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Dori Kornfeld Goldman


Active in high-stakes litigation, Dori focuses her practice on crafting the trial and appellate strategy for cases in state and federal court. From the initial case evaluation through appeal, she takes the lead in developing the legal arguments, drafting pivotal trial pleadings and appellate briefs, handling error preservation, and presenting oral arguments.

Dori is known for her adept approach to jury charges, brief writing, and strategic case assessments. She assists plaintiffs and defendants across industries achieve successful results in trials and appeals involving complex business disputes, contract and tort claims, personal injury, and statutory and procedural issues.

She is a board-certified appellate specialist and has been engaged by leading trial attorneys across the state to assist during trials and all stages of appeals.

Dori graduated from Harvard Law School, cum laude, and clerked for the Honorable Lee H. Rosenthal of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas. She received her undergraduate degree, magna cum laude, from Princeton University, where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and served as Executive Editor of The Daily Princetonian. Before attending law school, Dori was a policy analyst for the Electronic Privacy Information Center.

Dori holds numerous professional and civic leadership roles. She has served as co-chair of the membership committees for the State Bar of Texas Appellate Section and the State Bar of Texas Women and The Law Section, and as chair of the Houston Bar Association Federal Practice Section. Dori’s service to the profession and the community has led to honors, including the Joseph D. Jamail Award for Justice by AVDA, Women of Influence Award from the National Council of Jewish Women Greater Houston, and the Kristi Couvillon Pro Bono Award from the Texas Civil Rights Project.

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Representative Experience

  • Texas State Court: JJJJ Walker v. First National Bank Served as appellate counsel in trial and appeal up to the Texas Supreme Court, with plaintiff successes valued at $117 million.
  • Texas Supreme Court: CenterPoint Energy Houston Elec., LLC et al. v. Gulf Coast Coalition of Cities, et al. Represented CenterPoint in a successful appeal regarding the utility’s multi-billion-dollar stranded-cost true-up following Texas’s electric deregulation.
  • United States Supreme Court: Ricci v. DeStefano Successfully represented in the U.S. Supreme Court a group of 20 New Haven firefighters in an Equal Protection Clause and Title VII lawsuit. The Supreme Court ruled 5-4 in our clients’ favor, not merely reversing the summary judgment in favor of the City of New Haven, but further ruling that our clients were entitled to summary judgment in their favor on liability under the Title VII.
  • Federal Court: M.D. v. Abbott Represented a class of 12,000 foster children care in a class action lawsuit that challenged pervasive failures in the Texas foster care system. After a two-week trial, the court issued a 255-page verdict finding widespread constitutional violations and appointed independent special masters.
  • California State Court: Peregrine Litigation Trust v. John J. Moores, et al. Represented litigation trust in prosecution of insider trading and mismanagement claims against bankrupt corporation’s former auditors, officers, directors, and business partners. The trust successfully settled its claims for what was believed to be the largest cash recovery ever paid by outside directors of a publicly-traded company.
  • Federal Court: ASARCO v. Augusta Resource, Inc., et. al. Defended a publicly held mining company in an adversary proceeding alleging fraudulent transfer relating to the purchase of 20,000 acres of undeveloped land worth over $400 million. The case settled on terms extremely favorable to our client, which paid only pennies on the dollar of plaintiff’s claims and was able to maintain full and complete ownership of the property.

Presentations & Publications

  • “Jury Charge: Protecting Your Client’s Interests,” Harris County Attorney’s Office, May 2017
  • “The Forgotten Children: Lawsuit for Structural Reform of the Texas Foster Care System,” Houston Bar Association Civil Appellate Bench Bar Conference, April 2017
  • “Texas-Sized Pro Bono: Tackling Texas Foster Care,” Houston Volunteer Lawyers and CenterPoint National Pro Bono Week Kick-Off,” October 2016
  • “Federal Appellate Procedure,” State Bar Annual Civil Appellate Practice 101 Course, September 2016
  • “Judge Orders Revamp of Texas Foster Care System to Continue,” National Public Radio, Houston Matters, March 2016 (featured speaker)
  • “Federal Appellate Procedure: Traps for the Unwary,” Jefferson County Bar Association Appellate Update CLE, 2015
  • Fifth Circuit in the Supreme Court: 2013 Term in Review, The Appellate Advocate, Fall 2014
  • “The Impact of Wal-Mart v. Dukes on Employment Law Class Actions and FLSA Collective Actions,“ State Bar of Texas Labor and Employment Law Institute, 2013 (co-author)
  • “Title VII after Ricci v. DeStefano,” Texas Bar CLE Annual Advanced Employment Law course, 2010 (author and presenter)
  • Ricci v. DeStefano: The Intersection between Disparate-Treatment Liability and Disparate-Impact Liability,” UTCLA Labor and Employment Law Conference
  • “Decision Should Streamline Removal Litigation,” Texas Lawyer, April 2010
  • “Venue in Complex Bankruptcies in the Wake of Volkswagen: Ammunition to Keep Defendants from Remote Venues in Adversary Proceedings?” The Houston Lawyer, January/February 2010
  • “U.S. Supreme Court and Fifth Circuit Update,” State Bar of Texas’ 26th Annual Litigation Update Institute, 2010 (co-author)