Ray Viada is a founding partner of Viada & Strayer, which represents local governmental entities and the officials of those entities in all types of civil litigation. A 1987 graduate of the of the UH Law Center, magna cum laude, Ray served as an associate editor on the Houston Law Review (Board 23), and as judicial intern for the late Hon. Norman Black, Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas. Ray has been a teacher in several venues -- a teaching fellow for the UH History Department (78-80), high school history teacher for Navasota ISD (1981-83), and member of the faculty of the State Bar of Texas CLE Course on Suing and Defending Governmental Entities, every year from 2006 through 2013. Following law school, Ray clerked for Hon. Jerry Smith, judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. Since 1988, Ray has been in private practice as a litigator. Most of Ray’s clients over the years have been local governmental entities – cities, counties, and special use districts – a practice which involves asserting causes of action and defenses generally applicable to the private sector, but also involvement with the range of issues that affect government – immunities, structure of government, including separation of powers, constitutional duties, standards of judicial review of government decisionmaking, and the like. Since 1997, Ray has been certified as a specialist in civil appellate law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. He has first-chaired over 100 appeals, orally argued four cases before the Texas Supreme Court and many others before the Texas courts of appeals and the U.S. Fifth Circuit.