April 26, 2021

Fourteenth Annual Color of Justice Program Held on March 25, 2021

The National Association of Women Judges, in partnership with the Travis County Women Lawyers Association (TCWLA), held the fourteenth annual Color of Justice Program on March 25, 2021, where students from Akins, Travis, and Del Valle high schools were able to learn from and visit with lawyers and judges. The Color of Justice Program emphasizes the rule of law and provides the students with an opportunity to have one-on-one conversations with judges and lawyers that hopefully inspire them to enter the profession.

The event featured two panel discussions with speakers sharing their personal backgrounds, experiences, and their areas of practice. They also discussed the importance of personal commitment and perseverance, and the importance of lawyers and judges in our society. The first panel, “Law as a Career: Preparing the Way,” featured Hon. Delia Garza, Travis County Attorney; Hon. Rudy Metayer, Chamberlain McHaney and Pflugerville City Councilmember; and Chris Mugica, Jackson Walker. TCWLA board member and solo practitioner Emily Morris moderated the panel.

The second panel, “Making a Difference,” featured judicial panelists. Participating in the panel were Justice Gisela Triana of the Third Court of Appeals, Judge Carlos Barrera of Travis County Criminal Court #8, Judge Lora Livingston of Travis County 261st Civil District Court, and Judge Nick Chu, Travis County Justice of the Peace, Pct. 5. The panel was moderated by Judge Maria Salas-Mendoza, El Paso County 120th Civil District Court and NAWJ District 11 Director.

NAWJ granted a $1,000 Access to Justice scholarship to Laura Rativa for her demonstrated commitment to the achievement of equality of opportunity and access to justice. She gave a moving speech to the students emphasizing the importance of hard work and perseverance that was required to succeed as an immigrant from Colombia and first-generation college and law student.

The Color of Justice Program could not be as successful without the help of its sponsors, including the William Wayne Justice Center for Public Law, TCWLA, and Chris Mugica.