News & Insights

Cary Kavy, Howard Newton & Jon Ray Earn “Lawyer of the Year” Recognition from Best Lawyers

October 13, 2011

Cox Smith Matthews Incorporated (“Cox Smith”) today announced that shareholders Cary Kavy (Banking and Finance Law), Howard Newton (Litigation - Real Estate) and Jon Ray (Natural Resources Law) were named “Lawyer of the Year” in their respective specialties in San Antonio by The Best Lawyers in America® for 2012.

Best Lawyers designated 2012 “Lawyers of the Year” in high-profile legal specialties in large legal communities. Only a single lawyer in each specialty in each community is being honored as the “Lawyer of the Year.” The lawyers being honored as “Lawyer of the Year” received particularly high ratings in Best Lawyers’ surveys by earning a high level of respect among their peers for their abilities, professionalism, and integrity.

Leader of the firm’s Banking and Financial Institutions practice and recognized by Best Lawyers in America since 1995, Cary Kavy assists clients with a broad range of matters involving corporate, securities and financial institution law. Her knowledge and focus is in securities matters, as well as mergers and acquisitions. A past president of the Texas Association of Bank Counsel, she has represented one of the largest publicly traded financial institutions in Texas for over 25 years and assisted them with numerous corporate, securities and regulatory matters on an ongoing basis. She has also represented numerous banks and bank holding companies in stock offerings, and advised a publicly traded bank holding company in a going private transaction.

Howard Newton, who has been recognized by Best Lawyers in America since 2007, is board-certified in civil trial law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization and is a Fellow in the American College of Trial Lawyers. He advises business organizations, public entities and individuals on a wide variety of civil disputes in state and federal courts. With more than three decades of courtroom experience, Newton is a highly regarded litigator who is recognized by peers and clients for his ability to understand complex business and litigation issues and achieve the most effective and efficient results for his clients.

Board-certified by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization in oil, gas, and mineral law, Jon Ray has been recognized by Best Lawyers in America since 1993. As head of the firm’s Energy and Natural Resources department, he leads a team of professionals who assist clients in all aspects of exploration programs, including lease acquisition, title examination, the curative process, regulatory compliance and litigation defense. Ray has experience representing operators and producers in exploration programs, sales and acquisitions, financings and hydrocarbons marketing. He has many years of experience in negotiating and preparing exploration and participation agreements, farm-ins and farm-outs, joint operating agreements and related trade and industry contracts, as well as loan documentation and purchase and sale transactions.

Last month, Cox Smith announced that 50 of its attorneys were selected by their peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® 2012 (Copyright 2011 by Woodward/White, Inc., of Aiken, S.C.). The firm was also top listed in San Antonio in 26 categories based on the number of listed attorneys in a practice area and/or geographic region, which can be viewed at

Best Lawyers compiles its lists of outstanding attorneys by conducting exhaustive peer-review surveys in which thousands of leading lawyers confidentially evaluate their professional peers. The current, 18th edition of The Best Lawyers in America (2012) is based on more than 3.9 million detailed evaluations of lawyers by other lawyers.