Seven attorneys who will be receiving the prestigious Top Lawyers Under Forty Award from the Hispanic National Bar Association will honored Thursday night in Atlanta.
The Hispanic attorneys were selected not only on their ethical standards and legal skills but also for their commitment to their communities and the legal profession.
"We are proud to honor the 2013 Top Lawyers Under Forty as some of our nation's brightest and most promising Latino leaders and professionals," said Peter M. Reyes Jr., HNBA national president, in a statement. "As honorees, you represent the new generation of the Latino legal community and the HNBA is proud to recognize your accomplishments with this well-deserved award."
Attorneys being honored are:
Yesenia Gallegos, Partner, Fox Rothschild (Los Angeles)
Yesenia M. Gallegos, a very active HNBA member and a California-based litigator at Fox Rothschild, has carved a path of excellence as a litigator in the area of employment and labor law. She was recently elevated to partner, in part for her work as one of the lead attorneys in a class-action case where she and her colleagues successfully enforced a class action waiver in an employer's arbitration agreement. This high-profile case is on appeal and is expected to set precedent on the issue of class action waivers in arbitration agreements in California.
Johnny Garza, Partner, Adame * Garza (Houston)
Johnny N. Garza Jr. earned his stellar reputation in the legal community in a variety of complex cases, including his involvement in a Texas Court of Appeals case that upheld the trial court's ruling excluding evidence regarding a plaintiff's undocumented immigration status. In addition to his courtroom experience, Garza is active in the community and has served as president of the Hispanic Bar Association of Houston. He is committed to raising scholarship funds for Latino law students and other aspiring students.
Liz Lopez, Of-Counsel, Barnes & Thornburg (Washington, D.C.)
Liz Lopez has had a varied career serving as a prosecutor, government affairs advisor, and counsel to Fortune 500 companies. In her spare time, she has served in leadership positions in various organizations, including the HNBA, where she has held several positions on the HNBA Executive Committee. She was also a key player in the HNBA's efforts to support the nomination and confirmation of Justice Sotomayor to the United States Supreme Court. Lopez also regularly appears as a legal and political commentator on television and radio.
Rosevelie Marquez Morales, Partner, Harris Beach (New York)
Rosevelie Marquez Moralez is a partner at Harris Beach PLLC. At the time she was elevated to the partnership, she was one of the youngest associates to be elected partner. She also served as president of the Puerto Rican Bar Association (PRBA-NY), which represents more than 1,000 attorneys of Puerto Rican decent in the New York metropolitan area and Puerto Rico. She is an accomplished litigator practicing in the field of products liability, medical malpractice and insurance defense. She has authored numerous articles and is a presenter at many national conferences.
Carlos Montoya, Assistant General Counsel, ARAMARK Corp. (Philadelphia)
Carlos S. Montoya, an outstanding lawyer and community leader, is assistant general counsel and director of government affairs compliance at Aramark Corp. in Philadelphia. He has held leadership roles on many boards, including the Hispanic Bar Association of Pennsylvania (HBA-PA) as well as the Public Interest Law Center of Philadelphia.
Anna Maria Tejada, Of-Counsel, Kaufman Dolowich Voluck & Gonzo (Hackensack, N.J.)
As the president-elect of the Hispanic Bar Association of New Jersey (HBA-NI), Anna Maria Tejada has already distinguished herself in her community. Respected by her peers for her excellent lawyering skills, she has served as lead counsel on a number of complex cases involving employment law. She is also interested in politics that affect Latina leaders and serves on the Political Action Committee of Latinas United for Political Empowerment (LUPE). Tejada served as a law clerk to former New Jersey Supreme Justice John E. Wallace Jr.
Christina Vigil, Trial Attorney, U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (Albuquerque, N.M.)
Christina Vigil is a rising star who has dedicated her career to representing those who have been discriminated against. Equally active in the legal profession and community, she dedicates her time to many community projects such as the Innocence and Justice Project. She has also served as the executive director for the New Mexico Women's Justice Project, in addition to sitting on the New Mexico Governor's Independent Oversight Committee for Prisons, Gender Responsive Solutions, and Collateral Consequences task force. Christina is the past national secretary of the HNBA.
The HNBA will present the awards at the 2013 Annual Corporate Counsel Conference and 18th Annual Uvaldo Herrera National Moot Court Competition in Atlanta. The HNBA represents the interests of the more than 100,000 Hispanic attorneys, judges, law professors, legal assistants and law students in the U.S. and its territories.
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