William C. Bednar, Jr.

Past Chair

Mr. Bednar has a distinguished career in the field of education law, having served as Assistant Attorney General for the State of Texas: Chief Education and Civil Rights Section, Senior Lecturer on Law and the Handicapped for UT
Austin, and General Counsel to the Texas Education Agency. Mr. Bednar has represented schools and individuals in school law matters in private practice. He serves on counsel to the firm.

Ms. Horton has significant experience in representing school districts in all aspects of disputes involving the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. She works with districts to informally resolving disputes with parents of students with disabilities. She represents school districts in all aspects of the dispute resolution process, including representing districts in due process hearings in federal court in IDEA cases. Like all lawyers at Thompson & Horton LLP, Ms. Horton works with schools to analyze problems and develop strategies to resolve issues so they do not result in costly lawsuits.

When litigation occurs, Ms. Horton represents schools in state and federal court, in special education due process hearings, and before the Texas Education Agency. She also represents schools in appellate matters in state and federal court. At the state and federal level, Ms. Horton advises lawmakers of the concerns of public school clients regarding legislative matters, especially those dealing with special education.

Ms. Horton is a founding partner of Thompson & Horton LLP. Previously Ms. Horton was an attorney at Bracewell & Giuliani LLP for 28 years, a partner in the Public Law Section for 21 years, and head of the Section for a number of years. A long-time member of many school law profession organizations, Ms. Horton is past chair of the School Law Section of the State Bar of Texas and a past member of the Board of Directors of both the Council of School Attorneys of the National School Boards Association, and the Education Law Association. She is the past chair of the Texas Association of School Boards Council of School Attorneys. A graduate of the University of Texas and the University of Texas School of Law, Ms. Horton has been named a Texas Monthly Super Lawyer. Ms. Horton is a frequent speaker on school law issues at both the state and national level.


  • State Bar of Texas, 1970

Representative Publications

  • Comment, 49 Tex. L. Rev. 247 (1971)
  • A Survey of the Texas Reform Package: House Bill No. 72, 16 St. Mary’s L.J. 813 (1985)
  • Preventive School Law in Principals Handbook: Current Issues in School Law, Chapter 30, NOLPE (1989)
  • The Role of Federal Judiciary in Shaping Public Education, Preventive School Law in Critical Issues in Education
  • Law, Chapter 12, NOLPE (1988)


  • The University of Texas School of Law, Austin, Texas, J.D. 1970
  • Stanford University, 1962 B.A. Political Science

Membership & Service

  • Editor in Chief, Texas International Law Journal
  • School Law Section, Texas State Bar, Chairman 1980-1981
  • Education Law Association, President 1988
  • Fellow Texas Bar Foundation – Life
  • Austin Independent School District Executive Committee, Forming the Future Project 1982
  • Project A+ Citizen’s Advisory Committee (Empowerment Team) 1989-1990
  • Lay Citizens Textbook Advisory Committee 1990-1991
  • Texas Easter Seal Society, Chairman 1989-1991
  • National Easter Seal Society House of Delegates, 1989-1990, 1992-1994
  • Capital Area Rehabilitation Center, Board of Directors, 1975-1997, President, 1981-1982
  • Austin YMCA, Board of Directors, 1980-1987, President, 1983-1984