PUBLISHED:October 20, 2023

Collin Cox '01 named chair of Duke Law Board of Visitors


Cox, co-partner in charge of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher’s Houston office, has been a member of the Law School's board since 2017

Collin Cox posing with Dean Kerry Abrams Collin Cox and Dean Kerry Abrams

Collin Cox ’01, co-partner in charge of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher’s Houston office, has been named chair of Duke Law School’s Board of Visitors (BOV). 

Established in 1963, the board provides an opportunity for alumni, members of the judiciary, and friends to participate in and advise on decisions affecting the Law School. Cox succeeds Porter Durham ’85 T ’83, who chaired the board since 2019 and this month received the 2023 Charles A. Dukes Award for Outstanding Volunteer Service from Duke University. 

Cox has been a member of the board since 2017. He has taught Hearings Practice during Wintersession for the past six years and in August addressed the entering JD class during LEAD Week. 

“Collin Cox is a perfect choice to serve as chair of our Board of Visitors,” said Dean Kerry Abrams. “He has been a steadfast supporter of the Law School and a valuable resource to our students and faculty. I am confident that he will continue our tradition of strong board leadership, exemplified by outgoing chair Porter Durham.”

A business trial lawyer who represents clients in high-stakes commercial cases, Cox previously practiced with Williams & Connolly and Yetter Coleman, and he clerked for Judge Anthony J. Scirica of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. He also serves as secretary of the Houston Bar Association, president-elect of Houston Volunteer Lawyers, and chairman and president of Da Camera of Houston. He is the past chairman of the Buffalo Bayou Partnership and the Texas Lyceum, the preeminent leadership organization for Texans younger than 45.

At Duke, Cox graduated Order of the Coif and served as editor-in-chief of Duke Law Journal. In addition to his JD, he holds an M.Phil from University of Cambridge and a BA from Baylor University, where he graduated magna cum laude and was student body president.

In advance of the board’s fall meeting later this month in Durham, his first as chair, Cox answered questions about his new role.

How do you feel to be taking over as chair of the BOV?
It’s a huge honor. I’ve been blessed to be involved with the board for many years, and I’ve seen what a difference my predecessors in this role have made for the Law School. And I’m particularly excited about working with Dean Abrams and the faculty and staff, especially as we approach Duke’s Centennial next year. We have so much to celebrate at Duke, but one of the things that makes the Law School great is that we’re modest enough to know our best days are ahead of us. We have a lot to do together.
What should the Duke Law community know about you as you assume this role? 
I’d like members of our community to know that I’m here to listen to them. The world — especially the practice of law — is changing so fast. We want all members of our community, new and veteran, to know they have a voice in how this remarkable institution prepares for its next 100 years.
What are your priorities for the board under your leadership?
The Board of Visitors is composed of servant leaders who are shaping their own home communities around the world. Twice a year, they all come back to Durham. We want to benefit from their collective wisdom, making sure we create as many chances for them to contribute as possible. And we’ll do whatever we can to support Dean Abrams and the incredibly positive trajectory of the Law School. During each of our meetings, we’ll have a particular topic around which much of our discussions will focus. This fall, we’ll focus on the importance of our faculty to our overall mission.
What has motivated you to be such an active alumni volunteer and leader?
First, I really can’t repay what Duke has provided me. The people I encountered here pushed me to be the best version of myself. My friends challenged and inspired me. The faculty wanted me to succeed and opened doors so I could. And the staff came to work every day to make the student experience better. So giving back a little is the least I can do for this wonderful place. Second, I’ve been preceded by so many people in this role whom I respect deeply. I’m lucky to call them mentors and friends, and following their examples is extra motivation. I’m honored to stand on their shoulders.