Firm welcomes veteran Houston trial lawyer Wendie Childress, former Senior Counsel at Yetter Coleman; Validity’s professional team nationally now half women
NEW YORK (APRIL 8, 2019) – Further growing its presence in the important Texas legal market, Validity Finance announced the arrival of Wendie Childress, who joins the firm as portfolio counsel in the company’s Houston office.
An experienced trial lawyer, Ms. Childress arrives from litigation powerhouse Yetter Coleman, where she was Senior Counsel, representing both plaintiff and defense clients in complex commercial litigation and arbitration. Her practice spanned cases across a wide range of industries including energy, technology, healthcare, and financial services.
Ms. Childress also brings public sector experience to her new job. Earlier in her career, she served as general counsel to the Texas Senate Committee on Business and Commerce, giving her insight into the political obstacles and opportunities facing business clients.
“Wendie has achieved significant stature in South Texas thanks to her winning track record in commercial disputes on behalf of a range of prominent clients. Her success as a high-stakes litigator and an expert in policy and regulatory matters makes her a perfect fit for our business,” said Laina Miller, a Validity investment manager and head of the firm’s Houston office.
“Wendie also co-chaired her firm’s Women in Leadership initiative, and is a strong advocate for women lawyers, which we value highly,” Ms. Miller added, noting that Validity’s 10-member professional team is now evenly split between men and women.
Since launching in June 2018, Validity has reviewed over 250 case opportunities brought by clients and law firms of all sizes, including 80% of Am Law 100 firms. The firm has partnered in funded cases with Am Law 100 firms, boutique trial firms as well as entrepreneurial business clients. Validity has invested in several major matters originating in Texas, including cases in the oil and gas sector.
As Validity CEO Ralph Sutton reports, “A growing number of companies now regularly share litigation risk with outside counsel and litigation finance companies in ways that seemed challenging just five years ago—and that were all but impossible when I entered the industry in 2006.”
Along with this expanded adoption of litigation finance has come the need to increase the speed and accuracy of case due diligence and assessment, activities that Ms. Childress will help manage in expanding Validity’s portfolio in Texas and the Southwest. She follows on the heels of another recently joined portfolio counsel William Marra in New York.
“As a commercial litigator, I understand the value of shared economic risk using litigation funding. Validity has demonstrated some of the most innovative and collaborative approaches to litigation finance, including solutions conceived to drive law firm revenue, as well as help companies achieve the greatest recoveries,” Ms. Childress said. “I’m excited about my new role in helping business claimants and law firms take advantage of Validity’s capital pipeline and litigation expertise.”
About Validity: Validity provides businesses, law firms and individuals with non-recourse funding for a wide variety of commercial litigation. Founded by litigation finance pioneer Ralph Sutton, Validity believes that capital and legal expertise combine to help solve legal problems on behalf of clients. With a mission to make a meaningful difference in the legal system by focusing on client needs, Validity stands out with a relentless focus on fairness, innovation and clarity.