Self-help • Phillip McGraw

He spent his life behind the scenes. Then he met Oprah.

I SAW HIM FOR THE FIRST TIME in January 1998, during the Oprah Winfrey “Mad Cow” trial in Amarillo. A balding, broad-shouldered man who usually could be found right behind the talk show diva as she walked in and out of the courthouse, he never said a word to any of us in the news media. He wouldn’t even nod hello.

We were told he was Phillip McGraw, a co-founder of Courtroom Sciences, Inc. ( CSI), an Irving-based litigation consulting firm that creates jury profiles and conducts mock trials for some of the country’s most prestigious law firms. Although he had worked on many high-profile civil cases, including the Exxon Valdez oil spill suit and the fierce battle between the ABC television network and the Food Lion grocery store chain, he had made it his policy to avoid publicity. He always slipped away at the end of the day while the lawyers stood on the courthouse steps in front of a bank of microphones and took questions. Whenever we called to ask him about his work—in legal circles, he is renowned for his ability to analyze juries and develop trial strategy—we were sternly reminded

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