Heather Nevitt. Editor-in-Chief of Texas Lawyer magazine.

As I write this editor note, another year of the Oscars in the books. I enjoy watching the Oscars—primarily for the fashion, but that is usually about as deep as the show gets.

Yes, some actors have a cause or two they manage to plug on stage, but this year’s show was filled with more than pet-causes and political jabs. Even the standard “Who are you wearing?” question seemed frivolous and trite in this climate. The awards became a platform for the important discussion about inclusion and perseverance. Along with the messaging of the importance to speak up and to stand up for what is right. And to do so, is imperative to move the needle forward for real change.

And luckily, perseverance often wins, but it is never an easy road. Any change requires those who have the strength and reputation to stand up to push the dialog. It is those type of people who are able to lead a cause and enact real change.

This is also true with our cover story this month. Senior reporter John Counsel conducted an in-depth interview with a David Peeples, a judge who never shied away from a controversial issue or delicate matter. He gladly took on the hard cases throughout his career and made a real difference in the Texas legal community.

Indeed, most Judges get a couple controversial cases in their tenure, but in Peeples’ time on the bench, it was a regular occurrence. He was the judge known for handling politically fraught issues or high-profiled cases with respect, ease and professionalism. In fact, Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice Nathan Hecht once referred to Peeples as the “gold standard” for handling those hot cases. And that is conduct worthy of an award.

Best Regards, Heather D. Nevitt, Esq.