Leonard Ray Saenz

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Practice Areas

  • Mediation
  • Family
  • Divorce
  • Child Custody
  • Spousal Maintenance
  • Property Division
  • Grand Parent Access / Third Party
  • Juvenile Law
  • Trial Consulting

Biography

Leonard Ray Saenz is a retired Travis County Associate Judge and is certified by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization in both Family Law and Criminal Law. Judge Saenz brings to the firm over 27 years of courtroom experience as a former prosecutor, Associate Judge and private attorney. Additionally, as an Associate Judge, he has for the past 12 years, presided over thousands of family law hearings, including the full range of family law matters, including divorce, child custody, spousal maintenance, property division, modifications, and grandparent/ third-party access to children.

Judge Saenz has the experience to deal with high conflict child-related and property cases and has presided over numerous hearings involving protective orders dealing with family violence issues and has served as a faculty member involved in the national training of Judges handling domestic violence cases. In addition to his involvement in introductive judicial training, he has served as a faculty member of the advanced national training on Family Violence and Civil Protective Orders. Judge Saenz has presented continuing legal education courses locally and for the State Bar of Texas.

Judge Saenz served as an Assistant District Attorney in Kings County, Brooklyn, New York for over four years. As an Assistant District Attorney, he evaluated, prepared and tried misdemeanor and felony bench and jury cases dealing with possession and distribution of controlled substances as well as violent crimes ranging from misdemeanor DWI, to more serious crimes such as theft, assault, robbery, and murder. He was assigned to the Civil Rights Division where he worked with New York Police Department's Bias Unit prosecuting crimes motivated by a person's race, sexual orientation, religion or ethnic origin.

After serving as a prosecutor, in 1995 he practiced insurance defense for Speyer & Perlberg in New York, New York. Judge Saenz returned to Texas in 1996 and served as an Assistant District Attorney in Travis County, where during his tenure he handled an array of felony cases.

In February 2002 Judge Saenz was appointed to the bench by the Travis County District Court Judges. Prior to hearing family law matters he presided over thousands of Juvenile Court hearings and understands the family dynamic as well as substance abuse and mental health issues. Judge Saenz presided over Juvenile Drug Court and was the first Judge responsible for the Travis County Truancy Court Pilot Project.


Judge Saenz is a member of the Austin Bar Association, Texas Bar College, Member at Large for the Austin Bar Association Family Law Section, a member of the Texas Academy of Law Specialist, Member of the State Bar of Texas Family Law Section, member of the Texas Law Foundation, Hispanic Bar Association of Austin and a founding Master of the Barbara Jordan Inn of Court. He has held leadership roles as the Secretary/Treasurer, Vice-Chair and Chair of the Austin Bar Association's Criminal Law Section. As well as being a member of the Hispanic Bar Association, Judge Saenz was elected to serve as board member of the Hispanic Bar Association Charitable Foundation.

In addition to his commitment to improving the administration of justice over the years, he has been involved in our community. Judge Saenz has served a member on the Austin Child Care Council and served on Austin Independent School District's Dropout Prevention Task Force. Appointed Co-Chair of the Joint Subcommittee's Judicial Task Force which provided recommendations for City of Austin, Travis County and the Austin Independent School District for the handling of student's curfew and other class C misdemeanors in conjunction with truancy filings.

Judge Saenz attended the University of Texas where he received a BA in Government and a Minor in Economics. He went on to receive his Doctor of Jurisprudence from Northwestern School of Law of Lewis and Clark College in Portland, Oregon. Judge Saenz is eligible to practice law in both Texas and New York.


Judge Saenz has a clear understanding of various challenges facing our children, parents and blended families. He understands how the emotional, physical and financial stress can impact the family dynamic. Over the years he has sharpened his ability to hear litigants' concerns, evaluate their credibility, apply the law and ultimately decide the issue(s) raised during the hearing. His experience as a trial attorney and Judge provides clients with the judicial insight and evaluation of their unique issue(s). As a mediator Judge Saenz's experience offers litigants a unique perspective in helping parties resolve their differences especially in high conflict cases.

Book a mediation session with Leonard Saenz
http://www.bookmediation.com/sites/LeonardSaenz

Education

  • Lewis and Clark College Northwestern School of Law, Portland, Oregon
    • Doctor of Jurisprudence
  • University of Texas
    • B.A.
    • Major: Government
    • Minor: Economics

Bar Admissions

  • Texas
  • New York

Pro Bono Activities

  • Texas Law Foundation
  • Hispanic Bar Association Charitable Foundation, Board Member

Certified Legal Specialists

  • Texas Academy of Law Specialist, Member
  • Austin Bar Association, Member
  • Texas Bar College, Member
  • Austin Bar Association Family Law Section, Member at Large
  • Hispanic Bar Association of Austin, Member
  • Barbara Jordan Inn of Court, Founding Master
  • Austin Bar Association’s Criminal Law Section, Held the Following Leadership Roles: Secretary/Treasurer, Vice-Chair and Chair
  • Travis County Truancy Court Pilot Project , (former Chair)
  • Austin Child Care Council , (former Member)
  • Austin Independent School District’s Dropout Prevention Task Force, (former Member)
  • Joint Subcommittee’s Judicial Task Force which provided recommendations for City of Austin ravis County and the Austin Independent School District, (former Co-Chair)

Past Positions

  • Travis County, Associate Judge
  • Kings County, Brooklyn, New York , Assistant District Attorney
  • Speyer & Perlberg , Prosecutor