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Professor Stanley Johanson and Katy Hutchinson, ’11, receive 2011 Texas Exes Teaching Awards

Stanley Johanson, James A. Elkins Centennial Chair in Law, and law student Kathryn (“Katy”) Hutchinson, ’11, of the University of Texas at Austin have been awarded the 2011 Texas Exes Teaching Awards.

The purpose of the Texas Exes Teaching Awards is to promote quality teaching at The University of Texas by publicly recognizing those professors and teaching assistants who have had a positive and profound influence on the educational experience of University of Texas students. 

Each year a professor and graduate instructor from each college at the university are awarded the Texas Exes Teaching Award. Only students can nominate candidates for the award and student selection committees, formed with help from the Senate of College Councils, read all of the nominations from their college and select the recipients.

This year, the students chose twenty-seven teachers and graduate instructors or teaching assistants to receive the Texas Exes Teaching Award. Honored professors received a $1,000 award and graduate instructors or teaching assistants received $500 awards.

At the Texas Exes Teaching Awards ceremony were, left to right, Professor Stanley Johanson, Katy Hutchinson, Texas Exes President Richard Leshin, UT Law Professor Stefanie Lindquist, and Texas Exes Executive Vice President and Provost Steven Leslie.

Johanson and Hutchinson received their awards at a ceremony in February at a ceremony at the Etter-Harbin Alumni Center. Texas Exes President Richard Leshin, a 1978 UT Law graduate and former student of Johanson, spoke at the event. Professor Stefanie A. Lindquist, the A.W. Walker Centennial Chair in Law, served as a representative from the School of Law and helped present the awards to Johanson and Hutchinson.

Professor Johanson, who joined the UT Law faculty in 1963, teaches courses on Wills & Estates and Estate Planning. He was in the inaugural group of professors who were elected, in 1995, to the University of Texas Academy of Distinguished Teachers, whose purpose is to give public recognition to outstanding classroom teachers at the university. He is the co-author of Wills, Trusts and Estates, which is used in more than 120 American law schools.

In 1997, Johanson received the Treat Award for Excellence, the highest honor bestowed by the National College of Probate Judges, and in 2005 he was presented a Lifetime Achievement Award by the Real Estate, Probate & Trust Law Section of the State Bar of Texas for his contributions to the improvement of Texas wills and trust law. The State Bar of Texas Tax Section recently announced Johanson is the winner of the 2011 Outstanding Texas Tax Lawyer Award, the highest award that the Tax Section gives. The Student Bar Association also recognized Johanson for his special contributions to the UT Law community by selecting him as the full-time faculty member honoree for 2010–2011 during W. Page Keeton Law Week this spring.

Hutchinson, a third-year law student, served as a teaching assistant for Professor Mitchell Berman’s criminal law class in the Fall 2010 semester. She is currently a teaching assistant for Professor Emily Kaden’s contracts class. Hutchinson worked in the Supreme Court Clinic last fall and in the Capital Punishment Clinic this spring. Last spring she published an article, “Some Open Questions About Intellectual Property Remedies,” in the Lewis & Clark Law Review with coauthor Michael Traynor, a California attorney and former president of the American Law Institute. Hutchinson is also the outgoing executive submissions editor on the Texas Intellectual Property Law Journal. Following graduation this May, Hutchinson will clerk for Sarah Vance, the chief judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana.

During the Texas Exes Teaching Awards program, Texas Exes Chief Operating Officer Bill McCausland read students’ quotes and information about Johanson’s and Hutchinson’s teaching styles.

“One student captured the quality of Stanley’s teaching, when she said, ‘Professor Johanson teaches the class material in an engaging and humorous way, while also spending time participating in a wide array of extracurricular activities that enhance current students and alumni experiences with the School of Law,’“ McCausland said. “Another student said, “Professor Johanson has introduced me to different branches of the law. As a result of his work, I am considering career paths that I otherwise would have been ignorant of.”

McCausland described Hutchinson as being on a mission to help her first-year students adjust to law school: “Katy said, ‘My goal is for the students to think critically about the subject matter, but moreover to teach them the critical skills necessary to succeed in law school.’“ McCausland added, “One student gave a testament to Katy’s great attitude when he said, ‘Getting adjusted is a hard task, but Katy takes it on. She takes times to teach us outside of class to make sure we understand the material and the deeper lessons about doing well in law school.’“

To learn more information about the award, go to the Texas Exes Teaching Awards Web page

Contact: Laura Castro, UT Law Communications, 512-232-1229, lcastro@law.utexas.edu.

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