C.J. Donald ’14 was elected to the board of directors of the Dallas Association of Young Lawyers (DAYL) for 2020. He will be responsible for supporting DAYL membership efforts, organizing events and fundraising. He will also serve as a liaison between the board and two committees regarding service efforts and professional development opportunities. He is a graduate of Vanderbilt University Law School and is an associate at the law firm Haynes and Boone in Dallas, Texas.
According to its website, the goals of DAYL are to improve the quality of life for all young lawyers through a variety of initiatives designed to educate, support, challenge and entertain members, as well as to serve the Dallas community through public service projects that young lawyers find meaningful.
“The DAYL is the city’s only bar organization dedicated to young lawyers,” Donald says. “‘Young’ denotes a big group here, and any Texas lawyer meeting one of the two following qualifications can join: be 36-years-old or younger, or have been in practice five or fewer years.
“We focus on service to the community and service to lawyers,” he continues. “As for our community service, we design initiatives to secure justice for individuals without the means to secure the same for themselves. We do this by raising funds for local groups that administer pro bono efforts in our city, as well as organizing several pro bono projects ourselves.”
The second pillar of DAYL’s mission is its service to the young lawyers themselves.
“As a resource for young lawyers, DAYL seeks to support them in their efforts to become better practitioners with a three-tiered approach: continuing legal education; helping them maintain healthy lifestyles by cultivating habits to aid wellness despite the stressful nature of the profession; and become better business developers by organizing events for lawyers to meet other lawyers.”
Prior to being elected to the DAYL board, he had been actively involved in good works as a group member.
“I have served on the DAYL Equal Access to Justice Committee (EAJ) since January 2018,” Donald says, “and I’ve assisted with fundraising efforts benefiting a local group that provides pro bono services across northwest Texas.”
Donald has mapped-out two major goals as a member of the DAYL board.
“First, I want to see DAYL’s commitment to the community grow. The EAJ Committee raised over $14,000 for local pro bono efforts in 2019. I would love to see that number edge closer to $20,000. Second, DAYL is currently home to several litigators, but as a transactional lawyer I hope to increase programs and services for lawyers who may never see the inside of a courtroom.”
by Cindy Long
January 3, 2020