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Kierra PowellMarcia Johnson

Professor Marcia Johnson, in collaboration with Professors Dr. Gautam Nayer and Ashraf Mozayani serve as co-Project Investigators (PI) on a grant awarded by the U.S. Department of Justice in the amount of $509,233 for the period January 1, 2020 to December 31, 2021. The competitive award was made to the university to review postconviction criminal cases involving violent felony offenses in which actual innocence might be demonstrated using DNA testing. Conservatively, it is estimated that 5,640 individuals in Texas have been wrongfully convicted. That constitutes 4% of the more than 141,000 Texas state prison inmates who have likely been convicted of crimes they did not commit. Johnson’s co-PIs are professors in criminal justice and forensic sciences, respectively. The project is an interdisciplinary research project that combines legal and social implications.
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There are 3 additional faculty spotlight in this edition.





Rodolfo “Rudy” Ruiz '2019

Kierra PowellSo, when people say dreams don’t come true—I am always led to share my story.  
I’m currently a third-year law student, in my last semester at Thurgood Marshall School of Law (“TMSL”) and the rising Valedictorian of the Class of 2019.  Before attending law school, I worked for an attorney, but longed for more.  What solidified my desire to obtain a law degree is the injustice I saw in poor communities, generally populated with minorities. I believe that justice should not stem from ethnicity, race, money or socio-economic position. A powerful ambition for social justice to prevail under any cause, coupled with a commitment to a more inclusive society, motivated me to pursue a career in law.

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Remeko T. Edwards ‘05

Kierra PowellThe Honorable Remeko Tranisha Edwards was born in Selma, Alabama. She spent the majority of her childhood in the suburbs of Dallas where she graduated from Lancaster High School in 1994.  Remeko began her college education at Prairie View A & M University; however, she received her Bachelor of Liberal Arts in Criminal Justice from the University of Texas at Arlington in 1998. After graduation, she became an employee of Dallas County as a Juvenile Detention Officer, Court Coordinator, and Probation Officer until 2002.

Remeko received her Juris Doctorate Degree in 2005 from Thurgood Marshall School of Law in Houston, Texas. Through much prayer, sacrifice, and support from her family and friends, Remeko became licensed to practice law in the State of Texas in November 2005.

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