March 20, 2013 – The Tax Section Council of the State Bar of Texas has selected University of Houston Law Center Professor Emeritus Ira Shepard as the 2013 recipient of the Outstanding Texas Tax Lawyer award. This is the highest award that the Tax Section bestows to honor recipients for their outstanding reputation, expertise and professionalism in the practice of tax law in Texas.
"I am delighted and gratified to receive this recognition for doing exactly what I wanted to do and exactly what I loved doing," said Shepard.
Shepard taught at the Law Center from 1975 to 2011 and was a primary force in establishing the school's LL.M. Taxation program. The LL.M. program has just been ranked for the first time nationally at No. 18 in U.S. News & World Report's latest survey. Before his tenure at the Law Center, Shepard taught at the University of Georgia School of Law and also as a visiting professor at the University of North Carolina Law School.
Shepard received his baccalaureate degree from Harvard College in 1958 and his law degree from Harvard University in 1964, where he was an editor of the Harvard Law Review. Following graduation, he practiced in New York City with the firm of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison. Shepard is a fellow of the American College of Tax Counsel and a frequent speaker at various tax programs, including the State Bar's Advanced Tax Law Course.
"He is the single most sought after speaker to provide a yearly tax law update for this course. He is knowledgeable and entertaining – a rare combination," said Tina Green, chair of the Section of Taxation for the State Bar of Texas in announcing the award.
Shepard was the Special Advisor to the Southern Federal Tax Institute from 1974 to 2010. He has chaired the Continuing Legal Education and Research Committee of the American Bar Association Tax Section and the planning committee for the University of Texas Tax Conference.
An earlier recipient of this award was UH Law Center graduate Stanley Blend '67.