Skip to content


John Vacalis is a seasoned attorney with extensive litigation and business counseling, negotiation, and case management experience in state and federal jurisdictions across the country. John works with domestic and international clients on a variety of matters including commercial litigation, energy, employment, intellectual property, bankruptcy, and finance.

Recognized as a “Recommended Litigation Firm” in Texas in Benchmark: Litigation, The Definitive Guide to America's Leading Firms and Attorneys

Received a national first-tier ranking for Commercial Litigation in U.S. News - Best Lawyers® “Best Law Firms” 2020

Member, Robert W. Calvert American Inn of Court

Representative Matters

  • Provide counsel to sovereign wealth fund regarding potential litigation and workout issues concerning investments located throughout the United States
  • Provide representation to multiple lending institutions and investment groups regarding loan modifications, foreclosure actions, bankruptcy filings, sequestration, and breach of contract and guaranty actions
  • Serve as lead counsel to a micro-mobility solutions company on various legal issues pertaining to a global launch of a business that included entity formation for each jurisdiction of operation and related partnership and shareholder agreements, international tax, permits and registration, employment issues, FCPA, IP, and management of local law firms and territory partners across the globe
  • Serve as counsel to a science based biologics manufacturer of regenerative medical products regarding extensive a variety of employment and vendor contracts, business negotiations, and commercial litigation across several jurisdictions
  • Counsel to several entrepreneurs and start-ups on entity formation and organization, master servicer agreements and statements of work, non-disclosure, non-solicitation and non-competes, employment, vendor agreements, business negotiations, and related litigation
  • Provide counsel to investment group in a Utah arbitration regarding alleged environmental defects concerning certain oil and gas interests purchased from a bankrupt entity
  • Representing an individual in a complex officer and director lawsuit that is intertwined with multiple state and federal matters
  • Work with oil and gas operator and mineral owners regarding lease disputes and their respective rights and interests
  • Serve as defense counsel to an individual in a non-compete and general employment dispute brought by her former employer
  • Successfully defended an oil and gas operator in a breach of contract action brought by an equipment vendor seeking damages for alleged corrosion to rental drill pipe
  • Provide counsel to an electric cooperative regarding the reconciliation of fuel costs pursuant to a wholesale power agreement
  • Provide counsel to a physician partnership in a Montana state court action brought by former partners for non-compete and breach of contract allegations
  • Represented state agency in declaratory judgment action regarding its rule-making authority
  • Secured summary judgment in Florida breach of contract and foreclosure action resulting in multimillion-dollar judgment and dismissal of all counterclaims with prejudice
  • Secured settlement for international aeronautical manufacturer in breach of contract action
  • Defended multiple condemnation and declaratory judgment suits brought by private and governmental entities
  • Represented Chinese manufacturer against injunctive relief during an enforcement action for unfair competition and trademark infringement
  • Represented limited partnership in breach of good faith and fair dealing, fraud, negligence, and breach of fiduciary duty suit brought in California by a former general partner
  • Secured favorable settlement for limited partnership over a multimillion-dollar wage and hour class action suit brought in California
  • Obtained temporary restraining order, permanent injunction, and agreed judgment in theft of trade secrets and breach of fiduciary duty case
  • Secured primary managing custody for pro bono client in bench trial of child custody dispute
  • Tried multiple administrative proceedings concerning City of Dallas employment disputes
  • Secured favorable arbitration award in breach of contract suit regarding manufacture licensing

Prior Employment

  • Law Clerk for the Honorable Harry W. McKee, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, Tyler Division, 2003-2004

Honors & Affiliations


    • Texas Rising Stars® by Thomson Reuters (Business Litigation); 2007, 2015-2017
    • Justinian Honorary Law Society


  • Member, Texas Bar Association
  • Member, Austin Bar Association
  • Member, Dallas Bar Association
  • Member, Texas Young Lawyers Association
  • Member, Robert W. Calvert American Inn of Court

Education & Admissions


  • J.D., 2003, cum laude, Syracuse University College of Law; Executive Editor, Syracuse Law and Technology Journal
  • B.A., 2000, The University of Texas at Austin


  • Texas
  • U.S. Dist. Ct., E. Dist. Texas
  • U.S. Dist. Ct., N. Dist. Texas
  • U.S. Dist. Ct., S. Dist. Texas
  • U.S. Dist. Ct., W. Dist. Texas