Finis E. Cowan, Jr.

Of Counsel

713-632-8000 | Houston, Texas
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Professional Summary

Mr. Cowan's career has spanned more than fifty years, from a trial associate with Baker Botts LLP to a federal judge in the Southern District of Texas back to Baker Botts LLP as senior partner to a private practice focusing as arbitrator and mediator.

Some of his recent major accomplishments include the successful defense of plaintiffs in the Delaware Court of Chancery challenging alleged breaches of fiduciary duty to stockholders, the settlement of a construction contract dispute relating to design and construction of the South Texas Nuclear Facility (achieved the then highest settlement of a construction contract dispute in the U.S.), the successful defense against plaintiff cities seeking damages for breach of contract and right to rescind their contract to participate as owner in the South Texas Nuclear Facility; the successful representation of a former Texas Lt. Governor in a civil rights action which was argued before the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals and the U.S. Supreme Court, the successful defense of a billion-dollar case involving allegations of attempted monopolization of the airline industry, and the successful defense against claims for rescission of a contract to participate in River Bend Nuclear Facility.  In early 2004, he assisted in the successful defense of an antitrust case prosecuted by seventeen competitors against the leading national manufacturer/distributor of tortillas in the U.S., which was dismissed in trial by a directed verdict.

Finis is a member of the State Bar of Texas and an Emeritus Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers.

He served in the USMC Reserve in 1948 to 1955, and in active duty in 1951-1953.

Professional Honors & Affiliations
  • R.D. Secrest Outstanding Trial Lawyer Award, 2005
  • Lifetime Excellence in Advocacy Award, Texas Association of Certified Trial and Appellate Specialists, 2003
  • The Best in the World, International Commercial Litigation, 1996
Education & Professional Background
  • University of Texas School of Law, LL.B., 1956 (with Honors, Order of the Coif)
  • Rice University, B.A. 1951 (with Highest Honors, Phi Beta Kappa, Phi Delta Phi)
  • U.S. District Judge for Southern District of Texas, Galveston Division, 1977-1979
  • Admitted to Practice: Texas, 1955