SPECIAL GUEST SPEAKER
This year's Solo and Small Firm Conference guest speaker is Kansas City attorney Stanley Tate. Tate, known as the "student loan solver," helps graduates develop a strategy for getting rid of student loans. Throughout his legal career, he has helped thousands of people with their student loans. During the SSF Conference, Tate, a dynamic and engaging speaker, will discuss "Carving Your Path: Developing a Successful Law Practice in a Nice Area of Law" and "Everything You Need to Know About Student Loans in 2023." He will also join the "60 Tips in 60 Minutes" panel.
Julie A. Bays
Julie A. Bays is the practice management advisor of the Oklahoma Bar Association. She works with the OBA Management Assistance Program to provide assistance to attorneys in using technology and other tools to efficiently manage their offices and teaches a variety of CLE classes. Bays is also involved with the Access to Justice initiatives of the OBA such as Oklahoma Free Legal Answers. Connect with her on LinkedIn.
Ed Blau is the owner and founder of the Blau Law Firm, an Oklahoma City criminal defense and civil rights litigation firm. Before starting the Blau Law Firm in 2011, Blau had been an assistant district attorney in Oklahoma County for approximately six years. He also served in the Oklahoma County Public Defender’s Office for a period of time.
Kenton Brice joined the OU College of Law Library in 2015 as its first Digital Resources Librarian. In addition to teaching legal research in the Legal Research, Writing, and Advocacy Program, Brice also assists in administering the Digital Initiative at the College of Law. He brings his professional and technical experiences to the College of Law to help educate students on how to utilize technology to become more effective researchers, lawyers, and professionals.
Melissa Brooks is the director of Legal Information and Engagement at the Oklahoma Access to Justice Foundation and serves on the OBA Access to Justice Committee. Brooks received her J.D. from OCU School of Law in 2017.
Jim Calloway has served as director of the OBA Management Assistance Program for 25 years. He received his J.D. from the OU College of Law. He publishes the award-winning law blog, "Jim Calloway’s Law Practice Tips" and has co-authored three ABA books on law practice management. Calloway, alongside Sharon Nelson, produces the monthly podcast, "The Digital Edge: Lawyers and Technology," covering legal tech issues. Calloway, an ABA member, served as 2005 ABA TECHSHOW chair and is a member of the ABA Law Practice Division’s Law Practice Magazine editorial board, writing the magazine's "Practice Management Advice" column for five years. He was awarded the Law LP Division’s Robert P. Wilkens Award for Best Column in Division Publications in 2015. He is currently co-chair of the LP Division’s Legal Futures Initiative. In November 2018, he was awarded the William G. Paul Oklahoma Justice Award from Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma, Inc. for his work on access to justice projects. Jim has been inducted as a Fellow of the College of Law Practice Management.
Shandi Campbell is the director of the Housing Solutions Landlord Tenant Resource Center, where her work is focused on making homelessness rare, brief and non-recurring in Tulsa County. Previously, Ms. Campbell served as assistant city attorney for Enid, staff attorney for the Apache Tribe of Oklahoma civil-legal program and as a contract attorney and mentoring attorney for the Native Alliance Against Violence CIRCLE Project.
Mark S. Darrah maintains a general civil practice in mid-town Tulsa. A substantial portion of his legal work involves estate planning, probate, estate administration, trusts and trust litigation. Darrah is a graduate of the University of Southern California and the OU College of Law. He has practiced in Tulsa since 1982 and is a member of all relevant bar associations. Darrah is the author of A Catalogue of Common People, a collection of personal essays and commentaries. He is also an occasional contributor to “Studio Tulsa” on KWGS 89.5 FM and an amateur fiddler. He was the 2018 Carl G. and Gladys L. Herrington Distinguished Lecturer at Rogers State University.
Elaine Dowling is a solo practitioner in Northwest Oklahoma City. Dowling represents people with debt or debt-related issues, doing various types of work for all kinds of people with credit report problems or identity theft issues - filing bankruptcies, helping people with credit reports, defending collection cases, defending foreclosure cases and otherwise trying to make a difference for people who have been handed more by life than they can handle.
Gina Hendryx is the OBA General Counsel. A licensed attorney for more than 30 years, Ms. Hendryx received her J.D. from OCU School of Law. As General Counsel she is the chief disciplinary counsel, supervising a staff of 15 and serves as the association’s counsel on other legal matters. Ms. Hendryx works with the Professional Responsibility Commission and serves as a liasion to the OBA Board of Governors, OBA committees, the courts, and other local and national entities concerning lawyer ethics issues. Hendryx is a frequent lecturer in the areas of professional responsibility and compliance with ethical standards. She has spoken to numerous private, public and governmental sector groups including state and county bar associations, legal services groups, and Judge Advocate General training programs. She writes a regular column for the Oklahoma Bar Journal on current issues in the area of professional accountability. She is also an avid scuba diver with over 1000 logged dives and hold instructor level ratings with several scuba certification agencies.
Brian Hermanson currently serves as the president of the Oklahoma Bar Association. He has also served as the district attorney for the 8th District of the State of Oklahoma since 2011, representing Kay and Noble counties. He received his J.D. from the OU College of Law. He has served as president of the YMCA, the Rotary Club and Ponca Playhouse, serves on the board of the Community Christian Church, has been an ex-officio member of the Ponca City Chamber of Commerce for 12 years, is former president of the Kay County Bar Association and the current president of the Noble County Bar Association. He has won several awards, has served in numerous leadership capacities and does work with many other organizations. He lives in Ponca City with his wife, Ruslyn, and they have two daughters, Brianna and Charlcy.
Darla Jackson serves as director of the Mabee Legal Information Center at the TU College of Law. She earned her M.L.I.S. and J.D. from the University of Oklahoma. She also holds an LL.M. in Indigenous Peoples Law from OU and an LL.M. in International Law from the University of Georgia School of Law. She is co-author of Oklahoma Legal Research (CAP 2013) and author of Oklahoma Practice Materials: A Selective Annotated Bibliography in State Practice Materials: Annotated Bibliographies (Hein 2021). She is active in several professional organizations and serves on the boards of many organizations, ABA Committees and OBA Committees. She is a member of the OBA, the ABA, the Chickasaw Nation Bar Association and the Cherokee Nation Bar Association.
OBA Executive Director Janet Johnson grew up in Duncan, Okla. and attended Empire High School. She received her B.A. in Letters from the University of Oklahoma in 2006 and her J.D. in 2010 from OCU School of Law. Early in her law career she was in a small private practice before realizing the call of her servant’s heart. She transitioned to working as a State’s Attorney for the DHS Child Support Services until 2020. In 2020, Janet was given the opportunity to follow her passion of providing quality continuing legal education to her peers and colleagues and joined the OBA as the Director of Educational Programs. In October 2022, she was selected by a unanimous vote by the OBA Board of Governors to become the Executive Director, effective January 1, 2023. She is the first female Executive Director of the Oklahoma Bar Association, and rumor has it that she is the youngest as well. She is excited about her new role and making a positive impact for the legal profession and membership.
Bio to come!
John Lieber is an attorney, a registered nurse and a health educator. He received his J.D. from TU College of Law in 1978 and his B.S.N. from OU in 2007. As a healthcare educator, he leads workshops for law firms, bar associations, employers and community groups on a variety of health topics such as healthy eating, stress management, sleep improvement, physical activity, stroke prevention, living wills and diabetes education.
Bio to come!
Robert G. Spector is the Glenn R. Watson Chair and Centennial Professor of Law Emeritus at OU College of Law. He received his J.D. from the University of Wisconsin in 1966. Professor Spector writes and lectures extensively on family law topics. In 2022 he received the Robert G. Spector award created by the OBA Family Law Section recognizing life time contributions to Oklahoma Family Law. He serves in numerous capacities and has received multiple awards for his contributions to the field of law. He is the author of Oklahoma Family Law: Cases and Materials, Oklahoma Family Law: The Handbook and Oklahoma Family Law: Statutes and Rules Annotated as well as more than 100 articles on family law.
Norman attorney Richard Stevens serves as OBA ethics counsel. A solo practitioner following his retirement from the District 21 District Attorney’s Office in 2016 after 33 years as a prosecutor, he received both his B.A. (1978) and J.D. (1982) from OU. He is a member of the OBA Criminal Law Section. Mr. Stevens has served on the Professional Responsibility Commission (2016-2017,2019), as an at-large governor (2013-2015) and vice president (2018) of the OBA.
Jordan Turk is a practicing attorney in Texas and is also the Legal Technology Advisor at Smokeball. Her family law expertise includes appeals, pre and postnuptial agreements, as well as complex property division and highly contentious custody cases. In addition, Turk has given CLEs across the country on topics ranging from client relationships to proper trust account management. She graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a B.A. in Classics, History, and Religious Studies. She then went on to attend the University of Arkansas School of Law to earn her J.D. After almost four years of practice with a high-asset family law firm in Houston, Turk discovered the world of legal technology which ultimately brought her to Smokeball.
All events during the 2023 Oklahoma Bar Association Solo & Small Firm Conference will be held at the Osage Casino – Tulsa; 951 West 36th St. N; Tulsa, OK 74127.