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Feds Feeds Families Program Closes Out Record-breaking Year

Defense Department and other federal employees nationwide met and exceeded goals to answer the call and assist food-insecure households through this year's "Feds Feed Families" food drive, the Pentagon's team lead for the drive said.
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Face of Defense: Captain Serves Nation Her Family Chose

A behavioral health officer serving in Kuwait has given more than 10 years of service as an enlisted soldier and as an Army officer.
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Inherent Resolve Airstrikes Continue in Syria, Iraq

U.S. military forces continued to attack Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant terrorists in Syria, U.S. Central Command officials reported.
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Hagel Orders Expeditionary Ebola Support Team

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel ordered Northern Command to train a 30-member military team capable of responding anywhere in the United States to new cases of Ebola.
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Pentagon Leaders Salute USO, Troops for Service

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff paid tribute to the USO and service members for their volunteerism and service.
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Casemaker and Fastcase: Reviews from the trenches

This summer, the State Bar of Texas became the first bar association in the nation to offer its members access to both Casemaker and Fastcase. While this is no doubt exciting for those attorneys who already know the benefits offered by these two legal research products—others might be wondering how it affects their daily practice and how the two products differ.

At $2,000, the State Bar has estimated that access to Fastcase and Casemaker is the most valuable benefit it provides for its members. Deciding which of the two to use largely depends on personal preferences as the platforms have distinctive designs and user experiences (for example, some liken Fastcase to using a Mac and Casemaker to using a PC).

Here’s what two lawyers—one a fan of Fastcase and the other preferring Casemaker—have to say about their experiences. To get more information on all the differences between Fastcase and Casemaker, read the September Texas Bar Journal’s Technology column.

Casemaker Fan: Deborah J. Bullion, a litigator with Gascoyne & Bullion in Sugar Land

There are a number of tools that make research easier and quicker. I especially love knowing when I pull up a case if it has been reversed, modified, or given favorable or negative treatment all on the same page. There are several tabs above the case that show the subsequent history and whether the petition or writ for review was granted or denied. And CaseCheck+ is so easy. As you research and pull up a case, it immediately provides a red thumbs-down for cases that have been treated negatively with cites to those cases and a green thumbs-up to indicate that the case is still good law.

If the case is still good law, it important to know how it has been cited or applied by other courts. With one click at the top of the page, CiteCheck provides a list of linked cases that have cited your case. The cite to your case will be highlighted in red so that you do not have to read through a 10-page opinion.

I have also found that researching how a statute has been treated or applied by the courts is just as easy by clicking on “Annotator” and instantly getting a list of cases that cite the statute. All with one click, you can get an idea of how courts have interpreted and applied the statute.

 

Fastcase Fan: Grant Scheiner, a criminal defense lawyer and principal in Scheiner Law Group in Houston

Texas solos and firms of 10 lawyers or fewer get the Premium Plan, which includes all of the state and federal libraries contained in the large firms’ Texas Plan—plus nationwide coverage from state and federal courts, state statutes, administrative regulations, court rules, constitutions, and more. All Texas attorneys also get annotated statutes from other states, as well as transactional access to newspaper articles, federal court filings, legal forms, and law reviews.

Fastcase is especially useful if you work with mobile devices, including smartphones and tablets. It has easy-to-use iOS and Android apps, and its mobile sync feature lets you share search results and research material across all of your devices at once. Useful features include a bubble chart that allows you to visually compare the importance of cases that come up in your search results and the Bad Law Bot automated listing of the negative treatments.

I really appreciate how Fastcase not only lists case search results by relevance (which is basically Fastcase’s algorithmic measurement of the importance of each case) but also lets you quickly switch the search results to filter showing the most recent case first. When I’m researching case law for an appellate brief or legal memorandum for a trial court, I find the most important cases are usually the “landmark decisions” and the most recent decisions. Fastcase lets me switch between these listings in a snap.

Original author: Lindsay Stafford Mader
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Statement by Texas Secretary of State Nandita Berry on Supreme Court Action regarding Photo ID

Following today's action by the U.S. Supreme Court, photo ID will be required at the polls this election. Early voting begins Monday, and Texans will need to bring one of seven legislatively approved forms of photo ID if voting in person, just as they have in the last three statewide elections.
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Mobile Election Identification Certificate station coming to Amarillo

A mobile station issuing Election Identification Certificates (EICs) will be in Amarillo Thursday, Oct. 23, and Friday, Oct. 24, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
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Mobile Election Identification Certificate station coming to Corpus Christi

A mobile station issuing Election Identification Certificates (EICs) will be on the first floor of the Nueces County Courthouse on Thursday, Oct. 23, and Friday, Oct. 24, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
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Statement by Texas Secretary of State Nandita Berry on Supreme Court Action regarding Photo ID

Following today's action by the U.S. Supreme Court, photo ID will be required at the polls this election. Early voting begins Monday, and Texans will need to bring one of seven legislatively approved forms of photo ID if voting in person, just as they have in the last three statewide elections.
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Mobile Election Identification Certificate station coming to Amarillo

A mobile station issuing Election Identification Certificates (EICs) will be in Amarillo Thursday, Oct. 23, and Friday, Oct. 24, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
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Mobile Election Identification Certificate station coming to Corpus Christi

A mobile station issuing Election Identification Certificates (EICs) will be on the first floor of the Nueces County Courthouse on Thursday, Oct. 23, and Friday, Oct. 24, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
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Mobile Election Identification Certificate station coming to Amarillo

A mobile station issuing Election Identification Certificates (EICs) will be in Amarillo Thursday, Oct. 23, and Friday, Oct. 24, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
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Mobile Election Identification Certificate station coming to Corpus Christi

A mobile station issuing Election Identification Certificates (EICs) will be on the first floor of the Nueces County Courthouse on Thursday, Oct. 23, and Friday, Oct. 24, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
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Statement by Texas Secretary of State Nandita Berry on Supreme Court Action regarding Photo ID

Following today's action by the U.S. Supreme Court, photo ID will be required at the polls this election. Early voting begins Monday, and Texans will need to bring one of seven legislatively approved forms of photo ID if voting in person, just as they have in the last three statewide elections.
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Transcom Widens Logistics Pipeline in Ebola Fight

U.S. Transportation Command Joint Task Force-Port Opening teams are widening the pipeline necessary to move forces, humanitarian aid, medical supplies and portable hospitals into Liberia in support of the U.S. government's response to the outbreak of Ebola in West Africa, Transcom officials reported.
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Airstrikes Hit ISIL in Syria, Iraq

U.S. military forces continued to attack ISIL terrorists in Syria using fighter aircraft to conduct seven airstrikes.
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Dunford Succeeds Amos as Marine Corps Commandant

After nearly four years as Marine Corps commandant, Gen. James F. Amos passed command to Gen. Joseph F. Dunford Jr. in a ceremony at Marine Barracks Washington.
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Texas lawyers, legal organization to receive ABA Difference Makers Awards in San Antonio

Three Texas attorneys and a San Antonio legal services organization will receive national awards for breaking down barriers through community service, pro bono work, and service to the legal profession, the American Bar Association announced today

The list of 2014 Difference Makers Awards recipients includes State Bar of Texas Immediate Past President Lisa M. Tatum, former Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice Wallace B. Jefferson, Houston immigration lawyer Harry Gee Jr., and RAICES, a San Antonio-based legal services and education organization for refugees and immigrants.
 

 

The awards will be presented Friday, Oct. 24 in San Antonio during the 9th Annual National Solo & Small Firm Conference, presented by the ABA Solo, Small Firm and General Practice Division.

Tatum, the owner of San Antonio-based LM Tatum, PLLC, will receive the 2014 Making a Difference Through Community Service Award, which honors an attorney—living or deceased—who has made a significant lifetime contribution to the local community.

Tatum has served in leadership positions in local, state, and national bar associations and has been active in her community as an alumnus of Leadership San Antonio, a member of local chambers of commerce and the Greater San Antonio YMCA Board of Directors, and as an adjunct professor at the University of Texas at San Antonio, among other activities.

During her term as State Bar president in 2013-2014, Tatum guided the launch of two major initiatives: I was the First. Vote for Me!, an award-winning interactive civics education project for Texas elementary school students, and the Care Campaign, an effort to empower attorneys to serve the millions of low-income Texans who can’t afford the legal help they need.

Click the links below for more information about the recipients.

Harry Gee Jr., Houston  Col. Will A. Gunn, Fort Belvoir, Virginia  Wallace B. Jefferson, Austin  RAICES  Lisa M. Tatum, San Antonio 

 

Original author: Lowell Brown
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#TBT: Celebrating 75 years of Texas legal history

This year marks the 75th anniversary of the State Bar of Texas.

As we celebrate, we want to engage lawyers and the general public on a variety of historical facts pertaining to State Bar and Texas legal history. What better way to showcase our history with you than through Throwback Thursdays?

Every Thursday, we’ll provide a photo and snippet of historical context via the State Bar of Texas Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram social media pages.

Members are encouraged to share their throwback photos with us. If you have a fun or interesting photo from your lawyer induction ceremony, an annual meeting, a CLE, or another event, we want to see it. Email your photos and caption information to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or you can share your throwback shots through your own social media pages. Just be sure to add the hashtag #TBT and tag or mention the State Bar of Texas with your post.

Created by the State Bar Act in 1939, the State Bar of Texas is the fifth-largest organization of lawyers in the United States and has played a crucial role in the lives of lawyers and the general public. Throughout the course of its history, the bar has strived to accomplish its mission to support the administration of the legal system, assure all citizens have equal access to justice, foster high standards of ethical conduct for lawyers, enable members to better serve their clients and the public, educate the public about the rule of law, and promote diversity in the administration of justice and the practice of law.

We look forward to sharing our history with you and viewing yours.

Pictured: An image from the second telecast murder trial in Texas history, State of Texas v. David Frank McKnight, in September 1958 in Amarillo. Post in the comments section if you know the state's first telecast murder case. 

Original author: Torrie Bethany
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