Meet Your Inn Advisors

SBA Mentors

Starting law school can feel overwhelming. But don’t worry; your Student Bar Association or, "SBA," mentors are here to support you during your first year. These upper-level law students lead your weekly meetings and social events. As you will discover, there will be many opportunities to get to know classmates, your mentors and faculty advisors through various informal and formal events led by your SBA mentors.

Your SBA mentors also help familiarize you with the law school and student organizations, services, and programs available to you. They can also point you in the right direction if you feel like you need assistance. 

Some of the questions you may want to ask your SBA mentors include:

  • Can you have a normal life on the weekends or are you studying all the time? 
  • What kinds of student organizations does SMU law have? How can I join one?
  • Are there any law school-wide events for all law students?
  • What was the hardest part about first semester?

These law school veterans have first-hand experience and they want to share their knowledge with you.

Inns of Court mentorsFaculty Mentors

Our highly accomplished faculty is here to support you. The  Faculty Mentors in your Inn can counsel you on important academic issues, like course selection, relevant internship opportunities and law-related organizations you may be interested in joining. They can also give you tips on study skills and introduce you to other faculty members who teach in areas of particular interest to you. Relationships you form with your Faculty Mentors can greatly enrich your educational experience at SMU Dedman School of Law.


Faculty Mentors


Ruth Cross | Orly Mazur | Martin Camp


Mary Spector | Nathan Cortez


Jeff Gaba | Natalie Nanasi


James Coleman | Joanna Grossman


Pat Heard | Tom Mayo


Heather Stobaugh | David Taylor

Academic Success Mentors

SMU Dedman Law is dedicated to cultivating a supportive academic environment and to helping all law students reach their full academic potential. To this end, each Inn is assigned a team of three Academic Success Program or, "ASP,"Mentors, second and third-year law students who have achieved academic excellence in law school. They conduct wrap-up sessions at the end of each week starting in the second week of school. In these sessions, you discuss issues like class preparation, note-taking skills, case-briefing, outlining, learning styles, and study habits. You also take practice tests and work to improve your exam-taking skills. 

The ASP Mentors are there to answer your academic questions, provide support, model successful study skills, and guide you during the weekly wrap-ups. Typically, there is a pre-designated topic to discuss during the session, but each Inn is encouraged to reach out to its ASP Mentors to propose alternative issues of concern to review during the sessions. 

Career Services Counselor

The Career Counselor assigned to you will be your individual career counselor throughout law school to help you identify and achieve your professional goals. She or he will provide you with guidance and feedback on every step of the legal hiring process, from reviewing resumes and cover letters to acquiring legal experience during law school to developing job search strategies and will work closely with you in your search for post-graduate employment.

In addition to providing personalized career counseling advice, the Office of Career Services has specifically designed for your class a series of seminars designated “Career Foundations & Professional Development” (CFPD), which have been integrated into the Inn program. CFPD seminars provide information regarding professionalism, various practice areas and legal markets, networking opportunities with private and public sector employers and workshops to develop interviewing and networking skills. These seminars are complemented with interactive events, all designed to help you develop as a professional and enhance your future employability. 

Community Fellows


Community Fellows


John Torres, Executive Vice President, Chief Legal Officer, & Secretary | Lennox International, Inc.

Judge Tonya Parker ’98, Judge | 116th Civil District Court

Doug Wabner ’85, U.S. Hiring Partner | Norton Rose Fulbright

Bill Wilshusen ’79, Partner | Haynes and Boone, LLP



Rosario “Chachy” Heppe ’99, Executive Director, Corporate Compliance |Fluor Corporation

Chief Judge Barbara Houser ’78, Chief Judge | U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Northern District of Texas

Mark Sloan ’90, Managing Partner | Thompson & Knight LLP

Robert S. Hart ’87, Executive Vice President, General Counsel & Secretary | Mark Cuban Companies

Taylor Wilson ’90, Partner | Haynes and Boone, LLP



       Judge Jane J. Boyle ’81, District Judge | U.S. District Court, Northern District of Texas

A. Shonn Brown ’98, Partner | Lynn Pinker Cox & Hurst

David Haley ’86, President | HBK Capital Management

Albert C. Tan ’93, Partner | Haynes and Boone, LLP



Michael M. Boone ’67, Co-Founder & Partner | Haynes and Boone, LLP

Messina Madson ’04, Founding Partner | Madson Castello

Cliff Robertson ’10, Attorney | UT Southwestern Medical Center

Betty Ungerman ’90, Deputy General Counsel | Lennox International, Inc.



Judge Rebecca Rutherford ’98, Magistrate Judge | U.S. District Court, Northern District of Texas

Tim Powers ’90, Managing Partner | Haynes and Boone, LLP

       Salman Bhojani ’13, Councilman | Euless City Council

Angela Zambrano ’97, Partner | Sidley Austin LLP



       Van Beckwith ’90, Partner | Baker Botts LLP

Chief Judge Barbara M. G. Lynn ’76, Chief Judge | U.S. District Court, Northern District of Texas

Kathleen LaValle ’82, President & CEO | Dallas CASA

Gabe Vazquez ’02, Vice President, Chief Legal Officer | Vistra Energy

Jan Sharry ’77, Partner | Haynes and Boone, LLP