Sally Crawford to be Inaugurated as 104th DBA President
by Lea C. Dearing
On Saturday January 19, 2013, the Dallas Bar Association will begin a year of “Celebration and Rededication” with the inauguration of Sally L. Crawford as its 104th president.
A 1986 Order of the Coif graduate of SMU School of Law, Ms. Crawford has been a partner at Jones Day since 1996. Her practice focuses on mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance and general corporate law, with particular concentration in the representation of privately held companies in the technology, transportation, manufacturing and service industries—a nice complement to her pre-law profession.
A Columbus, Ohio native, Ms. Crawford moved to the Dallas area in 1977 after marrying John Crawford. She began working at Continental Mechanical Corp. where she rose through the ranks to the position of Vice President-Administration. She worked extensively with outside counsel, and it was there that she was encouraged to go to law school.
Upon graduation from SMU, Ms. Crawford spent two years at Brice & Mankoff before joining Jones Day in 1988 as an associate. And the rest, as they say, is history.
The eighth woman President of the Dallas Bar Association, Ms. Crawford has been recognized as one of the Best Women Lawyers in Dallas by D Magazine and in Texas Super Lawyers. In 2011, she was recognized by Altrusa International of Richardson as one of the Outstanding Women of Today and by the University of Texas at Dallas as a Distinguished Alumni.
At Jones Day Ms. Crawford is a member of the firm’s diversity committee and has served as the Dallas Office Public Service Coordinator for many years. Her true passion lies in pro bono work and helping those less fortunate. She has been named Pro Bono Coordinator of the Year by the Dallas Volunteer Attorney Program (DVAP) and played no small part in Jones Day’s DVAP Pro Bono Firm of the Year and the W. Frank Newton Pro Bono Services Awards.
Ms. Crawford has contributed to pro bono causes at every level, donating countless hours to pro bono representation and countless more mentoring attorneys with their own pro bono cases. She began doing pro bono work in1986, as a newly licensed attorney when she took her first assignment from the local legal aid clinic. On that auspicious day, Ms. Crawford was assigned a “simple” divorce case that ended up being the most complicated pro bono matter she has handled to date. With a little help from a seasoned family lawyer she marched into court as a first year corporate lawyer and successfully protected her first family law client. Ms. Crawford was not deterred by the challenge and has since completed hundreds of pro bono cases through legal aid and devoted thousands of hours of her time to assist individuals that would not otherwise have access to legal representation.
“Sally Crawford does not ‘do’ pro bono work, giving back to the community is the way she lives her life,” said Charolette Noel, a tax partner in Jones Day’s Dallas office. At Jones Day and in the Dallas bar community, Ms. Crawford is affectionately known as the “queen of pro bono.”
In addition to her pro bono work, Ms. Crawford has contributed to many other worthwhile causes, including participating as a director and officer of the Dallas Entrepreneurship Institute, College of the State Bar of Texas, DBA Community Service Fund and Consumer Credit Counseling Services of Greater Dallas. She is a Fellow of the Dallas Bar Foundation and of the Dallas Association of Young Lawyers Foundation. She also serves on the board of the Richardson Symphony and is a “Big” in the Big Brothers Big Sisters mentoring program.
This impressive resume, however, barely begins to describe Ms. Crawford’s contribution to the Dallas community. She has served on the board of the DBA since 2004 and has been a long-time member of the DBA Securities, Mergers & Acquisitions and Corporate Counsel Sections, the State Bar Business Law and Corporate Counsel Sections, the State Bar College and the Pro Bono College of the State Bar.
And she does all this while maintaining her busy practice in Jones Day’s transactional practice group. In her role at Jones Day, Ms. Crawford displays the same dedication to clients that she has demonstrated with her service to the bar. Steven Stennett, a partner at Jones Day, recalled working with Sally over the last 12 years, “The rapport Sally has with her clients is incredible. They look to her as more than just someone who provides legal advice, she is a part of their team, a trusted advisor. I have always strived to have the same relationships with my clients and to serve them with the same level of respect that Sally does.”
We are lucky to count Sally Crawford as a leader in our community.
Ms. Crawford spends her free time with her daughter Elizabeth Field, who lives in Oklahoma and is following in her mother’s footsteps as a tax attorney. She also enjoys spending time with her many nieces and nephews.
Service to the needy, mentoring to young attorneys and counseling to global businesses is all in a day’s work for Sally Crawford. She is a superlative example of what we can all accomplish for our community, our profession and our clients. The DBA is fortunate to have Ms. Crawford at the helm in 2013, and we wish her continued success as we celebrate all that we have achieved together in past years and rededicate ourselves to serving our community and our profession.
Lea C. Dearing is an associate at Munsch Hardt and is Co-Chair of the Publications Committee. She can be reached at email@example.com.