Dallas, Tex. (Nov. 6, 2019) — The Board of Directors of the Dallas Association of Young Lawyers (“DAYL”) voted today to amend its bylaws to recognize the Dallas LGBT Bar Association (“DLGBTBA”) as a sister bar association.
Through the designation of “sister bar association,” the DAYL officially recognizes the DLGBTBA by creating a voting seat on the DAYL’s Board of Directors specifically allocated to a representative of the DLGBTBA. The DAYL’s action required a vote of a simple majority of its Board of Directors.
“While the DAYL has long supported young attorneys from all walks of life, including those young lawyers who identify as part of the LGBT+ community, we are proud to officially recognize the DLGBTBA as a sister bar association,” said DAYL 2019 President Charlie Gearing.
“This is an important and historic step for equality and inclusion for our organization, but more importantly, we hope this supports LGBT+ young attorneys in Dallas for decades to come. They are, without equivocation, welcome and supported in the DAYL.”
The DLGBTBA is a network of over 300 lawyers, law students, para-professionals, and related professional allies who identify as LGBT+ or share an interest in the laws that affect and protect the LGBT+ community. Over 100 of those individuals are due-paying members.
The DLGBTBA joins the ranks of other sister bar associations, including the Dallas Asian American Bar Association (“DAABA”), the Dallas Hispanic Bar Association (“DHBA”), the J.L. Turner Legal Association, and the Dallas Women Lawyers Association (“DWLA”).
Although records indicate that the DLGBTBA existed in many forms — including as part of a private organization named “The Stonewall Legal Society” dating back as far as 1993 — most bar associations in Texas do not officially recognize their local LGBT+ bar associations.
“As the gatekeepers of justice, lawyers are often the key to achieving the rights and liberties of marginalized groups for the public at large. Without formal recognition of their existence from legal institutions, LGBT+ lawyers themselves face an uphill battle fighting for the rights of others,” said DLGBTBA President Mario H. Nguyen. “Today, the DLGBTBA makes history.”