J. Dennis Hester

Associate Attorney



Houston, Texas


Prior to joining the Cogdell Law Firm, Dennis spent two years as a law clerk for a United States District Judge. In his clerkship, Dennis assisted the Court research and draft opinions and orders at almost every stage of the criminal process. He also helped the Court handle a high volume of criminal jury trials ranging from fraud, drug trafficking, immigration, and firearms offenses.

Dennis is an associate attorney at the Cogdell Law Firm. He has helped defend the firm’s clients in a variety of federal criminal matters, including allegations of mail fraud, wire fraud, securities fraud, healthcare fraud, environmental crimes, and drug crimes. He has also successfully represented clients on appeal, winning reversals of convictions and restitution orders. In 2012, The Texas Lawyer recognized Dennis as the “Appellate Lawyer of the Week” for his outstanding advocacy in a case in the 14th Court of Appeals.


Associate, Cogdell Law Firm, PLLC
Sept. 2010 – Present

  • Drafting state and federal appellate briefs including brief to Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals that led to reversal of district court’s restitution order in large-scale health care fraud case.
  • Extensive experience drafting pleadings addressing Sentencing Guidelines and 18 U.S.C. § 3553(a) factors and arguing the same in court.
  • Second-chairing state and federal jury trials. Arguing complex legal issues raised before and during trial.
  • First-chairing various hearings in both state and federal criminal matters, conducting cross-examination of witnesses and arguing legal issues.

Law Clerk, U.S. District Judge Robert Junell
Aug. 2008 – Aug. 2010

  • Assisted in drafting memorandum opinions and orders in a variety of criminal litigation.
  • Assisted Court handle over 40 criminal jury trials.


J.D., Loyola New Orleans College of Law, cum laude
May 2008

  • Member of Loyola Law Review
  • Criminal Prosecution Law Clinic

B.A., Rider University, cum laude
May 2004


  • State of Texas
  • United States District Courts for the Southern, Western, and Eastern Districts of Texas
  • United States Courts of Appeals for the Fourth and Fifth Circuit

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