Kent Rutter


Education and Clerkships

J.D., University of Michigan Law School, 1996, cum laude; Contributing Editor, University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

B.A., Duke University, 1993

Bar Admissions


Court Admissions

United States Supreme Court

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit

U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas


Consistently ranked as one of the tops in the field for his appellate work on behalf of Haynes and Boone’s clients, Kent Rutter offers clients an expertise that is unique among his peers—the ability to provide an empirically sound assessment of the likelihood of success on appeal.

Kent’s skill in this area comes not only from his 18 years of experience in the federal and state appellate courts and his board certification in civil appellate law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, but also from co-authoring an award-winning empirical study of appellate decisions.   Kent is regularly asked to lecture on appellate practice and has appeared before hundreds of trial lawyers, appellate lawyers, and in-house counsel to speak on the topic of evaluating appeals. In his practice, Kent uses his insights into the appellate process to guide clients on the strategies offering them the best prospects for victory on appeal.

Judges and lawyers recognize Kent not only as an accomplished appellate lawyer, but also as a leader in the appellate bar and the community at large. Kent has served as chair of the Appellate Practice Section of the Houston Bar Association and as course director of the 2014 Advanced Civil Appellate Practice Course presented by the State Bar of Texas. In 2013, Kent became one of the youngest lawyers to be named to the Texas Super Lawyers list of the top 100 attorneys in Houston.   As a long-time member of the Alexis de Tocqueville Society of the United Way of Greater Houston, Kent has mentored young professionals with an interest in bettering their communities and supported a wide array of organizations that serve families in need.

Professional and Community Activities

  • Chair, Appellate Practice Section of the Houston Bar Association (2010-2011)
  • Council Member (2009-2012) and Committee Chair (2008- ), Appellate Section of the State Bar of Texas
  • State Bar of Texas, Appellate Section
  • Houston Bar Association, Appellate Practice Section
  • Houston Young Lawyers Association
  • National Association of Railroad Trial Counsel
  • Texas Association of Civil Trial and Appellate Specialists
  • Special Assistant Disciplinary Counsel, Texas Commission for Lawyer Discipline
  • Member, Alexis de Tocqueville Society, United Way of Greater Houston
  • Fellow, Texas Bar Foundation
  • Fellow, Houston Young Lawyers Foundation 


Super Lawyers

Repeat Recognition as 2014 Texas Super Lawyers

Texas Super Lawyers has once again recognized Haynes and Boone in its annual award listing, with seven firm attorneys featured in the Tops of Texas honors.

Professional Recognition

  • Board Certified in Civil Appellate Law, Texas Board of Legal Specialization
  • Named to the list of Top 100 Houston Super Lawyers (2013 and 2014)
  • Award for "Outstanding Law Review Article," presented by the Texas Bar Foundation (2004)
  • Named one of "Houston's Top Appellate Lawyers" by H Texas magazine (2009 and 2010)
  • Selected for inclusion in Texas Super Lawyers (2012-2014)
  • Selected for inclusion in Texas Super Lawyers - Rising Stars Edition (2004-2011)

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