Rob Walters is a senior partner with extensive experience in antitrust, securities, class action, and other commercial disputes and is nationally recognized for his abilities and accomplishments as a trial and antitrust lawyer. Mr. Walters also represents clients in government investigations and in the antitrust aspects of mergers and acquisitions. He serves as Partner-in-Charge of the firm’s Dallas office and has served on the firm’s Executive Committee. Mr. Walters served as Executive Vice President and General Counsel of Energy Future Holdings (fka TXU Corp.) from 2007 until 2012, where he was responsible for the company’s legal and governance matters, including acquisitions, financings, litigation, investigations, and compliance matters, as well as the company’s regulatory and governmental affairs and external communications. He also served as interim general counsel to Blockbuster, Inc. in 2005-2006.
Some of the more significant matters Mr. Walters has led include:
- As trial counsel to AT&T in successfully defending against the Department of Justice’s antitrust challenge to AT&T’s $108 billion acquisition of Time Warner, Inc.
- As trial counsel in successfully defending Bechtel and Jacobs Engineering in a $7 billion dollar arbitration involving fraud and fiduciary duty claims stemming from the construction of the world’s largest refinery project.
- As trial counsel in Aetna’s successful prosecution of federal antitrust claims against Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan stemming from its use of “MFN-Plus” contracting arrangements.
- As trial counsel to Conduent in a multi-billion dollar claim brought by the State of Texas under the Texas Medicaid Fraud Act.
- As trial counsel to Tenet Healthcare in its successful takeover defense litigation under federal securities laws against Community Health Systems in an approximately $7 billion hostile tender offer for Tenet Healthcare.
- As trial counsel to J.C. Penney and its board in defending against federal securities and derivative litigation stemming from public disclosure issues regarding initiatives of activist shareholders.
- As trial counsel in successfully defending Blockbuster in antitrust litigation brought by bellwether and class plaintiffs representing thousands of independent video retailers claiming revenue-sharing agreements negotiated between Blockbuster and the Hollywood studios violated federal and state antitrust laws and seeking billions of dollars in damages.
- As trial counsel in successfully defending Intel Corporation in class securities litigation stemming from its $8 billion acquisition of McAfee Inc.
- As trial counsel for the City of Dallas in successfully defending antitrust litigation stemming from the 2006 Wright Amendment Reform Act, which modified the restrictions on flights from Dallas Love Field and Dallas-Fort Worth Airport, and as City of Dallas counsel before Congress in securing the Wright Amendment Reform Act.
- As trial counsel to Liberty Mutual Insurance Company and the workers compensation industry in the successful defense of In Re Workers Compensation Antitrust Litigation, which was comprised of over forty class actions against dozens of insurers claiming industry conspiracies to pass on billions of dollars in “residual market loads”.
- As trial counsel to CBS Outdoor in successfully defending against RICO and fraud litigation brought by independent billboard companies seeking hundreds of millions in damages.
- As trial counsel to Life Insurance Company of Georgia in a successful fraud action against Electronic Data Systems in which Life of Georgia secured a multi-million dollar trial verdict, which it sustained on appeal to the Fifth Circuit.
- As trial counsel to Blockbuster in successfully defending approximately twenty-five class actions across the nation challenging Blockbuster’s “extended viewing fees” as impermissible penalties.
- As trial counsel to Liberty Mutual Insurance Company in the Insurance Brokerage Antitrust Litigation in which then Attorney General Elliot Spitzer of New York charged major insurance companies with bid rigging and illegal contingent commissions on commercial insurance sales.At the behest of the insurance defendants, Rob served in court as lead spokesman for the insurance industry.
- As trial counsel for Blockbuster in successfully defending at trial a contract and business tort action stemming from production of the film “Monster.”
- As trial counsel for Energy Transportation Systems, Inc. in antitrust litigation against major western railroads for conspiring to monopolize the transportation of coal from the Powder River Basin to utilities in the Southwest.A two-month trial resulted in a verdict of $1.1 billion for plaintiffs.
* Includes matters handled prior to joining Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP
Mr. Walters received his Bachelor of Arts degree (Plan II Interdisciplinary Honors) summa cum laude from the University of Texas at Austin in 1980. He earned his law degree from the University of Texas at Austin in 1983, graduating cum laude and serving on the Texas Law Review (top 3% of class).
- The American Lawyer’s “Forty-Five Lawyers Under 45: Rising Stars in the Law”
- The National Law Journal’s “Top Forty Lawyers in America Under Forty”
- Texas Monthly’s “Top 100 Lawyers in Texas”
- Best Lawyers Dallas “Lawyer of the Year” for Antitrust Law (2019 and 2014)
- Recognized by Dallas Business Journal as a “Leading Energy Lawyer”
- Recognized by U.S. Lawyer Rankings as among the nation’s “Top Ten Antitrust Lawyers”
- Recognized by Global Competition Review’s research with clients and peers as being among the world’s leading competition lawyers and featured in The International Who’s Who of Competition Lawyers & Economists and The International Who’s Who of Business Lawyers
- Recognized by Global Counsel Competition Law Handbook as among “America’s Best Antitrust Lawyers”
- Recognized by as among “America’s Best Trial Lawyers”
- The Best Lawyers in America (antitrust, bet-the-company, and commercial litigation) (2003-2018)
- UT Law School Distinguished Alumnus Service Award (2014)
- “D” Magazine General Counsel of the Year (2010)
- ADL Jurisprudence Award (2008)
- Recognized as “Texas’s Best Antitrust Lawyer” by Texas Lawyer (2007)
- Recognized by Who’s Who Legal (2007)
- Texas Lawyer Magazine’s “Distinguished Leader” for its 2017 Professional Excellence Awards that recognize “lawyers who have made their mark on the legal profession in the Lone Star State”.
- Dallas Women’s Lawyers Association 2018 “Her Champion” Award for lifetime commitment to the advancement of women in the legal profession.
- 2005 Burton Award for Legal Writing (with Mark Curriden).The Burton Award is jointly given by The American Lawyer, Library of Congress, and the Burton Foundation in recognition of exemplary legal writing.
- American Law Institute
- Texas Bar Foundation
- The Center for American and International Law
- Higginbotham Inn of Court, Barrister
- Council of the ABA Antitrust Section (2003-2005)
- Dallas Bar Association, Antitrust Section Council Chair (2001-2002)
- ABA Antitrust Section, Strategic Task Force Committee Member (2001)
- ABA Antitrust Section, Fuels and Energy Industry Committee Chair (1997-2000)
- ABA Antitrust Section, Publications Committee Chair (1994-1997)
- ABA Antitrust Section, Regulated Industries Committee Chair (1992-94)
- ABA Antitrust Section, Assistant to Chair (1989-1990)
- Vinson & Elkins Jury Project, Chair
Mr. Walters sometimes lectures on the antitrust laws, the trial of complex litigation, and on energy policy and law. He has served as an adjunct professor at Southern Methodist University School of Law on trial advocacy and at the University of Texas School of Law on energy policy and law.
- Dallas Citizens Council, Executive Committee
- Dallas Council on World Affairs, Board of Directors
- Klyde Warren Park Foundation Board, Founder and Vice Chair
- Dallas Police and Fire Pension Board
- University of Texas School of Law Board of Trustees
- University of Texas System Chancellor’s Council, Executive Committee
- UT Austin, College of Liberal Arts Foundation Board
- UT Plan II Alumni Board, Founding Member