Scott Chase announces his upcoming retirement as of December 31, 2021. When Scott graduated from University of Houston Law Center in May 1971, he had a 2-year commitment to the US Army to fulfill. As a Distinguished Military Graduate from the ROTC program at UofH, he had been commissioned as a Military Intelligence Officer during law school. The Vietnam War was still ongoing and he was assigned to Infantry and Military Intelligence Officer training. He didn’t know what the rest of his 2 years would entail. When he arrived at his first permanent duty assignment in 1971 at Ft. Lee, VA, the Army found a perfect place for him—“utility” Legal Officer for the post. For the next 20 months, he wrote wills, processed administrative discharges, defended DWIs, acted as the post Voting Officer, and, most importantly, served as general counsel to the Army unit that privatized KP (kitchen police) duty, which resulted in Army personnel not having to lose training time by working randomly as military kitchen staff.
That work as general counsel gained him valuable experience in federal regulatory law, which landed him an in-house job with Dallas-based food company, Campbell Taggart Inc. After several years, he was recruited as legal counsel for Dr Pepper Company, later serving as general counsel. In 1986, Scott became general counsel to a hospital management company, Republic Health Corporation, where he gained experience in the nascent field of “health law,” a field with a proliferation of new regulatory and business model legal issues. Scott became a successful solo practitioner in that field, representing hospitals and physician practices in corporate and regulatory matters, and earned the designation Board Certified in Health Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization in 2002. Ultimately, he joined Farrow-Gillespie Heath Witter LLP where he has led its healthcare practice since 2015. He is also married to name partner, Debra Witter. He and Debra have both appeared on Jeopardy.
Mr. Chase is consistently listed as a Texas Monthly Super Lawyer (a Thomson Reuters service), and D Magazine Best Lawyers in Dallas, as well as having been included in Best Lawyers in America for 20 years.
Despite his busy practice, he has also found ways to be involved in bar and community affairs. In addition to being a founding member of the Dallas Bar Association Health Law, Corporate Counsel, and Franchise Law Sections, he chaired its Corporate Counsel, Health Law, and Solo and Small Firm Sections. Mr. Chase also served as President of the Dallas Association of Young Lawyers and chaired the DBA House, Community Involvement, Membership, Memorial and History, and Peer Assistance Committees, and helped build 25 DBA-sponsored Habitat for Humanity houses. He is a member of various other DBA committees, and he has been a lecturer on the U.S. Constitution and Declaration of Independence to schools in Dallas Independent School District. He was Fellows Chair of the Dallas Bar Foundation. In 2011, he was the recipient of the DAYL Foundation Award of Excellence for his community service and legal activities.
Mr. Chase has mentored students at UNT Dallas College of Law since 2016 and was an Adjunct Professor there in 2019. He is a current Board Chair of the Center for the Study and Advancement of Early Texas Art (CASETA), and a Member of the Executive Committee of the Board of The Dallas Opera. He was a Former Board Chair of the Oak Cliff Chamber of Commerce, Turner House (an arts support group), AIDS Arms (now Prism Health North Texas), Friends of Fair Park, The Dallas 40 (a public issues forum), and the East Dallas Health Coalition (predecessor to a Parkland Hospital Community Oriented Primary Care Clinic). He also serves on the boards of The Senior Source and Dallas Democratic Forum.
As a partner in Dallas Social Venture Partners, a non-profit fund whose “investors/partners” give expertise and financial support to maximize the social return on their investment in Dallas nonprofit agencies, Scott served as Co-Lead Partner for Youth Village Resources of Dallas (now Youth with Faces). Graduates of the Youth with Faces food service program have been an integral part of the non-profit restaurant Café Momentum. Finally, Scott has served on two City of Dallas boards and been a candidate (unsuccessful) for two political offices. He was also a City of Dallas Administrative Law Judge.
We know Mr. Chase is far from done with a life of community engagement, but after such a notable professional career, FGHW wishes Scott much enjoyment and fulfillment on this new path.