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< Staff & Leadership

Shelly Skeen

South Central Regional Director
Dallas, TX

Shelly L. Skeen (pronouns: she/her) is the South Central Regional Director for Lambda Legal, where she has also served as a Senior Attorney. Lambda Legal is the oldest and largest national civil rights legal organization working for full and lived equality for LGBTQ+ people and people living with HIV through impact litigation, public policy advocacy and education.

Ms. Skeen is a seasoned litigator, appellate practitioner, mediator, and arbitrator. She holds a diploma in International Arbitration, has filed amici briefs in the U.S. Supreme Court and successfully appeared before the Texas Supreme Court.  Ms. Skeen has served as the Chair of the LGBTQ Law Section for the State Bar of Texas, President of the Dallas LGBT Bar Association, is a frequent speaker and author on LGBTQ+ legal issues (including the First Amendment, Public Accommodations, Estate Planning, Probate, HIV, and Family Law) and is adjunct faculty for National Institute of Trial Advocacy, the University of Texas School of Law, and UNT Dallas College of Law. In 2016, the Texas Bar College awarded Ms. Skeen The Franklin Jones Award for the Best CLE Article, which addressed the retroactivity of Obergefell. Ms. Skeen served on the CLE Committee for the State Bar of Texas for 7 years and is a frequent CLE Course Director.  In 2018, Ms. Skeen earned an LL.M. from UCLA School of Law, with specializations in Constitutional Law and Law & Sexuality.  Ms. Skeen was honored by the Texas LGBTQ Law Section with its highest award, the Judge Black Award, for her work on behalf of the LGBTQ+ community and was recently named a “Living Legend” by the Dallas Bar Association.  She has worked with Transgender people across the country to ensure that they have identity documents that match who they are, and also works with Texas law schools, nonprofit organizations, and law firms to educate them about how to safely obtain accurate identity documents on behalf of their clients. Ms. Skeen has testified before the Texas Legislature in support of LGBTQ+ people and has recently served as counsel in Doe v. Abbott, PFLAG v. Abbott, Poe v. Drummond, Fowler v. Stitt, and Wilkins v. Austin. In 2024, the Texas Bar CLE gave Ms. Skeen its “Standing Ovation” Award for her extraordinary energy, commitment of time, and leadership of high-quality CLE programming. Ms. Skeen is a certified Queer & Trans Affirming Professional, was a founding member of the Coalition for Aging, LGBT and also serves on the Board of the Juanita J. Craft Civil Rights House and Museum.