Rodney L. Drinnon is an experienced litigator who handles complex civil litigation in cases in both federal & state courts. He has served as the lead trial lawyer on matters ranging from antitrust actions, contested corporate control disputes, director and officer liability, contract disputes, employment matters (including misappropriation of trade secrets, restrictive covenants, and Department of Labor investigations), insurance coverage questions, and oil and gas litigation. Rodney is admitted to practice in Texas, Ohio, and Illinois, and he has successfully tried cases in over ten jurisdictions throughout the country. He is co-managing partner of the Houston, Texas office of McCathern.
Rodney has been instrumental in representing his clients in “bet the company” type litigation. In 2006, Rodney obtained a temporary restraining order for the benefit of a Fortune 100 client, preventing its IT provider from effectively shutting down the company’s operations due to a dispute over a licensing issue. The matter was subsequently resolved favorably for his client prior to trial.
Rodney has regularly represented both employers and former employees in trade secret and non-competition agreement cases. He has taken an active role in defending clients’ interests and preventing unfair competition through the improper acquisition of valuable trade information. Most recently, Rodney obtained a temporary injunction against a former director of a major marine construction client in Hillsborough County, Florida. The case later resolved via mediation favorably for his client.
Similarly, Rodney has obtained summary judgment or dismissals on behalf of employers defending claims of sex, race, age and disability discrimination, as well as harassment, FMLA, and FLSA claims.
In 2004, Rodney became one of the youngest attorneys to obtain a favorable judgment from the Ohio Supreme Court on behalf of a major insurance carrier. The case arose when an insured brought suit following a denial of coverage under a policy of professional liability insurance after the insurer discovered material misstatements of fact on the face of the insured’s insurance application. Rodney obtained summary judgment for the insurer in the trial court and was affirmed by Ohio’s First District Court of Appeals. The Ohio Supreme Court certified the narrow issue of whether the insured’s material misstatements required malice to void the policy ab initio. Following oral arguments, the Court decided that the insured’s material misstatements were so egregious that it could not disturb the lower courts’ rulings.
Rodney has represented both shareholders and business entities in pursuing and defending claims of minority shareholder oppression, breach of fiduciary duties, and misappropriation of corporate assets. He has assisted clients in extricating them from soured business relationships, recently coined “corporate divorce” actions. Rodney has used this experience to assist emerging businesses and entrepreneurs in the formation and growth of their respective business entities to prevent these type of situations.
A former collegiate wrestler, Rodney subscribes to the maxim “Proper Preparation Prevents Poor Performance.” Whether resolving disputes for Fortune 50 companies or individuals experiencing their first foray into the litigation arena, Mr. Drinnon utilizes an aggressive, reasoned, and practical approach to the practice of law, focused on serving his respective clients’ best interests in an economical fashion.
Rodney Drinnon was named by Super Lawyers to its list of Texas Super Lawyers in 2020, 2021 and 2022, an honor received by less than 5% of attorneys each year. He was also named a Top Lawyer in Houston for Commercial Litigation for 2021-2022 by Houstonia Magazine.
- “How to Bet on Small Companies Positioned to Take on Their Competition”, Nasdaq.com (February 2022)
- “What My Kids Have Learned From My Taking Up Boxing”, The Good Men Project (March 2022)
- “Rodney Drinnon: Boxing offers a masterclass in how to establish civility and enforce it”, Chicago Tribune (March 2022)