Essays In Honor of Professor Stephen T. Zamora edited by James W. Skelton, Jr. (Ethiopia)


Soon after James Skelton sent the final draft of the anthology Eradicating Smallpox in Ethiopia to the publisher, he began a new writing project. That’s when he joined Professor Alfonso Lopez de la Osa Escribano as a coauthor and the lead editor of this collection of scholarly essays that became a Festschrift (book designed to commemorate an excellent scholar who has retired or passed away).

The book is written in honor and memory of Professor Stephen T. Zamora (1944-2016), who taught many courses at the University of Houston Law Center, served as the dean for six years, and created and served as the Director of the Center for U.S. and Mexican Law.  Steve was a brilliant lawyer and law professor in the fields of international and comparative law, and was known as an upbeat, kind, thoughtful, pleasant and caring man. Steve’s kindness, good humor and generous compliments came to him so naturally and effortlessly that he made everyone he came in contact with feel important and valued. He and his wife Lois  served in the Peace Corps in Colombia from 1967 to 1969.

Following Zamora’s shocking and untimely death, Alfonso began the process of compiling essays by inviting many of Zamora’s colleagues to submit scholarly articles for the purpose of honoring Zamora’s intellectual and institutional dedication to U.S.-Mexican understanding and demonstrate the respect, admiration, and affection they had for Zamora.  When Jim joined the project, he completed the process of editing the papers in hand and acquiring and editing the new papers.  Alfonso and Jim worked closely to coordinate their efforts, and 20 months later they had 19 chapters fully edited and ready for publication. In February 2021, they assembled the final manuscript and submitted it to Arte Publico Press.

Most of the chapters provide excellent examples of Professor Zamora’s vision, versatility, and talent for friendship, as well as insights into a situation, moment, or remarkable anecdote the authors experienced with Professor Zamora.  They also provide insights into the personal, practical and professional relationships the authors recall about Professor Zamora.  Many of the authors have included vivid, first-hand descriptions of their relationship with him.

About the editor

Jim Skelton served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Ethiopia (1970-72), and worked as an Operations Officer in

James Skelton

the Smallpox Eradication Program there. He is the author of the Peace Corps memoir, Volunteering in Ethiopia, the lead editor and a coauthor of the anthology Eradicating Smallpox in Ethiopia: Peace Corps Volunteers’ Accounts of Their Adventures, Challenges and Achievements, and the coauthor of the textbook, Doing Business in Emerging Markets.

Jim practiced law for over 46 years, specializing in international energy transactions in emerging markets, and served as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Houston Law Center from 2008 to 2016, teaching the course in “Energy Law: Doing Business in Emerging Markets.”

He has published 26 articles for legal periodicals and books, as well as seven book reviews for Peace Corps Worldwide. He has been a member of the Advisory Board of the Houston Journal of International Law (HJIL) for 43 years, including 11 years as chairman, and cosponsors, with the HJIL, the annual Skelton Lecture Series at the University of Houston Law Center.

Biographical essays

Essays in Honor of Professor Stephen T. Zamora: A Life Between Mexico and the United States
Edited by Alfonso Lopez de la Osa Escribano and James W. Skelton, Jr. (Ethiopia 1970-72)
Arte Publico Press (University of Houston)
616 pages
December 2022
$ 8.49 (Kindle); $27.95 (Paperback)

Through this collection, Zamora’s contemporaries aim to expand his legacy and continue his life-long work as an educator, attorney and uniter of peoples.

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