John D. Sheppard is a trial and Houston personal injury lawyer who prides himself on working harder than the competition, aggressive representation, strategic thinking, and successful results. Whether serving as first-chair in a jury trial or arguing to an appellate court, John particularly enjoys being in the courtroom and transforming complex legal and factual issues into simple and persuasive terms for the jury or judge. John’s clients trust him because they know he will take all steps necessary to achieve the best possible outcome. John welcomes a challenge, and nothing motivates John more than when one of his clients has been treated unfairly.
After growing up in Spring, Texas, John attended Rhodes College in Memphis, Tennessee, and later transferred to Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. He played varsity soccer for both Rhodes and Emory. John was accepted to the University of Texas School of Law during his final semester at Emory. After graduating from Emory, he decided to defer his admission at UT Law for one year to work in Houston as a clerk at a law firm. Working at a law firm for a year confirmed to John that he had a passion for the law and for justice.
John then attended and graduated with honors from the University of Texas School of Law, the number one ranked law school in the state of Texas and one of the highest ranked law schools in the country.
Very early, during his first semester of law school at UT Law, John was recruited to work for Fulbright & Jaworski in Houston, arguably one of the most prestigious trial law firms in the United States. After graduation from law school, John joined Fulbright and handled cases ranging from a few million dollars to bet-the-company cases, primarily on behalf of the world’s largest corporations. During just his fourth year as a lawyer, John was chosen by partners at the firm to argue a case involving more than $100 million to the Houston Court of Appeals, which he won.
After several years at Fulbright, John’s reputation had grown and he received a phone call recruiting him to join a prestigious Houston and Seattle trial boutique that handles high-stakes cases for both plaintiffs and defendants. John was intrigued by the opportunity to represent plaintiffs and decided to make the leap. Two years later, John was promoted to partner at the firm — ahead of schedule and quicker than any other lawyer in the firm’s history.
In 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015, John was named a Rising Star by Texas Lawyer. In 2013, he was nominated and then elected as a life fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation, a foundation of which only the top 1/3 of 1% of Texas attorneys are invited to join.
In 2015, John co-founded Morrow & Sheppard LLP with Nick Morrow, his longtime friend, classmate at UT law, and colleague from Fulbright. Both John and Nick have a passion for the law and for representing ordinary people and small businesses who need help.
John has proudly handled cases for clients who could not afford to pay fees on a pro bono basis since his first year as a lawyer, particularly when the case involves an important community matter. In 2014, John began representing a Texas Army veteran on a pro bono basis to challenge his unconstitutional exclusion from the Texas Hazlewood Act, which provides educational benefits to some but not all Texas veterans. In January 2015, John won the case in the trial court, and the court ruled that the law was unconstitutional. The government has appealed the ruling, and John is handling the appeal. To read about this case as it was covered in the Houston Chronicle, click here. To read how this case and issue was addressed by CBS national news, click here.
John met his future wife, Lucy, in the fifth grade after she made her way to Texas from Argentina. Lucy is an infectious disease pediatrician at a hospital in Houston. John and Lucy have a small boy and a girl. John enjoys spending time with family, reading, playing soccer and other sports, and watching football.
John and his wife Lucy also enjoy giving back to the community. They are active members of multiple charitable organizations, including those that focus on the medical community and disadvantaged children.
Organizations & Honors
- Recognized as a “Rising Star” by Texas Monthly in 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015.
- Houstonia Magazine, Top Lawyers, 2015
- In 2013, elected by the Texas Bar Foundation as a Life Fellow, a foundation of which only the top 1/3 of 1% of Texas attorneys are invited to join.
- Natural Gas Infrastructure: Litigation Concerns and Considerations (2013)
- Harris County Bench Book, Editor-in-Chief, 2008-2010; Contributing Editor, 2006-2007.
- CLE Presenter, Natural Gas Development Seminar, Seattle, Washington, March 21, 2013.
- University of Texas School of Law (J.D., with honors)
- Emory University (B.A., Political Science)
- UAA Conference All-Academic Honor Roll, 2000 (soccer)
- Rhodes College, Memphis, Tennessee
- SCAC Conference All-Academic Honor Roll, 1997 and 1998 (soccer)
- Phi Alpha Theta (history honor society)
Admitted to Practice
John is licensed to appear in the following Courts:
- All Texas state courts
- United States Supreme Court
- United States Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals
- United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas
- United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas
- United States District Court for the Western District of Texas
- United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas
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