Editor’s note: The Review-Journal’s “Where Are They Now” series catches up with athletes who played high school, college or professional sports in the Las Vegas Valley. Stories will run at least once a week.
Tasha Schwikert was a star gymnast at UCLA, where she won two all-around national championships, but she didn’t expect the news that came her way about two weeks ago.
Her alma mater announced it was inducting Schwikert into its Hall of Fame.
“It’s such a huge honor,” she said. “Thinking about how they had to parse through and evaluate hundreds of athletes to come through UCLA every year, to be selected among the nine honorees is pretty incredible.”
She’s also a budding star in the legal world, and in February was named to the Dallas Business Journal’s “40 under 40” list.
Both honors surprised Schwikert, who was born and raised in Las Vegas and graduated from UNLV’s law school in 2015. She and her husband, former UNLV basketball standout Mike Moser, still own a home in Summerlin.
Schwikert, 35, moved to the Dallas Metroplex after Moser retired from professional basketball and became a player development coach for the NBA’s Mavericks last September.
Schwikert joined the Dallas firm Munck Wilson Mandala a year ago, and she specializes in commercial real estate transactions and worked on a company merger valued at more than $100 million. She is helping the firm create a sports law practice, and Schwikert plans to get involved with name, image and likeness deals for college athletes.
Schwikert became interested in law after graduating from UCLA in 2009 and then working for the Wasserman Media Group in Los Angeles and representing female athletes.
“It really felt like Olympic athletes didn’t get the respect they deserved,” Schwikert said. “Working with them, I was doing a lot of the marketing deals and their PR deals, but I wanted to be able to do their contracts as well. I really thought I was going to go back into a sports agency and work as a contract attorney, but I kind of fell in love with the law and wanted to try a bunch of different stuff. That’s what got me to law school.”
Schwikert, who won a team bronze medal at the 2000 Olympic Games and was named to the Southern Nevada Sports Hall of Fame in 2011, also has been an advocate for victims’ rights. She announced two years ago that former USA gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar sexually abused her for several years.
Nassar already was serving a sentence of up to 175 years after pleading guilty in 2017 to seven counts of child molestation. Schwikert said she was one of more than 500 survivors of Nassar.
She testified in May 2019 before the Texas Senate State Affairs Committee. That state soon after extended the statute of limitations for those who commit sexual assault against minors from 15 years to 30 years past the victim’s 18th birthday.
Schwikert also co-chairs a committee that aids Nassar’s victims.
“I was fearful (of speaking out) whether it be backlash, retaliation, shame,” Schwikert said. “Also, I guess I would call myself more of a private person. Sharing a personal thing with the world was very scary for me, but it’s been very positive. My reasoning for coming out was to be a voice for others who are fearful of coming out and sharing their own truths.”