Left to right: Jeff Kuehnle,Craig Stahl and Mike Hatchell
Left to right: Jeff Kuehnle,Craig Stahl and Mike Hatchell (Courtesy photos)

Haynes and Boone has boosted its appellate and energy practices, hiring prominent Texas appellate lawyer Mike Hatchell in Austin and energy litigators Craig Stahl and Jeffrey Kuehnle in Houston.

Hatchell left Locke Lord to join Haynes and Boone as counsel. Stahl and Kuehnle, now partners at Haynes and Boone, came from Andrews Kurth Kenyon.

Stahl said Haynes and Boone not only has a well-established energy practice, but the firm’s network of offices in Denver, Fort Worth and San Antonio are a good fit for his practice. He declined to identify his clients but said he does a lot of litigation for upstream companies involved in royalty disputes, class actions and contract disputes. He and Kuehnle have worked together on energy litigation for the last 20 years, he said.

Houston partner Jeff Nichols, who is co-chair of Haynes and Boone’s energy practice group, said Stahl and Kuehnle are a good fit for the firm’s energy litigation team.

Hatchell, who led the appellate practice group at Locke Lord before moving to Haynes and Boone, said that after 13 years at Locke Lord, where he built a go-to appellate practice group, he could step down with pride. He said that after conversations with Haynes and Boone partners Nina Cortell and Anne Johnson, who are longtime friends, he realized that his skills are a good fit for his new firm.

Joining Haynes and Boone is “both an honor and a new challenge,” he said in an email message.

Hatchell and lawyers at Haynes and Boone have collaborated and shared many appeals over the years, Hatchell said, adding that he is currently working on appeals for Samson Exploration and E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Co.

Cortell, an appellate partner in Dallas, described Hatchell as one of the leaders of the Texas appellate bar, and said his experience and track record before the Texas Supreme Court will be a tremendous asset to the firm and its clients.

Hatchell received the 2015 Gregory S. Coleman Outstanding Appellate Lawyer Award from the Texas Bar Foundation. Hatchell joined Haynes and Boone on Sept. 1, and Stahl and Kuehnle joined on Aug. 17. In addition, Emmie Gooch, a litigator who works with Stahl and Kuehnle, joined Haynes and Boone in Houston as a counsel on Tuesday.

Andrews Kurth managing partner Bob Jewell said the firm wishes Stahl and Kuehnle well at their new firm.

No one from Lock Lord could immediately be reached for comment on Hatchell’s departure.