SAN ANTONIO — Texas’ highest civil court adjudicates a range of high-profile legal issues, from parental rights and family law to shareholder disputes and complex personal injury cases.

Voters in this election will make choices for three seats on this court. While we’ve been incredibly impressed with two Democratic nominees this cycle, we recommend the three Republican incumbents who have exceptional legal backgrounds, temperaments and expertise.

Voter’s Guide: What you need to know for the November elections

Instead 3, Justice Debra Lehrman, a Republican, won a third term. Having been appointed to the Supreme Court in 2010, she is the court’s longest-serving female judge. She is an expert in family law and serves as liaison between the Court and the Standing Commission on Children, Youth and Families and the Family Law Section of the Texas State Bar. She is the author of legal guides for the Texas Family Code and for Child Representation, and has won numerous awards for her efforts and expertise.

“It’s one of my passions,” she told us. “And experience in family law is essential. And I’m the only one in the field now to have that kind of experience. And more than half of our emergency case consists of CPS cases. I just don’t know if people really realize how badly we are dealing with this.

The Democratic challenger in this race, Erin Nowell, is impressive. Nowell serves on the Dallas 5th District Court of Appeals and impressed us with her temperament, knowledge, and experience as a litigator. But as the court’s lead judge, Lehrmann has proven himself time and time again.

Texas Supreme Court Justice Rebeca Huddle is an experienced business attorney with a compelling personal story.

Courtesy

In Place 5, we recommend Justice Rebeca Aizpuru Huddlewho was nominated to the Supreme Court of Texas in 2020. Huddle is an El Paso native who was a partner in the high-powered law firm Baker Botts and served as a judge on the Texas First District Court of Appeals.

Huddle is an experienced commercial litigator, particularly in the areas of personal injury law and shareholder disputes. She also served as a judge on the Court of Appeals for the First District of Texas, writing more than 400 majority opinions.

She faces Democratic challenger Amanda Reichek, who sits on the Dallas 5th District Court of Appeals. Like Nowell, Reichek also impressed us with his legal training, temperament and experience on the bench. And we appreciate his experience in labor and employment law and the diversity it would bring to the court.

Voters can’t be wrong. Both candidates have comparable professional experience. But Huddle worked on the Supreme Court, and we think her perspective as a Latina and as the child of Mexican immigrants brings crucial diversity.

Texas Supreme Court Justice Evan Young has exceptional experience serving on the state's highest civil court.

Texas Supreme Court Justice Evan Young has exceptional experience serving on the state’s highest civil court.

Courtesy of Baker Botts LLP

For Place 9, we recommend Justice Evan Younga Republican appointed to the court in the fall of 2021.

He has a fabulous pedigree.

After earning his farewell speech at Clark High School in San Antonio, Young earned a bachelor’s degree from Duke University and the University of Oxford, where he was a British Marshall Scholar. He is a graduate of Yale Law, and he clerked for United States Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.

While serving in the United States Department of Justice under Attorneys General Alberto Gonzales and Michael Mukasey, Young spent time in Iraq helping the Iraqi government strengthen its legal institutions.

Like Huddle, Young was also a partner of Baker Botts.

Young faces Julia Maldonado, a Democrat who sits on the 507th District Court in Harris County. Maldonado is originally from Nuevo Leon, Mexico, and we appreciate his family’s powerful immigration history. But we were a bit put off when Maldonado called Young a “bookworm.” She was also oddly dismissive of Huddle.

Young is easily the best choice in this race.