Marilyn Tennissen Sep. 9, 2014, 10:03am

Nine lawyers from Provost Umphrey Law Firm have been selected to the 2014 Texas Super Lawyers List along with three young attorneys named as Rising Stars.

The Super Lawyers named are Walter Umphrey, Bryan Blevins Jr., Paul “Chip” Ferguson, Joe Fisher II, D’Juana Parks, James Payne, Darren Brown, Keith Hyde and Mark Sparks.

Super Lawyers, a Thomson Reuters business, is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement.

Founding partner Walter Umphrey, as well as Chip Ferguson, Joe Fisher, D’Juana Parks, James Payne and Darren Brown are listed as Super Lawyers in the area of Personal Injury – General: Plaintiff.

Bryan Blevins is listed as a leader in Personal Injury – Products: Plaintiff, Keith Hyde for Environmental Litigation and Mark Sparks for International Law. Both Bryan Blevins and James Payne have been named to the Texas Super Lawyers list every year since its inception in 2003.

Each year, no more than 5 percent of the lawyers in the state are selected by the research team at Super Lawyers to receive the honor.

In addition to the nine Super Lawyers, Jennifer Job, Matthew Matheny and Colin Moore were selected to the 2014 Texas Rising Stars list.

The Rising Stars list is developed using the same multiphase selection process used for the Super Lawyers list, except lawyers selected to Rising Stars must be 40 years old or younger or in practice for 10 years or less.

Provost Umphrey is in its 45th year of business. It was founded in 1969 by two Port Arthur trial lawyers, Walter Umphrey and the late David Provost.

According to the firm's website, Walter Umphrey's first federal jury trial resulted in a $4 million verdict in 1972.  On behalf of 3,600 Texas asbestos victims, Umphrey led a team of lawyers in the Cimino and Jenkins trials and won the nation’s first class-action/consolidation trial involving asbestos exposure - a $1 billion verdict.

During the 1990’s, Walter Umphrey was the lead attorney for the State of Texas against the tobacco industry, which won a historic civil litigation settlement—$17.6 billion.


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