Jay Rutherford Elevated to Office Managing Partner, and Jesse S. Lotay and Christian Triantaphyllis Named Firmwide Practice Leaders

February 14, 2022 | Attorney News

Jackson Walker is pleased to congratulate Jay K. Rutherford on his appointment as managing partner of the Fort Worth office, effective February 11, 2022. In addition, the Firm announces the appointment of Jesse S. Lotay and Christian A. Triantaphyllis as firmwide chairs of the Energy and Business Immigration & Compliance practices, respectively.

“This year is shaping up to be one of the best yet for our Firm,” said Wade Cooper, managing partner of Jackson Walker. “William Jenkins has done a phenomenal job as managing partner of our Fort Worth office for the past seven years. Under his leadership, the office saw tremendous growth, including the addition of new practices. Jay Rutherford will be sure to keep the office on the growth trajectory. His relationships in the Fort Worth community are second to none.”

Regarding the practice leadership changes, Wade noted, “We are grateful to Mike Pearson for his many years of service as chair of the Energy practice, and look forward to Jesse leading Jackson Walker’s energy team amidst the rapidly evolving energy landscape. We are also excited about the addition of immigration as a new practice area to expand our services related to investment- and employment-based visas.”

Fort Worth Welcomes New Managing Partner

In 1988, our late partner Susan Halsey helped open the Fort Worth office and was named managing partner in 2010. Following her passing in 2014, partner William R. Jenkins stepped into the role and continued to build on the office’s growth and involvement in the Fort Worth community. With Jay Rutherford assuming the role of Fort Worth managing partner, the office will maintain its steady growth, collegial culture, and commitment to serving the greater community.

On his appointment as office managing partner, Jay said, “It is a tremendous honor to be entrusted with the role of managing partner of the Fort Worth office of Jackson Walker. Together, with the dedicated professionals in our office, we’ll continue our mission of providing the finest, most trusted legal counsel to our vast range of clients, while creating lasting relationships, and always giving back to our community.”

Jay Rutherford

For more than 30 years, Jay has handled employer-employee issues and disputes for some of the nation’s largest corporations. In his advisory role, Jay counsels clients on all aspects of personnel and employment policies and practices and all matters affecting the employer-employee relationship and compliance with all state and federal employment laws and regulations. He is board certified in Labor and Employment Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, for which he served on the Advisory Council in 2019-2020 and as an examiner in 2014-2019.

Jay has led Jackson Walker’s Labor & Employment practice since 2014 and previously served as a hiring partner for the Fort Worth office.

Jay has been recognized among The Best Lawyers in America since 2010, including as “Lawyer of the Year” in Dallas/Fort Worth for Labor Law – Management in 2021 and 2022, and as a “Texas Super Lawyer” by Thomson Reuters since 2003. Last year, he was named to Lawdragon’s list of the 500 leading practitioners in Corporate Employment. Locally, Jay has been named among Fort Worth’s 400 most influential people by Fort Worth Magazine (since 2020) and the top attorneys lists in Fort Worth Magazine (since 2001) and 360 West (since 2018). He was also presented with the 2016 Chairman’s Award by the Texas Association of Business, for which he has served as General Counsel since 2015.

Outside of the Firm, Jay has been active in his community and has served on numerous boards of associations that serve youth needs like First Texas Council of Campfire USA, Junior Achievement of the Chisholm Trail, and the Fort Worth Stock Show Syndicate. He has served on the Operating Board of Trustees of the Botanical Research Institute of Texas (BRIT) since 2019. He is also a former chair of the Texas Association of Business and the Texas Lyceum.

He received his B.S. from Texas Tech University and his J.D. from The University of Texas School of Law.

New Leadership for Energy

For over a century, Jackson Walker has played a vital role in the growth and development of Texas business and, in particular, the oil and gas industry. Today, our energy attorneys serve as legal counsel to clients worldwide for matters involving regulation, litigation, finance, tax, bankruptcy, mergers and acquisitions, intellectual property, and land use and municipal law. As Texas leads the nation in traditional and renewable energy production, our team delivers services related to renewable energy, hard minerals, pipelines/midstream, shale and unconventional resources, water, and oil and gas.

Three years prior to Dotson Babcock & Scofield’s merger with Jackson Walker in 1990, Houston partner Michael P. Pearson became chair of the Energy practice. He maintained that role when he joined Jackson Walker and remained the Energy practice chair until January 1, 2022, when Jesse S. Lotay stepped into the position.

Jesse S LotayAs the longtime chair of the Commodities & Derivatives practice, Jesse counsels a broad spectrum of energy and non-energy clients in transactional matters, with particular expertise in the renewable, midstream, infrastructure, trading, marketing, and hedging industries. Jesse represents clients in all aspects of physical and financial trading, marketing, and hedging transactions across commodities, including digital currencies, environmental attributes, metals, water, and electric power. He is a frequent speaker on oilfield operations, marketing, and hedging matters and has authored numerous nationally and internationally published articles on these subjects. Jesse also regularly represents oil and gas producers, landowners, oilfield service providers, midstream companies, operators, and end users in infrastructure development and across each aspect of the oil, gas, NGL, and water value chains.

In recognition of his practice, Jesse was named among Lawdragon’s inaugural list of the 500 Leading Environmental and Energy Lawyers in 2021. Outside of Jackson Walker, Jesse serves on the World Affairs Council of San Antonio Board of Trustees. He is also an active member of the Board of Directors of Boys & Girls Clubs of San Antonio. Last year,  Jesse was accepted into the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD) Fellows Program, which focuses on high-performing attorneys from diverse backgrounds in leadership positions. He also was a member of the 2018 leadership class of the Institute for Energy Law.

Jesse obtained his B.S. from Trinity University, his J.D. from the University of Tulsa College of Law, and his LL.M. from the University of Houston Law Center.

Firm Adds Immigration Practice

Upon his arrival at Jackson Walker in December 2018, Christian established the Investment Immigration practice, which previously operated under the International, Labor & Employment, and Real Estate practices. As of January 1, 2022, the practice—now entitled Business Immigration & Compliance—operates under its own umbrella and has 10 attorneys, three of whom joined Jackson Walker after working with Christian in the past.

Christian TriantaphyllisIn his practice, Christian regularly serves as counsel to real estate developers, regional centers, private equity funds, and family offices, and advises those on structuring potential EB-5 funding by providing analysis on project business plans, securities offerings, and economic reports. His practice also includes working with attorneys across Jackson Walker’s real estate and corporate practices to facilitate Qualified Opportunity Zone investments for both real estate and operating businesses.

Outside of Jackson Walker, Christian volunteers his time as a member of the Texas chapter of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, a member of the National Peace Corps Association, and is a prior board member of the National Inter-Faith Foundation for increasing affordable housing supply, creating jobs, and providing social services.

Christian obtained his B.A. from Southern Methodist University and his J.D. from New York Law School

Meet JW

Founded more than 130 years ago, Jackson Walker helps businesses of all sizes navigate the increasingly complex legal landscape. With more than 400 attorneys across seven Texas-based offices, the Firm represents Fortune 500 companies, multinational corporations, major financial institutions, insurance companies, and a wide range of public companies and private businesses around the globe. The Firm is ranked nationally in 27 practice areas in the U.S. News’ “Best Law Firms” rankings, and has 14 Chambers-ranked practices.