Celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month

The Hispanic Issues Section is proud to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month!

Did you know:

  • Hispanic Heritage Month started as Hispanic Heritage Week in 1968 by President Lyndon B. Johnson.
  • It was expanded to a 30-day period in 1988 by President Ronald Reagan.
  • Hispanic Heritage Month runs in the middle of two months, from September 15 to October 15, because there are several independence days of Latin American countries either on or near September 15:
    • Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua - September 15
    • Mexico - September 16
    • Chile - September 18
    • Belize - September 21

The Library of Congress hosts a Hispanic Heritage Month website that collects stories and highlights events occurring during Hispanic Heritage Month.

Want to see some interesting demographic facts about the Hispanic population in the United States?  The Pew Research Center has released a "10 Facts for Hispanic Heritage Month" article highlighting some of those facts to commemorate Hispanic Heritage Month.

Local PBS and other television stations, school districts and other groups frequently have Hispanic Heritage Month programming - get out there and celebrate!

Posted September 21, 2016


Message from the Chair

Dear HIS Members,

¡Bienvenidos! It is truly an honor to serve as Chair of the Hispanic Issues Section (HIS) for the forthcoming year. We begin by first acknowledging the outstanding work of our Immediate Past Chair Manuel Escobar and the outgoing council members. The new council members aspire to match our predecessors’ energy and passion.

Going forward, we will continue to nurture and grow the section. In 2014, we surpassed 500 members, making HIS a “medium-sized” section of the State Bar. Our objective now is to surpass 750 members by the end of 2017. With this goal in mind, you soon will be hearing about our new membership initiatives as well as our plans to co-host regional membership/networking events with local bar organizations in Corpus Christi, Austin, Tyler, San Antonio, and Dallas/Fort Worth. With your help, the section will continue to keep pace with the rapidly growing Hispanic community at large.

Further, HIS will continue to provide and support statewide networking, CLE, public service, and pro bono opportunities for our members. We have forged strong relationships with the law schools and a number of local bar organizations. HIS serves as an informational hub offering opportunities for our members, and we frequently use our website and newsletter to recognize our members’ achievements. Accordingly, please contact us with member news, awards, accolades, opportunities, or if you would like to publish an article or speak at a CLE.

We will continue to champion the Hispanic community of Texas and support access-to-justice initiatives. An essential purpose of HIS is to study and report on laws, judicial decisions, and governmental regulations as they may affect Hispanics. To this end, we recently launched a multiple-year service project focused on combating the predatory practice of notario fraud. We are in the process of forming coalitions, recruiting volunteers, and developing training materials. If you would like to join this effort, please contact me or Immediate Past Chair Manuel Escobar.

With your help, we have an opportunity to take you, our community, and the Hispanic Issues Section to new heights. We encourage you to join an HIS committee, spread the word about our Section, and send us news of your achievements. If there are other ways HIS can serve you, please let me know.

Un fuerte abrazo,

Arturo M. Aviles, Chair
Hispanic Issues Section
State Bar of Texas

Join Us at Annual Meeting!

NOTE: All HIS CLE programming is in Room 201C.

This year the State Bar of Texas Annual Meeting will be held at the Ft. Worth Omni & Convention Center on June 16 and 17, 2016.  

Just as we did last year, HIS is sponsoring a three-hour block of CLE on issues affecting the Hispanic community including labor and employment law, immigration and notario fraud. We also are co-hosting a Diversity Forum and an evening reception. All events will take place on Thursday, June 16. Below is the schedule:

9:00am – 12:00pm: Diversity Forum co-hosted with the African-American Lawyers, Asian Pacific Interest, LGBT Law and Women in the Law Sections.

Section CLE (3 hrs credit, including 1 hr of Ethics)

1:30pm - 2:30 pm: Labor/Employment Law: Warning for Non-Union Employers (Large or Small) - The NLRB May Be Watching You

  • Michelle Alcala, GRAVES DOUGHERTY HEARON & MOODY, P.C., Austin, TX

2:30pm - 3:30 pm: Immigration Consequences of Criminal Offenses

  • Jordan Pollock, Dallas Immigration Specialist, DALLAS COUNTY PUBLIC DEFENDER'S OFFICE, Dallas, TX
  • Novert Morales, Austin MORALES LAW OFFICE ATTORNEYS AT LAW, PLLC, Austin, TX

3:30pm - 4:30 pm: Notario Fraud: Unauthorized Practice of Law and Potential Private Causes of Action

  • Lauren Fisher Flores, KIDS IN NEED OF DEFENSE (KIND), Houston, TX 
4:30pm - 5:00pm: Section Membership Meeting (Includes election of officers and council members, and Presentation of Annual Section Awards)

5:30pm - 7:30pm: Joint Reception with Asian Pacific Interest Section

We hope to see you in Fort Worth! Click here to register for the Annual Meeting!

Updated June 16, 2016


See our latest newsletter!

The Hispanic Issues Section has issued the newest version of its newsletter, so check your inbox!  If you are an HIS member and did not get the newsletter for some reason, please let us know, and in the meantime you can view the newsletter here.

Have something you would like to see in a future newsletter?  Email us!

Updated August 22, 2016


HIS is on Facebook!

The Hispanic Issues Section now has a Facebook page!  Please visit us and like the page, and send us your notes, accomplishments and stories so that we can share them with all of our wonderful friends!

Posted August 9, 2015


Updates from the Hispanic Issues Section

We have plenty of recent updates for our members and friends!

  • The Hispanic Issues Section has just named the winners of its annual awards. Please click here for the full list and announcement! These awards were presented at a ceremony at the State Bar of Texas Annual Meeting. See our News page for details and pictures!
  • The Hispanic Issues Section approved new bylaws last year, which can be seen here.  Law students and recent graduates (licensed two years or less) can now join the section for FREE!  We have updated our membership form--download it here!  Or visit our Join Us page to join the section!
  • We now have our second Member Spotlight - Judge J. Manuel Bañales!  Please visit the Member Spotlight page to see Judge Bañales' excellent Q&A regarding the formation of the section and being an elected judge in Texas!
  • We frequently highlight when our members are in the news.  Be sure to visit the Members in the News page for updates, including recent honors given to Hispanic Issues Section members such as Texas Supreme Court Justice Eva Guzman and Angelica M. Hernandez!

Would you like to advertise your event with us?  Have a news item regarding a Hispanic Issues Section member?  Please email us!


Welcome to the New Hispanic Issues Section Website!

Welcome to the new website!  We are looking forward to bringing members a variety of news items from Hispanic Issues Section members around Texas, as well as news on important legal issues impacting the Hispanic community.  As we launch the new website, we want to hear from section members!  

We are particularly interested in receiving the following information from members:

  • Members in the News Items - Tell us about a recent accomplishment.  Recently make partner?  Receive an appointment to a board or committee?  Has your organization recently held a noteworthy event or activity?  Tell us!  
  • Events - Let us tell our members about your upcoming events, and put them on our calendar! 
  • News and Articles - Have a news item or summary, or a scholarly article you would like to share?  Send it to us!
  • Feedback - What else would you like to see on this site? 
Please email us!

Our Purpose

The purpose of the Hispanic Issues Section is to study and report on laws, judicial decisions and governmental regulations as they may affect the particular needs of the Hispanic community of Texas, to provide a common meeting ground and forum for members of the profession for consideration of special issues with respect to the recognition and enjoyment of constitutional rights of the Hispanic Community, both individually and collectively, and to take such action with respect thereto, all subject to our Bylaws and the laws, rules and regulations of the State Bar of Texas.

Copyright 2016 the State Bar of Texas