The 2009 Excellence in Legal Service Award was given to St. Mary’s University School of Law Clinical Professor Lee Terán by the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF) at their 25th Annual San Antonio Awards Gala on Friday, September 18 at the Westin Riverwalk Hotel.

 “We are delighted that Professor Terán has been recognized by MALDEF for her impressive work in the area of Immigration litigation,” said Ana M. Novoa, St. Mary’s associate dean for Clinical Education and Public Interest and professor of Law. “For many years, Professor Terán has been a champion of the poor and marginalized and a leader in the defense of basic human rights. She continues to be an inspiration to her students and colleagues. St Mary’s is very lucky to have her as part of our faculty.”

Founded in 1968, MALDEF has celebrated 40 years of advancing Latino civil rights at the organization’s birthplace in San Antonio. MALDEF hosts four annual regional awards galas in Los Angeles, Washington, D.C., Chicago, and San Antonio.

In San Antonio, MALDEF also recognized Barbara Hines, director of the Immigration Law Clinic at the University of Texas at Austin, for excellence in legal service; State Representative Rafael Anchia, with the Matt Garcia Public Service Award; Dell Corporation with the Corporate Social Responsibility Award; and Mary Esther and Joe J. Bernal with the Lifetime Achievement Award.

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