Tyler Today April/May 2017 : Page 38

Adoption Day presented by the Smith County Young Lawyers Association by Robert Marlin The Smith County Bar Association has a specialty association under its umbrella known as the Smith County Young Lawyers Association (SCYLA), a service organization comprised of men and women who have recently joined the Bar. Most are just beginning their careers. Members consist of attorneys practicing in Smith County who are thirty-six years of age or younger, as well as attorneys who are over thirty-six practicing law for five years or less. The membership spans all types of law practices: large, medium, and small firms; in-house counsel; the nonprofit sector; and solo practitioners. The organization strives to offer something for everyone, whether it is networking with fellow legal professionals, socializing or performing community service. It is a diverse organization, dedicated to providing its members with opportunities beyond merely the practice of law. Bryan Campbell is a Tyler native who pursued his legal education at the University of Houston Law Center. He graduated with his law degree in 2001, passing the bar that same year. “I sat for the bar exam only once and passed. Once was enough!” Bryan says. After being admitted to the 38 APRIL / MAY 2017 bar, Bryan practiced in Houston until he returned to Tyler in 2005. Upon his return to Tyler, Bryan joined SCYLA, becoming a member of its board of directors, serving consistently, and even taking on the role of president in 2012. “The year I joined the board, is the year that we became involved with ‘Adoption Day.’ The Texas Department of Family Protective Services actually came to us and asked if our organization would be interested in helping celebrate adoptions. We took a vote to decide we would help out,” Bryan remembers. “Back then, Adoption Day was a one-day deal, once a year. I think that first year there were maybe ten children being adopted. In those days, we would have the celebration at different places. One year, it was at Caldwell Zoo. Another year, it was held at Discovery Science Place. I was involved every year and have watched it grow.” Judge Carole Clark has been a part of Adoption Day in Smith County since it began. She has been on the bench for nineteen years, and spent eighteen years as a family law attorney prior to that. She worked for Child Protective Services before

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