Erika Vela is a corporate attorney with a focus on corporate and securities law, mergers and acquisitions, and commercial contracts. Before joining Phillips Kaiser in Houston, Erika served in-house at Panasonic Corporation of North America and in the corporate group McCarter & English in New Jersey and New York.
Erika earned her undergraduate degree from Rutgers University - New Brunswick and her J.D. from Penn State School of Law, where she served as the Senior Editor & Chair of the Bylaws Drafting Committee of the Penn State Journal of Law and International Affairs (JLIA) during her final year.
While in law school, Erika was as a judicial extern for The Honorable William “Skip” Arbuckle III in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania and a Teacher’s Assistant for Advanced LL.M. Legal Analysis, Research & Writing, and U.S. Common Law Methods. Erika also worked as a legal intern for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in New York; a summer associate in the corporate group at Veirano Advogados in Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, Brazil; and a legal scholar in the Safeer Program at the Dubai Judicial Institute in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. She received three CALI Awards for the highest class grade in Legal Analysis, Research & Writing; Criminal Procedure; and International Business Transactions.
Erika is fluent in Spanish and Portuguese.
Education and Activities:
- B.A., Women’s and Gender Studies, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey – 2003 to 2007.
- J.D., Penn State School of Law, University Park, Pennsylvania – 2010 to 2013.
- Member, Hispanic Bar Association of Houston, Houston, Texas – 2018 to Present.