AUSTIN -- John Keel, former head of the Legislative Budget Board, was named state auditor Wednesday by the Legislative Audit Committee.
Keel replaces Lawrence Alwin, who recently retired.
"We are happy to announce the selection of John as the new state auditor," said House Speaker Tom Craddick. "He's a great resource and, of course, has lots of experience in state government. He will be a great auditor."
"With his CPA training and his years of service to state government, John has an excellent background for this position," said Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst. "I had the utmost respect for his work ethic and level of expertise as director of the LBB, and I know those attributes will serve him well as our new state auditor."
Keel's appointment was announced at a meeting of the Legislative Audit Committee. Craddick and Dewhurst co-chair the panel. Other members include Sens. Steve Ogden, R-Bryan, and Tommy Williams, R-The Woodlands, and Reps. Jim Pitts, R-Waxahachie, and Brian McCall, R-Plano.
Keel, a certified public accountant, retired in June as director of the Legislative Budget Board, a position he held for 10 years. Prior to that, Keel was special assistant for budget and projects to former Lt. Gov. Bob Bullock.
Keel's service in state government began in 1973 at the Texas Water Quality Board as an accountant. He served two stints in the comptroller's office and was deputy comptroller for six months in 1990 before moving with Bullock to the Senate. Keel was also an internal auditor and later a budget director for the attorney general's office from 1988 until 1990.
From 1981 until 1988, Keel ran his own private-sector tax, accounting and consulting practice.
A graduate of Reagan High School in Austin, Keel graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a bachelor's degree in business administration and earned a master's in business administration from St. Edward's University.
Keel served in the U.S. Army Reserves reaching the rank of captain before being honorable discharged. He is married to Lara Laneri Keel and has a daughter Kelly Keel.
Contact: Bob Richter, 512/463-0223
or Mark Miner 512/463-0715
Room CAP 1W.09, Capitol
500 West Texas, Suite 880