A period of relative calm prevailed during the reign of John Convery, with most attention directed toward improving the criminal justice system in Texas. John began his new term exhorting the troops to sign up new members and to get involved volunteering in the association. As he noted, all TCDLA projects of standing and ad-hoc committees depend on member volunteers.
During his term, John saw the hire of Andrea Keilen as new general counsel and legislative liaison, as the legislature geared up for another frantic 140-day session. The year also saw revelations regarding the problems in DNA labs statewide, and the Texas Forensic Science Commission and Texas Indigent Defense Commission created the Texas DNA Mixture Review Project to examine cases where lab work proved deficient.
Also of paramount importance this year was the reform of bond and bail practices in the state, resulting in over-incarceration and the unconscionable incarceration of the poor because they were unable to pay. As a result, county jails are overcrowded, and reform would better ensure that low-level, nonviolent offenders would be released early.
In February, John lead members on a Caribbean members trip that featured ten hours of CLE as well. Fun was had by all.
This year also saw Tim Evans and Lydia Clay-Jackson named as deans emeritus of the Tim Evans Texas Criminal Trial College in Huntsville. John named Lance Evans and Kerri Anderson-Donica to serve as the new deans, four-year terms that can be renewed one time.
John took the opportunity to boost the Texas Lawyers Assistance Program of the State Bar, noting that lawyers are 5 times more likely to struggle with these issues than other people, and that 18–20% of lawyers abuse drugs.
In a sad note, the year saw the passing of one of the legends of criminal defense, Richard "Racehorse" Haynes, and an issue of Voice for the Defense magazine paid tribute to this giant.