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Harper Estes Bio

Harper Estes joined the firm in March of 1980 upon graduation from Baylor Law School. He serves as lead trial counsel in civil lawsuits primarily related to the oil and gas industry. He has tried cases to jury verdict ranging from the simplest surface damage disputes to significant groundwater contamination and a royalty class action. He also frequently serves as mediator and arbitrator, having conducted thousands of mediations and served on both domestic and International Arbitration Tribunals. Harper has argued appeals before the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, numerous Texas intermediate appellate courts and the Supreme Court of Texas. Regardless of the case or the circumstances, Harper’s goal is to help clients achieve results, and help lawyers and their clients achieve a successful resolution in mediation and arbitration. He served as the President of the State Bar of Texas, has published numerous articles, book reviews and opinion columns in the Texas Bar Journal, and is a frequent speaker at Continuing Legal Education events.

In 2020 Harper was the recipient of the Luke Sowles Award for Excellence in Litigation, awarded annually by the Litigation Section of the State Bar of Texas

Aside from his law school years in Waco, Harper has spent his entire life in West Texas. He and his wife Dee moved to Midland in 1980, raised their children here, and now enjoy watching their grandchildren grow up here. Harper occasionally sings with and writes songs for the Backsliders, a bluegrass-gospel group that regularly performs at retirement homes, churches, and “wherever they’ll have us (or are hard of hearing)”.

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Credentials

Recognitions and Memberships
  • Luke Sowles Award for Excellence in Litigation Recipient – Litigation Section of the State Bar of Texas, 2020
  • State Bar of Texas — Former President, 2008-2009
  • Fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation — Former Chair of the Fellows, 2013
  • Midland County Bar Association– Former President, 2005
  • Named Outstanding Young Lawyer,  Midland County, 1992
  • American Arbitration Association — Commercial PanelMember
  • International Centre for Dispute Resolution– Commercial PanelMember
  • Texas Board of Legal Specialization — Board Certified in Civil Trial Law
  • American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA) — Member
  • Named Texas Super Lawyer in Texas Monthly Magazine consistently since 2005
  • AV Preeminent® Rating, Martindale-Hubbell

Education
  • B.A., Texas Tech University, 1977
  • J.D., Baylor University School of Law, 1979
Bar Admissions
  • State Bar of Texas
  • United States District Courts for the Western, Northern, Eastern and Southern Districts of Texas
  • United States Courts of Appeal for Fifth and Tenth Judicial Circuits
  • United States Supreme Court
Community
  • First Presbyterian Church, Midland — Former Deacon and Elder
  • Midland Fair Havens, Inc. — Former Officer and DIrector
  • Hearthstone Temporary CHildren’s Shelter– Former Board Member
  • Big Brothers – Big Sisters of Midland — Former Board Member and Big Brother of the Year
  • Big Brothers – Big Sisters Board of Ambassadors — member
  • Texas Book Festival Advisory Board — Former Member

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Midland TX, 79701