


Michael A. Olivas spoke at the University of Chicago Legal Forum on “Immigration – Related State and Local Ordinances: Preemption, Prejudice, and the Proper Role for Enforcement”. The papers will be published in Spring, 2007. He also spoke on the DREAM Act and on immigration law/higher education at the Association for the Study of Higher Education, and delivered the Henry L. Salvatori Lecture at Chapman University, on Hernandez v. Texas. At Cornell, he delivered a paper on “What the War on Terrorism Has Meant for United States Colleges and Universities”, which will appear in a book edited by Ronald Eherenberg for the Cornell University Press. He also moderated the Charles Miller presentation on the recent Spellings Report at University of Houston.


Laura Oren’s article titled, Thwarted Fathers or Pop-up Pops?  How to Determine When Putative Fathers Can Block the Adoption Their Newborn Children, has appeared in a Symposium on Fathers and Family Law, 40 Fam. L. Q.153 (2006).  Her article, Some Thoughts on the State-Created Danger Doctrine:  DeShaney is Still Wrong and Castle Rock is More of the Same, will be appearing in the Fall 2006 issue of the Temple Political and Civil Rights Law Review.  She also has been invited to participate in the Wells Conference on Adoption Law, sponsored by Capital University Law School’s National Center on Adoption Law (to be held February 15th).   She has been appointed Co-Director of the Center for Children, Law & Policy at the University of Houston Law Center, and is helping to plan the Center’s conference on Children and the Law After the Katrina Disaster:  An Interdisciplinary Conference on Young Evacuees, scheduled for April 20th at the University of Houston Law Center.


Jordan Paust participated in the MSC Wiley Lecture Series at Texas A&M University on October 18th where he spoke on humanitarian aid.  He also participated in a panel discussion of detention and interrogation of alleged terrorist suspects at Rice University on November 3rd.  The book, Paust, Bassiouni, et al., International Criminal Law (3 ed. 2006) has been finalized for publication along with a new Documents Supplement.  His article, Above the Law: Unlawful Executive Authorizations Regarding Detainee Treatment, Secret Renditions, Domestic Spying, and Claims to Unchecked Executive Power, has been accepted at the Utah Law Review.


Nancy Rapoport has been named to the editorial board of the Journal of Legal Education by AALS President-Elect Nancy Rogers; She has also been on the BBC radio twice this month (LiveFive) talking about Enron and she has spoken about Enron & corporate governance to groups in San Antonio & Myrtle Beach; she is a contributing editor on the JURIST and MoneyLaw blogs.


Richard Saver presented “Abandonment of Research Subjects: The Problem of Remedying Intangible Harm at the American Society for Bioethics and Humanities” annual meeting in Denver, Colo. on October 28th.  He participated in a special panel session on medical research regulation and ethics.  His co-panelists included Dr. Alexander Friedman and Dr. David Wendler of the National Institutes of Health.   In addition, the Board of Editors of the international medical journal, Accountability in Research has invited him to join the editorial team as a peer reviewer.


Ira B. Shepard spoke (with Professor Martin McMahon of the University of Florida Law School) on "Recent Developments in Federal Income Taxation" to the Southern Federal Tax Institute in Atlanta on September 18th and on the same topic to the State Bar of Texas Advanced Tax Law Course in Dallas on September 28th. In October he spoke to the Wednesday Tax Forum on "Current Developments in Federal Taxation," on "Recent Developments in Individual Taxation" in New Orleans to the Tulane Tax Institute, and on "Recent Developments in Federal Income Taxation" in Denver to the partners of the CBIZ accounting firm. On November 1st, he spoke at the University of Texas Tax Conference on "Recent Developments in Federal Income Taxation," and on the same day also participated in a panel discussion on “Ethics Lessons from the Shelter Wars: What All Practitioners Can Learn From the IRS’s Increased Disciplinary and Criminal Enforcement Efforts” with Stephen Whitlock (Director of the IRS Office of Professional Responsibility, Washington) and Kathryn Kenneally (of Fulbright & Jaworsky, New York). On November 3rd, he spoke to the Tennessee Tax Institute in Nashville on "Recent Developments in Federal Income Taxation" and on November 6th, he spoke to the Maryland 2006 Advanced Tax Institute in Baltimore on "Recent Developments in Business Taxation." Later in November, he plans to speak on "Recent Developments in Federal Income Taxation" in St. Louis to the partners of the BKD accounting firm, in Scottsdale to the partners of the BDO accounting firm, and in Williamsburg to the William & Mary Tax Conference. In December, he plans to speak to a telecast for the CPA Society on "Recent Developments in Federal Income Taxation" and to the Houston Bar Association Tax Section on an ethics topic related to tax shelters.


 Ben Sheppard co-authored a solicited article published in Dispute Resolution Journal, a publication of the American Arbitration Association, titled Holding The Fort Until The Arbitrators Are Appointed: The New ICDR International Emergency Rule.  The rule amendment described in the article establishes the first procedure for pre-arbitral emergency relief that is included in standard arbitration rules offered by a major arbitral institution.  He chaired the American Arbitration Association Task Force that drafted the May 2006 revisions to the International Arbitration Rules discussed in the article. He also moderated a session dealing with arbitrator ethics at the European Users’ Council Symposia sponsored by the London Court of International Arbitration at Tylney Hall, Rotherwick (Hampshire), England, September 8th-10th. He has been appointed Chair of the Disputes Division of the ABA Section of International Law for 2006-2007.


Sandra Guerra Thompson was quoted in the Houston Chronicle on September 30th in an article on the question of whether the judge in the case of former Enron CFO Andrew Fastow was lenient in sentencing Fastow.  This article was also the basis of an article published on Accountingweb.com on October 5th.  She was also quoted by the Houston Chronicle on October 4th regarding the recusal of a Harris County judge.  The Chronicle also published two op-ed pieces that she authored.  The first was published on October 3rd and it addressed the Fastow sentence, explaining that it was appropriate in light of Fastow’s level of cooperation as a witness for the prosecution and on behalf of investors and former employees of Enron.  The second op-ed piece appeared on October 22nd on the question of criminality among immigrants.  She was also quoted in the Corpus Christi Caller-Times on October 11th regarding the constitutionality of a capital murder prosecution for injuring a woman and causing her to lose a pregnancy.


Don Tomlinson, Clinical Professor, along with 361st District Judge Steve Smith (Brazos County), presented a seminar in mid-October at a statewide gathering of Georgia trial judges near Macon, Georgia, at the request of the Georgia Institute for Continuing Judicial Education. The seminar was titled “Media Relations and Media Law: Right, Wrong and Otherwise.”  Prior to the seminar itself, Professor Tomlinson conducted television interviews with several judges asking a series of questions that might be offensive (there are many topics; by way of example, evidence of personal marijuana use in the context of too many dismissals of marijuana possession cases; FOI-based documents showing that the judge’s car is in the government parking lot at ten and gone by two most everyday; having lunch with a litigant the judge ruled in favor of that very morning in open court). The ground rules are that the judge can’t issue a general denial and can’t refuse to comment based on some code of judicial conduct. Once a number of these interviews have been conducted, Professor Tomlinson and Judge Smith edit the videotape for presentation at the seminar. They invariably turn out to be quite humorous (at the expense of the judge), but they illustrate many points about judges’ relationships with the television media. The audience, of course, is informed in advance of the fictitious nature of it all and told the ground rules. The seminar itself involves the playing of these and other videos intertwined with discussions of media relations and media law as it relates to reporters covering trials and the like. Professor Tomlinson and Judge Smith have been presenting this seminar since the late 1990s to groups of trial judges across the country, including a number of times to Texas trial judges through the Texas Center for the Judiciary.


Joe Vail was interviewed on October 2nd in the Texas Lawyer on a case argued before the U.S. Supreme Court, Toledo-Flores v. U.S. dealing immigrants and crime. On October 8th he was quoted in the Houston Chronicle on the detention of immigrants in Texas and on October 12th he gave a presentation before the American Leadership Forum on immigration policy. Professor Vail was quoted again by the Houston Chronicle on the situation of the Houston Salvadorans who came here in the 1980’s fleeing an unlivable country.


Greg Vetter presented an analysis of provisions dealing with patent rights found in open source software licenses as part of the Open Source Panel at the 21st Annual Intellectual Assets & Technology Law Institute held in Dallas on October 5th-6th. 


Stephen Zamora spoke on two panels at the 30th Annual Meeting of the Mexican Academy of Private International Law (AMEDIP), held in Mexico City from October 25th to 28th.  In addition to speaking on U.S. conflicts of law principles, he spoke at the opening ceremony that honored Dr. Leonel Pereznieto Castro, one of the founders of AMEDIP. President Vicente Fox has awarded to Stephen Zamora a medal -- the Decoration of the Order of the Aztec Eagle -- in recognition of Professor Zamora’s many years of dedication to scholarship and teaching that promotes U.S. – Mexican understanding.   On October 27th, Luis Ernesto Derbez, the Foreign Minister of Mexico, presented the medal to Professor Zamora at a special ceremony at the Foreign Ministry of Mexico, in Mexico City.  The Order of the Aztec Eagle is the highest recognition granted by the Mexican government to a non-Mexican citizen.  Former students and colleagues of Professor Zamora attended the ceremony, as well as a celebratory luncheon hosted by Ambassador Arturo Dager, the Legal Adviser to the Foreign Minister and a University of Houston Law Center alumnus (LLM).  

Harriet Richman, Editor