Judge Harlin "Cooter" D. Hale
United States Bankruptcy Judge
Northern District of Texas, Dallas Division
THE HONORABLE HARLIN D. “COOTER” HALE was appointed as United States Bankruptcy Judge for the Northern District of Texas, on November 1, 1982. He received his B.S. degree in 1979 from Louisiana State University and his J.D. in 1982 from the LSU Paul M. Hebert School of Law, Order of the Coif. In 1982-83, Judge Hale was a law clerk to the Honorable James L. Dennis, Associate Justice, Louisiana Supreme Court, who is now a judge on the United States Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. In 1983, he went into private practice in Dallas, Texas, with Strasburger & Price, LLP, followed by McGuire, Craddock, Strother & Hale, P.C., and Baker & McKenzie, LLP. Judge Hale is a frequent lecturer at law school and state bar seminars on bankruptcy and litigation topics, and a regular author in legal publications on bankruptcy issues. Beginning January 2009, he became a Visiting Professor at Southern Methodist University on Creditors’ Rights. Besides being a member of various state and local bar associations, he is also on the Executive Committee of the Bankruptcy Section of the State Bar of Texas, and serves as its 2012 Chair; National Conference of Bankruptcy Judges (2012 Fifth Circuit Governor); Master, John C. Ford American Inn of Court (2007-2008 Sergeant of the Inn Award); American Bankruptcy Institute; American Law Institute; Federal Bar Association (2006-07 Bankruptcy Section Chair); and Commercial Law League. He was awarded the 2019 William L. Norton, Jr. Judicial Excellence Award, American Bankruptcy Institute at the National Conference of Bankruptcy Judges. Judge Hale is married to Claire King Hale and they have two sons. He enjoys religion, tennis, reading, travel and history in his spare time.
Bankruptcy Judges’ Law Clerks Panel - A Peek Behind the Curtain