I am a proud product of Laredo schools, having graduated from United High School in 1990.
I graduated from St. Mary’s University with a Bachelor’s Degree in International Business, a Doctorate of Jurisprudence, and a Masters of Business Administration.
I began my career prosecuting family violence and white-collar crime with the Webb County District Attorney. Since 2004, I have been in private practice, focusing on probate, oil & gas, and family law.
I have served in many professional, social, and volunteer associations, from the St. Mary’s University—School of Law Alumni Board to the President of the Society of Martha Washington. Most rewarding is helping the most vulnerable members of our community, at the Children’s Advocacy Center, as a board member and former President, and at Casa de Misericordia Women’s Shelter as a fundraiser and pro bono attorney. I was previously appointed by Governor Rick Perry to serve on the Texas Statewide Blue-Ribbon Task Force for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect.
I am married to my partner in law and in life Edward Frederick. Together we are the proud parents of Edward Henry and Alexandra. In my spare time I enjoy yoga, running, and hunting for arrowheads at the ranch. My greatest joy may be bringing family and friends together for good food and wine.
Are there any assumptions about women that you would like to change? Why?
A great misconception is that we cannot be successful as both mothers and professionals. Once as a baby lawyer, and a seasoned male lawyer told me I should be home raising my children instead of practicing law. Another male lawyer refused to reschedule a deposition when my daughter was 2 weeks old. I was nursing her every 2 hours. I hope younger women never experience that. While it takes support at home and work and fair treatment from others—and it can be a delicate balance—but everyone should know—women can do it all.
What role or impact would you like to play in relation to women in law?
My first role is to help my clients with their most difficult problems. My impact is working hard, every day, one case at a time. It’s most satisfying to help and empower victims of violence, fraud, abuse, or even just unfortunate circumstances. It’s also important to improve our profession by uplifting other women in the law, be they lawyers, clerks, court reporters, or officers. I always try to help other lawyers by resetting a case when their child was sick, sending them a sample motion, and giving them advice about a case, or lending a shoulder or bending an ear for anyone I work with. I’ve always appreciated the kindness from those who do the same for me.
Which women are you inspired by in your local community, and globe?
I’ve been inspired by many. My mom has always been a guiding light. Her encouragement and brutal honesty have always given me strength. My sisters always keep me in check. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg blazed a trail for women professionally, but also raised a family and had a personal trainer at the Supreme Court—talk about goals. My friends make me laugh and give me moral support. My exercise buddies keep me fit and somewhat sane. Colleagues who say, “hey, are you ok?” help me re-focus, and even adversaries drive me to fight the good fight. These collective many have encouraged me throughout.
Advice for the younger generation of women?
Don’t try to be someone else, always try to be your best you. Set goals. You will reach many of them, and you will learn more when you don’t and grow from the effort. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Always keep moving forward.
Best advice for your 19-year-old self?
Travel! Once you start working, you never stop. Once you begin your professional career or have children your obligations can be relentless and the value of your time changes. See as much of the world as you can before you find your place in it.