Friday, November 27, 2015

A Heartfelt Thanksgiving to All !

Thanksgiving 2015
Thanksgiving, like for so many, is my favorite time of year for reflection. As 2015 nears a close and I reflect over the year, I am so grateful for so many things of which a few I share.

1.     Health.  I am so grateful that my family is all healthy. Mima is 81,  living with me (ever since law school), still doing an amazing job of raising my kids (2 valedictorians and 1 salutatorian of the 4 kids so far). All 4 children are athletic and engage in sports (intramural and otherwise). Tony likes to run and although I am out of marathon shape, I can still whip out an 8 miler on Saturday mornings no problem.  

2.     Recognition. We all love it, right ? But when it comes out of left field, it means so much more. Was so honored this year to be honored by Texas Tech School of Law (Dec. Ft. Worth magazine Texas Tech “Strong Leaders”) and a top 20 minority of Texas by Texas Lawyer. I had to fight back the tears at the awards luncheon. I have strived to never take advantage of being a minority and compete on the same level playing field, but that luncheon made me realize it was never a level playing field for me, I have had to run twice as fast and go twice as far to get where I am. If my example can inspire others, then my accomplishments have truly meant something. In a spirit of giving back to the Texas Tech School of Law who gave me a scholarship, it is with joy I have created a scholarship endowment that will help a law student every year in perpetuity.

3.     My work. My first thanks is to the people of my office who dedicate their lives to helping others and justice. It is not an easy job and all the staff who work at the Coffey Firm are tough, tried and true with a glowing heart of caring that takes precedence over everything else. The Tarrant County District Attorney’s office has hired two of my lawyer associates in 3 months. However, the silver lining in the clouds has come through our clients’ patience and understanding. They all expressed to me that no one wants a defense lawyer whose heart is not in the right place and their hope is that a few defense lawyers of my training might improve the district attorney's office. The two who left for the DAs office were replaced with two brilliant lawyers who have been arrested for DWI  !  You can’t get any better understanding of our clients’ situation if you tried- compassion oozing out of every pore ! Love it ! We are very grateful for our longterm Dallas associate Andrew Morris’ miraculous health recovery ! The Coffey Firm celebrated 15 years this year, and it is with so much gratitude to so many clients, judges, prosecutors, clerks, probation officers and others that so much right and justice in the world has been accomplished.  My heart swells with gratitude. Most of all, I would like to thank all the Coffey Firm clients past and present. Much love. (pic below of office Thanksgiving Fiesta)

4.     The children. Proud to say that none of them work as their academics are their full time job and all are excelling as I am blessed to be able to support them. Kiki graduated with his biology degree from the University of Texas in May and is pursuing his Master’s in Kinesiology while teaching as a TA at the University of Texas. (pic below of Kiki on the right with Taylor and Willy on day of UT graduation)

Sparky graduates with a 3.9 math major from Baylor this spring. He is currently looking at taking the GRE, LSAT and possibly teaching for 2 years for Teach for America before he starts further grad studies in some field as yet undecided. (pic below of Sparky on the left at Camp Stewart where he was voted Best Counselor)
Spencer started at the McCombs School of Business this year at the University of Texas. He is also the manager for division 1 University of Texas Longhorns basketball team so NCAA March Madness will be that much more exciting for the family this year ! (pic below of Spencer)
Little Mimi Coffey, Jr. is making straight As and working hard to match her brothers with a valedictorian/salutatorian status come 2019. Her class is currently over 500. She made the freshman basketball team. She had 175 kids over for her 8th annual Halloween party and  I was reminded how her peers value her leadership skills. Our family celebrated this year as Tony formally adopted her. Now she has a dad for life ! (pic below of Mimi Jr.)

 Our foreign exchange student and naturalized family member son Willy had to return to Germany this summer. We are so proud he was chosen for a special internship at the Bundestag (German Congress). We can’t wait until he comes home to spend Christmas with us. We love and miss him very much. (pic below Willy with his German Congressman Kai Whittaker at the Bundestag)

5.     Friends. So grateful to all of them: my longtime friends, my cigar buddies, my lawyer buddies, and my NCDD family- particularly my fellow Regents who dedicate their talents and time in sacrifice to educating other lawyers to better ensure justice nationwide. As many more DWI groups and seminars pop up across the nation, I am honored and proud to be in a leadership role for the oldest and most prestigious of them nationwide.

To all, I wish a Happy Thanksgiving and wonderful 2016 ! Remember, life only matters when it is bigger than yourself. Give back, don’t hold back, be good to others even if it hurts, faced between a rock and a hard place- always opt for giving someone a chance. Forgive. Remember harsh punishments accomplish more harm than good. Be smarter than the rest and to do this you must not be a sheep. Open up, let it out there-  always opt for giving, even if it is just giving someone a chance. Only then, can you mean something….

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