Allyson N. Ho is a partner in the Dallas office of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP and co-chair of the Firm’s nationwide Appellate and Constitutional Law practice group.
Mrs. Ho is “undoubtedly one of the premier appellate lawyers in the United States” (Chambers). She has presented over 65 oral arguments in federal and state courts nationwide, including multiple high-stakes cases on behalf of business before the U.S. Supreme Court.
Her most significant winning arguments include a U.S. Supreme Court reversal worth billions of dollars for unionized employers in the Sixth Circuit; a U.S. Supreme Court reversal limiting the power of federal regulators; a multi-billion dollar environmental win in the Fifth Circuit; a multi-billion dollar commercial victory for the founder of a technology company in the Appellate Division of the New York Supreme Court; a billion dollar environmental win in the Houston Court of Appeals; a nine-figure commercial victory in the Corpus Christi Court of Appeals; and a nine-figure arbitration win in the Fifth Circuit.
Among her numerous accolades, Mrs. Ho is one of only a small group of advocates (and the only one in Texas) to be named among the nation’s top appellate lawyers every year for the past ten years (2012-21) by Chambers. She is also one of the few appellate lawyers nationwide to be named to the BTI Client Service All-Stars List, an honor bestowed by the corporate counsel community for lawyers “who stand above all the others in delivering the absolute best in client service.” She is also routinely named as a leading appellate lawyer by Benchmark, The Best Lawyers in America®, The Legal 500, Texas Super Lawyers, and D Magazine.
Mrs. Ho has received the Gregory S. Coleman Outstanding Appellate Lawyer Award (Texas Bar Foundation, June 22, 2018), been named a “Distinguished Leader” (Texas Lawyer, Sep. 1, 2017) and “Appellate MVP” (Law360, Nov. 23, 2015), and been recognized on the “Appellate Hot List” (National Law Journal, Nov. 16, 2015). In addition, she has been profiled in “Texas Appellate Power Couple” (Texas Lawbook, January 7, 2021), “Litigators of the Week” (The American Lawyer, May 8, 2020), “Litigation Powerhouse” (Law360, Aug. 10, 2016), “Supreme Court Insider” (National Law Journal, July 21, 2016), “Supreme Court Specialists, Mostly Male, Dominated Arguments This Term” (National Law Journal, May 11, 2016), “Attorney of the Year Finalist” (Texas Lawyer, Nov. 2, 2015), “Litigation Department of the Year” (Texas Lawyer, June 1, 2015), “Employment Group of the Year” (Law360, Jan. 13, 2015), “A Supreme Month: Lawyer Credits Preparedness in Ability to Argue Two U.S. High Court Cases in Three Weeks” (Texas Lawyer, Dec. 8, 2014), “High Court Debuts for Two Lawyers” (National Law Journal, Nov. 3, 2014), “Women in Business Awards” (Dallas Business Journal, Aug 29, 2014), “Litigation Departments of the Year” (Texas Lawyer, June 2, 2014), “Winning Women” (Texas Lawyer, Aug. 22, 2011), and “High court practitioners: increasingly diverse” (National Law Journal, June 6, 2011).
Federal and State Appellate Practice
Mrs. Ho has argued a series of high stakes, landmark cases on behalf of the business community before the U.S. Supreme Court. National Law Journal called her a “Veteran SCOTUS Advocate” in the “upper echelons of Supreme Court practice.” Law360 named her a “Supreme Court Star” and “one of the nation’s preeminent appellate lawyers.” And EmpiricalSCOTUS.com ranked her among “the most successful attorneys that currently practice before the Court.” Mrs. Ho once argued two significant business cases before the Court within the span of 21 days—including a “significant ruling for employers” that “paved a new path for companies paying millions of dollars in retiree health care benefits” (Law360), as well as a landmark administrative law dispute in which “several justices agreed with Ho’s contention that SCOTUS should revisit and overrule its own precedent” (Law360). She also prevailed against the EEOC in a case that the employment defense bar called “good news for employers across the country.” And in “the most important patent case in modern history” according to patent law experts, her argument before the Court was credited for “pick[ing] up two votes that pundits thought unreachable.”
She has appeared before every federal court of appeals in the country, including en banc arguments before the Fourth and Sixth Circuits. She has successfully represented business clients in every circuit, including the First (Pruco Life Insurance Company), Second (Swiss Federation; Rite Aid), Third (Johnson & Johnson), Fourth (Genex Services), Fifth (United Space Alliance LLC; Elliott Co.; MERSCORP; 24 Hour Fitness USA, Inc.; Stream Energy; Health Management Systems), Sixth (Deutsche Bank; American Airlines; M&G Polymers), Seventh (Expedia), Eighth (Cotter), Ninth (Boeing; JP Morgan Chase Bank), Tenth (Mitchell International), Eleventh (AstraZeneca), D.C. (FedEx), and Federal (Repros Therapeutics) Circuits.
In addition, Mrs. Ho regularly appears in state appellate courts across the country. She has argued numerous cases in the Texas Supreme Court, Texas appellate courts in Dallas, Houston, San Antonio, Corpus Christi, and Eastland, and state appellate courts in Arizona, Michigan, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, and West Virginia, prevailing on behalf of Ford Motor Company, PepsiCo, International Paper, Tenet, GameStop, Deutsche Bank, and Unit.
Government and Public Service Experience
Mrs. Ho has a distinguished record of experience at the highest levels of the federal government. She served as Special Assistant to President George W. Bush, Counselor to Attorney General John Ashcroft, and law clerk to Justice Sandra Day O’Connor of the U.S. Supreme Court and Judge Jacques L. Wiener Jr. of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.
Her record of public service also includes appointments to various boards and commissions. Among the most notable are her election as a member of the Administrative Conference of the United States, a trustee of the United States Supreme Court Historical Society, and a trustee of the Texas Supreme Court Historical Society. She is also vice chair of the Federal Judicial Evaluation Committee, appointed by U.S. Senators John Cornyn and Ted Cruz to evaluate potential appointments of all federal judges and U.S. Attorneys in Texas, and has previously served on the U.S. Magistrate Judge Merit Selection Panel for the Northern District of Texas.
Other Background Information
An active pro bono litigator, Mrs. Ho works most frequently with the First Liberty Institute and as amicus counsel for the State and Local Legal Center, the National Organization for Victim Assistance, and the National Crime Victim Law Institute. She is a frequent public speaker and active member of the Federalist Society, the American Law Institute, and the Washington Legal Foundation’s Legal Policy Advisory Board.
Mrs. Ho graduated from Duke University magna cum laude with a B.A. in English, Rice University with an M.A. and Ph.D. in English Literature, and the University of Chicago Law School with high honors. She was a member of the Law Review and Order of the Coif. She and her husband Jim, a federal judge, have a twin daughter and son.
University of Chicago Law School - 2000 Juris Doctor
Rice University - 1994 Master of Arts
Rice University - 1994 Ph.D.
Duke University - 1988 Bachelor of Arts
District of Columbia Bar