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Meet Our Three New Partners

Rusty Hardin & Associates Promotes Emily Smith, John MacVane and Leah Graham to Partner

Rusty Hardin & Associates, LLP is pleased to announce it has named Emily Smith, John MacVane, and Leah Graham as new partners at the Houston-based civil and criminal litigation firm. 

“I would comfortably go anywhere in the country to try a case with these three attorneys,” said Mr. Hardin. “Their constant loyalty to their clients, their impeccable ability to anticipate what a client or case needs, and their sheer talent make me confident that I can rely on them in every respect.”

Ms. Smith, who joined Rusty Hardin & Associates in 2019, handles complex commercial litigation and business disputes involving a variety of issues, including contract, fiduciary duty, negligence, trade secrets, oil and gas, and bankruptcy. Her previous experience includes an internship with Judge Lisabeth Tabor Hughes of the Kentucky Supreme Court, as well as Judge Jennifer Elrod of the U.S Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. She also served as a judicial clerk for Chief Bankruptcy Judge Jeff Bohm of the Southern District of Texas. Ms. Smith has been named to the list of Ones to Watch by Best Lawyers in America in both 2021 and 2022.

Mr. MacVane’s extensive experience in both criminal and civil matters allow him to focus his practice on civil cases with possible criminal implications. His practice also includes criminal defense, catastrophic personal injury, and commercial litigation. Before joining Rusty Hardin & Associates in 2019, Mr. MacVane served as an assistant federal public defender in the Southern District of Texas. He also clerked for Texas Supreme Court Justice Brett Busby when Judge Busby was on the 14TH Court of Appeals and also for New Hampshire Supreme Court Chief Justice Linda S. Dalianis.

Ms. Graham joined Rusty Hardin & Associates in 2019 and focuses her practice on high-stakes business disputes both at trial and in arbitration. Her experience includes matters involving construction, sports, employment, oil and gas, real estate, environmental, product liability, intellectual property, partnership, trustee and fiduciary matters, and personal injury claims. Ms. Graham has been recognized as a Texas Rising Star by Thomson Reuters every year since 2018 and was named to the 2019 list of Top 40 Under 40 Civil Plaintiff Trial Lawyers by National Trial Lawyers.

“The beauty of these promotions is that our clients will not see a difference at all – Leah, John and Emily have been operating on a partner level for some time now,” said Mr. Hardin. “This is confirmation of just how much we value them and their work. They are just great lawyers.”