The Honorable Debra Lehrmann
Chair; Justice, Supreme Court of Texas
Justice Debra H. Lehrmann has served on the Supreme Court of Texas since 2010, having been elected to the Court twice following her gubernatorial appointment. She serves as the Court’s liaison to the State Bar of Texas, the Children’s Commission, the State Bar Family Law Section, and the Family Law Council.
With a cumulative total of over 33 years of judicial experience, she was a trial judge in Tarrant County for 23 years prior to her appellate service. A member of Phi Beta Kappa, Justice Lehrmann graduated from The University of Texas with high honors in 1979 and from The University of Texas School of Law in 1982. She received her LL.M. degree through Duke Law’s Master of Judicial Studies program in 2016.
Nationally known, she is a past chair of the Family Law Section of the American Bar Association (ABA/FLS), a commissioner on the Uniform Law Commission (ULC), a member of the American Law Institute (ALI), and a fellow of the American Bar Foundation. She has also been an active leader in the Texas legal community for many years. In addition to her national work, she served as the inaugural chair of the State Bar of Texas Child Protection Law Section and is an emeritus member and past president of the Lloyd Lochridge Inn of Court in Austin, an emeritus member of the Eldon B. Mahon Inn of Court in Fort Worth, a past president of the Texas Chapter of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts (AFCC), a fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation, a charter member of the Tarrant County Bar Foundation, and a past president of the Tarrant County Young Lawyers Association. She has also served on the Advisory Board of Tarrant County Dispute Resolution Services.
In 2003, she received the Texas Bar Foundation’s Outstanding Journal Article Award for “The Child’s Voice—an Analysis of the Methodology Used to Involve Children in Custody Litigation.” As part of her dedication to the practice of law and training of lawyers, she speaks frequently at continuing legal education events on a broad variety of topics throughout the state and country, and she is the author of Texas Annotated Family Code (Lexis Nexis-Matthew Bender, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 eds.) and Court-Appointed Representation of Children in Texas Family Law Cases—A Practical Guide for Attorneys (Lexis-Nexis-Matthew Bender, 1st Ed., 2004; 2nd Ed., 2005-06; 3rd Ed., 2006-07; 4th Ed., 2007-08; 5th Ed., 2008-09).
The recipient of numerous awards and recognitions over the years, Justice Lehrmann most recently received the 2021 Texas Women Lawyers Pathfinder Award, which is given to individuals who have been a champion promoting the advancement of women in the law and who exemplify professionalism, leadership, and commitment to the public interest. In 2020, she received the Child Protection Law Section Founder’s Award in recognition of her significant contribution to the establishment of the section. She received the Tarrant County Parenting Center’s 2011 Hand-in-Hand Award for outstanding contribution to improving the lives of children and families, and in 2009 she received the prestigious Judge Eva Barnes Award for dedication and outstanding service to the legal profession. In 2005, she received the Court-Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) Scott Moore Award in recognition of her service to children who are the subjects of abuse and neglect proceedings. In 1990, she was recognized as the Outstanding Young Lawyer of Tarrant County.
Justice Lehrmann and her husband Greg have a wonderful family: sons Gregory and Jonathan, both practicing lawyers, daughter-in-law Sarah, and grandchildren Jack and Haley.