Vinson & Elkins

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Vinson & Elkins LLP
Vinson & Elkins
HeadquartersFirst City Tower
Downtown Houston, Texas
Major practice areasTransactions, Litigation, Regulatory, Tax, Oil & Gas Law, Intellectual Property, Restructuring/Bankruptcy
Key peopleMark Kelly, Chairman; Scott Wulfe, Managing Partner
Date founded1917
FounderJames A. Elkins and William A. Vinson
Company typeLimited liability partnership

Vinson & Elkins LLP (or V&E) is an international law firm with approximately 700 lawyers worldwide[1] headquartered in Downtown Houston, Texas.[2][3]

The firm has offices in major energy, financial, and political centers worldwide, including Austin, Dallas, Dubai, Houston, London, Los Angeles, New York City, Richmond, Riyadh, San Francisco, Tokyo, and Washington, D.C.



The firm was founded in Houston, Texas, in 1917 by Judge James A. Elkins and William A. Vinson.[4][5][6]


In May 2021, it was announced that the firm elected current partners Keith Fullenweider as chair and Jim Fox, Michael Holmes and Hilary Preston as vice chairs. The change takes effect on January 1, 2022. The firm's current chairman is Mark Kelly and its managing partner is Scott Wulfe. [7]

Practice areas[edit]

The firm mainly practices in fields of law that pertain to the energy industry,[8] with more than 400 lawyers involved in energy-related legal work. The firm is recognized as "The World's Leading Energy Law Firm" by Euromoney Magazine 2010 - 2011. In 2011, Chambers & Partners recognized V&E globally, as the leader in Projects & Energy: Oil & Gas.[9]

The firm's focus reflects the birth of the modern petroleum industry at Spindletop in Beaumont, Texas, only 80 miles from Vinson & Elkins' initial office in Houston.

Practice areas[edit]

Vinson & Elkins has expanded from its core energy practice to many other practices including mergers and acquisitions, private equity, capital markets, infrastructure, infrastructure development, finance, international transactions, regulatory matters, professional liability, intellectual property, complex commercial litigation, restructuring and reorganization, climate change, environmental, labor and employment, tax, employee benefits and executive compensation, appellate, condemnation, and real estate.

In 2001, V&E received negative attention for its role as legal advisor to Enron, the failed Houston-based energy company. During the years following Enron's collapse, Vinson & Elkins was the subject of a number of claims, and its representation of Enron endured scrutiny by news organizations, the U.S. Congress, and federal agencies. Vinson & Elkins was voluntarily dismissed without payment in January 2007 from the last significant litigation involving the Enron collapse. The law firm agreed to pay $30 million to the failed energy company's bankruptcy estate to avoid a lawsuit claiming it aided in the company's downfall.[10]

In 2009, the firm was again named a Community of Respect by the Anti-Defamation League, a designation V&E has maintained since the program's inception in 2006, and is also the two-time recipient of the Thomas L. Sager Award for the South/Southwest Region by the Minority Corporate Counsel Association for the firm's sustained commitment to diversity.[11] In 2009, the City of Houston's Flexible Workplace Initiative Program honored Vinson & Elkins for the second consecutive year with the Alfred P. Sloan Award for Business Excellence in Workplace Flexibility.[12] Additionally, in 2009, the Human Rights Campaign awarded V&E a perfect score, for the second year in a row, on the HRC's 2010 Corporate Equality Index (CEI), which rates businesses on a scale from 0 to 100 percent based on lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) workplace policies and benefits.[13]

Community involvement[edit]

Outside of the legal arena, Vinson & Elkins has also been recognized[by whom?] for its community involvement and support of the arts. V&E has been the only law firm to be named to The BCA Ten, sponsored by the Business Committee for the Arts, Inc. and Forbes magazine, a list of the top 10 business patrons of the arts in the U.S., and has been so named twice. The firm has maintained a long-standing pro bono relationship with The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, the Houston Ballet, and Houston Grand Opera, and supports numerous other arts, civic, and charitable organizations in communities where V&E has offices.


V&E has been active and has had an office in London for more than 50 years. [14][15] V&E has an active practice in China advising Chinese companies on energy-related mergers and acquisitions. In 2013, V&E announced plans to close its Shanghai office and concentrate the China practice in Beijing and Hong Kong.[16]

Managing partners[edit]

  • Mark Kelly and Scott Wulfe (2012–present)
  • Joseph C. Dilg (2002–2011)
  • Harry M. Reasoner (1992–2001)
  • J. Evans Attwell (1981–91)
  • A. Frank Smith Jr. (1971–81)
  • Lewis White (1962–71)
  • Raybourne Thompson Sr. (1959–62)
  • Robert A. Shepherd Sr. (1952–59)
  • Warren Dale (office manager 1947-52)
  • James A. Elkins (1929–47)

Notable alumni[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "A Texas-Sized Centennial for Vinson & Elkins". Retrieved 2017-09-02.
  2. ^ "Houston." Vinson & Elkins. Retrieved on May 5, 2010.
  3. ^ Selden, Jonathan. "Law firms in Austin help Houston offices." Austin Business Journal. Thursday September 22, 2005. Retrieved on May 5, 2010. "At Vinson & Elkins LLP, the Austin office is accommodating evacuated attorneys from the Houston headquarters as well as some clients, says Don Wood, administrative partner."
  4. ^ Craftsmanship and Character: A History of the Vinson & Elkins Law Firm of Houston, 1917-1997
  5. ^
  6. ^ "The Handbook of Texas Online"
  7. ^
  8. ^ "Vinson & Elkins' Texan heritage explains its reputation today as a global leader in energy law," Chambers Student Guide
  9. ^ "Projects & Energy Lawyers & Law Firms – Global". Retrieved 2015-09-22.
  10. ^
  11. ^ "Past Honorees - 2009". Retrieved 2015-09-22.
  12. ^ [1]
  13. ^ [2]
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^ Seah, Jessica (12 July 2013). "Vinson & Elkins to Close Shanghai Office". The Asian Lawyer. Retrieved 19 July 2013.
  17. ^

External links[edit]