An Early and Innovative Start to His Legal Career 

Derek Mergele didn’t even wait until he graduated from law school to make a big impact on the legal profession.  A Texas Tech University School of Law student, he wanted to bring LGBT issues to light in the West Texas area.  

So he started an LGBT law student organization, Lavendar Law, that hosts informative lectures open to students and the public regarding LGBT legal issues.  Lavendar Law also works to educate future lawyers on the issues that many gay and transgender individuals face.  Mergele has established legal clinics to provide indigent transgender people to change their gender identities on official documents.  

His work has drawn interest from a large number of people who represent a “wide array” of the community.   He attributes that to a great need for information, particularly after Supreme Court’s ruling on marriage equality, which he noted was “very broad in scope and there remain a lot of unanswered questions.”

Despite his law student status, Mergele is already a credit to the legal profession.  While same-sex marriage and other LGBT issues will continue to be controversial here in Texas, the bench and bar and the public at large all need to know what the law is and what it means to them.  Fortunately, we have lawyers like Mergele – um, make that lawyers-to-be like Mergele – who elevate the profession by serving the community in the best way they know how.   

Posted: 1/12/2017 8:24:19 AM by Editor | with 0 comments

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Thanks for stopping by On the Merits, the first blog from the Texas Center for Legal Ethics. On the Merits will take a close look at significant legal stories with an eye toward addressing the legal myths and misconceptions that turn up in news stories, movies, TV programs, websites, anonymous emails and other forms of mass communications. Our goal at On the Merits is to provide readers with a thoughtful examination of what the media and others are saying about the legal profession and to apply the frequently-absent context of how the legal system actually works.

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