Outstanding Texas Tax Lawyer

Each year, the Tax Section recognizes one attorney as an Outstanding Texas Tax Lawyer. Nominations are submitted by the Tax Section membership and final selection is made by the Council.

Nominees must: be a member in good standing of the State Bar of Texas or an inactive member; have been licensed to practice law in Texas or another jurisdiction for at least ten years; and have devoted at least 75 percent of his or her law practice to taxation law.

In selecting a winner, the Council considers a nominee’s reputation for expertise and professionalism within the community of tax professionals specifically and the broader legal community; authorship of scholarly works relating to taxation law; significant participation in the State Bar of Texas, American Bar Association, local bar associations, or other legal organizations; significant contributions to the general welfare of the community; significant pro bono activities; reputation for ethics; mentorship of other tax professionals; experience on the bench relating to taxation law; experience in academia relating to taxation law; and other significant contributions or experience relating to taxation law.  

 
 
2019 - William H. Caudill 

William H. Caudill has been one of Texas’s leading tax attorneys for decades. A fourth-generation Texan and partner at Norton Rose Fulbright since 1986, Bill is an expert in a wide variety of tax topics, including partnerships, oil and gas, real estate, and tax-exempt organizations just to name a few.

Bill received his J.D. with high honors from the University of Texas at Austin, where he was on Law Review, a chancellor, and a member of the Order of the Coif. He received his Master's degree in public accounting from the University of Texas at Austin Graduate School of Business (Dean’s Award for Academic Excellence), and his B.S.B.A. with high honors from the University of Arkansas. Bill is also a Certified Public Accountant.

A prodigious speaker and writer, Bill has spoken at dozens of events and authored many articles over his career. He has given significantly of his time to the tax profession and is a member of an elite group of three attorneys who have served as both Chair of the Section of Taxation of the American Bar Association (2016-2017) and Chair of the State Bar of Texas Tax Section (1991-1992).

Bill has been tirelessly devoted to the Houston community through involvement with his church, the Boy Scouts of America, the Mary Christian Burleson House Preservation and Development Foundation, and as outside general counsel to the Greater Houston Community Foundation, among other activities.

Bill has a warmth and ease about him that he extends to his clients as well as the attorneys he has mentored over the years. His partners have referred to him as “a guru of partnership tax,” and as Tax Legend and former Outstanding Texas Tax Lawyer Award recipient Charles W. Hall has said, “Bill Caudill is particularly well-known for his tax expertise regarding tax-exempt organizations, oil and gas, and partnerships. His expertise goes beyond that, though. He has an incredible breadth of knowledge across the entire spectrum of tax law, and also he has a great knowledge of law generally beyond tax. More importantly, he is a splendid human being and a wonderful friend.”

Thank you, Bill, for your significant contributions to our field. We are grateful for all you have done and continue to do for our practice. Congratulations on this well-deserved honor!

2019 - William P. Streng

Bill Streng grew up in Iowa, but he has left a lasting mark on Texas and the nation. Bill graduated from Northwestern University School of Law in 1962. He served as an Attorney-Advisor in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Tax Policy (Office of Tax Legislative Counsel) in United States Department of the Treasury. He began his career in academia as a faculty member with tenure at the Southern Methodist University School of Law. Bill then became of counsel at Bracewell & Patterson and remained affiliated with that firm for sixteen years. He moved to the University of Houston Law Center as a tenured professor of law in 1985. Bill has been instrumental in guiding tax law at UHLC from that point until his retirement from UHLC this year.

Bill Streng was one of the first co-authors with Boris Bittker, and he has authored or coauthored leading treatises in the areas of estate planning, corporate taxation, and international taxation. Few academics have published on as broad a spectrum of the tax law as Bill Streng. His reputation as a leading academic in tax law is internationally recognized. He was a Fulbright Scholar in 1993, and he has been invited to speak or teach throughout Europe in the Netherlands, Sweden, and other countries. In Asia, he has regularly taught in tax programs in Taiwan, Hong Kong, and New Zealand. Bill Streng has been a non-European member of the European Association of Tax Law Professors since 2002, and he has been a member of the American Law Institute since 1982. He has been a U.S. Branch Council Member of the International Fiscal Association since 1977.

Bill Streng has left a lasting mark on the tax profession in this state. He has educated tax professionals in this state since 1973, and literally thousands of tax professionals have been impacted by his mentorship and teaching over that period of time. Countless students indicate and recall fondly how Bill Streng was instrumental in their entering the tax profession. He has been a leading educator in taxation for many of the tax professionals in this state. In addition, Bill’s generosity is well-known and legendary. Bill has always been generous both in terms of his time and in providing resources to other teachers, educators, and professionals around this state. He has also been an active force for providing continuing education lectures in Texas for forty-six years. He is a true Texas legend.

 
 
2018 - Cynthia Morgan Ohlenforst
Cindy Ohlenforst’s practice today, as throughout her career, is an eclectic mix of all things tax. She focuses on multistate and local taxes and on litigation and controversy work, but continues to enjoy a wide range of tax projects, including transactional and tax planning matters, and lobbying in multiple state and local jurisdictions. Having decided before college at Loyola University in New Orleans that she would be a litigator, she was surprised to find herself fascinated by her tax classes at Southern Methodist University School of Law. In 1980, she graduated first in her law school class, after taking both advanced litigation classes and advanced tax classes—and after having a baby during April of her first year. Cindy joined Hughes & Luce—which eventually merged into what is now K&L Gates—where she began working with the legendary Vester T. Hughes, the first recipient of the Outstanding Texas Tax Lawyer Award.
 
A registered lobbyist in Texas, Cindy has co-authored sections of the Texas Tax Code and of the Internal Revenue Code, and has testified before legislative committees of multiple states. She has also litigated state and federal tax cases at both the trial and appellate levels, including work on U.S. Supreme Court cases. Her deal work includes projects for some of the world’s largest companies. Cindy is also a frequent speaker and author who co-authored the SMU Tax Journal’s Annual Survey of Texas Tax Law beginning in the 1980s.
 
Cindy has chaired the State Bar’s Tax Section, its State Tax Committee, and the Dallas Bar Association Tax Section, and has been a member of the Taxpayer Advisory Groups for multiple Texas Comptrollers. She has been named in Chambers USA, the Best Lawyers in America, the Dallas 500, Texas Super Lawyers, Best Lawyers in Dallas, Best Women Lawyers in Dallas, and the Top 50 Women in Texas, and elected to the American College of Tax Counsel. Cindy has also served in active leadership roles with many charitable organizations, including the United Way, Ursuline Academy, Jesuit Volunteer Corps, The Family Place, and Attitudes & Attire.
 
Cindy is as passionately dedicated to advancing women and diverse attorneys in the practice of law as she is to practicing law at the highest level. She co-chaired the State Bar’s Women in the Profession Committee during its first two years, and currently chairs the K&L Gates firm-wide Committee on Women in the Profession.

Cindy’s proudest accomplishment is having raised, with her amazing husband Pat, three accomplished daughters—a clinical psychologist, an orthodontist, and a veterinarian—each of whom benefitted from Cindy’s willingness to balance the demands of a challenging career with her non-negotiable commitment to being present for virtually every one of their practices, games, and performances.
 
 
2016 - Louise Hytken
Louise Hytken worked for the Tax Division of the United States Department of Justice for more than 37 years. She graduated from the University of Arizona in 1972 with a B.S. degree in mathematics, and graduated cum laude from Arizona State University Law School in 1976.
 

In 1984, she became the attorney in charge of the Dallas Field Office and continued to serve in that role until the field office became the Civil Trial Section-Southwestern Region in 1994. She served as the Section Chief for the Southwestern Region of the Civil Trial Section and, with a staff of about 20 attorneys, was responsible for tax cases in the district courts and bankruptcy courts in Texas and New Mexico. Her office litigated some of the largest dollar and most sophisticated tax cases in the country.

Louise is board certified in tax law, has been a licensed attorney for over 40 years, and has devoted her professional life to tax law. In 2014, she served as the Chair of the Dallas Bar Tax Section. Louise is also involved in community service. She is a volunteer with Reading Partners at a local school. Previously, she was the Board President of another non-profit. She is also qualified as an arbitrator with FINRA.

 
2015 -  Sander Shapiro 
Sander (Sandy) Shapiro is one of the true pioneers of tax practice in Texas – Federal, state, and local. He graduated from Rice University (then Institute) in 1951 and from the University of Texas School of Law in 1954. His first jobs as a lawyer were in Washington, D.C., in the Tax Division of the Department of Justice, and the United States Tax Court. In 1958, he and his wife Lottie moved back to Austin where he started private law practice, ultimately becoming a partner in the law firm then known as Clark, Thomas, Winters & Shapiro, where he practiced for 26 years. He was subsequently one of the founders of Shapiro, Edens & Cook, an Austin law firm.
 
Sandy helped introduce the practice of Federal tax law to the Austin Bar, focusing on tax controversy work. In later years, he pioneered in Texas the practice of state franchise and sales tax controversy work, and developed a nationwide practice in the field. During the time of his active practice, Sandy was also an adjunct professor of law at the University of Texas School of Law, and was a frequent lecturer to Bar and accountants’ groups on state and Federal taxes and related matters. He became active in the National Association of State Bar Tax Sections (NASBTS), an adjunct of the American Bar Association, and eventually became president and director emeritus. In NASBTS, he dealt with state taxes and is the author of several handbooks and articles on the subject. There are many, many lawyers in Texas and beyond who benefited from his mentoring and counsel.
 
During his years of active practice, besides his association with NASBTS, he was a member of the American Law Institute (Sustaining Life Member) and a fellow in the American College of Tax Counsel and American College of Trust and Estate Counsel. He was president of the Texas Law Review Association and has been active in various bar committees. He was and is very active in cultural and philanthropic causes in Austin.
 
Among the many honors Sandy has received, he is most proud of:
  • Commencement speaker to the 1984 University of Texas School of Law graduating class (which included his daughter).
  • Distinguished Lawyer Award given by the Travis County Bar Association
  • Anti-Defamation League Trailblazer award
  • Sander W. Shapiro Presidential Scholarship in Law endowed in his honor at the University of Texas School of Law.
Sandy retired from practice January 1, 2000.
 

2014  - Juan F. Vasquez
Juan F. Vasquez is currently a judge of the United States Tax Court, as well as a licensed CPA in Texas and California.  He graduated from the University of Texas in Austin in 1972 with a B.B.A. in Accounting.  After working for two years as an accountant in Los Angeles, he attended one year of law school at SUNY in Buffalo, New York, ultimately earning his J.D. from the University of Houston in 1977, followed by an LL.M. in Taxation from New York University in 1978.

After working as a trial attorney for the Internal Revenue Service in Houston, Mr. Vasquez became a partner in the law firm of Leighton, Hood and Vasquez from 1982-87, and he had a private practice as a tax lawyer in San Antonio from 1987-95, where he represented clients before the IRS and the United States Tax Court.
 
In 1984, Judge Vasquez became the first Hispanic attorney to be certified in tax law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. He was appointed by two United States Presidents as Judge, United States Tax Court, first by President Clinton in 1995 and again by President Obama in 2011. His current term expires in 2026.
Among his many honors and accomplishments:
  • Fellow, Texas and San Antonio Bar Foundations
  • Member, American Bar Association and Mexican American Bar Association
  • Founding member, National Association of Hispanic CPAs, San Antonio Chapter
  • Greater Austin Tax Litigation Association
  • Served on the Austin Internal Revenue Service District Director’s Practitioner Liaison Committee, 1990-91, Chairman, 1991
     
2013 -  Ira B. Shepard (deceased March 27, 2016)
At the time of selection as Outstanding Texas Tax Lawyer, Ira Shepard was a Professor of Law with the University of Houston Law Center. He taught Federal Tax and Professional Responsivity.
 
Professor Shepard joined the Law Center in 1975. Before his tenure at the Law Center, he taught at the University of Georgia School of Law and was a visiting professor at the University of North Carolina Law School.
 
He received his baccalaureate degree from Harvard College in 1958 and his law degree from Harvard University in 1964, where he was an editor of the Harvard Law Review. Following graduation, he practiced in New York City with the firm of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison.
 
He has been the Special Advisor to the Southern Federal Tax Institute since 1974. He has chaired the Continuing Legal Education and Research Committee of the American Bar Association Tax Section and the planning committee for the University of Texas Tax Conference.
 
2012 - Emily Parker
Emily A. Parker of Thompson & Knight L.L.P. was selected as our Outstanding Texas Tax Lawyer for 2012. Parker is the ninth recipient of the award.
 
Parker has served the legal profession, government, her law firm and clients with distinction through a wide variety of roles. Parker earned her law degree with honors in 1973 from the Southern Methodist University School of Law (now known as SMU Dedman School of Law) and was selected as the school’s 2007-2008 Distinguished Alumni for Government Service. Parker has represented large corporate taxpayers in a number of landmark cases in the energy industry and the area of estate taxation. From 2002 to 2004, Parker served as Deputy Chief Counsel (Operations) and for almost a year served as Acting Chief Counsel of the Internal Revenue Service, where she had ultimate responsibility for all legal matters at the IRS and leadership of all of their 1,600 attorneys.

During her career Parker has been recognized in a wide range of business and legal publications, including being named as 2012 Dallas Litigation & Controversy-Tax Lawyer of the Year by The Best Lawyers in America®. She has held numerous leadership positions for local, state, and national bar organizations, including most recently serving as Vice Chair of the American Bar Association’s Section of Taxation. She has also served as a community volunteer for Dallas CASA, the Child Abuse Prevention Center, and Easter Seals of Dallas.

Parker’s career has been marked with a series of firsts. She was the first female attorney hired by Thompson & Knight, its first woman Partner, and its first woman Managing Partner. Please join me in congratulating Emily Parker as the first woman to be awarded the Outstanding Texas Tax Lawyer!
 

2011 - Stanley M. Johanson
In 2011, Stanley M. Johanson, James A. Elkins Centennial Chair in Law and University Distinguished Teaching Professor of the University of Texas School of Law, was recognized as Outstanding Texas Tax Lawyer.

Professor Johanson joined the law faculty of the University of Texas School of Law in 1963 where he has taught thousands of students estate planning. He has won numerous awards over the years including the Treat Award for Excellence presented by the National College of Probate Judges and the endowed Massey Teaching Excellence Award at the University of Texas School of Law. In 2008, Professor Johanson was elected by the National Association of Estate Planning Councils to the Estate Planning Hall of Fame. His publications include Johanson’s Texas Probate Code Annotated (2010—published annually); Gilbert’s Law Summary on Wills (2002); Wills, Trusts & Estates (7th ed. 2005) (co-author; law school casebook adopted at over 120 American law schools). He is a member of the American Law Institute, American College of Tax Counsel, American College of Trust & Estate Counsel, and the International Academy of Trust and Estate Counsel.
 

2010 - Charles O. Galvin (deceased January 27, 2011)
Charles O. Galvin was the 2011 Outstanding Texas Tax Lawyer honoree.

Galvin received his B.S. in Commerce from Southern Methodist University, an MBA and Juris Doctor from Northwestern University, Doctor of the Science of Law from Harvard, and honorary Doctor of Laws degrees from Capital University and SMU.

He practiced law with the Dallas firm of Leachman, Matthews, and Gardere and most recently was of counsel to the Dallas law firm, Haynes and Boone, LLP.

He was professor of law at SMU from 1952-1983 and Dean of the Law School from 1963-1978. Dr. Galvin was also the Centennial Professor of Law, Vanderbilt University from 1983-1990, and thereafter Centennial Professor Emeritus. He also served as Executive in Residence, Vanderbilt, 1990-1994.

Overall in his career, Dr. Galvin taught at the law schools of Michigan, Harvard, Duke, Pepperdine, Kansas, Texas as well as the Business Schools of Northwestern University and SMU. He was a Distinguished Professor of Law, Emeritus, SMU Law School.

Dr. Galvin had been a member of Beta Gamma Sigma, Order of the Coif, and the Phi Delta Theta Social Fraternity. Further honors include: the Intellectual Leadership award from the National Council of Catholic Men; the Equal Justice Award of Legal services of North Texas; the John Rogers award from the Southwestern Legal Foundation;

Dr. Galvin membership in professional organizations incudes the State Bar of Texas; Texas Bar Foundation; Texas Supreme Court Historical Society; Dallas Bar Association; Dallas Bar Foundation; American Bar Association; American Bar Foundation; American Law Institute; American Judicature Society, United States Supreme Court Historical Society; American Tax Policy Institute; Southwestern Legal Foundation; Section of Taxation of the American Bar Association; Texas Society of CPAs and the Dallas Chapter of CPAs; and the Philosophical Society of Texas.

In public service, Galvin served on numerous commissions, committees, and advisory boards. He also served on numerous corporate and charitable boards.
 

2009 - Stanley L. Blend
Stanley L. Blend is recognized as the 2009 Tax Section Outstanding Texas Tax Lawyer. His career as a tax lawyer spans 40 years and is built on the principles of unwavering quality and service to the Tax Bar.

Upon graduation from the University of Houston Law Center in 1967, Stanley served as a Staff Attorney in the Tax Court Litigation Division of the Office of Chief Counsel for the Internal Revenue Service until 1971. While working for the Chief Counsel’s Office, Stanley attended Georgetown University Law Center and earned his L.L.M. in 1971.

In 1972, Stanley joined the firm that is now Oppenheimer, Blend, Harrison and Tate, Inc. (Oppenheimer + Blend) where he established a tax practice focused on providing the highest quality legal services to his clients. At Oppenheimer + Blend, Stanley has served as Chief Executive Officer, Chairman of the Board, and Practice Group Leader of the Property Exchange and Tax Groups.

In addition to his law practice, Stanley takes great pride in his involvement with the Taxation sections of both the State Bar of Texas and the American Bar Association and believes service to the Tax Bar is a vitally important responsibility of every tax lawyer. Stanley has served as the Secretary (1984-1985), Treasurer (1985-1986) and Chair (1987-1988) of the Section of Taxation of the State Bar of Texas. In addition, Stanley has served as both the Vice Chair (2002-2004) and Chair (2007-2008) of the American Bar Association Section of Taxation. He has also served as Council Director (1999-2002) and is the past Chair of the Partnership Tax Committee, with the American Bar Association.

Stanley has been a member of the Texas State Board of Public Accountancy, the American College of Tax Counsel, and has served on the Editorial Board of The Practical Tax Lawyer. Stanley has been recognized by Woodward/White, Inc. as one of the Best Lawyers in America©, by Texas Monthly Magazine as a Texas Super Lawyer and by Scene in SA Magazine as one of San Antonio’s Best Tax Law Attorneys. Stanley is a frequent author and lecturer on all areas of tax law. Most importantly, Stanley is a friend and mentor to many.
 

2008 - Steve Salch (deceased February 28, 2010) 
Steven C. Salch was selected as the 2008 Outstanding Texas Tax Lawyer.
 
Salch graduated from Southern Methodist University and from the SMU School of Law.

He practiced with Fulbright & Jaworski where he served as a Senior Partner, and then retired to Galveston to open his own practice. He was a member of the American Bar Association and the State Bar of Texas, the Galveston County and Houston Bar Associations, and the American Law Institute (Life Member). He served as Vice-Chair of the American College of Tax Counsel, was a past Chair of the American Bar Association Section of Taxation, and is one of fewer than 1,500 lawyers selected to Best Lawyers in America for 25 consecutive years. He was also listed in Who's Who in the World and Texas Super Lawyers.

Salch was a very active member of the community. He was a member of the Krewe of the Knights of Momus. He was a member of First Presbyterian Church, the UTMB Health System Advisory Board, the UTMB Development Board and President's Cabinet. He also served as an Advisory Director of the Grand 1894 Opera House, and was a member of the Galveston Historical Foundation.
 

2007 - Buford P. Berry
In 2007, the Tax Section recognized Buford P. Berry as Outstanding Texas Tax Lawyer.

Berry’s practice is focused on federal income taxation, with an emphasis on oil and gas taxation and tax litigation. He is a frequent speaker and writer on tax law topics.

Distinctions/honors for Berry include:

  • The Best Lawyers in America® by Woodward/White Inc. (Tax Law); 1987-2015
  • Texas Super Lawyers® by Thomson Reuters (Tax, Estate Planning & Probate); 2003-2011
  • Outstanding Texas Tax Lawyer Award, State Bar of Texas Section of Taxation; 2007
Barry’s professional memberships and affiliations include:
  • Member, American Bar Association; Past Chairman, Natural Resources Committee, Section of Taxation
  • Past Chairman, Tax Section of the Southwestern Legal Foundation; Currently Secretary of the Advisory Board of the International Oil & Gas Educational Center
  • Fellow, Texas Bar Foundation
  • Fellow, American Bar Foundation
  • Fellow, American College of Tax Counsel

He has also served numerous civic and charitable organizations, including Dallas Citizens Counsel, Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas Symphony, Goodwill Industries of Dallas, Kent Waldrep National Paralysis Foundation, Annual U.S. Savings Bond Campaign, and Thompson & Knight Foundation

Barry received his LL.B. from The University of Texas School of Law. Law school recognitions include Phi Delta Phi; Quizmaster; Order of the Coif; Chancellors; Associate Note Editor, Texas Law Review. He received his B.B.A. in Accounting, from The University of Texas at Austin.

2007 - C. Ronald Kalteyer (Deceased December 16, 2006)
Mr. Kalteyer was a partner at Locke Liddell & Sapp LL.P., where he was known as one of the top legal tax experts in the United States. A seventh generation Texan, he graduated from the University of Texas with a B.B.A. in Accounting (1975), then graduated with an M.P.A. in Taxation from the University of Texas (1977), and received his J.D. from the University of Texas School of Law (1979), where he served as Associate Editor of the Texas Law Review.

While Mr. Kalteyer had expertise in many areas of tax, he had substantial experience in real estate investment trusts and corporate taxation and had more than 25 years of experience providing clients with federal and state business tax solutions. Clients described him as smart and thoughtprovoking, and praised his ability to think outside the box, understand their business issues, and help them solve the most complex tax issues.

Prior to joining Locke Liddell & Sapp as a partner in 1994, he worked as an attorney at the law firms Jackson Walker and Vinson & Elkins. He also served as a Briefing Attorney for the Honorable Homer Thornberry of the U.S. Fifth Circuit of Appeals.

He was a frequent speaker and author on issues relating to tax law. Among other writings, he co-authored a tax treatise titled “Federal Tax Aspects of Cancellation of Indebtedness and Foreclosures”.

Mr. Kalteyer served as an Adjunct Professor of Corporate Taxation at Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law.

Among his many honors and accomplishments:

  • Voted one of The Best Lawyers in America
  • Named a Texas Super Lawyer
  • Member, American College of Tax Counsel and the Dallas Bar Association
     

2006 - Charles Hall

Charles Hall served as a senior Tax Practitioner at Norton Rose Fulbright. His legal practice involved federal, state, and local taxation matters,  including corporate, estate planning and general business issues. He graduated from the University of the South with a B.A. in Mathematics (1951), received his J.D. from Southern Methodist University School of Law
(1954), where he was an officer of the Law Review, and then earned his LL.M, Taxation, from Southern Methodist University (1959).
 
Mr. Hall was a founding member of Norton Rose Fulbright’s tax practice, which is one of the most recognized in the United States. He described a hallmark of his career as being his ability and willingness to take a tax case to the courtroom. His client list includes many of the country’s top corporations and pre-eminent individuals.
 
Among major cases that concluded favorably are his representation of an international soft drink company in a major tax case involving the tax treatment of its beverage production and a major oil company in a major district court income tax refund trial involving section 351.
 
During a career spanning over 58 years, Mr. Hall served as chair of the American Bar Association Section of Taxation, co-chair of the National Conference of Lawyers and CPAs, chair of the Tax Section of the State Bar of Texas, regent of the American College of Tax Counsel, and a member of the House of Delegates of the American Bar Association.
 
Mr. Hall has also been heavily involved in many civic and charitable causes, as Trustee and President, M.D. Anderson Foundation, and as Trustee and Vice President of the Allbritton Foundation and Art Institute.
 
Among his many honors and accomplishments:
  • The Best Lawyers in America, Best Lawyers, 1984-2016
  • Lawyer of the Year, Houston: Tax Law, Best Lawyers, 2014
  • Texas Top Rated Lawyer, LexisNexis Martindale-Hubbell, 2012-2014
  • Leading Tax Advisor, Expert Guides, 2006-2013
     

2003 - Vester T. Hughes, Jr. (deceased January 29, 2017)
The first presentation of the Outstanding Tax Lawyer Award was made to Vester T. Hughes, Jr. at the 2003 Advanced Tax Course held in Dallas, Texas, on September 19, 2003. The selection of Vester Hughes sets a high standard for all future recipients. His career as a tax lawyer spans six decades during which he has been an important part of the local, state and national tax practice.

Contrary to popular opinion, Mr. Hughes did not start life as the Tax Czar. He grew up in a small ranching community close to San Angelo. In 1949, he graduated from Rice with degrees in physics and math, and in 1952, graduated from Harvard Law School. Following graduation, Mr. Hughes served as the law clerk to U.S.Supreme Court Justice, Tom Clark, and then after his judicial clerkship, he served in the U.S. Army during the Korean War.

Mr. Hughes returned to Dallas after the war and started law practice as an associate with the law firm that would become Jackson Walker. He continued with that firm for 16 years until 1976 when he joined the law firm that would become the firm that bears his name, Hughes & Luce. 

Mr. Hughes is one of the world’s top tax experts and his accomplishments are many. He has served as the  Chairman of the Tax Section of the Texas State Bar; as member of the Council of the Taxation Section of the ABA; member of the Council of the American Law Institute; visiting professor of law at Southern Methodist University Law School; Institute Chairman of the Taxation Division of the Southwestern Legal Foundation. He is also the author of many tax publications and a frequent lecturer at tax institutes.

Mr. Hughes is an active participant in a number of charities. He has served as a trustee of the Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children since 1967 and has served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Juvenile Diabetes foundation since 1982.

Mr. Hughes has argued a number of cases before the U.S. Supreme Court and U.S. Court of Appeals, advised congressional committees and administrative agencies regarding tax laws, and represented public companies such as American Airlines and Electronic Data Systems.

With all that said, when thinking of words to describe Vester T. Hughes, Jr. and the values he has taught those that have followed him in practice, people choose such words as: ethical, and principled, a lawyer of integrity and character, and a friend and mentor to many.



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