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2019 UT System Legal Conference Speakers

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2019 UT System Legal Conference

SPEAKER

Karen E. Adams, J.D.

Janna Arney, Ph.D.

Allyson H. Kinzel, J.D.

Darren McCarty, J.D.

Bernard Arulanandam, Ph.D.

James B. Milliken, J.D.

Trey Atchley, J.D.

Stacey Napier, J.D.

Myrna Salinas Baumann, J.D.

Robert L. Noto, J.D.

Eric D. Bentley, J.D.

Adam Robison, J.D.

Ray Bonilla, J.D.

Kristin M. Roshelli, J.D.

Matt Bourgeois, J.D.

Sara A. Brinkmann, J.D.

Scott D. Schneider, J.D.

Daniel H. Sharphorn, J.D.

Nichole Bunker-Henderson, J.D.

Keri K. Stephens, Ph.D.

John D. Carroll, J.D.

Gary Susswein

Dona Cornell, J.D.

Ehsan Tabesh, J.D.

Abhay “Rocky” Dhir, J.D.

Simon Tam

Nelson Dong, J.D.

Leah Witcher Jackson Teague, J.D.

 Gregory N. Etzel, J.D.

Alexander Tsesis, J.D.

Nancy S. Footer, J.D.  

Fernando Gomez, J.D., Ph.D.

Max Weber, J.D., M.B.A.


BIOGRAPHIES


Karen E. Adams, J.D.
Chief Legal Officer, The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley
Edinburg, Texas

Karen Adams has served as the Chief Legal Officer for The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley since April 2015. Before joining UTRGV, Karen worked for 18 ½ years in the Office of Legal Affairs at UT Southwestern Medical Center. Karen previously also served as an Assistant City Attorney for the City of Dallas, Texas, and she began her legal career clerking in the General Litigation Division of the Texas Attorney General’s Office.

Karen graduated twice from The University of Texas at Austin, first with a Bachelor of Arts degree in the Plan II Honors Program, and then with Juris Doctor degree from the University of Texas School of Law. As an undergraduate, Karen was fortunate enough to be elected the editor of The Daily Texan, the student newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin, from 1989-1990 – an invaluable experience in her life.

All told, whether as a student or an attorney, Karen has been associated in some way with University of Texas institutions for nearly 31 years.


Janna Arney, Ph.D.
Deputy President, The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley
Edinburg, Texas

Dr. Arney earned her Ph.D. from The Ohio State University and held faculty appointments at Bowling Green University and California State University Northridge, before joining The University of Texas at Brownsville and Texas Southmost College (UTB/TSC).

A native of Brownsville, Texas, Dr. Arney returned to the Rio Grande Valley in 2002 as an assistant professor in the School of Business. She began her administrative career with the University in 2006, where she served as Associate Provost for Faculty and Academic Affairs. In this role, she also co-chaired the transition team coordinating the separation of the UTB/TSC partnership and was subsequently appointed as the UT Brownsville Chief Executive Officer by UT System through the closure of UT Brownsville.

In 2014, Dr. Arney was selected to serve as the first Vice President for Operations and Chief of Staff to the President for The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. In her current role as Deputy President, Dr. Arney works directly with the President on all institutional initiatives and has direct oversight for the areas of Institutional Compliance, Legal Affairs, Strategic Analysis and Institutional Reporting, and University Marketing and Communications.


Bernard Arulanandam, Ph.D.
Jane and Roland Blumberg Professor of Biosciences and
Interim Vice President for Research, Economic Development, and Knowledge Enterprise
The University of Texas at San Antonio
San Antonio, Texas

Since 2016, Dr. Arulanandam has directed the research enterprise at UTSA, leading to its highest research expenditures to date, and in 2018, added economic development to his portfolio. The same year, he fostered the creation of UTSA’s National Security Collaboration Center.

He is an established immunologist and directs a research program that is focused on elucidating host-microbial interactions and the cellular & molecular mechanisms involved in the induction of immune responses against infectious diseases.  Work from his laboratory have provided new insights into the development of vaccines against Chlamydia trachomatis, the leading cause of sexually transmitted bacterial disease and the creation of a potential live attenuated vaccine against multidrug-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii, identified as an important nosocomial pathogen.  His research has also advanced several animal models for vaccine development against Francisella tularensis.  

Dr. Arulanandam’s interdisciplinary research accomplishments are demonstrated by his funding from the National Institutes of Health, Department of Defense, and Department of Homeland Security, extensive list of research publications and issued patents. Dr.  Arulanandam has successfully mentored many students and post-doctoral fellows who have now developed independent productive careers in government, industry and academia.

From 2012 to 2016, Dr. Arulanandam served as the Director of the South Texas Center of Emerging Infectious Diseases and currently is also the Scientific Director of the Vaccine Development Center of San Antonio.  Dr. Arulanandam serves as the Councilor for the Oak Ridge Association of Universities, a member of the Board of Directors for Biomed SA and represents UTSA at the UT System Office of Federal Relations National Security Advisory Group (NSAG).

In addition to his current position as the Interim Vice President for REDKE, Dr. Arulanandam was appointed the Assistant Vice President for Research Support in 2012 and continues to serve in this role. In this capacity, he is involved in promoting and supporting research and scholarly activities at UTSA. In 2015, Dr. Arulanandam was named a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and received the Fulbright International Education Administrator Award in 2016.  In 2017, Dr. Arulanandam was elected as a fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology (AAM). Most recently, he was inducted as a fellow to the National Academy of Inventors (NAI) in 2019.

Dr. Arulanandam obtained a Ph.D. in Microbiology and Immunology at the Medical College of Ohio and received a postdoctoral fellowship at the Albany Medical College in New York and an executive M.B.A. at The University of Texas at San Antonio.


Trey Atchley, J.D.
Chief Inquiry Officer and Chief Research Security Officer 
The University of Texas System
Austin, Texas

Trey’s responsibilities include conducting and managing investigations involving allegations of misconduct within UT System Administration.  He also assists, conducts, and oversees investigations referred by the 14 UT System institutions and provides guidance and investigative assistance in matters relating to the deterrence, detection, and mitigation of threats against intellectual property. 

Prior to joining the UT System, Trey served as a Special Agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) for approximately 21 years. In that capacity, he investigated violations involving both criminal and national security matters. Trey was certified by the FBI as an adjunct faculty member and authorized to provide instruction in crisis and hostage negotiation matters, and interview and interrogation topics. He was also certified by the Department of Justice to conduct employment-related mediations. Trey served as an FBI Crisis Negotiation Coordinator for approximately seven years. In that role, he was responsible for coordinating Crisis Negotiators as they responded to domestic crisis situations and international kidnappings for ransom.

Trey received his B.B.A. from UT Austin and his J.D. from SMU’s Dedman School of Law.


Myrna Salinas Baumann, J.D.
King & Spalding LLP
Austin, Texas

Myrna provides employment counseling to public and private companies in connection with mergers, acquisitions, and other corporate transactions. She also advises employers regarding day-to-day employment compliance, best practices, and litigation avoidance. When the need for litigation arises, Myrna represents employers throughout the United States in lawsuits and administrative proceedings under federal and state employment laws.

In her employment counseling related to corporate transactions, Myrna regularly works with attorneys in the firm’s Corporate, Finance and Investments and Employee Benefits practices to negotiate purchase agreements, conduct due diligence, assess litigation exposure risks, and analyze ancillary employment documents, including executive employment, separation and release, retention bonus, and restrictive covenant agreements. Myrna’s advice and compliance practice addresses a variety of employment matters, such as employment and non-competition agreements, employee classification, performance and discipline, internal investigations, and terminations. 

Myrna’s litigation experience includes representing employers in disputes involving Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act, and the Fair Labor Standards Act, as well as investigations by government agencies such as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Department of Labor, and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

In addition to her employment practice, Myrna participates in the firm’s pro bono efforts, and she has earned multiple King & Spalding Pro Bono Service Awards in recognition of her commitment to pro bono matters. She also contributes to the firm’s diversity initiatives: she has served as the Co-Chair of the Latinx Affinity Group, as a planning committee member and Chair of the firm’s biennial Diversity Retreats, and as a member of the firm’s Diversity Committee and the Women’s Alliance Group. Myrna is also active in the Austin community, where she serves as a board member of Volunteer Legal Services of Central Texas and the Hispanic Bar Association of Austin’s Charitable Foundation and as a long-time volunteer for admission and fundraising for her undergraduate alma mater, Rice University.

Immediately following law school, Myrna served as a law clerk to the Honorable Hilda G. Tagle in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas.
 


Eric D. Bentley, J.D.
Vice Chancellor and General Counsel 
Texas Tech University System
Lubbock, Texas

Eric oversees an office of 26 employees, including 14 attorneys across the TTU System's component institutions (Texas Tech University, Texas Tech Health Sciences Center, Texas Tech Health Sciences Center El Paso, and Angelo State University).   

Eric received his J.D. from the University of Houston Law Center, his M.A. in Sports Management from the United States Sports Academy, and his B.A. from Hawaii Pacific University.  Eric is a former college baseball player who was on a baseball scholarship at the University of Utah and Hawaii Pacific University and has published multiple articles in the sports law field.  


Ray Bonilla, J.D.
General Counsel 
The Texas A&M University System
College Station, Texas

Ray leads the Office of General Counsel of The Texas A&M University System and serves as its chief legal officer. The A&M System is one of the largest systems of higher education in the nation, with a budget of $4.7 billion. Through a statewide network of 11 universities, seven state agencies, two service units and a comprehensive health science center, the A&M System educates more than 150,000 students and reaches more than 22 million persons through service programs each year. Externally funded research expenditures exceed $996 million and help drive the state’s economy.

Ray joined the Office of General Counsel in September 2011. Before joining the System, Ray was a partner in the law firm of Ray, Wood & Bonilla in Austin and served as General Counsel of the Texas Comptroller’s Office. In that position, Ray served as the primary legal advisor to Comptroller Sharp in his role as the State’s chief tax administrator and chief financial officer. Prior to his service at the Comptroller’s Office, Ray served on the Washington staff of former U.S. Senator Lloyd Bentsen, and as an attorney at the law firms of McGinnis, Lochridge & Kilgore and Baker Botts.  In November 2015, Ray was recognized for professional achievement by the Texas General Counsel Forum as the Outstanding General Counsel, Non-profit or Government Agency.

 

Matt Bourgeois, J.D.
Senior Legal Officer and Director, Institutional Compliance
The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center
Houston, Texas

Matt completed his undergraduate degree in chemistry at Purdue University and his law degree at the University of Houston.  Matt began his legal career at MD Anderson in 2011, where he focuses primarily on HIPAA compliance, breach response, and general privacy and data security matters.  In his spare time, Matt is an avid skier and a terrible golfer.
 


Sara A. Brinkmann, J.D.
Reed Smith LLP
Houston, Texas

Sara, a partner in her firm’s Life Sciences Health Industry Group, counsels life sciences companies and health care providers in both litigation disputes and regulatory enforcement matters. She has represented clients in fraud and abuse matters, including responding to government investigations of Medicare and Medicaid billing, conducting internal investigations, defending against Qui Tam and whistleblower lawsuits under the federal False Claims Act, and other regulatory matters regarding the federal Stark Law and Anti-Kickback Statute. She has also represented her health care clients in complex contract and business torts disputes, antitrust litigation, products liability (pharmaceutical) litigation, and medical malpractice suits. She has represented clients in federal court, state court, and administrative proceedings.

Sara has also represented clients in securities investigations and litigation, and she was seconded at one of the world's largest plastics, chemical and refining companies in 2016. In 2013, Sara served as a special prosecutor with the City of Houston's Legal Department through a 20-week attorney loan program, during which she tried more than a dozen cases to verdict.

Prior to joining Reed Smith, Sara completed a two-year clerkship for United States District Judge David Hittner in the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division. She assisted Judge Hittner as the lead briefing attorney on numerous cases, including those involving international Ponzi schemes, political bribery, Medicare fraud, trademark, trade secrets, and copyright infringement, complex contract, and employment disputes. Sara’s clerkship experience enables her to provide her clients with valuable insight into the judicial process and on the complicated issues that arise in litigation. While in law school, she served as a legal intern for Baylor College of Medicine's General Counsel's Office and Texas Children's Hospital's Risk Management Department.

Sara received her B.A. from Baylor University and her M.B.A. and J.D. from the University of Houston.


Nichole Bunker-Henderson, J.D.
Associate Deputy Attorney General for Civil Litigation
Texas Attorney General’s Office
Austin, Texas

Nichole Bunker-Henderson began serving as the Associate Deputy Attorney General for Civil Litigation in 2018. Nichole began her legal career as a law clerk at the Office of the Attorney General and was hired as an honors attorney in 2004. 

Nichole previously served as the Chief and Deputy Chief of the Administrative Law Division. While at the OAG, Nichole has worked on diverse matters as a trial and appellate attorney and general counsel to state agencies, including serving as the second chair on the school finance trial. 

During her nearly 20 years of government service, Nichole has also worked for the Texas Senate, Texas Legislative Council and the Texas Education Agency. She earned a bachelor’s degree in government from The University of Texas at Austin and a law degree from the University of Arizona.


John D. Carroll, J.D.
King & Spalding LLP
Washington, D.C.

John is a partner in the firm’s Antitrust practice. He focuses on civil and criminal antitrust matters, including mergers & acquisitions, strategic counseling and compliance, and global cartel investigations, where he represents clients before the Department of Justice Antitrust Division, Federal Trade Commission, and international and state antitrust enforcement authorities.

John was named a “Rising Star” for antitrust by Washington Super Lawyers and holds leadership positions in both the American Bar Association Section of Antitrust Law (Vice-Chair, Healthcare & Pharmaceuticals Committee) and the American Health Lawyers Association Antitrust Practice Group (Social Media Chair).

John joined the firm in 2011 after spending three years in the antitrust group at Ropes & Gray. Prior to joining Ropes & Gray, he was a staff attorney for several years in the Mergers I Division of the Federal Trade Commission’s Bureau of Competition. While with the FTC, he investigated, challenged, and negotiated settlements in a number of potentially anti-competitive business combinations in the technology, consumer products, defense, healthcare, and pharmaceutical industries and received an Award for Meritorious Service for work on merger litigation.

John received a B.A. from the University of Michigan and a J.D. from the George Washington University.


Dona Cornell, J.D.
Vice Chancellor/Vice President for Legal Affairs & General Counsel
The University of Houston System
Houston, Texas

Dona became University of Houston System vice chancellor for legal affairs and general counsel and University of Houston vice president for legal affairs and general counsel in June 2002. In her role, she is responsible for all legal matters of the System and each of its campuses, which includes transactional matters, all aspects of compliance and ethics, athletics issues, litigation management and advice and counsel regarding academic and student issues as well as many other legal matters affecting the System.     

Prior to her appointment, she served as the deputy chief of the General Litigation Division for the Texas Attorney General's office. As deputy chief for litigation, Cornell supervised 30 attorneys with responsibility for the 700-plus cases handled by the division.  Previously she was a shareholder in the Austin-based law firm Morehead, Jordan & Carmona.

Cornell earned her undergraduate and law degrees from UT Austin. She is licensed to practice law throughout Texas and in U.S. District Courts for the Northern, Southern, Eastern and Western Districts of Texas and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.  Prior to receiving her law degree, she served as a committee clerk and legislative aide in the 68th Texas Legislature, and an assistant director of Senate Bill Analysis for the 70th Texas Legislature.


Abhay “Rocky” Dhir, J.D.
President and Chief Executive Officer, Atlas Legal Research, LP
Dallas, Texas

Rocky's dual interest in innovation and the law prompted him to establish Atlas Legal Research, LP in 2000. Atlas provides legal research, legal writing, and document management solutions to corporate legal departments, law firms, and insurance staff counsel operations. Through his work as Atlas' CEO, Rocky helps clients become more efficient and more competitive in a legal landscape that requires lawyers to embrace new methodologies. Rocky is a firm believer that lawyers can enhance success by embracing business and management principles.

Rocky received his bachelor's degree from the University of Chicago and his J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School, where he served on the Michigan Law Review. After law school, Rocky completed a federal judicial clerkship with the Honorable Jerry Buchmeyer of Dallas.

A published legal author and frequent speaker on adaptation, legal innovation and social media, Rocky is a member of the Mac Taylor Inn of Court in Dallas and is also a proud member of the Rotary Club of Dallas, where he previously served on the Board of Directors, the Club's Foundation Board of Trustees, and as a two-time co-chair for the Club's annual Salute to America's Veterans. You can also find online videos of Rocky conducting interviews for Texas Bar TV, the official YouTube channel for the State Bar of Texas.



Nelson Dong, J.D.
Dorsey & Whitney LLP
Seattle, Washington

Based in Seattle, Washington, Nelson is a senior partner with the Dorsey & Whitney law firm.  He leads his firm’s international trade and national security law practice, focusing on export controls, economic sanctions, CFIUS national security reviews and tariff matters.  He is also co-head of Dorsey’s Asia Practice and has helped American companies, universities and independent research institutes to do business in the Greater China region and elsewhere around the world for over 30 years.  He writes and teaches regularly in these international law fields and has been an adjunct international law professor at Seattle University Law School.   

Nelson has been appointed twice as an export control policy advisor to the U.S. Department of Commerce, serving on the President’s Export Council’s Subcommittee on Export Administration (PECSEA).  He was a White House Fellow and Special Assistant to the U.S. Attorney General, and he also served as Deputy Associate Attorney General and as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, Criminal Division, in Boston.  He is a director of the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations in New York City and of the Washington State China Relations Council in Seattle.   He is an active member of the National Association of College and University Attorneys, the Council on Foreign Relations and the Committee of 100.  

Nelson is a graduate of Stanford University and the Yale Law School, and he was the first Asian American trustee of Stanford University.  He was recognized as a Trailblazer by the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association in 2009 and as the outstanding Asian American alumnus of Stanford University in 2019.
 



Gregory N. Etzel, J.D.
Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP
Houston, Texas

Greg concentrates his practice on the representation of hospitals and other healthcare providers in a variety of complex legal transactions and regulatory litigation. Prior to joining Morgan Lewis, Greg spent four and a half years in-house as Vice President of Legal Affairs at UTMB, providing legal counsel and representing the entire institution on a wide range of issues involving strategic initiatives, hospital and medical school operations, transactions, litigation management, public information, and international affairs.

Greg received his B.B.A. from The University of Texas at Austin and his J.D. from the University of Houston Law Center.
 


Nancy S. Footer, J.D.
Vice Chancellor & General Counsel
The University of North Texas System
Denton, Texas

Nancy has been Vice Chancellor & General Counsel since March 2004. Previously, Nancy was General Counsel for Bowling Green State University, where she also served as an adjunct faculty member in the College of Education and Human Development teaching higher education law. Prior to her tenure at BGSU, she served as Associate General Counsel for the University of Houston System. 

Nancy was a member of the Board of Directors of the National Association of College and University Attorneys from 1995-98 and is a past president of the Texas Association of College and University Attorneys. She received her J.D. from the University of Houston College of Law and her B.A. in History, with special honors, from UT Austin, where she gave the History Department commencement address in May 2007. She is licensed to practice in Texas and Ohio, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit and the Federal District Court for the Northern District of Ohio.
 



Fernando Gomez, J.D., Ph.D.
Vice Chancellor & General Counsel
The Texas State University System
Austin, Texas

Born in Gallup, New Mexico, Dr. Gomez earned degrees from the University of New Mexico (B.A., cum laude) and the University of Michigan (J.D. and Ph.D., American Culture). He attained tenure at Michigan State University before serving as assistant attorney general in Michigan and in Texas, and as general counsel for the California State University System. 
 
He has served as Texas State University System vice chancellor and general counsel for more than twenty years (1986-1990 and 1994-Present). He has authored three books, published short stories and poetry, and lectured throughout the United States and overseas, including Cuba and Yemen. 


 


Allyson H. Kinzel, J.D.
Vice President & Chief Legal Officer
The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center

Allyson holds a bachelor's in art history from Trinity University, and she earned her law degree (magna cum laude) at Tulane Law School, where she was awarded Order of the Coif. Before coming to MD Anderson, Allyson represented health care providers as a partner at Baker Hostetler and as an attorney at Vinson and Elkins.

Allyson served as MD Anderson's Vice President & Chief Compliance and Ethics Officer, as well as the Chief Privacy Officer from October 2014 to August 2018, and as MD Anderson's Deputy Chief Compliance Officer from November 2008 to September 2014. Allyson joined MD Anderson's Legal Services Department as the Vice President & Chief Legal Officer in September 2018.
 


Darren McCarty, J.D.
Deputy Attorney General for Civil Litigation
Texas Attorney General’s Office
Austin, Texas

Darren McCarty was named the Deputy Attorney General for Civil Litigation in 2018. Darren McCarty joined the Agency in 2017 as Special Counsel. Since joining the OAG, Darren has led the defense of Texas in some of its most difficult trials, including Senate Bill 4, the law banning sanctuary cities, and he was integral to the defense and resolution of the prison heat litigation. 

Previously, Darren was a partner at Alston & Bird LLP and an associate at Gibson, Dunn, & Crutcher LLP. He served as a law clerk to the Honorable Karen J. William of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit. Darren earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from The University of Texas at Austin and a law degree from The College of William and Mary.
 


James B. Milliken, J.D.
Chancellor, The University of Texas System
Austin, Texas

James B. Milliken, a national leader of public higher education with more than 30 years of experience, was named chancellor of The University of Texas System in September 2018. He oversees one of the largest public university systems in the United States with 14 health and academic institutions, including six medical schools. UT institutions enroll more than 240,000 students and employ more than 100,000 health care professionals, researchers, faculty and support staff.

Prior to joining the UT System, Milliken served in top leadership positions at major university systems in three states: The City University of New York (CUNY), the University of Nebraska (NU) and the University of North Carolina (UNC). In those roles, he led efforts that advanced economic development, online education, global engagement and student access and success.

As chancellor of CUNY – the nation’s leading urban public university – from 2014 to 2018, Milliken championed programs for underserved and vulnerable students. He led the development and implementation of CUNY's first university-wide strategic plan, which launched several ambitious initiatives to address student access and success that ultimately significantly increased graduation rates at the 24-campus system.

In 2004, Milliken, a fifth-generation Nebraskan, became the first alumnus to serve as president of NU. During his decade as president of the four-campus system, Milliken established a reputation as a relationship builder, leading initiatives that resulted in expanded access, enrollment growth, record increases in research, a successful capital campaign and much-needed emphasis on global engagement and workforce development.

At UNC, Milliken served as senior vice president at the 16-campus system, where he led strategy and economic development, institutional research, federal and state relations and university advancement. He was instrumental in achieving an overwhelming statewide vote to support a $3.1 billion statewide bond campaign, which at the time was the largest higher education bond package in the nation’s history.

In addition to a bachelor’s degree from the University of Nebraska, Milliken earned a law degree from New York University. He began his career at a Wall Street law firm but left to become an administrator and professor at NU. There he discovered a passion for public higher education and the opportunities it offers through affordable access and high quality.

Over the course of his career, Milliken has received numerous prestigious honors including the Distinguished Nebraskan Award presented by the state’s governor, the Lifetime Achievement Award from City & State New York and the Fulbright Award for Global Education. He holds the Lee Hage and Joseph D. Jamail Regents Chair in Higher Education Leadership at The University of Texas System.

Milliken has served on the boards of the American Council on Education and the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities and on the executive committee of the Council on Competitiveness. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Business-Higher Education Forum, and is the founding chairman of the Daugherty Global Water for Food Institute.

Milliken and his wife, Nana G. H. Smith, a graduate of Yale University and the New York University School of Law, have three adult children.  
 


Stacey Napier, J.D.
Vice Chancellor for Governmental Relations, The University of Texas System
Austin, Texas

Stacey serves as the primary liaison between the UT System Administration and Board of Regents and the Texas Legislature on the wide range of budget and policy issues and concerns that affect higher education and health care in Texas generally and the UT System institutions.  She is also the liaison with Executive Branch officials and agencies of Texas state government and at times with local governments in Austin and around the state.

Stacey began her career in state government working in the Texas House of Representatives as a legislative aide to State Representative Kenn George and later as General Counsel and Chief of Staff to Texas Senator Florence Shapiro.  In 2003, she joined then-Attorney General Greg Abbott as the Chief of the Intergovernmental Relations Division at the Office of the Attorney General (OAG).

Over the next 12 years, she served in various roles of increasing responsibility at the OAG, including Senior Counsel to the Attorney General and Deputy Attorney General for Administration, where she oversaw eight divisions within the OAG.  In January of 2015, Gov. Abbott named Stacey as the Director of Administration for the Office of the Governor. In this role, she oversaw the day-to-day operations of the agency, continued to routinely interact with legislators and staff and testified on behalf of the agency in budget hearings throughout the session.

In February 2016, Stacey was named Executive Director of the Texas Department of Information Resources (DIR).  As Executive Director, she oversaw the agency’s $750 million biennial budget, all employees, contracts and initiatives.  DIR’s main focus is to improve Texas by being a leader in technology innovation and contracting.  Stacey served as Executive Director through October 2018, when she was named Vice Chancellor for Governmental Relations. She now serves on the Board of the Department of Information Resources as the board member representing institutions of higher education. 

Stacey earned a Bachelor's degree from Louisiana State University and a law degree from the Southern Methodist University School of Law.


 


Robert L. Noto, J.D.
Vice President for Legal Affairs and General Counsel Emeritus
Michigan State University
East Lansing, Michigan

Bob served as MSU’s chief legal officer from 1995 until his retirement in March, 2018.  Bob began his career in higher education law in 1980 in the Office of Legal Counsel at New York University, where he worked for 15 years.  At the time of his departure from NYU he was Associate General Counsel and Deputy Secretary to NYU’s Board of Trustees.  He was also an Adjunct Associate Professor in NYU’s School of Education, where he taught Higher Education and the Law. Bob chaired the Principal Legal Officers Group of the Big Ten Academic Alliance (composed of the general counsel from each Big Ten university) from 2009 until 2018. 

Bob attended Harvard Law School, from which he graduated Cum Laude.  He received his undergraduate degree from Princeton University Magna Cum Laude and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa.   

 


Adam Robison, J.D.
King & Spalding LLP
Houston, Texas

Adam represents public and private hospital systems, academic medical centers, medical schools, children's hospitals, hospices, laboratories, physicians and suppliers in various regulatory and transactional matters.

Adam counsels clients concerning False Claims Act and Civil Monetary Penalty investigations, fraud and abuse, along with anti-kickback and physician self-referral issues, including physician contracting. He has also worked with clients on Medicare and Medicaid administrative overpayment appeals; Medicare and Medicaid self-disclosures; and compliance with the 60-day overpayment rule; as well as on Medicaid supplemental payment and 1115 Waiver programs.

In addition, Adam advises clients on a variety of transactional matters, including hospital joint operating company agreements, merger and acquisition agreements, and academic affiliation agreements.

Adam received a J.D., summa cum laude, from South Texas College of Law and a B.S. from Brigham Young University.
 


Kristin M. Roshelli, J.D.
King & Spalding LLP
Houston, Texas

Kristin advises clients on defending government investigations relating to Medicare and Medicaid billing, appealing alleged overpayments, self-disclosing potential overpayments, and analyzing arrangements under state and federal fraud and abuse authorities, including the Stark physician self-referral and anti-kickback statutes.  Kristin regularly assists clients with academic affiliations, mergers and acquisitions, and board governance matters.

Prior to entering the legal field, Kristin served as a nurse in the United States Air Force, worked in the general counsel’s office of a large academic medical center, and practiced as a registered nurse in a medical intensive care unit.
 


Scott D. Schneider, J.D.
Husch Blackwell LLP
Austin, Texas

Scott is a prominent litigator, as well as a sought-after advisor on Title IX, training programs, faculty hiring, promotion and tenure, and risk management within student affairs. Scott also provides expert witness testimony on matters dealing with institutional response to allegations of sexual misconduct. He is nationally recognized for his contributions to news media, including NPR, The Chronicle of Higher Education, Inside Higher Ed, CBS News and The Wall Street Journal.

Scott has provided training or delivered presentations for the National Association of College and University Attorneys (NACUA), the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS), the Association for Student Conduct Administration’s Gehring Academy, the International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators, EDUCAUSE and various associations of independent schools. Additionally, Scott is an award-winning professor at Tulane University, where he teaches on higher education and labor and employment law. Scott has been retained by the National Center for Campus Public Safety to serve as a faculty member for its Trauma-Informed Sexual Assault Investigation and Adjudication training program for campus officials.

Scott received his B.S. from the University of New Orleans and his J.D. from Washington and Lee University School of Law.
 


Daniel H. Sharphorn, J.D.
Vice Chancellor and General Counsel
The University of Texas System
Austin, Texas

Before joining UT System in 2007, Dan served in the Vice President and General Counsel's office of the University of Michigan for 25 years, most recently as Associate Vice President and Deputy General Counsel. In that capacity, Dan had primary responsibility for legal advice and litigation management at every level of the University in all matters related to faculty and student affairs, research, and governance. As Deputy General Counsel, he assisted in the management of an office with twenty attorneys, five paralegals, and related support staff that provided legal advice to the Board of Regents, the main University campus in Ann Arbor, two regional campuses, and the University of Michigan Medical Center. Dan directly supervised attorneys responsible for legal advice on intellectual property, technology transfer, export controls, purchasing, contracts, immigration, conflicts of interest and ethics, and student affairs. He also taught law, and social organization and law, in the University of Michigan Department of Sociology.

Dan began his career in higher education as an instructor and Judge Advocate General at the United States Military Academy at West Point. Dan earned a J.D., M.S.W., and M.A. (Sociology) from the University of Michigan and a B.S. from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.


 


Keri K. Stephens, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Department of Communication Studies
The University of Texas at Austin
Austin, Texas

Dr. Stephens' research program explores the interplay of communication and technologies by examining organizational practices and organizing processes, especially in contexts of crisis, disaster, and health.

Her two most recent books are New Media in Times of Crisis and Negotiating Control: Organizations and Mobile Communication. She has authored over 80 articles appearing in top research journals, proceedings, and books, in outlets such as Communication Monographs, Communication Research, Communication Theory, Health Communication, Human Communication Research, International Information Systems for Crisis Response and Management Conference, Journal of Business Communication, Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, Journal of Public Relations Research, and Management Communication Quarterly.

Her Hurricane Harvey and social media research, for which she was the PI, was funded by the National Science Foundation, and she has given a TEDxTalk and a podcast on that research. She is currently the PI on a Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) project, and her team just completed data analysis for one of the first community-wide wildfire drills in the U.S. She is an Associate Editor with Management Communication Quarterly, and is the vice-chair for the Mobile Communication Group of the International Communication Association.

Dr. Stephens currently teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in Organizational Communication, Communication Technologies, Grant Writing, Communicating to Build Sales Relationships, and Communication Studies Internships. In the fall of 2018, she was inducted into the Academy of Distinguished Teachers at UT Austin and she currently serves as the Secretary of that organization. She has also the President's Associates Teaching Excellence Award, the CommSCG Professor of the Year, and the Eyes of Texas Teaching and Mentoring Award.


 


Gary Susswein
Chief Communications Officer
The University of Texas at Austin
Austin, Texas

Gary serves as a strategic counselor to the president and oversees university wide marketing, media relations, social media and crisis communications. He has worked at UT since 2009, serving first as director of public affairs in the College of Liberal Arts and then as the university’s director of media relations before assuming his current role in 2016. A former journalist, Gary worked for 15 years for print newspapers, including as a political reporter, state and metro editor at the Austin American Statesman. A native of upstate New York, he earned a bachelor’s degree in history from the University of Pennsylvania and a masters in journalism from Stanford. He lives in Austin with his wife and two teenaged children.
 


Ehsan Tabesh, J.D.
Fisher Phillips LLP
Houston, Texas

Ehsan represents employers before state and federal courts and administrative agencies on a variety of labor and employment matters, including claims of discrimination, harassment, retaliation, leave law violations, breach of non-compete agreements, collective actions under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), theft of trade secrets, and other torts. Ehsan also counsels employers on compliance with federal and state employment statutes and drafts and reviews handbooks, employment policies, and employment contracts and non-compete agreements.

Ehsan obtained his B.A. from the University of Minnesota and his law degree from the University of Virginia School of Law. After law school, he served as a law clerk to the Honorable Sheri Polster Chappell of the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida.
 


Simon Tam
Author, Musician, Activist, and Troublemaker
Nashville, Tennessee

Simon is best known as the founder and bassist of The Slants, the world’s first and only all-Asian American dance rock band. He has been a keynote speaker, performer, and presenter at TEDx, SXSW, Comic-Con, The Department of Defense, Stanford University, and over 1,200 events across four continents. He has set a world record by appearing on the TEDx stage 13 times. His work has been highlighted in over 3,000 media features across 150 countries including The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, NPR, BBC, New York Times, and Rolling Stone. 

He was named a champion of diverse issues by the White House and worked with President Barack Obama's campaign to fight bullying. He recently helped expand freedom of speech through winning a unanimous victory at the Supreme Court of the United States for a landmark case, Matal v. Tam.

Simon designed one of the first college-accredited social media and digital marketing certificates in the United States. His approach to cultural competency in marketing has been taught to hundreds of Fortune 500 companies. Bloomberg Businessweek called him a "Social Media Rockstar." Forbes says his resume is a "paragon of completeness."

He has received many accolades for his work, including: The Mark T. Banner award from the American Bar Association, the Hugh M Hefner First Amendment Award, Milestone Case of the Year from Managing IP Magazine, and Distinguished Alum Award from Marylhurst University. In addition, he was named Citizen of the Year by the Chinese American Citizens Alliance, a Freedom Fighter by the Roosevelt Freedom Fighters, and a Portland Rising Star from the Light a Fire Awards. In 2019, he was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award from Greater Austin Asian Chamber of Commerce for his work in the Asian America community.

Most recently, Simon founded The Slants Foundation, an organization dedicated to providing scholarships and mentorship to artists combining activism and community engagement into their work.

 

Leah Witcher Jackson Teague, J.D.
Associate Dean and Professor of Law, Baylor University
Waco, Texas

Dean Teague earned her B.B.A, summa cum laude, and her J.D., cum laude, from Baylor University. She then entered private practice with the Waco law firm of Naman Howell Smith & Lee, P.C., where she practiced for almost five years in the firm's business section. Her primary interest and focus was tax planning. For over 20 years, Teague was the primary tax professor at Baylor and she taught almost a full load of courses in addition to her administrative duties. She currently teaches Basic Taxation Principles for Lawyers. She also currently teaches the Leadership Development class as part of Baylor Law's Leadership Development Program. 

On a national level, Dean Teague is an appointed member of the American Council on Education's Women Network Executive Council, a national advisory council to the Women's State Network. She chairs the council’s New Initiative Committee which is leading the Moving the Needle Initiative aimed at increasing the national awareness of the economic and social benefits of, and therefore importance of, greater diversity in leadership. She also joined other academic leaders from the U.S. and abroad to discuss the status of women leaders in society when she was invited to participate in two Oxford Round Tables.

In Texas, Dean Teague serves on the Executive Committee of the Texas Federal Tax Institute. Appointed by the Supreme Court of Texas, she served on the Professional Ethics Committee of the State Bar of Texas. She is an elected member of the Texas Bar Foundation. She is an alumna of Leadership Texas, as well as the Leadership America program. She was selected as a Woman of Distinction by the Blue Bonnet Council of Girl Scouts. She was also founding co-chair of Texas Women in Higher Education, Inc.
 


Alexander Tsesis, J.D.
Raymond & Mary Simon Chair in Constitutional Law and Professor of Law
Loyola University School of Law
Chicago, Illinois

Professor Tsesis is currently working on A Contextual Theory of Free Speech, which will be published next year by Cambridge University Press. His most recent books are Constitutional Ethos: Liberal Equality for the Common Good (Oxford University Press 2017) and For Liberty and Equality: The Life and Times of the Declaration of Independence (Oxford University Press 2012). His previous books include We Shall Overcome: A History of Civil Rights and the Law (Yale University Press 2008), The Thirteenth Amendment and American Freedom (New York University Press 2004), and Destructive Messages: How Hate Speech Paved the Way for Harmful Social Movements (New York University Press 2002).

The subjects of his articles range from cyber speech, constitutional interpretation and civil rights law to human rights. They have appeared or will appear in a variety of law reviews across the country, including the Boston University Law Review, Columbia Law Review, Cornell Law Review, Minnesota Law Review, Northwestern University Law Review, Southern California Law Review, University of Illinois Law Review, and Vanderbilt Law Review. Professor Tsesis’ scholarship focuses on a breadth of subjects, including constitutional law, civil rights, constitutional reconstruction, interpretive methodology, free speech theory, and legal history.

 


Max C. Weber
Vice President & Chief Compliance and Ethics Officer
The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center

Max is the Vice President & Chief Compliance and Ethics Officer for the MD Anderson Cancer Center's Institutional Compliance Office. Also, as Chief Privacy Officer, Max oversees MD Anderson's HIPAA privacy policies and procedures. He also serves as MD Anderson's contact person for receiving and resolving HIPAA privacy complaints and issues related to MD Anderson's Joint Notice of Privacy Practices.