McKool Smith principal Sam Baxter has been recognized as an “Icon of IP” by Law360. According to Law360, the publication’s IP Icon series honors “individuals who have shaped today's intellectual property landscape.”
In crowning Mr. Baxter as an IP Icon (see the feature article here), Law360 noted that “While lawyers from across the country streamed into the Eastern District of Texas as it became a patent law hot spot, McKool Smith PC's Sam Baxter, an East Texas native, used his roots in the region and ability to connect with jurors to earn a reputation of one of the most successful patent litigators in the district.”
While Mr. Baxter is just as well-known for his humble demeanor as he is for his trial wins, it would be difficult for him not be taken aback by all of the accolades that he has received. In September 2015, Mr. Baxter was profiled in Law360’s “Trial Aces” feature which recognized the Top 50 trial lawyers in the United States. The publication noted that Mr. Baxter has a “charm” and an “ability to touch the hearts of jurors.” He was also awarded 2015 "Outstanding IP Litigator - Texas" by Managing IP, and included in Benchmark Litigation's listing of the “Top 100 Trial Lawyers in America.” Law360 has previously recognized Mr. Baxter as one of the "10 Most Admired Intellectual Property Attorneys" in the country, and he was recently named the 2016 Best Lawyers patent litigation “Lawyer of the Year” in Tyler, Texas.
Mr. Baxter grew up in Waskom, and, as a former Texas State District Judge and District Attorney for Harrison County, few people know the Eastern District of Texas as well as he does. “People from East Texas are not easily fooled,” Mr. Baxter explained. “Over the years, I’ve seen more than my fair share of out-of-towners who come to Marshall and expect to sway the jurors with fluffy language or shiny suits. That stuff just doesn’t work around here. The jurors want to hear the facts and make decisions that are based on the weight of the evidence without people talking down to them or trying to pull a fast one.”
Sam’s powerful courtroom presence exudes the wit, precision, and charm that have become his trademarks in establishing his reputation as a legend in the Texas Bar whose name is synonymous with success in the courtroom. A point that can be confirmed by The National Law Journal’s annual listing of the “Top 100 Verdicts,” since four of Mr. Baxter’s verdicts have been recognized in the listing since 2007, including wins of behalf of Joshua Harman ($525 million); Versata ($345 million); Medtronic ($250 million); and Pioneer Corp. ($59 million).
Over the past year, Mr. Baxter has continued his legacy by securing a number of big wins for his clients. His recent victories included securing a $15 million patent infringement verdict for Droplets against Overstock.com, Inc. and Sears Holding Corp. During the trial, Mr. Baxter scored a much reported about key moment when he exposed a defense expert for producing a forged report. Mr. Baxter also played a fundamental role in securing a unanimous verdict for Joshua Harman against Trinity Industries after a Texas federal jury found that the company defrauded the United States by making false statements concerning a modified guardrail system and ordered it to pay $175 million in damages. The verdict was announced on October 20, 2014, after a six-day jury trial in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas in Marshall. Under federal law, the jury’s verdict was tripled to $525 million. It ranked as the fourth largest verdict of 2014 in The National Law Journal’s annual listing of the “Top 100 Verdicts.” On June 9, 2015, Judge Gilstrap entered a final judgment of $663,360,750 against defendant Trinity Industries Inc., which included an additional $138 million in penalties against the defendant.