James V. Derrick, Jr. graduated with honors from both The University of Texas at Austin (1967) and The University of Texas School of Law (1970). Following law school, where he was a member of Chancellors and the Order of the Coif and an associate editor of the Texas Law Review, he served for one year as judicial clerk to the Honorable Homer Thornberry, United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Judicial Circuit. For the next three decades, as a Partner at Vinson & Elkins, the Executive Vice President and General Counsel of Enron Corp., and the Managing Partner of the Houston office of Kelly Hart & Hallman, he advised United States and foreign enterprises on the legal aspects of business, real estate, and energy transactions. He led or otherwise played a major role in significant transactions in North America (including the Gulf of Mexico and the North Slope), South America, Europe (including the North Sea), India, and the Middle East. For several years he also taught as an Adjunct Professor of Law at The University of Texas School of Law.
Jim is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and is a Life Fellow of the American Bar Foundation, a Life Fellow of the Houston Bar Foundation, and a Life Fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation. He has served as Chair of the Houston Bar Foundation, President of The University of Texas Law Alumni Association, Trustee of The University of Texas Law School Foundation, Trustee of the Center for American and International Law, Vice Chair of the Advisory Board of the Southwestern Legal Foundation Oil and Gas Education Center, a member of the American Gas Association Legal Executive Committee, and Chair of The American Gas Association Corporate Law Committee. He has also served as a director of a number of enterprises in the energy and water sectors.
Largely retired from his law practice, Jim manages his family’s business interests and investments and is engaged in the non-profit sector. He currently serves as the Secretary of the Kinder Foundation, as a director and officer of the Houston Cinema Arts Society, as a member of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston film committee, as a director and officer of Project Row Houses, and as a director and officer of PRH Preservation, Inc. His prior non-profit involvement includes serving as a director of the Houston Grand Opera, as a director of The Foundation for Jones Hall, and as a director of the Society for the Performing Arts.
Jim is a recipient of The Anti-Defamation League Southwest Region’s Karen H. Susman Jurisprudence Award, given annually to “an outstanding member of the legal community who exhibits a commitment to equality, justice, fairness, and community service.”
He is a member of the Chattooga Club (Cashiers, North Carolina), the Coronado Club (Houston, Texas), the Eden Club (a golf society) (St. Andrews, Scotland), the Floridian National Golf Club (Palm City, Florida), the Fort Worth Club (Fort Worth, Texas), River Oaks Country Club (Houston, Texas), The Greater Houston Sports Club (Houston, Texas), The Outpost Club (a golf society), The Shivas Irons Society (a golf society), and Wade Hampton Golf Club (Cashiers, North Carolina).
He is married to Carrin F. Patman, a graduate of Duke University and The University of Texas School of Law. Carrin is a retired partner of Bracewell LLP, the current Chair of the Board of the Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County, and a 2014 Fellow of the Advanced Leadership Initiative at Harvard University.
Jim—a sixth generation Texan—and Carrin reside in Houston, Texas and share their lives with their beloved Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Wellington.