Ron Stutes has focused his efforts for over 25 years on representing municipalities – both in court and by advising City Councils, boards, commissions, and employees. He has experience representing cities regarding drafting ordinances, responding to challenges to ordinances, environmental matters, land use issues, code enforcement, employment issues, utility and franchise matters, bankruptcy, federal grants, and annexation. Mr. Stutes has tried lawsuits involving these issues in both state and federal court.
Mr. Stutes also has extensive experience appearing before state administrative agencies regarding utility and environmental matters, and has successfully challenged federal administrative rulings in the United States appellate courts.
Mr. Stutes is currently the City Attorney for the Cities of Gladewater, Cuney, Coffee City, East Mountain, and Uncertain. Mr. Stutes has provided litigation and other support services to the Cities of Tyler, Henderson, Lufkin, Rusk, and several other cities.
Mr. Stutes was instrumental in assisting the cities of Rusk and Palestine in their successful efforts to ensure the continued operation of the Texas State Railroad. Mr. Stutes drafted agreements between the cities, as well as legislation to form the Texas State Railroad Authority, and negotiated agreements for the new authority with the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and the private operators of the railroad.
Mr. Stutes also represents private entities in a wide range of commercial litigation. Mr. Stutes created and led a team of attorneys that represented a pipeline company in eminent domain efforts, and was lead counsel on a lawsuit that reduced the damages on a taking by over 80%.
Mr. Stutes has also actively participated in bar activities, serving as the President of the Smith County Bar Association, as the Secretary of the Board of Directors of the Smith County Bar Foundation, and as the President of the Texas City Attorneys Association.
Mr. Stutes is a frequent speaker at legal seminars as well as seminars for municipal board members and staff. He has spoken on litigation topics, land use, racial profiling, bankruptcy, and municipal franchises. He has spoken before such groups as the State Bar of Texas, the Texas City Attorneys Association, the North Central Texas Council of Governments, the Smith County Bar Association, the Federal Bar Association, and the National College of District Attorneys.
Born in Kilgore, Texas, Mr. Stutes grew up in East Texas and graduated from Navasota High School. He is married to Donna Gail Dozier, a Smith County native.