DALLAS — Jonathan Frels, who has served in the Texas attorney general's office for the past two years, has rejoined Vinson & Elkins LLP as a partner in its public finance group. He will be based in Houston.
Before his two years with the state, Frels was with V&E for seven years, representing issuers and underwriters in public finance transactions involving municipalities, school districts, water districts, counties, and other political subdivisions.
Barron Wallace, a V&E partner in Houston who leads the firm's public finance practice, said Frels is "an incredibly gifted and creative lawyer."
"Jonathan's public service experience with the Texas attorney general's office will allow him to make an immediate and positive contribution to our issuer and underwriter clients," Wallace said.
Frels joined the Attorney General's Office as chief of the public finance division. He oversaw the agency's review and approval of all bonds and similar financial obligations issued by state agencies, political subdivisions, and institutions of higher education.
For the past 18 months, Frels was deputy attorney general for legal counsel. He supervised the non-litigation civil legal divisions, including public finance, and frequently testified before the Legislature on public finance issues.
Frels is a 2001 graduate of the University of Texas School of Law.
V&E's 38-member public finance practice group includes 22 partners and 16 associates. The firm was the second-most active bond counsel in the Southwest in 2009, according to Thomson Reuters. Last year it represented regional clients in 125 issues totaling $6.5 billion.