Lynne Liberato, Super Alum, Super Lawyer

February 26, 2010

Revised March 1, 2010
SHSU Media Contacts:  Bruce Erickson

Lynne Liberato has done it again.

Liberato distinguished herself as a journalism student at Sam Houston State University back in the early ‘70’s, then as a reporter and photographer for the Huntsville Item for two years, especially in her coverage of the infamous Carrasco prison siege in the blazing hot summer of 1974.

Then she went law school and on to become one of the most highly respected appeals court lawyers in the nation.

Liberato said it was her experience as a reporter for the Item that convinced her to go to law school.

“Working for the Item, especially during the Carrasco siege, I met many national press reporters who had been to law school. Because I wanted to be a really good reporter, I went to law school to enhance my credentials and skills. Once I got to law school, I gradually shifted my mentality from wanting to be a reporter to wanting to be a lawyer,” she says.

Texas Monthly formally recognized her as a Texas “Super Lawyer”, several years running especially as an “Appellate Super Lawyer.”
Her fellow lawyers in Houston elected her president of the Houston Bar Association in 1993; her peers across Texas elected her president of the State Bar of Texas in 2000, and the United Way of Greater Houston honored her as Volunteer of the Year in 2008.

The SHSU Alumni Association officially designated her as “distinguished”—with a Capital D -- in 1996.

On March 2 she becomes the first woman ever to be selected for the Leon Jaworksi Award by The Houston Bar Association Auxiliary for “outstanding volunteer service to the greater Houston community.”

A delegate from Sam Houston State will be there to offer Liberato congratulations on behalf of all alumni and a proud alma mater.

While journalism lost a good reporter, the nation gained a good lawyer.

“Being a lawyer is really hard work,” she says.

“Sometimes it's fun, sometimes it's rewarding. It is much more rewarding than I ever thought because it has afforded me so many opportunities--to solve problems, to help people, to influence the law, to support myself and my family.

Here is an abbreviated list of this Super Sam Alum’s achievements and distinctions.

• She is a partner in the international law firm of Hayes and Boone and serves on the firm’s board of directors.

• She has argued jurisdictional issues to the United States Supreme Court, met with the president in the Oval Office regarding judicial appointments, and lobbied Congress for funding of legal services for the poor.

She is co-author of "Summary Judgments in Texas," often called the "bible" of summary judgments. Versions of this article have appeared in five law reviews since 1989, and it has been recognized as one of the 10 most-cited articles by appellate courts nationwide.

• She appears regularly before the Texas Supreme Court in cases involving multi-million dollar verdicts and cases with broad implications for Texas jurisprudence and handles appeals before the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals.

• She argues before trial judges to argue summary judgments, motions to dismiss, challenges to jurisdiction, privilege disputes and expert witness challenges and collaborates with trial teams on strategy, briefing, and advocacy and coordinates efforts to consolidate multi-district litigation.

• She was named one of the Best Lawyers in America for Appellate Law and Commercial Litigation (Woodward/White, Inc., 2005-2010)
• She chaired the United Way of Greater Houston (2005-2007) and still serves on its Executive Committee (2003-present); chaired the Hurricane Ike Task Force (2008); and the Hurricane Katrina/Rita Task Force.

• She serves on the Executive Committee, Greater Houston Partnership (2006-present); Board of Directors (2005-present) and chairs the Houston's Greatest Awards (2007, 2008), among other leadership duties for the Partnership.

• She has loyally served her law school alma mater, the South Texas College of Law, as a board member and trustee, and her son’s alma mater as a director of the United States Naval Academy Parents' Club of the Texas Gulf Coast.

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