Alexander M. Wolf

Partner

A trusted legal advisor and courtroom advocate, Alex Wolf represents clients in white collar criminal matters, investigations, and civil cases.  He is always ready for trial, but knows that for many of his clients, the best result skips such expense and publicity—whether that means discreetly avoiding criminal charges or favorably resolving a civil dispute.  Mr. Wolf has been recognized as a Super Lawyers “Rising Star” every year since 2019 and was named to Benchmark Litigation’s “40 & Under Hot List” in 2021.

Mr. Wolf has represented clients in investigations and prosecutions by the Department of Justice (DOJ), Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Commodities Future Trading Commission (CFTC), and Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC).  He was part of the SKV trial teams that secured jury acquittals in federal court for the BP wellsite leader wrongfully blamed for the Deepwater Horizon oil spill and a dentist charged with insider trading.

In his civil practice, Mr. Wolf represents plaintiffs and defendants in complex disputes, whether in federal courts, state courts, or arbitrations.  His industry experience encompasses railroads, higher education, healthcare, real estate, energy, and financial services, among others.  Mr. Wolf’s Representative Matters section details some of his recent victories.

Mr. Wolf attended Cornell University and Harvard Law School.  After law school, he practiced in the Boston office of an international law firm and clerked for the Honorable Carolyn Dineen King on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.  He also holds a master's degree in higher education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and worked in alumni affairs and development at Cornell University before attending law school. 

Outside of the office, Mr. Wolf is a mentor with the Emerge Fellowship and a member of the Houston Urban Debate League’s Young Professionals Council.  An experienced editor and researcher, he has provided editorial or research support for three books, with a fourth that he worked on due out in 2022.  Mr. Wolf is an Eagle Scout.  

Mr. Wolf is licensed to practice in Texas, Massachusetts, and Illinois.

White Collar Criminal Defense and Government Investigations

Current representation of former officers and employees of a company in an ongoing Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) investigation.

Successfully represented two separate clients in tax fraud investigations by IRS’s Criminal Investigation Division with no charges filed.

Won dismissal of felony Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act charges against client offshore contractor based on offshore rig explosion in Gulf of Mexico. Affirmed by the Fifth Circuit. United States v. Moss, 872 F.3d 304 (5th Cir. 2017). Secured favorable settlement on misdemeanor charges.

Secured voluntary dismissal of felony and misdemeanor charges against Texas Representative Dawnna Dukes that alleged falsification of travel vouchers and improper receipt of reimbursements.

Secured jury acquittal for client charged with insider trading arising from the merger of the Shaw Group and Chicago Bridge & Iron. United States v. Jesse Roberts, No. 3:15-cr-00020 (M.D. La. 2017). Argued and won motion to compel disclosure of FBI agents’ handwritten notes underlying formal reports. Following jury acquittal, secured voluntary dismissal of related charges brought by Securities & Exchange Commission.

Secured jury acquittal for client, BP Well-Site Leader on board Deepwater Horizon, charged with Clean Water Act violations stemming from rig explosion and oil spill. United States v. Robert Kaluza, No. 2:12-cr-00265 (E.D. La. 2016).

Civil Litigation

Successfully represented the nation’s largest railroad in a series of arbitrations against one of the country’s largest electric power generation corporations that resulted in a favorable global settlement on the first day of the first arbitration hearing.

Won summary judgment for client surgery center against contractual counterparty in a dispute concerning the parties’ rights to pursue unpaid claims against health insurance company.

Secured favorable settlements for client natural gas and crude company in two separate breach of contract cases based on deficient contractor work that caused leaks in storage tanks.

Argued and won jurisdictional discovery against two separate international defendants challenging personal jurisdiction in matter asserting civil Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act causes of action. Harvest Natural Resources, Inc. v. Mendoza Garcia et al., No. 4:18-cv-00483 (S.D. Tex.).

Won dismissal of duplicative breach of contract cause of action filed against client.

Argued and won summary judgment for client against former employer in dispute over unpaid commissions. Secured favorable settlement.

Won summary judgment for client healthcare corporation against insurance company that refused to advance costs of defense.

Won motion to compel arbitration in breach of contract case filed against client real estate company.

Secured multi-million dollar jury verdict in favor of client, a Houston-based high-frequency trading firm, on claims for theft of trade secrets and copyright infringement. Affirmed by the Fifth Circuit. Quantlab Technologies, Limited (BVI) v. Kuharsky, 696 F. App’x 682 (5th Cir. 2017). Secured multi-million dollar award of attorney and expert fees.

"Rising Star" by Thomson Reuters Super Lawyers, 2019, 2020, 2021

Benchmark Litigation “40 & Under Hot List,” 2021

Admissions:
State Bar of Texas
State Bar of Massachusetts
State Bar of Illinois
United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas
United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts

Organizations:
American Bar Association
Houston Bar Association
Houston Urban Debate League, member of Young Professionals Council (2016-Present)
Emerge Fellowship, Volunteer Mentor (2016-Present)
Cornell University, Alumni Interviewer (2011-Present)

Speeches:

  • "Defending a Federal White Collar Criminal Case," Southern District of Texas Federal Bar Association Luncheon (May 2018)
  • "FCPA Enforcement in the Trump Administration," Houston Bar Association Seminars (March 2018)
  • "Not Guilty:  The Roberts Insider Trading Acquittal," Houston Bar Association Seminars (October 2017)
  • "The 5 Biggest Problems in Criminal Law Today," Houston Bar Association Seminars (November 2016)

Quoted:

Publications:

  • "The Problems with Payouts: Assessing the Proposal for a Mandatory Distribution Requirement for University Endowments," Harvard Journal on Legislation, Vol. 48, 591–622 (2011)
  • "Introduction to Alternative Dispute Resolution," The Honorable Helen I. Bendix and Alexander M. Wolf, Los Angeles Daily Journal (Aug. 30, 2010)

Editorial and Research Work:

Mr. Wolf has provided editorial or research support for three books, with a fourth due out in 2022 with Penguin.  These include:

  • Bruce Kimball and Daniel Coquillette, The Intellectual Sword: Harvard Law School, the Second Century (Harvard University Press 2020)
  • Alison Lurie (Pulitzer prize winning author), The Language of Houses (Delphinium 2014)
  • Tom Olding, editor and translator, The Common and Piepowder Courts of Southampton, 1426-1483 (Ames Foundation 2011)

Cornell University
B.A., magna cum laude, 2006
Medieval Studies and English

Harvard Graduate School of Education
Ed.M., 2009

Harvard Law School
J.D., cum laude, 2012
Executive Articles Editor, Harvard Journal on Legislation

Law Clerk
to the Hon. Carolyn Dineen King
United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit 
2013-2014

Associate
Smyser Kaplan & Veselka, L.L.P.
2014-2020

Partner
Smyser Kaplan & Veselka, L.L.P.
2021-Present

Wolf Rising Star    Wolf Super Lawyer