Donald Keller Huddleston was born on October 10, 1967, in Killeen, Texas, to George and Katherine Huddleston. Don was the second of four children and the only boy. George was a military lawyer, and Katherine was a homemaker.
Don was an inquisitive child, a decent athlete, and a solid B student, who peers described as outgoing and friendly. When Don joined the high school debate team, he discovered his passion and his talent. He became a formidable competitor in public forum debate and oratory. That, combined with his father’s influence, sparked a desire in Don to practice law.
George promised to help pay for law school if Don would apply himself to his academics. By the first semester of his junior year of high school, Don’s GPA was up to 3.8, and by graduation, it was 4.0.
Don enrolled at the University of Texas–Austin Moody College of Communication. He joined the debate program, where his skills earned him scholarships for his remaining years of college. Don dated casually during this time, but his studies and competition schedule limited his ability to commit to a relationship.
While at a debate competition held in Oxford, Don toured the University of Mississippi and decided to attend Ole Miss Law.
In 1989, he graduated magna cum laude from UT–Austin with a B.S. in Communication Studies. He moved to Oxford that summer for law school.
Don received his J.D. degree in May of 1992 and joined a small, established corporate and tax law practice in Oxford. The partners were consummate professionals but not of the stiffly starched shirt and gold cufflinks variety. After years of relentless studying and competitions, Don happily settled into a more relaxed environment.
In the summer of 1995, Nicole Fontaine, a second-year law student at Ole Miss, had a two-month internship at Don's firm. She was driven and direct with an easy confidence that Don admired.
On the last day of her internship, Nicole asked Don out, and the two started dating. Don proposed immediately following her law school graduation, and the couple married a year later on April 26, 1997.
Don wanted children, but Nicole was ambivalent because she didn’t want anything to derail her career. Don agreed to be the primary caregiver should they become parents. Their son, Marc, was born in 2003, and their daughter, Ashley, in 2007. Don took paternity leave with the birth of each child so Nicole could immediately return to work.
Don was content with the family's above-average income and his reasonable work hours, but Nicole was not. She spent upward of 80 hours per week at the office and continued to answer emails and take phone calls at home. She wanted a more opulent and exciting lifestyle than either Don or Oxford could offer.
The couple separated in 2014 and worked out an amicable settlement. When the divorce was final in 2015, Nicole moved to Scottsdale, Arizona, where she felt she'd have a better opportunity to build her practice and live a more upscale lifestyle. Nicole and Don have joint custody, but Don is the custodial parent so Marc and Ashley can finish high school in Oxford.