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2021 Conference of the Professions

34th Annual Conference of the Professions


Divisive Times: Trust and Cooperation in Professional Relationships

Friday, April 30, 2021
9:00 am - 12:00 pm

This event will be hosted virtually

Click here to register

After a year of disaster and interpersonal turbulence, clergy, lawyers and physicians have a unique challenge and an important role in confronting misinformation and rebuilding individuals’ faith and trust in our most critical institutions, including our own. Join us on April 30 as we explore techniques to create space for intellectual humility and conviction in order to restore trust and rebuild relationships of mutual respect.

Keynote Speaker and Facilitator

Jill DeTemple, PhD, is the chair of SMU's Religious Studies Department and professor of Anthropology. Dr. DeTemple is an expert in reflective structured dialogue practices, with her research recently featured in the Dallas Morning News and TEDxSMU.

Panel Speakers

Padmaja Reddy, MD: Assistant Professor of Palliative Care at Parkland Health and Hospital System and UT Southwestern

Rabbi David Stern, MA: Senior Rabbi at Temple Emanu-El

Sakina Rasheed Foster, JD: Partner at Haynes and Boone, LLP

The Conference of the Professions brings together members of law, medicine, and theology in the Dallas area to discuss common challenges—ethical and otherwise—facing these professions. The conference is a joint effort and collaboration between the Dallas County Medical Society, Dallas Bar Association, SMU Maguire Center for Ethics & Public Responsibility, SMU Dedman School of Law, SMU Perkins School of Theology and the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center.


Click here to register


Event Steering Committee: Candy Crespo, Nancy Kasten, Kristina Kastl, Steve Long, George Mason, Tom Mayo, Evelyn Parker, Jon Roth, and John Sadler

Clergy: This activity has been approved for .3 continuing education units (CEUs) for clergy and religious professionals.


Legal Professionals: This activity has been approved for 3 CLE credits.


Physicians: The Texas Medical Association designates this live activity for a maximum of 3 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.



About the Conference 

The annual Conference of the Professions is sponsored by the SMU Dedman School of Law, the Dallas County Medical Society, the Dallas Bar Association, the SMU Perkins School of TheologyThe University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas and, since 1995, SMU’s Maguire Center for Ethics and Public Responsibility. Each year an ethical issue of common interest is identified. A noted expert in the field presents a keynote address, and a distinguished panel of local professionals discusses a related case that poses practical issues for law, medicine, the clergy, and other professions.


Past Conferences

Past conference titles along with the keynote speakers are listed below.

Crossing Borders - 05/24/2019
Time's Up for the Professions? Power, Sex and the Way Forward - 05/11/2018
Responding to Racial Conflict: Responsibilities of the Professions - 05/26/2017
Coming Home: The Professions Supporting Veterans - 04/22/2016
Supersizing the Professions: Ethical Issues Facing Mega-Churches, Law Firms and Medical Practices - 04/17/2015
Agony and Ecstasy: How Your Emotions Affect Practice - 05/09/2014
Shortcuts and High Roads: Everyday Morality and the Professions - 04/26/2013
Professional Ethics and Social Media: Like? - 10/14/2011
A Lawyer, a Priest, and a Doctor walk into a bar... The Ethics of Humor in the Professions - 10/14/2010
Generational Expectations and the Professions - 02/17/2009
What in God's Name Am I Doing? - 02/11/2008
Preparing for Disaster: Fire, Flood, and the Flu - 03/30/2007
Apology and the Professions - 03/01/2006
Healthcare for the Uninsured - 10/06/2004
Sexual Misconduct Within the Professions: Restoring Public Trust - 11/13/2003
Information Privacy and the Professions - 10/17/2002
Honor Thy Children? The Challenge of a Child-Centered Practice - 11/15/2001
Technology and the Environment: Promise of Benefits, Risks of Harm - 10/19/2000
Engineering of Human Tissue - 10/01/1999
Challenges to Diversity in the Professions - 10/22/1998
Death and Dying - 10/27/1997
Politics and the Professions - 11/21/1996
The Human Genome - 10/17/1995
The Professions and Violence in the Family - 10/25/1994
Money and the Professions - 10/28/1993
Chemical Dependency - The Professional's Responsibility to Each Other and to the Community - 03/14/1992
The Role of the Professional in the Community - 03/27/1991
Women and Men in the Professions: A Question of Balance in the 21st Century - 1990
The Socialization of the Professional and Mid-Career Burnout - 1989
AIDS, The Emerging Crisis - 01/20/1988
Self Regulation for the Professions - 12/09/1986
The Meaning of Professional Responsibility Today - 10/24/1985