Aubrey Lavery Meyers
Aubrey Lavery Meyers is the Vice President and Associate General Counsel of a Texas-based home loan company. Prior to her in-house role, she was an associate at Holland & Knight and Patton Boggs. Aubrey has focused on giving back to the community through mentoring, pro bono legal work, and educating young lawyers on how they can do the same. She continues to give back to her alma maters, mentoring pre-law students from the John Marshall Pre-Law Society at the University of Texas at Dallas, and current students at the University of Illinois College of Law. She began volunteering as a pro bono attorney for the Human Rights Initiative of North Texas in 2011 and has developed a passion for helping those who are seeking asylum in the United States.
Almaz Woldeab, CPA
Almaz Woldeab is Managing Director and Chief Financial Officer for the Civitas Capital Group family of companies. She is responsible for directing and overseeing the financial functions of the firm including Accounting, Financial Reporting, Financial Planning, Budgeting, Treasury and Audit. Before joining Civitas, Ms. Woldeab was at Texas Instruments, Inc. for over 12 years where she held several positions in Financial Planning and Management, Accounting and Financial Reporting, including most recently leading the preparation of the company’s Annual Plan and quarterly updates. She has also served as a controller for the Texas Instruments Foundation, a non-profit foundation. Ms. Woldeab holds a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from University of Texas at Dallas and a Masters of Business Administration from the Cox school of Business at Southern Methodist University. She is also a Certified Public Accountant.
Elizabeth A. Healy
Director and Co-Founder
Ms. Healy was instrumental in founding Human Rights Initiative of North Texas in 1999 and served as Executive Director for the organization until November 2005. Betsy remains firmly committed to the agency’s mission and now leads the Board of Trustees. Prior to her years with HRI, she was an associate with Cowles & Thompson, PC. She also completed a judicial clerkship at the Dallas Court of Appeals. Betsy is currently a Program Officer with the Harold Simmons Foundation, Dallas, TX.
Robert D. Graham
Mr. Graham is a Vice President of Contran Corporation. In his current position, Mr. Graham has responsibility for legal and other matters for certain companies within the Contran organization, including serving as Executive Vice President and General Counsel of Kronos Worldwide, Inc. and Vice President and General Counsel of NL Industries, Inc. Mr. Graham previously was a member of the Board of Directors, Executive Vice President and General Counsel of Software Spectrum, Inc., a global business software and technical services provider. Prior thereto, Mr Graham was a partner with Locke Purnell Rain Harrell in Dallas concentrating on corporate and securities law. Mr. Graham is the recipient of the 2008 Robert H. Dedman Award for Ethics and Law from the Texas General Counsel Forum.
Hind Jarrah PhD
Hind Jarrah is co-founder (2005) and former President (2005-2009) of Texas Muslim Women’s Foundation, a nonprofit, educational, philanthropic, outreach and social service organization dedicated to empowering women and their families. Dr Jarrah is the current Executive Director for TMWF. She served on the Faith and Feminism Committee at the Dallas Women’s Foundation and on the Board of Trustees from 2006-2009.Dr. Jarrah has been engaged in the promotion of understanding and respect for multicultural diversity since 1982, when she co-founded the Arabic Heritage Society, a nonprofit educational organization.
Laura J. O’Rourke
Laura O’Rourke is Managing Counsel of Business Litigation at Toyota North America. Prior to taking this position, Ms. O’Rourke was a lawyer with Baker & McKenzie, LLP in the Securities Litigation group. She has been actively involved in pro bono services throughout her legal career. She has also been an avid supporter of Humans Rights Initiative of North Texas since she started practicing law in 2002. She currently is a member of the HRI Pro Bono Attorney Liaison Committee. Ms. O’Rourke is also an active supporter of various civic endeavors in the Dallas community such as: Lawyers in the Classroom, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, Girls, Inc., Habitat for Humanity, Susan G. Komen, Salvation Army, and others.
Natalie Nanasi came to the United States as a refugee in the early 1980s. She is now the Director of the Judge Elmo B. Hunter Legal Center for Victims of Crimes Against Women at Southern Methodist University (SMU), Dedman School of Law, where she supervises students’ representation of survivors of a range of gender-based harms. Professor Nanasi was previously a Practitioner-in-Residence at American University, Washington College of Law and the Senior Immigration Attorney and Pro Bono Coordinator at the Tahirih Justice Center, where she advocated for immigrant women and girls fleeing human rights abuses such as female genital mutilation, domestic and sexual violence, forced marriage and honor crimes.
Greg W. Curry
Greg is a Partner in Thompson & Knight’s Energy Litigation Practice Group and serves as a member of the Management Committee and the Firm’s Client Services Partner. He focuses his practice on general commercial, insurance coverage, oil and gas, and environmental matters. He also counsels clients on litigation involving capital market transactions, including commercial real estate structured finance and workout projects. In addition to HRI, Greg is actively involved in several organizations, including the Texas Association of Defense Counsel (where he previously served as President), International Association of Defense Counsel, State Bar of Texas, Dallas Bar Association, and DRI-The Voice of the Defense Bar. He is a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation, Texas Bar Foundation, Dallas Bar Foundation, and Litigation Counsel of America and is a member of The College of the State Bar of Texas. Greg has been recognized by numerous publications for his outstanding legal work, including The Best Lawyers in America® by Woodward/White Inc. (2007-2013) and Texas Super Lawyers® by Thomson Reuters (2003-2012).
Sanjeeb Samanta leads Global Customer Support Experience Operations at Texas Instruments (TI). Sanjeeb has been with TI for over 20 years and prior to joining TI worked with companies such as IDM, Technip, Price Waterhouse, and IBM in Asia, Europe and the US. He is an alum of UT Dallas. Sanjeeb is the winner of TI’s 2015 Founders Community Service Awards and is actively involved in helping the refugee community in the metroplex partnering with HRI and Heart House. He is a member of the US India Chamber of Commerce, President of Dallas Squash, and is one of the Ambassadors (leaders) of InterNations Dallas, among other roles he plays in the community.
Alan Wright is a partner at Kilpatrick Townsend in Dallas, TX. Alan has practiced law for over 30 years and was previously a partner at Crouch & Ramey, a litigation law firm based in Dallas. Mr. Wright is Board Certified in Civil Appellate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. He has worked extensively as a consultant and advisor to trial lawyers before, during, and after trial. In addition to his traditional appellate court practice, Mr. Wright has also focused his appellate efforts on summary judgments, expert witness challenges, jury charges, disqualification and recusal, arbitration-related litigation, mandamus and other extraordinary writs, supersedes and judgment enforcement, and attorney’s fees issues. Mr. Wright was recognized as a Texas “Super Lawyer” in 2003, 2004, 2005 and 2009 for Appellate Law and again in 2015 and the four years immediately preceding for Appellate Law, Business Litigation, and General Litigation by Texas Monthly and Law & Politics magazines. Mr. Wright was also recognized in The Best Lawyers in America® for Labor and Employment Law in 2013, 2014, 2015, and in 2016 for Commercial Litigation.
Rocio is an associate in the firm’s capital finance and real estate group. Her practice focuses on commercial real estate and she has experience in real estate acquisitions and dispositions, including hotels and real estate owned (REO) property. Rocio has worked with landlords and tenants on leasing matters, including office, industrial and retail lease negotiations for properties across the United States. She also has experience advising on real estate issues in corporate mergers and acquisitions. An active member in her community, Rocio dedicates time to public service and pro bono efforts in Dallas.
Advisory Board Members
Don M. Glendenning*
Patricia Cook, MD, FACP*
Kenneth Z. Altshuler, M.D.
Serena Simmons Connelly*
Ambassador Swanee Hunt
*denotes Lifetime Board Member