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Lance Lankford


Lance Lankford has nearly thirty years’ experience representing businesses, sports teams, leagues and facilities, and municipalities. He has counseled various cities and states regarding sports facility development and spent yearly six years as Vice President/General Counsel for Center Operating Company, LP, with responsibility for overseeing all legal issues related to the financing, construction and operation of American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas, and the integration of the venue into the adjacent 60-acre mixed use development. Mr. Lankford has also worked on projects for the Pittsburgh Penguins, USA Hockey, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Edmonton, Quebec City, the San Francisco 49ers, Stockton, California and the owners’ of both Gilley’s and Billy Bob’s, two of the most significant entertainment venues in the United States. He was also instrumental in the development of the Cedar Park, Texas entertainment and ice skating venue operated by the Dallas Stars as a home for their minor league hockey franchise.

In addition to his work in the sports and entertainment industry, Mr. Lankford has worked on a variety of real estate developments and represented tenants and building owners in lease negotiations. He raised several million dollars from investors on behalf of a company that commercialized technology in the energy sector and oversaw all legal work related to the corporate structure and intellectual property for that company, and obtained approval from the State of Pennsylvania for a multi-million dollar loan for a project to utilize the technology. Mr. Lankford has worked on the sale of a chain of privately owned retail stores and of a skin care business owned by one of the premier plastic surgeons in north Texas, along with several other asset sales and purchases. Lance has been involved in real estate transactions involving partnerships between the public and private sectors – both from finance and management perspectives – and has overseen the development of nearly $1 billion in construction projects.

Prior to his time at American Airlines Center, Lance Lankford was Corporate Counsel for the Dallas Stars, where he worked with the cities of Euless, Duncanville and Plano to develop recreational skating complexes. He was also responsible for negotiating player contracts on behalf of the team and oversaw all legal aspects of the Stars, the Texas Rangers, Mesquite Rodeo and the creation of high school hockey in Texas.

Mr. Lankford has significant lobbying experience with the Texas State Legislature, obtaining passage of the “Public Entertainment Facility Act” in 2003 and has taught classes at Southern Methodist University. Lance has spent time with the NHL’s Detroit Red Wings and the law firm of Dickinson Wright PLLC and has served on the board of directors for the Children’s Pre-School Program at St. Andrew Methodist Church, kidoodle.tv and the Dallas Sports Commission.

Lance was born in Michigan and was an all-state athlete in both hockey and football. He received a BBA from the Stephen Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan and his law degree from the University of Michigan Law School. In 1995 he relocated to Dallas to work for the Stars and was a member of the front office during the team’s Stanley Cup Championship in 1999.


Areas of Practice:


Business and Tort Litigation


Estate Planning and Probate

Real Estate

Sports Law


Bar Admissions:

Texas, 2003

Michigan, 1994



University of Michigan Law School, Ann Arbor, Michigan, 1994, J.D.

University of Michigan Ross School of Business, Ann Arbor, Michigan, 1991, B.B.A.

Professional Associations and Memberships:

State Bar of Texas

Sports Lawyers Association


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