Widgetized Section

Go to Admin » Appearance » Widgets » and move Gabfire Widget: Social into that MastheadOverlay zone

Lead Stories

UPDATED: Jury Finds Toyota Liable, Awards Reavis Family $242M

By Litigation Writer Natalie Posgate – (Aug. 17) – A Dallas jury ruled Friday that Toyota Motor Corp. manufactured a Lexus with defective seatback failure that caused permanent brain damage to two small children during a 2016 crash on North Central Expressway.

Citing the automaker’s apparent indifference to fixing a known problem with front seat behavior in their vehicles, the jury of nine men and three women ruled that Toyota should pay $242 million.

Litigation Writer Natalie Posgate has more on Friday’s verdict, including interviews with jurors, as part of her gavel-to-verdict coverage in The Texas Lawbook.

Doctor Pleads Guilty, Lawyer’s Death Delays Trial in Forest Park Conspiracy Case

By Mark Curriden – (Aug. 17) – Dr. Wade Barker, a founding surgeon of the now bankrupt Forest Park Medical Center, has agreed to plead guilty for his role in what prosecutors claim was a $40 million criminal bribery and kickback scheme that involved 21 doctors, hospital administrators and consultants. The Texas Lawbook has learned that as many as three other defendants in the case are involved in secret plea negotiations with prosecutors.

Federal Judge Hands AT&T Huge Win in $4B False Advertising Case

By Mark Curriden – (Aug. 17) – A federal judge in California ruled Thursday that the Federal Trade Commission “definitively failed to prove its case” that DIRECTV misled customers in tens of thousands of TV, websites and newspaper advertisements over an eight-year span. This is the second huge courtroom victory this summer for AT&T GC David McAtee.


Diamondback Energy To Buy Energen Corp. for $9.2B

By Claire Poole –(Aug. 14) – In a much-speculated-about move – pushed along by activist investors – Midland-based Diamondback Energy Inc. said after the markets closed Tuesday that it had agreed to acquire Energen Corp. for $9.2 billion in stock and assumed debt.

The deal creates the third largest independent oil and gas producer focused on West Texas’ Permian Basin. Claire Poole has the details in The Texas Lawbook.

CDT Weekly Roundup: 12 Firms, 132 Lawyers, 12 Transactions Worth $19.9B

By Claire Poole – (Aug. 14) – Thanks to the $62 billion Energy Transfer Equity purchase of Energy Transfer Partners, it was hard for dealmakers to top week before last. But this past week proved respectable.

There were 12 transactions announced worth $19.9 billion, nearly all of them in the energy sector. Claire Poole has the details in her weekly Corporate Deal Tracker Roundup.

DBJ: Tinder Founders Sue Match for $2B

By Brian Womack of the Dallas Business Journal – (Aug. 14) – Dallas’ Match Group is having relationship problems.

The company and its parent IAC are being sued by founders of Tinder, along with current executives and early employees, for manipulating financial information, according to a new filing. The lawsuit seeks at least $2 billion.

RM Firm

H1 2018: Goldman, JP Morgan Sitting Atop Financial Advisor Tables

By Claire Poole – (Aug. 13) – Investment banking stalwarts Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan were the top financial advisors on deals involving Texas companies in the first half of 2018, according to Mergermarket data provided exclusively to The Texas Lawbook. See where everybody else is, and read where the experts think the second half is headed. Hint: “Texas Tea” still reigns.


Choose a Legal Recruiter Wisely – Your Career May Depend on It

By Randy Block of Performance Legal Placement – (Aug. 13) – The right recruiter can help you find the right job or take your legal career to the next level. But it seems few attorneys know much at all about how the recruiting process works. Randy Block of Performance Legal Placement explains what you should know before you turn your resume – and perhaps your future – over to a recruiter.

Mike McKool’s $145M Birthday Verdict against Apple

By Mark Curriden – (Aug. 10) – Mike McKool has tried more than 100 cases to a jury during the past 45 years. He’s won more multimillion-dollar verdicts than you can count on both hands. But last week, the Dallas trial lawyer engineered a $145.1 million patent verdict against the almighty Apple in its home state – a victory that was especially sweet as McKool approaches his 69th birthday this week.

More Stories

Energy Deals on the Upswing, with Three Transactions Worth $7.3B Announced involving Eight Texas Law Firms

Three deals totaling $7.3 billion announced within 24 hours of each other show that dealmaking is picking up in the oil and gas sector. Two involved midstream…


David Gerger Back on his Own Again with a New Team

By Mark Curriden – (Aug. 16) – David Gerger, arguably the most successful white-collar criminal defense lawyer in Texas who represented Enron CFO Andrew Fastow and BP Macondo site leader Robert Kaluza, is comfortably back at his own law firm again. Gerger left the Houston office of Quinn Emanuel to start a firm with a group of former federal prosecutors and public defenders. Gerger, Samy Khalil and Matt Hennessey also convinced highly respected federal prosecutor Ashlee McFarlane. The Texas Lawbook has complete details.

Texas Lawbook Sponsors UT Government Enforcement Institute

(Aug. 15) – The Texas Lawbook is the official media sponsor of the Fifth Annual University of Texas Government Enforcement Institute set for Sept. 20 in Dallas. The day-long CLE program features an extraordinary line up of speakers, including a handful of corporate general counsel, federal prosecutors and senior officials at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Morgan Lewis partner Steve Korotash and Chesapeake Energy Chief Compliance Officer Patrick Craine have the details.

TIP: Lawbook subscribers get a discount.

Judith Ross

GCs, Lawyers & Firms

White & Case Brings On International Arbitration Partner in Houston

White & Case enhanced its international arbitration capabilities in Latin American and Lusophone regions through…

Bell Nunnally Adds IP Partner During Move-In Week

Jason Nardiello is the second IP partner to join Bell Nunnally this summer. He previously…

Haynes and Boone Enhances Energy Litigation Practice in Houston

David Ammons in the fourth energy litigator in the Houston area that Haynes and Boone…

McGuireWoods Picks Up Houston Litigation Pair

Yasser and Meghaan Madriz practiced together at Haynes and Boone prior to joining McGuireWoods.…

Spencer Fane Adds Peg Hall in Dallas

Hall is the second partner to join Kansas City-based Spencer Fane this month.…

Sean Wheeler Q&A : Why He Moved, What He Wants To Do, Where He Sees The Market

Sean Wheeler Q&A : Why He Moved, What He Wants To Do, Where He Sees The Market

In his first in-depth interview since the move, Wheeler talks about why he joined Kirkland,…

State Bar Honored by ABA for Access-to-Justice Programs

The State Bar of Texas was recently honored with the 2018 Harrison Tweed Award at…

DBA Wins ABA Partnership Award

The ABA Standing Committee on Bar Activities and Services honored the DBA, the New Jersey…

Corporate Deal Tracker

New to Corporate Deal Tracker, or need a refresher on its criteria? You can also find that below.


Lawyers in the News

Jim Baird
Alan Beck
Michael Blankenship
Elizabeth Brandon
Frank Branson
Chip Brooker
David Buck
Michael Byrd
J. Michael Chambers
James Chenoweth
Shaun Clarke
John B. Connally
Patrick Craine
Shamus Crosby
Mark Deverka
Robert Dougherty III
Bill Finnegan
Chris Gaut
David Gerger
John Goodgame
John Greer
Isaac Griesbaum
Jim Halbrooks
Matt Hennessy
Jason Jean
Samy Khalil
Steve Korotash
Rick Lacher
Ramey Layne
Doug Lionberger
Jon Liroff
Bryan Loocke
Ryan Maierson
Pete Marketos
David McAtee
Danny McEntee
Ashlee McFarlane
Mike McKool
Doug McWilliams
Seth Molay
Bill Munck
Jesse Myers
Bill Noble
Dave Oelman
Steve Peterson
Alan Rafte
Doug Rayburn
Lance Schuler
Sanjiv Shah
Eric Stahl
Bill Swanstrom
Jeff Tillotson
Steve Trauber
Jimmy Vallee
Victor Vital
George Vlahakos
Chad Watt
Wes Williams
Debbie Yee
Matt Zmigrosky

Firms in the News

Akin Gump
Baker Botts
Barnes & Thornburg
Bowman and Brooke
Chesapeake Energy
Crain Caton
Gerger Khalil
Gibson Dunn
Houlihan Lokey
Law Offices of Frank Branson
Locke Lord
JP Morgan
McKool Smith
Morgan Lewis
Munck Wilson
Paul Hastings
Reese Marketos
Tillotson Law Firm




Mergermarket: Top 30 M&A Texas-based Deals of H1 2018

(Aug. 3) – In the first half of 2018, the top 30 M&A transactions involving Texas-headquartered companies were pretty big deals. That’s not a big surprise. The surprise is how much the value of those deals were dominated by the top two.

As gathered by Mergermarket exclusively for The Texas Lawbook, the top 30 transactions were valued at $124.9 billion. But the top two deals accounted for more than $54 billion, or nearly 44 percent of the top 30 total.

M&A H1 Legal Advisor Rankings: Shake Outs At The Top

By Claire Poole – (July 27) – Even for a 2018 characterized by shake-ups – firm mergers, office openings, lateral raids – the changes at the top of the first-half M&A legal advisor charts are remarkable. V&E dropped. Kirkland ascended. And two national firms with no presence in Texas took the top deal value spots.

According to Mergermarket M&A data involving Texas-based companies provided exclusively to The Texas Lawbook, Houston-based Vinson & Elkins lost its top-ranked spots in both deal volume and deal value.

‘Who Run the World?’ Beyoncé Notwithstanding, An Austin M&A Lawyer Do

By Claire Poole – (April 20) – The Texas Lawbook Corporate Deal Tracker results for 2017 are in, and the top spot is held by a woman. In a corner of the profession long dominated by white guys from Houston, this is a big deal. Claire Poole has details about the winner. One more thing: she recently moved.

Law Firm Competition Intense for M&A Deals in Texas

By Claire Poole and Mark Curriden – (April 16) – The Texas Lawbook’s 2017 Corporate Deal Tracker results for M&A dealmaking are final and there are some major surprises. V&E still reigns No. 1, but a handful of national law firms that have moved into Texas are threatening to take its crown. The Texas Lawbook has all the numbers on M&A by Texas law firms.

Corporate Deal Tracker 2017: A Year of Market Contrasts

By Claire Poole – (March 26) – Dealmaking in 2017 was confounding: deals were up, but values were down. The deal count hit 735, but total reported value dropped below $400 billion. There are lots of reasons, of course. But maybe the best explanation is the market itself. Claire Poole sums up the year based on the 2017 annual Corporate Deal Tracker tallies exclusively in The Texas Lawbook.


EFH, Oncor, Vistra – A Corporate Restructuring for the Decades


By Mark Curriden – (Jan. 19) – In some ways, it was more saga than bankruptcy: A four-year-long, $45 billion corporate restructuring that included the elimination of more than $20 billion in debt, four corporate M&A divestitures valued at $18 billion each, heated battles with state regulators that caused two of those deals to collapse, and the $20 billion spin-off of two subsidiaries. And now the deal is a finalist in the Outstanding Corporate Counsel Awards. Mark Curriden describes the EFH journey through the courts in The Texas Lawbook.

Dena Stroh & NTTA’s Law Firms Finalists for Biz Litigation and M&A Deal of Year


By Mark Curriden – (Jan. 18) – Dena Stroh says she had no idea that government law could be fascinating. But in 2017, she guided the North Texas Tollway Authority through one of the largest government bond issues in the U.S., as well as a potentially major class-action lawsuit. For that, and more, she and what she calls her “excellent lawyers” are nominated in two categories of the 2017 Outstanding Corporate Counsel Awards. Read the details in The Texas Lawbook.

Michael Sukenik is ‘Adept at Operating Across Diverse Markets’


By Mark Curriden – (Jan. 18) – Michael “Misha” Sukenik travels a lot. He’s the legal officer behind two of the best known franchise names in the Yum! Brands inventory in 120 countries. He’s also a finalist in the Outstanding Corporate Counsel Awards. Read about him in The Texas Lawbook.

Trinity Industries: Their Hard-Fought Fifth Circuit Win Yields Three Outstanding Corporate Counsel Finalists


By Mark Curriden – (Jan. 17) – A 2014 East Texas jury verdict that Trinity Industries violated the False Claims Act resulted in a $663 million judgment against the Irving-based manufacturer of highway guardrails. Instead of cratering, Trinity launched a counter-offensive led by the company’s top legal officers, Theis Rice and Sarah Teachout. In 2017, the duo and their outside counsel scored an historic reversal—earning them nominations as finalists in three categories of the 2017 Outstanding Corporate Counsel Awards. The Texas Lawbook explains.

Chasity Henry is a ‘Recognized Problem-Solver’


By Mark Curriden – (Jan. 17) – Chasity Wilson Henry had just graduated from law school in 2006 when she found herself handling nine-figure M&A deals with some of the savviest corporate lawyers in North Texas. Now Assistant General Counsel at Kimberly-Clark—and a finalist in the 2017 Outstanding Corporate Counsel Awards—Henry is leading the legal department in strategic acquisitions and joint ventures. The Texas Lawbook lays out the reasons Henry is a fast-rising legal star.

Blake Rice’s Job is ‘Problem-solving with Really High Stakes’


By Mark Curriden – (Jan. 17) – For Blake Rice, the work day starts early. Though he is based in Dallas, the lifelines of Neuberger Berman, the fast-rising investment services company he represents, stretch across time zones from London to Hong Kong and beyond. His grasp of complicated global transactions has earned him both respect and a nomination for a 2017 Outstanding Corporate Counsel Award. Learn about him in The Texas Lawbook.

David Hernandez Serves as Trusted Counselor & Adviser to Hunt Family


By Mark Curriden – (Jan. 16) – Baltimore-born David Hernandez made his reputation in Texas as a tax lawyer and a strategic thinker. After years in the law firm trenches, he has emerged as a masterful in-house counsel at Hunt Consolidated and a trusted Hunt family advisor in a time of delicate transition. For this, and more, Hernandez is a finalist in the 2017 Outstanding Corporate Counsel Awards. Learn more about him in The Texas Lawbook.

Janie Perelman: ‘People Just Want to be Treated with Respect’


By Mark Curriden – (Jan. 16) – A massive data breach in 2014 could have been catastrophic for Michaels Stores. The arts and crafts company had to explain what happened to regulators, notify 2.6 million customers and fend off no less than five massive lawsuits. But Michaels has recovered, and many credit the rapid and transparent response by Janie Perelman, the company’s assistant general counsel. And now she’s a finalist in the 2017 Outstanding Corporate Counsel Awards. Read how she did it in The Texas Lawbook.

Lennie Nicholson Wanted to be Radar O’Reilly, but Became a Great Banking Lawyer


By Mark Curriden – (Jan. 16) – Lennie Nicholson has helped guide a tiny credit union into a publicly-traded company. For that, the vice president and associate general counsel of LegacyTexas Bank has been named as a finalist in the Outstanding Corporate Counsel Awards. Not bad for an Upstate New Yorker who got hoodwinked by Uncle Sam. Read more in The Texas Lawbook.

Chris Luna Uses ‘Carrots and Sticks’ to Push for Law Firm Diversity


By Mark Curriden – (Jan. 15) – Chris Luna, chief counsel at MetroPCS, has been a fixture in Dallas business and public life. He is an outspoken proponent of diversity in both the legal profession and the businesses they serve. His legal department is a finalist in the Outstanding Corporate Counsel Awards. Find out why in The Texas Lawbook.

Liberty Mutual Corporate Counsel Kimberly Houston “Sees the Bigger Picture”


By Mark Curriden – (Jan. 15) – Kimberly Houston’s fascination with the law may have begun with “Matlock,” but it’s grown into an expertise on such weighty subjects as employment misclassification and regulatory compliance. As Corporate Counsel for Liberty Mutual, the insurance giant, Houston has wrestled with large-scale undertakings, from a class action defense to the development of the company’s new corporate campus in North Texas. And now she’s a finalist in the Outstanding Corporate Counsel Awards. Read about her in The Texas Lawbook.

Stacie McNulty ‘Embodies the Spirit’ of the Public Service & Pro Bono Award


By Mark Curriden – (Jan. 12) – Stacie McNulty is a highly-respected authority on intellectual property. Her observations on the subject have been cited by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. But her long-standing commitment to programs dealing with HIV and other public health issues commands something close to awe. As a result, she’s a finalist in the upcoming Outstanding Corporate Counsel Awards. Details in The Texas Lawbook.

Award Finalist: Oncor’s Complex Asset Swap with Sharyland


By Mark Curriden – (Jan. 12) – When Oncor Electric Delivery Company and Dallas-based Sharyland Utilities swapped assets in 2017, it was more than another $400 energy distribution deal. It was a solution to a problem that had plagued and perplexed 60,000 rate payers. That’s one of the reasons the deal is a finalist in the 2017 Outstanding Corporate Counsel Awards. Read about what made it unusual and who made it happen in The Texas Lawbook.

Nicola Hobeiche Has a ‘Personal Sense of Obligation to Help Others’


By Mark Curriden – (Jan. 11) – Nicola Hobeiche is assistant general counsel at ORIX USA, but her office is often a minefield: of books or clothes or toys headed for a homeless shelter. Sure, she’s an experienced and respected trial lawyer, but she’s also a first-rate community servant and a finalist in the Outstanding Corporate Counsel Awards. Read about her in The Texas Lawbook.

Brittany Perez ‘Crafts Unique & Custom Solutions to Complex Legal Issues Around the Globe’


By Mark Curriden – (Jan. 11) – Brittany Perez jumps horses in competition. As vice president and associate general counsel of Match.com, she’s also involved in issues as diverse as consumer class actions and cybersecurity. She’s a finalist in the Outstanding Corporate Counsel Awards and her profile in The Texas Lawbook spells out why. Spoiler alert: She didn’t meet her husband on Match.

Keitha Wright ‘Rolls Up her Sleeves’ on Diversity


By Mark Curriden – (Jan. 10) – Keitha Wright was the first person in her family to graduate from college. Now the Howard University Law School grad is senior counsel at G2 Secure Staff. Because of her work inside and outside, she’s a finalist in the diversity category of the Outstanding Corporate Counsel awards. More in The Texas Lawbook.

Baron Oursler Offers ‘Legal Answers that Provide Business Solutions’


By Mark Curriden – (Jan. 10) – Baron T. Oursler decided to become a lawyer as an 11-year-old boy. Now he’s general counsel of a $1 billion trucking company. He’s also among finalists in the Outstanding Corporate Counsel awards for 2017. Read more in The Texas Lawbook.

Cross-Border Dealmaking for TX Companies Plunges in 2017


By Claire Poole and Mark Curriden – (Dec. 6) – Cross-border deals in Texas are down dramatically in 2017. Aside from the usual suspects – a strong dollar and undependable oil prices – is a new one: the uncertain parameters of the Trump administration’s “America First” policies. Some transactional lawyers think a lack of policy structure breeds uncertainty among foreign investors. Others think it has no effect at all. This exclusive in The Texas Lawbook has the numbers and the story behind them.