BBQ GUYS How an attorney’s team smoked the competition at the World’s Championship Bar-B-Que Contest in Houston. KERRY FELLOWS, OWNER OF ACROSS THE TRACK COOK-OFF TEAM, RECALLS THE MINUTES LEADING TO THE UNVEILING OF THE WINNERS. “They announced the second runner-up and then the first runner-up,” he said. “Then this guy to my left said ‘Congratulations!’ and I was about to ask him ‘What are you talking about?’ when I realized what he meant.” It was a triumphant moment for Fellows, who battled approximately 300 teams for three days at the 2013 Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo to win Championship Ribs and Overall Grand Champion. If you know anything about barbecue in Texas, then you know the competition is tough. “The Houston rodeo is a big deal,” said Fellows, a Houston attorney. “It’s one of the bigger rodeos in the country and among the biggest cook-off contests.” This is the twelfth time the team has entered the competition, and last year Across the Track came close to advancing to the final round. “They take the top eight in each category and we came in ninth,” Fellows explained. “I’d rather be number 299 than nine.” It is impossible to pinpoint what could have attributed to the team’s success this time around. Fellows followed the same recipe as in previous years, although he made a few adjustments. Naturally, Fellows wouldn’t provide specifics other than to reveal that the ribs were cooked over oak and pecan. There was one big difference this year, though: Fellows did not taste the ribs. He normally samples the meat after it is cut and before it goes to the judges’ station. This year, however, as he was preparing to taste the last piece of meat available, Fellows noticed Texas Southern University President John Rudley, of his alma mater, heading toward the team’s tent. Fellows decided to give the last piece to Rudley. “I tell people I don’t even know what the winning ribs tasted like!” The team’s win has made this year’s competition the most memorable, although every year has its own story. Fellows never thought of the team’s record as a losing streak, nor did he ever consider taking a break from competing. The barbecue aspect adds another layer to the experience, but there is more to the rodeo fete than just the cook-off competition he observed. “Above all else, we are there to have fun with our families and friends. That’s our motto.” But in all honesty, a win is a win. Walking down the street on a recent day, Fellows marveled at the fact that his team was awarded the big title. “It was like I’d just realized it for the first time!” TERI RODRIGUEZ Antique Road Show How a Fort Worth judge applies his passion for cars to the courtroom. CARS ARE NOT JUST A FORM OF TRANSPORTATION BUT A WAY OF LIFE FOR FORT WORTH JUDGE PATRICK FERCHILL. When he was just 10 years old his father bought a navy blue 1929 two-door Plymouth sedan. It was in rather sad condition, but his father restored it, changing the exterior from navy blue to yellow, with a green fender. “It probably wasn’t authentic,” Ferchill said, “but it made for a showstopper.” Judge Ferchill caught the “car bug” from his father, who by 1971 had collected 260 cars. His dad stored them in five warehouses— the vehicles stacked bumper to bumper—but there were always 20 cars ready at any time for use in East Texas parades. At age 11, Ferchill facilitated the purchase of his first car—a 1929 Ruxton sedan, one of only a few built before the stock market crash. Ferchill saw a picture of this rare car in a Motor Trend magazine, and after pointing it out to his father, his dad called the seller, made the deal, and had it shipped to Longview on a returning strawberry truck. After getting his driver’s license at age 14, Ferchill picked out a black 1960 Thunderbird—the car he drove in high school and college and still owns today. “It’s eerie sometimes,” he said, “to drive around in your high school car and think about some of the memories.” Those days will surely be front and center next year when Ferchill drives the Thunderbird to his 50-year high school reunion (class of 1964) in Longview. His love of cars has flourished over time. The first car he purchased with his wife was a 1971 Cadillac Eldorado convertible. It was, at the time, their everyday car, but has since become a collectible. Over the past 42 years, the Eldorado has been repainted and received a new engine, but it still runs smoothly when Ferchill takes it out on nice weekends. Ferchill believes his passion for cars, and ultimately his appreciation for the past, makes him a better attorney and judge. “Anyone who is interested in something from the past has a respect for precedent and tradition,” he observed. “I do think that my solemn and hearty interest in the past, and in nostalgic things, fits in with an emphasis on precedent.” In addition to his respect for precedent, Ferchill has learned the importance of quality. “There was such quality in those cars, with custom-built bodies, and it makes one have high expectations from the lawyers who practice in front of me.” BLAIR McBRIDE TEXAS PEOPLE Martin Frost Polsinelli Shughart, P.C., Dallas and Washington, D.C. Named chairman of the board of the bipartisan National Endowment for Democracy, a nonprofit dedicated to the growth of democratic institutions around the world. Lowell A. Keig Troilo Law Firm, P.C., Austin Appointed to the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs, which assists local governments in providing housing to people with low incomes. Angela Fontana Weil, Gotshal & Manges, L.L.P., Dallas Named a 2013 Most Powerful and Influential Woman by the Texas Diversity Council. The award recognizes Texas women who provide leadership excellence in all areas. Judge Oscar G. Gabaldon Jr. 65th Judicial District, El Paso Received the Disproportionality Award by the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services. The award honors people who strive to eliminate disparity in the Texas foster care system.
Published by State Bar of Texas. View All Articles.
This page can be found at http://mydigimag.rrd.com/article/In+Recess/1386193/156769/article.html.