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On March 1, candidates for president-elect of the Texas Young Lawyers Association (TYLA) began campaigning across the State of Texas. We asked both Raymond Baeza and Victor Flores some questions so that you can get to know them better. Below are their answers.

Raymond Baeza

1.       Why do you want to be the president of TYLA?

I carry with me the responsibility of helping others because of those who have helped me along my way. When I was in high school, I participated in Teen Court, a volunteer program that offered me an opportunity to act as a student “attorney.” Through my experience, I realized I wanted to be a lawyer. While I did not know a single lawyer, I learned from certain teachers that I first needed to graduate from college. Coming from a family of limited means, I understood this meant that I had to consider as many resources available to help me pay for college as possible. I applied for and was selected as a scholar for the Daniels Fund Scholarship Program—Mr. Bill Daniels was an entrepreneur who left his fortune to a private foundation that awards grants and scholarships. After two years of hard work in high school, I received a comprehensive college scholarship that allowed me to achieve step one, graduating from college. I doubt I would be a college graduate, a licensed attorney, and a candidate for President-elect of TYLA without the Daniels Fund Scholarship Program. I have made it my mission to return the help extended to me, and TYLA has been my avenue to serve others.

2.       What do you see as the single greatest challenge facing young lawyers in Texas?

There are over 26,000 young lawyers in Texas. I think most young lawyers are affected by different issues than their colleagues, depending on practice area, location, and other factors, but there are several issues that affect most of our young lawyers. In my experience, some of the widespread issues are student debt, the need for more skills-based experience, and the importance of health and wellness in practice. Because law school tuition continues to increase, most graduates face several years of student debt repayment. This becomes an even more difficult situation for a young lawyer who has moved cities and started his or her own law practice. Sometimes, young lawyers find a job opportunity that allows them to start saving for retirement right out of law school, but oftentimes, retirement savings cannot be considered in light of the other financial challenges that young lawyers encounter. I think more can be done to give law students and young lawyers better resources and help us make more informed short-term and long-term financial decisions early on in our careers, and I think TYLA should help with creating and disseminating this information.

3.       Can you tell us a little about yourself, your legal practice, and your previous involvement with the bar?

I am a first-generation lawyer and the oldest of four children. I am married to Melissa and we have a 2-year-old son, Ethan. I graduated from Texas Tech University School of Law in May 2010 and began practicing that November. I am a trial attorney for Farmers Insurance and I have been with Farmers for six years.     

I have been involved with my local bar through the El Paso Young Lawyers Association (EPYLA). I have served as EPYLA’s vice president and treasurer twice. I have been an EPLYA board member since 2013. I received El Paso’s Outstanding Young Lawyer of the Year award in 2016 in recognition of my professional achievements and contributions to my community. At the state level, I have been involved with TYLA as the El Paso area director since 2014. During my time on the TYLA board, I have served as a project lead, co-chair, and most recently, the vice president. I have served on the following committees: Member Outreach/Service to the Profession, Public Service in the Community, and Law Focused Education and Diversity. I have worked on many TYLA projects to educate the community, promote diversity, and assist young lawyers, including Vote America!, End Bullying Now, Just Drive Campaign, Resources for Foster Care Children, I Was the First. You Can Be a Lawyer Too!, and the Diversity Scholarship Program. I am also a graduate of the LeadershipSBOT program and a fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation.                  

4.       What is the best advice you have been given about practicing law?

Always be over prepared and on time. Being prepared doesn’t mean you’re always going to win, but you will have worked for your client as hard as you possibly could.          

5.       What is some advice you were not given as a young lawyer that you wish you had received?

You don’t need to start your career with a long-term plan. Do the work and see where it takes you.

6.       If anyone wants to find out more about you, where should they turn?

Please visit my website or feel free to follow me on social media. I am on Facebook at Raymond Baeza for TYLA President Elect and Instagram at baeza_raymond. I can also be reached via email ( or phone (915) 261-8513.


Victor Flores

1.         Why do you want to be the president of TYLA?

My military service taught me that leadership isn’t a rank – it is a decision to place the needs of others before your own. TYLA has a legacy of excellence in public service and leaders that genuinely want to improve the lives of other Texas attorneys and those in our community who are in need.

I have a heart and passion – reinforced through experience – to serve more. If elected to lead TYLA as President-Elect, I’d like to further help children impacted by domestic violence, family members of veterans dealing with PTSD, young lawyers experiencing professional burnout, and students needing better resources to learn about government, civics, and the application of law.           

2.         What do you see as the single greatest challenge facing young lawyers in Texas?

Burnout. We all work to keep the lights on. Still, we can’t help our clients if we aren’t taking care of ourselves. TYLA has a history of developing projects that address work-life balance in addition to facilitating mentor/mentee opportunities to help with the same. As President-Elect, it’s my plan to continue expanding these resources for Texas young lawyers. Currently, TYLA has a series of sponsored CLE Roadshows that it hosts across the state each year. As TYLA President, I’d like to incorporate an ethics discussion panel about burnout and attorney work-life balance at each CLE Roadshow.    

3.         Can you tell us a little about yourself, your legal practice, and your previous involvement with the bar?

The legal profession was my second call to duty. In my Marine Corps career, the loss of two Marines in my unit while serving in Iraq triggered a drive to “serve more.” When my military service ended, serving my community as an attorney was a simple transition.    

My passion is serving others. I’m currently a mentor for Communities in Schools of North Texas and serve my church as its legal counsel. In the past few years, I’ve also volunteered with Habitat for Humanity home-builds, legal clinics for veterans and first responders, local food bank drives, community service projects with the Advocacy Resource Center for Housing; organized “CLE Roadshows” in Amarillo, El Paso, and McAllen; coordinated community panels with city elected officials, police officers, attorneys and religious leaders aimed at improving police-community relations; created legal resources for Hurricane Harvey survivors, and more.

To pay the bills – I’ve practiced as a government lawyer for several cities in Texas. I’ve been a prosecutor, civil litigator, and general counsel. Most of my professional experience has been centered as in-house counsel for McAllen and Denton, Texas. However, as a solo practitioner (V. Flores Law Firm, PLLC), I’ve also served as outside counsel to other municipalities.

My previous bar service includes the Texas Bar Journal Board of Editors, State Bar of Texas Government Law Council, ABA Young Lawyer Division Council as a District Representative, ABA YLD – Disaster Legal Services Team as a vice director, and Hidalgo County Bar Association Board of Directors. 

As a result of being exposed to such a diverse practice and bar service, I’ve had the privilege of being mentored so many great Texas attorneys. I’m honestly humbled and grateful for it all.

4.         What is the best advice you have been given about practicing law?

Last year, I had the privilege of participating in the IADC Trial Academy hosted at Stanford Law School. At one of the scheduled student/faculty dinners, a faculty member started an interesting discussion about “courage” versus “honor” in the legal profession. In summary, we acknowledged that as attorneys we should always strive for courage and honor. But, our faculty advisor stated it best, “Being an honorable legal advocate requires a keen sense of ethical conduct and civility – and that takes courage.” 

5.         What is some advice you were not given as a young lawyer that you wish you had received?

Mentors matter. There’s pressure coming out of law school to be “practice ready.” Generally, I avoided asking others for help for fear that I was inconveniencing them. But over the past few years, I’ve learned that seasoned attorneys relish the opportunity to extend a helping hand. Mentors can help you with resources, provide a listening ear when you’re overwhelmed with work and life, and navigate professional landmines.

Pay it forward. Remember to look behind you. Every year, a new wave of young lawyers comes looking for similar mentor guidance and support. They might be green and overly ambitious – but so were we. Always be looking for ways to “pay it forward” with these new lawyers.

6.         If anyone wants to find out more about you, where should they turn?

You can learn more about me on my website, You can also follow my campaign on Facebook: @Victor Flores for TYLA President Elect; Instagram: @floresvesq; LinkedIn: @victor-a-flores; and Twitter: @Victor_A_Flores.

Views and opinions expressed in eNews are those of their authors and not necessarily those of the Texas Young Lawyers Association or the State Bar of Texas.

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