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SDM Attorneys Named to Super Lawyers
September 21, 2017

SDM is pleased to announce that Super Lawyers® has selected ten Scott Douglass & McConnico attorneys for inclusion in Super Lawyers®  2017 by Thomson and Reuters.  The following firm attorneys were selected for this honor:

Paige Arnette Amstutz
, Business Litigation, Super Lawyers 2014 - 2017   

Casey L. Dobson, Business Litigation, Professional Liability, Construction Litigation, Super Lawyers 2005 - 2017   

Sam Johnson, Civil Litigation, General Litigation, Super Lawyers 2003 - 2004, 2010 - 2017

Carroll G. Martin, Energy & Natural Resources, Administrative Law, Business Litigation, Super Lawyers 2005, 2007 - 2017

Stephen E. McConnico, Business Litigation, Professional Liability, Super Lawyers 2003 - 2017

Elizabeth "Becky" Miller, Energy & Natural Resources, Business Litigation, Super Lawyers 2003 - 2017

Cynthia L. Saiter, Business Litigation, Securities Litigation, Estate & Trust Litigation, Intellectual Property Litigation, Professional Liability, Super Lawyers 2014 - 2017   

Christopher D. Sileo, Business Litigation, Energy & Natural Resources, Professional Liability, Super Lawyers 2014 - 2017 

Jane M.N. Webre, Appellate, Super Lawyers 2003 - 2017

H. Philip Whitworth, Jr., Energy & Natural Resources, Super Lawyers 2003 - 2017


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Scott Douglass & McConnico Presents Annual Oil & Gas Seminar
September 21, 2017

Scott Douglass & McConnico’s annual seminar, “Oil & Gas Regulation in Texas,” will be held September 21, 2017, at the J.W. Marriott Hotel in Austin. The seminar is designed to present an overview of current Railroad Commission rules and procedures, related litigation issues, and other oil and gas issues that will be useful to attorneys, engineers, geologists, landmen, and others whose business brings them in contact with the Railroad Commission of Texas or the General Land Office.

The firm has hosted the popular seminar for more than 30 years. Scott Douglass & McConnico attorneys John Camp, Jim Cowden, Doug Dashiell, Mark Hanna,  John Hicks, Olga Kobzar, Bryan Lauer, Carroll Martin, Davin McGinnis, and Flip Whitworth will speak at the event. Among other topics, they will discuss Railroad Commission rules, regulations and hearing procedures, drilling permits and Rule 37/38 exceptions, horizontal drilling, comingling, voluntary and forced pooling, retained acreage clause issues, production sharing agreements, and surface and subsurface use issues.

Anyone interested in attending can register by e-mailing Jackie Harrison or on site at the seminar. View the Registration Form here.


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Kennon Wooten Publishes Article On Electronic Discovery
September 19, 2017

Kennon WootenKennon Wooten's article "Mastering Electronic Discovery: Proportionality is the Polestar, and Metadata May Not Be 'the New Black' After All" was published in the September 2017 Austin Lawyer magazine (p. 26).


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SDM Recognized as Champion of Justice Law Firm
September 18, 2017

Scott Douglass & McConnico is pleased to be recgonized by the Texas Access to Justice Commission as a Champion of Justice Law Firm. 

SDM raised one of the largest amounts of money and had one of the highest rates of attorney participation in the “medium size” category of the Champions of Justice Firm Competition. Winners are determined by tabulating ATJ contributions made by the firm’s attorneys who contributed to the statewide Justice for All Campaign.

Kennon Wooten and Jane Webre will attend the Justice for All Reception and accept the award on behalf of Scott Douglass & McConnico.


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Scott Douglass Is Pleased To Be Part Of The 100 Club
September 8, 2017

The 100 Club recognizes firms who have 100 percent membership in the Austin Bar Association. Scott Douglass is pleased to support the Austin Bar Association and the work they do for the legal profession and Austin community.


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Kennon Wooten and Anthony Arguijo Publish Article in The Advocate
September 7, 2017

Kennon WootenAnthony ArguijoKennon Wooten and Anthony Arguijo have had their article “Rule 91a Dismissal Procedures: Basic Considerations and Unanswered Questions” published in the Fall 2017 issue of The Advocate.  The article presents an overview of Rule 91a and provides practical guidance for litigants confronting Rule 91a’s dismissal procedures.   


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Scott Douglass Sponsors the Equal Justice Works 2017 Annual Dinner
August 31, 2017

Scott Douglass is supporting the Equal Justice Works 2017 Annual Dinner honoring Kenneth C. Frazier, CEO of Merck.  Steve McConnico and Kim Bueno will attend the dinner, which honors lawyers who exemplify the values of Equal Justice Works --compassion, dedication and commitment to achieving equal justice for individuals and communities in need.

The Annual Dinner, which takes place on November 1, has become one of the largest fundraising dinners in DC hosted by a legal nonprofit. It raises the critical general support funds needed for our programs that mobilize the next generation of lawyers committed to equal justice.


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SDM Sponsors AYLA Judicial Reception
August 30, 2017

Scott Douglass is a sponsor of the Austin Young Lawyers Association Judicial Reception at the Four Seasons on September 21. The Judicial Reception provides young attorneys with an opportunity to meet with local judges.
 
SDM attorney Anthony Arguijo served on the board of AYLA from 2014-2016 and continues to be involved.


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Scott Douglass Is Proud To Sponsor The 2017 Hispanic Heritage Luncheon
August 29, 2017

Scott Douglass is proud to sponsor the 2017 Hispanic Heritage Luncheon on September 22. This year's keynote speaker is Carlos Gonzalez Gutierrez, the Consulate General of Mexico in Austin. The cultural speaker will be poet Zachary Caballero.

The luncheon serves as the primary fundraiser for the HBAA Charitable Foundation, and funds the foundation's scholarship and other charitable programs.

SDM attorney Anthony Arguijo serves as Immediate-Past President of the Hispanic Bar Association of Austin.


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Annual Texas Minority Counsel Program Reception Hosted at Scott Douglass
August 28, 2017

Scott Douglass will host the annual Save-the-Date Reception for the State Bar’s Texas Minority Counsel Program. The TMCP is a client development, networking, and CLE event for diverse attorneys in Texas. The TMCP was created in 1993 with the mission of increasing opportunities for minority and women attorneys who provide legal services to corporate and government clients, and to expose those organizations to the legal talent of diverse attorneys.

SDM attorney Asher Griffin has served on the Steering Committee since 2011.

The reception on September 14 is a kick-off to the 25th Annual Texas Minority Counsel Program which takes place in November.


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Dan Bitting and Cindy Saiter Publish Article in Corporate Counsel Review
August 23, 2017

Dan BittingCindy SaiterDan Bitting and Cindy Saiter have had their article “Litigation Strategies for In-House Counsel” published in the Corporate Counsel Review—volume XXXVI – May 2017, Number 1. The article provides practical advice to in-house counsel whose company is facing litigation.


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Eleven SD&M Lawyers Named to Best Lawyers in America 2018
August 15, 2017

Scott Douglass is pleased to announce that eleven of the firm's lawyers have been named to the 2018 Best Lawyers® in America list.

Earlier this year, Scott Douglass & McConnico was named as a 2017 Best Law Firm by Best Lawyers®. 

The Best Lawyers list includes:

James N. Cowden: Oil and Gas Law

Doulgas J. Dashiell: Oil and Gas Law

Casey L. Dobson: Bet-the-Company Litigation; Commercial Litigation

Sam Johnson: Professional Malpractice Law - Defendants

Carroll G. Martin: Oil and Gas Law

Stephen E. McConnico: Bet-the-Company Litigation; Commercial Litigaiton; Legal Malpractice Law - Defendants; Personal Injury Litigation - Defendants; Professional Malpractice law - Defendants

Elizabeth N. Miller: Natural Resources Law; Oil and Gas Law

John G. Soule: Oil and Gas Law

Catherine J. Webking: Energy Law

Jane M.N. Webre: Appellate Practice

H. Philip Whitworth, Jr.: Natural Resources Law; Oil and Gas Law


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Steve Wingard Joins Intellectual Property American Inn of Court
August 10, 2017

Steve WingardSteve Wingard has been accepted in the Honorable Lee Yeakel Intellectual Property American Inn of Court. Steve's business litigation practice includes lawsuits involving claims of patent infringement, copyright infringement, theft of trade secrets.

The mission of the American Inns of Court is to foster excellence in professionalism, ethics, civility, and legal skills for practitioners, judges, and professors in order to enhance the quality, availability, and efficiency of justice in the United States. The Inns include lawyers, law professors, judges, and law students in social and program meetings adapted from the traditional English legal apprenticeship model, are designed to facilitate the exchange of ideas and experience, and mentor younger members by association with more experienced members. The process helps shape a culture of commitment to the highest standards of our learned profession and encourages its practice with dignity, civility, and courtesy. If you want to know more about the Inns of Court movement, check out the website at www.innsofcourt.orgw


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Four SD&M Lawyers Recognized as Super Lawyers for Fifteen Consecutive Years
August 9, 2017

Congratulations to Steve McConnico, Becky Miller, Jane Webre and Flip Whitworth for being selected as Super Lawyers for 15 consecutive years.

Super Lawyers recognizes lawyers who have attained a high-degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. This selection process includes independent research, peer nominations and peer evaluations.  We are proud to work alongside lawyers who have been selected for their excellence year after year.

Stephen E. McConnico
Business Litigation
Selected to Super Lawyers 2003 - 2017

Elizabeth "Becky" Miller
Energy & Natural Resources
Selected to Super Lawyers 2003 - 2017  

Jane M.N. Webre
Appellate
Selected to Super Lawyers 2003 - 2017

H. Philip Whitworth, Jr.
Energy & Natural Resources
Selected to Super Lawyers 2003 - 2017


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David Shank Presents at Advanced Business Law Course
August 9, 2017

David ShankDavid Shank is presenting on “Common Interest Doctrine Including Multi-State Privilege Issues” at the State Bar Advanced Business Law Course. The seminar takes place November 9-10, 2017 in Houston.


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Judge Rules in Favor of CTRMA
August 8, 2017

Ruling by U.S. District Judge allows the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority to continue construction of Texas 4 Southwest toll road.

Scott Douglass & McConnico lawyers Casey Dobson, Jane Webre and Mike Merriman represent the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority.

Read more on the case and its implications for Austin road projects here.


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Dan Bitting elected to Senior Aggie Leadership Council
August 7, 2017

Dan BittingDan Bitting was recently elected to the Senior Aggie Leadership Council (SALC), a group of Aggie executives in the Austin area who meet regularly to exchange ideas about leadership challenges and solutions.  The group hosts guest speakers who talk candidly about their roles as leaders in Texas A&M academics, administration and sports; Texas state and U.S. government; and both large and small business enterprises.


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Steve McConnico Shares the Legacy of Chief Justice Jack Pope
August 4, 2017

Steve McConnicoSteve McConnico will share the legacy of his longtime friend and colleague in his talk “Lessons from the Life of Chief Justice Jack Pope” at the Texas Bar CLE course, The Independence of the Judicial Branch: Its Past and Future. Chief Justice Pope passed away earlier this year at the age of 103. He spent 38 years as a Texas judge, including two decades on the Texas Supreme Court, and serving as Chief Justice from 1982-1985. The course will be held at the Texas Law Center in Austin on August 31, 2017.  More information, including registration instructions and a copy of the course brochure is available here.


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Steve McConnico to Participate in Mock Trial with American College of Trial Lawyers
August 4, 2017

Steve McConnicoSteve McConnico will participate in the American College of Trial Lawyers’ first ever CLE program titled “Ethics in Litigation: A Radically Different Approach.” The seminar is a full day mock trial  demonstration including a twelve person jury and panel discussion following the jury verdict.  Steve will cross examine plaintiff’s expert for Defendant and present the direct examination of defendant’s expert.  The seminar takes place September 28, 2017 at the Marriott Marquis in Houston, Texas.  Additional information will be forthcoming from ACTL in the near future.


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Curtis Osterloh Presents at the Council on State Taxation (COST) Annual Meeting
August 4, 2017

Curtis OsterlohCurtis Osterloh will co-present on “Best Practices in Handling Audits and Appeals” at the Council On State Taxation (COST) Annual Meeting. COST is the premier state tax organization representing taxpayers consisting of more than 600 multistate corporations engaged in interstate and international business.  Curtis is a frequent speaker for COST.  The session will explore the tricks of the trade for dealing with all types of auditors. The session will also detail settlement and resolution tactics for immediate use in current and upcoming audits. The annual meeting takes place October 22 - 25, 2017 in Orlando, FL.


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Curtis Osterloh Presents on Texas Liquor Tax Audits
August 4, 2017

Curtis OsterlohCurtis Osterloh will present on “Texas Liquor Tax Audits: Avoiding Possible Pitfalls” at the Annual Texas Bar & Nightclub Convention. The convention is sponsored by the Texas Bar & Nightclub Association (TBNA) which is an alliance of Texas bar and nightclub owners protecting its members by providing a platform for all relevant political and legal information.  Curtis has spoken at a number of TBNA events.  Texas Mixed Beverage Audits are difficult to handle correctly if you’re not prepared. Curtis has years of experience helping bar and nightclub owners and managers in various types of tax assessments on a local, state and federal level. In this seminar, Curtis breaks down the process and shares tips on how to handle your audit in the most effective and efficient manner. The convention takes place August 14, 2017 in San Antonio, Texas.


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Cindy Saiter Presents at Advanced In House Counsel Course
August 4, 2017

Cindy SaiterCindy Saiter will speak on a panel addressing Ethical Issues In Contract Negotiations at the Texas State Bar Advanced In House Counsel Course.  The course takes place August 17-18, 2017 in San Antonio, Texas.


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Sam Johnson to Present on Ethics for Real Estate Lawyers
August 1, 2017

Sam JohnsonSam Johnson will present on “Ethics in Real Estate Practice” at the 51st Annual William W. Gibson Jr. Mortgage Lending Institute hosted by the University of Texas School of Law. Sam will discuss potential ethical pitfalls for lawyers and other dilemmas in a real estate practice.  The conference takes place September 28 and 29, 2017 in Austin, Texas.


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Dan Bitting to Discuss Estate Disputes
August 1, 2017

Dan BittingDan Bitting will moderate a panel of corporate trustees discussing “Drafting Wills and Trusts for Efficient Administration” at the Estate Planning, Guardianship and Elder Law Conference. Dan will offer the perspective of one who litigates disputes over trusts and wills.  The conference takes place on August 3-4, 2017 in Galveston, Texas.


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Jane Webre and Kennon Wooten Accept Nominations for ALI Membership
July 10, 2017

Jane WebreKennon WootenSD&M attorneys Jane Webre and Kennon Wooten have accepted their nominations for elected membership in the American Law Institute.  When reviewing candidates for membership, the Institute’s Membership Committee considers the following characteristics: professional excellence; experience, interest, and involvement in activities that fall within the mission of the Institute; anticipated desire and commitment to participate in, as well as to make potential contributions to, the Institute’s work and law reform activities; achievement or promise of future achievement in the candidate’s chosen endeavor in the law; and professional recognition or standing among peers.  The Institute—made up of judges, lawyers, and law professors—drafts, discusses, revises, and publishes Restatements of the Law, model statutes, and principles of law that are influential in the courts and legislatures, as well as in legal scholarship and education.


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SDM is pleased to welcome Cheryl Joseph to the firm
June 22, 2017

Cheryl JosephCheryl represents plaintiffs and defendants in a variety of complex litigation, with an emphasis on commercial litigation, professional malpractice defense, energy-related disputes, and oil and gas matters.  Prior to joining the Firm, Cheryl practiced at Williams & Connolly LLP in Washington, DC.  At Williams & Connolly, Cheryl represented individuals and companies in complex commercial litigation, including securities litigation and bankruptcy litigation, as well as in government investigations.


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John Ellis to Moderate Panel of “Texas Legal Legends” at the State Bar of Texas Annual Meeting
June 15, 2017

At 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, June 22, 2017, John Ellis, along with co-moderator Lauren Fincher, will lead a panel discussion with three Texas Legal Legends: Hon. Royal Furgeson, Jr., Hon. Ruby Sondock, and H. Ron White.  Each of the panelists has been honored as “Legal Legends” by the Litigation Section of the State Bar of Texas.  The event will take place in the Topaz Room of the Hilton Anatole during the State Bar of Texas Annual Meeting in Dallas, Texas. Click here for additional details about the event and the panelists.  
 
Mr. Ellis is an associate at SD&M and currently serves on the board of directors of the Texas Young Lawyers Association (TYLA).  Ms. Fincher, an associate at Locke Lord LLP, serves as the TYLA Liaison to the Litigation Section Council.  Texas Legal Legends is a project of the Litigation Section of the State Bar of Texas. Its purpose is to memorialize the stories of many legendary lawyers who have practiced in Texas, and to use those stories to enhance the public’s understanding of the historical importance of lawyers and the importance of making a difference.


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Kim Bueno Obtains Defense Verdict for Johnson & Johnson
June 12, 2017

SD&M attorney Kim Bueno recently prevailed at trial in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas on behalf of defendants Johnson & Johnson and Ethicon, Inc.  Kim served as co-lead trial counsel. The plaintiff alleged injuries from a pelvic mesh product that was implanted to treat her incontinence.  At the end of the three-week trial, the jury rejected the plaintiff’s claim that a pelvic mesh product caused her injuries.  The defense verdict marked Johnson & Johnson’s first win in a pelvic mesh trial in Philadelphia.


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Abe Kuczaj, Robyn Hargrove, and Jamie Baskin Win Appeal on Behalf of Hundreds of Victims of the Bastrop County Complex Fire
June 6, 2017

SD&M attorneys Abe Kuczaj, Robyn Hargrove, and Jamie Baskin recently won an appeal on behalf of hundreds of victims of a wildfire in Bastrop County.  The property owners sued Asplundh Tree Expert Co., alleging that its negligence caused the fire and resulted in devastating losses to nearby property owners.  Asplundh sought dismissal of all claims on the basis of the statute of limitations.  On appeal, the Austin Court of Appeals held that the property owners’ claims were not barred by the statute of limitations.  The court of appeals’ holding was based on the doctrine of American Pipe tolling, which delays running of the statute of limitations during the pendency of a related class action against the same defendant.  The court of appeals’ opinion contains one of the most in-depth discussions of American Pipe tolling by a Texas court to date.


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Dan Bitting and Cindy Saiter Defeat Breach of Fiduciary Duties Claim
June 6, 2017

SD&M attorneys Dan Bitting and Cindy Saiter recently defeated claims against the independent administrator of an estate for breach of fiduciary duty, legal malpractice and fraud. The Court found that the claims were barred by the statute of limitations, granted summary judgment for the administrator and denied plaintiffs’ motion for a new trial.


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Paige Amstutz, Sara Clark and Ray Donley Win Appeal in Takings Case
June 5, 2017

Representing landowners, SD&M attorneys Paige Amstutz, Sara Clark and Ray Donley recently prevailed in an interlocutory appeal of a trial court’s denial of a municipal plea to the jurisdiction. The landowners sued the City of Rollingwood alleging unconstitutional taking and nuisance claims resulting from the flooding of their property. The City responded with a plea to the jurisdiction, claiming that sovereign immunity barred the landowners’ claims. The trial court denied the City’s plea, and the City pursued an interlocutory appeal of the ruling. Ruling for the landowners, the Austin Court of Appeals found that the trial court properly denied the City’s plea.


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Dan Bitting and Cindy Saiter Win Summary Judgment Against Trustee for Breach of Fiduciary Duties
June 1, 2017

As trial counsel for an attorney ad litem appointed to represent the interests of certain beneficiaries of an oil and gas royalty trust, Dan Bitting and Cindy Saiter recently obtained a summary judgment finding that the corporate trustee had breached its fiduciary duties as a matter of law in the manner in which it compensated itself. The Court further found that the breach was a clear and serious breach of fiduciary duty. The case subsequently settled.


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Dan Bitting to Speak on Avoiding Legal Malpractice at Estate Planning Seminar
May 9, 2017

SDM's Dan Bitting will speak at the Austin Bar Association’s 31st Annual Estate Planning & Probate Section All-Day CLE in Austin, Texas on Thursday May 11, 2017 at the Austin Bar Association’s Seminar Room.  Dan’s presentation, "Avoiding Legal Malpractice” will be one of multiple topics covered during the all-day seminar.  More information on the seminar can be found here.


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