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UH Law Center skills lab named in honor of alumnus, litigator Robert Talaska ‘88

Art Install

UH Law Center Dean Baynes celebrates the dedication with the family of Robert Talaska. From left are Baynes, Dylan Talaska, Debra Clairmont and Travis Talaska.

Art Installation

Dylan Talaska, left, and Travis Talaska, right, unveil the photograph of their father during the dedication ceremony for the Robert J. Talaska Advocacy Skills Lab.

May 04, 2023 — The University of Houston Law Center hosted a ceremony this spring semester for the dedication of the Robert J. Talaska Advocacy Skills Lab.

"Naming is important because the person becomes part of the fabric of the building and the memory lives on," said Leonard M. Baynes, Dean of the UH Law Center.

Robert J. Talaska passed away in 2019. On hand to dedicate the space were his sons Dylan Talaska and Travis Talaska, and their mother Debra Clairmont (’88).

Talaska, a 1988 graduate of the UH Law Center, spent two decades advocating for clients in birth trauma litigation and served as national chairman of the American Association for Justices’ Birth Trauma Litigation Group.

“Bob’s expertise in complex medical malpractice and birth trauma litigation brought him in close proximity to hurting families. You can’t do that type of work well without a great deal of empathy and humanity. The legal community needs more attorneys like Bob,” said Baynes.

“There is not a better person to name an advocacy skills lab after than Bob,” said Scott Kruka (’87), a UH Law Center classmate of Talaska's and Of Counsel with Waters Kraus Paul. “Skills that he brought to bear representing those families started at UH Law Center.”

Kruka noted that friends and family from both coasts attended the ceremony, a testament to how deeply Talaska had touched the lives of those around him.

The lab, located on the second floor of the John M. O’Quinn Law Building, will serve as a dedicated space for the Blakely Advocacy Institute students to work with staff and coaches to learn the art of advocacy.

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