Above (left to right): Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison, Louise Raggio ‘52 and SMU Dedman School of Law Dean John B. Attanasio.
SMU Dedman School of Law is proud to become the new host of the Louise Ballerstedt Raggio Endowed Lecture Series. The Raggio endowed lecture series, established by Ms. Raggio’s friends and family, honors and celebrates her tremendous accomplishments in advancing the legal rights of women in Texas and across the country.
Louise Ballerstedt Raggio, a 1952 graduate of the evening law program at SMU Dedman School of Law, is known as a “pioneer in marital and family rights.” Her involvement in the Marital Property Act in 1967 brought Texas into the 20th century. Louise is credited with securing property rights for married women in Texas and with paving the way for women in every state to start their own businesses and gain equal access to credit. As chair of the State Bar of Texas' Family Law Section, she spearheaded the Family Code project in 1979, making Texas the first state with a unified family code. For that effort, she received the State Bar of Texas' highest honor and was the first woman elected as Director to the Board of Directors of the State Bar of Texas in its more than 100-year history. Louise has received numerous awards and honors, including being the first recipient of the Dallas Bar Association’s Outstanding Trial Lawyer Award, as well as receiving the Margaret Brent Award from the American Bar Association in 1995.