Terry Keel is a founding partner of the firm and continues to serve as Of Counsel. Mr. Keel has an extensive public service record. He is currently a state official for the Texas Department of Agriculture, appointed since January 2015 as an Assistant Commissioner over administrative duties related to agriculture and consumer protection. The Texas Department of Agriculture is headquartered in Austin and also has numerous regional and field offices throughout the state, employing over 600 personnel.
He previously served as Executive Director for the Texas Facilities Commission (2009 – 2015) and prior to that served as Parliamentarian for the Texas House of Representatives (2007 – 2009). Mr. Keel was an elected member of the Texas House (1997 – 2007), representing the Austin area. Chairmanships included of the House Committee on Criminal Jurisprudence, the House Select Interim Committee on Sex Offender Statutes and the Select Committee on Election Contests. He also served as Vice Chair of the Committee on Public Safety, a member of the General Investigating & Ethics Committee, the Judiciary Committee, and the House Administration Committee. Rep. Keel authored a large number of legislative measures including major public safety and criminal justice enactments and received numerous recognitions from civic groups for his service as a legislator, including from the Texas District and County Attorneys Association, the Texas Municipal Police Association and the Austin Police Association.
Immediately prior to his service in the House of Representatives, Mr. Keel served as Travis County Sheriff from 1992 to 1997 where he was acclaimed for his innovations in the areas of victim services, inmate education and labor, and law enforcement investigations. Mr. Keel also served as Assistant Travis County District Attorney from 1984 to 1992, supervising several divisions, including major crimes and the Repeat Offender Program and was lead counsel in over fifty felony jury trials. He received several distinguished law enforcement and civic awards for his service as Sheriff and Assistant District Attorney, including special recognitions from the Austin Police Association, the Chief of Police, the Hispanic Police Officers Association, and the Law Enforcement Commendation Medal from the National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution.
Mr. Keel has a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Texas (1980) and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Houston (1983). He received his license to practice law by the Texas Supreme Court on June 24, 1983. He is additionally licensed to practice before the United States Supreme Court, the Western and Southern Federal Districts of Texas and the U. S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.
Mr. Keel is a fifth generation Austinite and a 1976 graduate of L.B.J. High School.