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September 20, 2022

The Commission Welcomes Five New Commissioners

The PDF in which this article appears can be found in Bifocal, VOL 44, Issue 1

Each September, a new roster of commissioners are appointed by the ABA president. Most commissioners serve for multiple years with a handful of new faces starting in any given year. This year, we have five new commissioners; you will find them to be a diverse and highly expert group in their individual disciplines.

Sandra D. Glazier is an equity shareholder at Lipson Neilson P.C., Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, and an author of the ABA Book entitled “Undue Influence and Vulnerable Adults”. Sandy concentrates her practice in probate litigation; estate planning and administration; and, family law. She has acted as a testifying or consulting expert. She has also acted as a mediator in probate and family law matters. Sandy has litigated some of the largest undue influence cases in Michigan. Sandy is active with the OCBA (Oakland County Bar Association -having held numerous leadership positions), ABA RPTE (sitting on the Diversity and Inclusion Committee and actively continuing participation in the Continuing Legal Education Committee) and is currently a member of the Michigan State Bar Probate Section’s work group focusing on proposals to statutorily address undue influence and is the upcoming Chair of that Section’s Guardianship Committee.

Sandy is a nationally recognized author in legal publications such as Bloomberg Tax, Leimberg Information Services, Inc., and Trust & Estates Magazine. She currently sits on advisory boards for the Notre Dame Tax and Estate Planning Institute and Trust & Estates Magazine’s Planning & Taxation Committee.  She presents nationally on such topics as undue influence, ethical duties to vulnerable adults, defending fiduciaries, issues relating to remote execution and electronic wills, as well as with regard to the attorney-client privilege in the area of estate planning.  Sandy has been awarded the OCBA’s Distinguished Service Award, received “Top Lawyer”, “Super Lawyer”, “Leading Lawyer (Michigan), “AV®” Rated Preeminent attorney and AEP® designations, and is a fellow of Litigation Counsel of America (the Trial Lawyer Honorary Society). She was awarded Trusts & Estates Magazine 2018 Distinguished Author in Thought Leadership and Bloomberg Tax’s 2018 Estates, Gifts and Trusts Tax Contributor of the Year. For more background about Sandy, see:

Jacobo Mintzer is a graduate of the University of Buenos Aires School of Medicine. He completed his Psychiatry Residency at Hadassah-Hebrew University School of Medicine and his Fellowship in Geriatric Psychiatry at the University of California, Los Angeles. He is the founding Director of the South Carolina Institute for Brain Health. He is a Professor in the Department of Health Sciences in the College of Health Professions at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) and a staff physician at the Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center. He is the former founding Executive Director of the Roper St. Francis Healthcare System Clinical Biotechnology Research Institute. At MUSC, he developed the Geriatric Psychiatry and Alzheimer’s Research Program in 1991, which includes inpatient, outpatient, and consultation services as well as a fellowship program. Dr. Mintzer has been involved in clinical research on Alzheimer’s disease for the last 20 years and is author of over 200 peer-reviewed research articles. He is the former President of the International Psychogeriatric Association, founding board member of the AARP supported Global Council on Brain Health, board member of the South Carolina Alzheimer’s Association, and former member of the Alzheimer’s Association (national) Public Policy Committee. He is also the former treasurer of the American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry. Dr. Mintzer has devoted most of his career to the understanding and the development of treatments for neuropsychiatric symptoms of dementia. In recent years, Dr. Mintzer became involved in the understanding of issues related to aging and the law. He recently published information about the prevalence of dementia in the South Carolina prison system and is an active member of the American Bar Association Dementia and Criminal Justice working group.

Kyle Page is a geropsychologist at the Edward Hines, Jr. Veterans Affairs Hospital located in the Chicagoland area. Dr. Page holds board certification ingeropsychology from the American Board of Professional Psychology and specializes ingeriatric mental health, with expertise in conducting decisional and executional capacity evaluations. His work in capacity assessment of older persons directly intersects with the Commission's extensive work on that subject. He also provides an important connection in our work to Veterans Affairs. In his role at VA, he provides psychotherapy and assessment to older adults in long-term care and physical rehabilitation. In addition, he supervises predoctoral interns and postdoctoral fellows and often offers continuing education to health care providers on a range of geriatric mental health topics. Dr. Page is committed to improving the care of older adults, and in this pursuit has served as a member of interdisciplinary teams developing capacity educational material for the Veterans Health Administration and reviewing and editing the 2nd edition of the Assessment of Older Adults with

Diminished Capacities: A Handbook for Lawyers. Dr. Page has published several book chapters and articles on later life mental health and is on the editorial board for the Clinical Gerontologist. Dr. Page earned his doctorate in psychology with an emphasis on aging and mental health from the University of North Texas and completed a clinical psychology fellowship with emphasis in geropsychology at the VA Boston Health Care System.

Hon. Jerry Simoneaux Jr. was elected Judge of Harris County Probate Court 1 in 2018.

He was the managing partner of the Simoneaux Law Firm (later Simoneaux & Watson) from 2001 to 2018. From 2009 – 2010, he took a brief hiatus from his practice to serve as a Staff Attorney in Probate Court 1. His practiced focused on probate, trust, and guardianship litigation and appeals. Two of his cases are cited in Johanson’s Texas Estates Codes Annotated and O’Connor’s Texas Rules of Civil Trials.

In addition to working full time as a probate litigation and appellate attorney, he also served as an Associate Judge in the Houston Municipal Courts from 2015 through 2018.

He continues to innovate and implement new ways for attorneys to interact more effectively and efficiently with the courts and juries, and give parties greater access through improved remote appearances that work seamlessly with those appearing in person.

Judge Simoneaux believes service to the legal and lay communities is an essential part of his role in the judiciary. He is in his second term as a Director for the Houston Volunteer Lawyers, founder and president of the Texas Probate Law American Inn of Court, and he is leading the effort to establish a new Texas Board of Legal Specialization in Trust, Estate, and Guardianship Litigation. He enjoys speaking at continuing legal education seminars and is especially proud to have been chosen by the National Center for State Courts to take part in the Fourth National Guardianship Summit.

Judge Simoneaux is an avid sailor and regularly competes in sailing races along the Texas Gulf Coast. In 2016 when travel to Cuba relaxed, he helped organize the first group U.S. sailors to sail privately owned boats into Havana Harbor since 1958 and competed in a sailing regatta along the Cuban coast.

Judge Simoneaux married Christopher Bown on December 12, 1991. They have one son, Chad Simoneaux.

Pamela Teaster is a Professor and the Director of the Center for Gerontology at Virginia Tech. She is the North American Representative of the International Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse, Immediate Past President of the Board of Trustees for the Center for Guardianship Certification, and serves on the Editorial Boards of the Journal of Elder Abuse and Neglect and the Journal of Trauma, Violence, and Abuse Review. Dr. Teaster is a Fellow of the Gerontological Society of America and the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education and is a recipient of the Isabella Horton Grant Award for Guardianship (National College of Probate Judges), the Rosalie Wolf Award for Research on Elder Abuse (NAPSA), the Outstanding Affiliate Member Award (Kentucky Guardianship Association), and the Distinguished Educator Award (Kentucky Association for Gerontology). Former president of the National Committee for the Prevention of Elder Abuse, she has received continuous funding for from public and private sources. Her areas of scholarship include the abuse of elders and vulnerable adults, guardianship, end-of-life decision making, ethical treatment of older adults, and public policy and public affairs. She has published over 200 scholarly articles, reports, and book chapters and is the editor/author of 6 books.

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