Crofts & Callaway represents clients and assists law firms throughout the state of Texas in the area of civil appeals. Our practice focuses primarily on advocacy before state and federal appellate courts, providing our clients with a full range of services including:
We recognize that the presence of an appellate specialist is a powerful tool at all phases of litigation. As a result, in addition to appellate advocacy, we are frequently engaged before or during trial to assist in formulating legal theories and strategy, preserving the record for appellate complaint, and consulting on trial court motions and jury charges. Our litigation support role spans from pleadings and discovery through post-judgment phases of trial, including:
We have also observed that the presence of an appellate specialist is a powerful tool in furthering post-trial settlement negotiations. In that vein, the mediation process is increasingly utilized during the pendency of an appeal. After securing abatements of appellate timetables for that purpose, we have participated in successful mediations that disposed of controversies without incurring the usual expense of appeal.
The appellate specialty concept was first developed at Groce, Locke and Hebdon in San Antonio, where Thomas H. Crofts, Jr. ultimately chaired the appellate section from 1975 to 1991. The Texas Board of Legal Specialization appointed him to serve on its first Appellate Advisory Commission, which continues to formulate the criterial for board certification. As the appellate section grew, outside trial lawyers and their clients often retained Groce, Locke to handle appeals and to provide appellate-related analyses at various litigation stages. Sharon E. Callaway joined the section in 1983. In 1989, Sharon became a shareholder, and Wallace B. Jefferson joined the firm as a member of the appellate group.
In September 1991, Tom, Sharon, and Wallace formed Crofts, Callaway & Jefferson as the first appellate specialty firm in Texas. Charles A. Gonzalez, former Judge of the 57th District Court, temporarily joined the firm in 1998 to establish a mediation practice before replacing his father, Henry B. Gonzalez, as a member of the United States House of Representatives.
As our tenth anniversary approached in 2001, Governor Rick Perry appointed Wallace to be an Associate Justice on the Supreme Court of Texas. Wallace was elected to a full term on the Supreme Court in 2002. On September 14, 2004, Governor Perry announced the appointment of Wallace as the 26th Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. At the end of 2003, Tom Crofts retired from management and became "Of Counsel" to the firm. The tradition of excellence the founding shareholders helped to create continues at Crofts & Callaway. Tom Crofts is a Fellow in the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers. Sharon Callaway served as Chairperson of the Texas Pattern Jury Charge Committee on Business, Consumer, and Employment Law from 1997 to 2004. Sharon is a frequent speaker at CLE seminars. Tom and Sharon are board-certified in civil appellate law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.