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Danielle Copes

Service Professor in Law


Danielle Copes


  • LL.M., International and Comparative Law, St. Mary’s University School of Law, 2007
  • J.D., Magna Cum Laude, St. Mary’s University School of Law, 2005
  • B.A., Political Science, Pepperdine University, 2000 (minor: Sociology)

License to Practice

  • Texas

Specialties and Courses

  • Legal Communication
  • Lawyering Skills
  • Professionalism
  • Advocacy
  • International Law
  • Contract Drafting

Honors and Awards

  • Best San Antonio Lawyers, Personal Injury Litigation, S.A. Scene (peer-selected), 2015, 2014
  • Best San Antonio Lawyers, Defective Products Litigation, S.A. Scene (peer-selected), 2015
  • Top San Antonio Lawyers, Plaintiffs’ Personal Injury, S.A. Scene (peer-selected), 2014
  • Order of Barristers
  • John M. Harlan Society
  • Phi Delta Phi
  • Most Outstanding Moot Court Award, St. Mary’s University School of Law


Danielle Copes (J.D. ’05, LL.M. ’07) teaches Legal Communication, Analysis, and Professionalism I and II and experiential Contract Drafting. She was the first LCAP instructor in the law school’s groundbreaking fully-online J.D. program. Her areas of academic and pedagogical interest include student self-assessment, accessibility and universal design, and equity issues in education and employment.

Before joining the law faculty, Copes practiced state and federal litigation and appeals, domestic and international commercial transactions, corporate structuring and governance, multi-national ventures and state and federal administrative law. Professor Copes has handled cases in a variety of areas, including contracts, business disputes, construction law, fiduciary matters, intellectual property, labor and employment, bankruptcy, insurance defense and tort claims. She is admitted to practice before the United States District and Bankruptcy Courts for the Western and Southern Districts of Texas and the United States Courts of Appeals for the Fifth and Federal Circuits.

Copes previously served as an adjunct professor of law teaching and coaching international law and appellate advocacy.

A first-generation college student, Copes earned her J.D., magna cum laude, from St. Mary’s University School of Law, where she received several awards for her leadership skills and academic excellence. She sharpened her advocacy skills as a state, regional and national moot court competitor and served as a research assistant in the areas of state, federal, and military rules of evidence, military criminal justice, and constitutional law. Professor Copes also holds a post-doctorate degree in international and comparative law, graduating at the top of her LL.M. class.

She is a former intern to The Hon. Emilio M. Garza of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.

An Ohio native, Copes now resides in Helotes, Texas. She enjoys cheering on her two favorite student-athletes and volunteering with youth sports organizations and children’s health charities.



  • Talking in Class: A Lesson in Oral Communication Skills for the Legal Writing Space, Lone Star Regional Legal Writing Conference, Lubbock, Texas (April 2023).
  • Self-Assessments that Work: Methods, Practices, and Examples to Empower Student Success, AASE National Conference, San Antonio, Texas (May 2022).