The HBAstl has a straighforward, yet effective, governance structure. The governing Board of Directors consists of our Officers, Members-at-Large, and our Standing Committee Chairs. Click on the links to the right to find out more. Also, please feel free to check out our Bylaws.
Rick studied law at Saint Louis University and the Centro de Estudios Universitarios at the Colegio de San Pablo (Spain). He has extensive appellate experience in both state and federal court. He appears regularly as an invited guest on Spanish-language radio and television broadcasts, as well as at Spanish-language parish programs designed to educate the Hispanic community on legal issues. Two-thirds of his client base is Latine, primarily in immigration, workers’ compensation, and personal injury. The firm is fully bilingual and has affiliated offices with attorneys in Argentina and Mexico. He has served on the Board of HBAstl since 2020.
Alex studied in Mexico, Germany, and France, obtaining her Juris Doctorate and Master’s in International Business simultaneously at Saint Louis University. Recently recognized by Missouri Lawyers Media in its annual diversity and inclusion awards, Alex seeks to integrate her commitment to equity in her estate planning practice. She also is on the Board of the Hispanic Leaders Group of St. Louis, co-founded Comunidad STL to promote Latine political interests, and is a member of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. She was asked to assist the Missouri Bar’s Special Committee for Lawyers of Color and has served on the Board of HBAstl since 2018.
Patrick, the Chief Privacy Officer and Associate General Counsel at Edward Jones, leading efforts to develop policies for and responding to cybersecurity incidents, records, eDiscovery, and information management/governance. From Texas, he attended Washington University School of Law and is extensively involved in legal education activities. He has served in multiple capacities for non-profits such as the St. Louis Bar Foundation, the Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis, and the Missouri Supreme Court Commission of Racial and Ethnic Fairness and its Practice of Law Subcommittee. He helped establish the first Hispanic bar association in St. Louis and served as its first President.
Germán was born and raised in Colombia and pursued his studies at the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana in Bogota, the Basque Country University in Spain, the Carlos III University in Spain, and Washington University in St. Louis. Negotiation, Dispute Resolution, and Fundamental Rights are priorities. He became a citizen in 2017 and his practice focuses on immigration and traffic law, where he listens carefully to his clients not only to create a safe and environment and help them resolve their legal issues but also to empower his clients with legal knowledge. He is the Immediate Past President of HBAstl, an Executive Board position.
Rudy joined ArchCity Defenders in August 2019 as a Staff Attorney with the Direct Representation team, representing clients on a variety of civil and municipal matters. He interned with ACD during his third year of law school and connected with the values and mission of ACD. Rudy would describe ArchCity Defenders as dedicated, passionate, and zealous who take a holistic approach in representing their clients. He is bilingual and has volunteered for Catholic Charities, including giving assistance during the 2016 floods surrounding Pacific, MO. He is a staunch supporter of human rights and has served on the Board of HBAstl since 2019.
Francisco J. Carretero Owner and Managing Attorney Frank J. Carretero, LLC Frank has been an attorney for over thirty years, primarily in civil litigation, assisting and representing diverse immigrant and Hispanic communities. Born in Madrid, Spain and immigrated to Saint Louis in 1970 along with his parents and brothers. Frank pursued his studies at Saint Louis University School of Law and University of Missouri – Columbia. Frank is one of the only Hispanic members of the Missouri Bar to be selected on panels submitted to the Governor of Missouri for judicial appointments. He serves on the Board of the Hispanic Leaders Group of St. Louis and is now Member at Large of HBAstl.
Phillip A. Cervantes Owner and Managing Attorney Cervantes & Associates Phil’s practice areas include personal injury, workers' compensation, medical malpractice, products liability, FELA and railroad accident matters, and general litigation. Phil studied at Drake University School of Law and St. Ambrose University, of which is he is a Board member. He has faithfully served on the Board of HBAstl for many years.
Peter’s practice centers on listening to his client to develop the best strategy to meet their needs. Recognized by the St. Louis Business Journal as a Diverse Business leader for his work in the St. Louis region, Peter has worked with other diversity leaders for many years to increase inclusivity in the legal profession. Peter studied at Washington University and University of Illinois College of Law and has faithfully served on the Board of HBAstl for many years, often securing significant funding in support of the organization’s activities.
As Assistant General Counsel of Employment for SSM, Meredith advises on a variety of employment law issues and manages employment-related litigation for the organization. Meredith was in private practice before going in-house. Meredith attended Saint Louis University School of Law and Washington University in St. Louis. Meredith has faithfully served on the Board of HBAstl for many years.
As a high-stakes immigration attorney focusing on complex cases across a wide range of industries, including technology, entertainment, hospitality, financial services, and real estate & construction, among others. Katerina’s practice includes all types of business immigration, including employment-based immigrant and nonimmigrant (temporary) visa petitions and related business immigration matters. Katerina has represented C-level executives, investment firms, entrepreneurs, multinational corporations, athletes, and celebrities before the U.S. Department of Labor, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. She also routinely handles consular processing matters, family immigration affairs, and naturalizations. A native speaker of English and Spanish and a veteran of some of the nation’s most prestigious law firms, Katerina offers clients first-class legal work in a boutique firm environment and represents clients in all 50 states, as well as from countries around the globe.
Jessica Mendez, Lead Counsel- Global Battery and Light, Energizer Holdings, Inc. At Energizer, Jessica supports the businesses that produce Energizer’s flagship batteries and lighting products globally, providing guidance on advertising, consumer protection, product development, and intellectual property, among other areas. Prior to joining Energizer, Jessica was in private practice. Over the course of her career, Jessica’s accomplishments have been recognized by professional associations, including Best Lawyers® in America and Super Lawyers®. Jessica is a past-president of HBAstl, an LCLD fellow, and HNBA’s Deputy VP of Programs. Jessica holds a J.D. and LL.M from Washington University in St. Louis and a B.A. from Boston University.
Tino has a decade of experience representing clients in complex finance matters and commercial real estate matters, including those involving acquisitions, sales, real estate development and secured financings. He has taught at Washington University School of Law as an adjunct professor in the Urban Revitalization Clinical Practicum. Tino holds a J.D. from Saint Louis University and an A.B. from the University of Chicago. He serves as a mayoral appointed Commissioner on the Regional Cultural and Performing Arts Development Commission and on the St. Louis Housing Authority; other activities include services on the various boards, including the The Old North St. Louis Restoration Group and long-term service on the Board of HBAstl.
Gabriela Baeza-Stout is an associate with Armstrong Teasdale’s Corporate Services Group, she is also a member of the firm's Technology Transactions team and the Data Innovation, Security and Privacy practice. She is an accomplished attorney with years of experience both in-house and in private practice. Skilled in technology transactions, corporate and M&A matters, as well as in intellectual property as it relates to transactional law. She graduated with am LLM in Intellectual Property and Technology Law from Washington University, an LLB from Universidad Anáhuac-Mayab and a MA from New York University. She has been admitted to the practice of law in Missouri, in the United States and in the Yucatan, Mexico.
Maria Artemia Martinez Gomez Luna (Adams) is a Corporate Attorney Licensed in Mexico City and currently working for the Corporate Compliance department of Centene. Maria has more than 25 years of professional experience. She initiated her career as a researcher in Constitutional matters for a former Magistrate of the Federal Electoral College. After she graduated from Universidad Anahuac’s Law school, she pursued a Concentration in Business Law from Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico. She worked as the lead of the Corporate Legal Department for Grupo Reforma for eight years. Artemia emigrated to St. Louis in 2013 and graduated in 2019 from Washington University in St. Louis, where she received an LLM with Concentration in Corporate Law. She is a graduate of the Hispanic Leadership Institute and co-chair of the Development Learning program of the Women’s Employees group of the Company she works for. Her main goal is serving others. She is currently participating in a Mentorship program sponsored by the City of St. Louis to promote the retention of professional foreigners in St. Louis.