David G. Drumm
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David G. Drumm

When asked to describe my complex and decades-old practice, I usually tell people that it comes down to dirt—including anything my clients may find underneath that land or decide to build on top of it. If there’s one common denominator to these dirt-related deals, it is that they demand you move quickly and creatively, measuring and managing risk without becoming paralyzed by it. Our clients know that I excel at achieving this balance.

A real estate and oil and gas attorney with more than four decades of experience, David Drumm regularly guides clients through every aspect of complex sales, leasing, and financing deals in these sectors. Clients have included hotel owner/operators, real estate developers, owners and managers of office buildings and multi-use developments, as well as managers of inbound real estate investment by non-U.S. clients. David also has significant experience handling oil and gas transactions and other development projects, which can reach into the billions of dollars, for (often multiple generations of) family businesses or closely owned groups, for which he also often serves as outside “general counsel.”

“Oil and gas entrepreneurs and independent business owners in the real estate space are my kinds of people,” David explains. “They aren’t simply sitting behind a desk pushing paper. Sometimes they need to take informed risks in order to get deals done, and I help them do both as safely and strategically as possible.” One of the ways he accomplishes this is by assisting clients with “hard money” lending or connecting them to “club investors.” In fact, David has developed a reputation as the go-to for these alternative financing arrangements, which create a direct relationship between investor and collateral—but exist outside of the traditional banking or investment house structures. They offer more flexibility and speed when they are essential – for example, if a client will contractually default if they cannot secure funding, and they have days, not months, to do it. “It is not uncommon for me to be closing the loan, drafting the documents, and reviewing and cleaning up title within 72 hours of receiving the first package. Most real estate lawyers simply aren’t wired this way,” he adds.

In addition to sharing his client’s entrepreneurial gusto, David confesses to also being “a bit of a pointy-headed intellectual wonk,” who loves property law and contract law, and finds an almost aesthetic beauty in their pure analysis and application.

But here’s what matters most to clients—David doesn’t just know the real estate and oil and gas industries and the law pertaining to them, backwards and forwards; he cares enough to get to know their business and really see it through their eyes. Whether they are a sophisticated owner-operator of a high-end hotel chain, or a small developer who may be a recent immigrant to this country and needs help acclimating to the business and legal environment in Texas, clients can count on David to meet and assist them at the exact level they require.

Oil and gas entrepreneurs and independent business owners in the real estate space are my kinds of people, David explains. They aren’t simply sitting behind a desk pushing paper. Sometimes they need to take informed risks in order to get deals done, and I help them do both as safely and strategically as possible.

David G. Drumm

Significant Matters

  • Represented ownership group in construction of eight story medical office building with attached parking on the campus of Baylor Medical Center Dallas.
  • Represented City of McKinney as fee owner and financial incentive provider in construction of hotel and event center.
  • Represented Midlothian Economic Development Corporation as incentive provider in construction of hotel and conference center facility.
  • Represented oil and gas producers in 9-figure sales of Barnett Shale, Permian Basin, and East Texas properties.
  • Represented developer in securing ad valorem and occupancy tax rebates on mixed-use hotel, retail and office development.
  • Represented purchaser of 50 acres of commercial land out of bankruptcy.
  • Represented investors in an out-of-court insolvency workout of oil and gas promoter’s assets and liabilities.
  • Represented gas producer in joint development and exploration agreements in Williston Basin, Montana.
  • Represented decedent’s estate in work-outs with lenders and sales of multiple hotel/motel properties.
  • Represented local municipality in workout of publicly incentivized private development impacted by the financial crash and then in documenting financial incentive package for continued development by a subsequent developer.
  • Regularly represent hard money lender on documenting commercial mortgage loans, foreclosures, workouts, and sales of REO properties.
  • Regularly represent oil and gas producers in borrowing base line of credit loan transactions.

Areas of Focus



  • Southern Methodist University, Dedman School of Law (J.D., cum laude, 1980)
    • Member: Phi Beta Kappa, Phi Delta Phi, Order of the Coif
    • Notes and Comments Editor, Southwestern Law Journal, 1979-80


Bar Admissions
  • Texas, 1980


  • Rated AV Preeminent by Martindale-Hubbell
  • Best Lawyers in America, 2012–2024, Real Estate Law
  • Texas Super Lawyers by Thomson Reuters, 2020-2021
  • D Magazine Best Lawyers in Dallas, 2016, 2018, 2021-2024, Real Estate
  • D Magazine Best Lawyers in Dallas, 2018, Energy & Natural Resources

dd AV-Preeminent-2020 (1) dd Best-Lawyers-Logo (1)  dd David-Drumm-SL2021 dd Drumm-SL2020


  • Member: American Bar Association.
  • Member: State Bar of Texas. Oil, Gas & Energy Resources Law Section and Real Estate, Probate, and Trust Law Section.
  • Member: Dallas Bar Association. Real Property Section and Energy Law Section.


  • Wellbore Assignments – Some Guidance At Last, Carrington Coleman Capital Newsletter, Fall 2009.
  • Purchase and Sale Agreements For Raw Land Development Including Staged Closings and Takedowns, February 2007.
  • Negotiating and Drafting Lending Agreements for Raw Land and Development  Loans, November 2006 and November 2007.
  • The UCC as Applied to Oil and Gas: What Effects?, February 1996.
  • Oil and Gas Law, Chapter 29 in Doing Business in Texas, International Law Section State Bar of Texas.
  • Conforming the Nonforming Use: Proposed Legislative Relief for a Zoning Dilemma, 33 Southwestern Law Journal, 855-882, September 1979.

Outside of Work

I collect music—compact discs, including a whole panoply of genres—everything from Al Jolson to AC/DC, with some bluegrass and delta blues thrown in for good measure. I then distill all of it down into a playlist of about 55,000 songs that I play in my home on a shuffle. I was an anthropology major in college and, had I not decided to pursue law, I would probably now be a university professor in some kind of social science. Informally, I do teach adult education in a number of venues such as the Dallas Philosophers Forum, for which I occasionally lecture on such topics as the history of ideas or human consciousness.