Ethics Explorer A Guide to the Financial Interests of Elected Officials

Court of Criminal Appeals Presiding Judge Sharon Keller (R)

Industry
Lawyer
Education
J.D., Southern Methodist University; B.A., Rice University
Financial Statements

Sources of Income

  • Keller has served on the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals since 1994; she was the first woman elected to the court.

  • She receives income from businesses on properties that she owns, including El Regio restaurant in Dallas, a Church’s Chicken restaurant in Dallas, a billboard on one of her Dallas properties and an Auto Genius car repair shop in Dallas. Keller also received income from a Pep Boys auto repair shop in Philadelphia in 2012.

  • Keller owns stock in Southwest Airlines. 

Property

  • Keller owns residential properties in Dallas valued at $481,480 and $452,000.

  • She owns a commercial property in Dallas valued at $1,915,000.

  • She has quarter ownership of commercial properties in Dallas valued at $378,220 and $137,440

  • She is also a partial owner of commercial properties in Arlington. One is valued at $2,009,862 and the other is unlisted.

Analysis

  • Keller received a public warning in 2010 from the State Commission on Judicial Conduct for “willful or persistent misconduct” that “casts public discredit on the judiciary.” On Sept. 25, 2007, lawyers for Michael W. Richards, who had been convicted of rape and murder, asked the court to stay open to receive an appeal. Keller ordered the court closed at 5 p.m., and Richards was executed that night.

  • The Texas Ethics Commission imposed a $100,000 penalty on Keller in 2010 for failing to disclose more than $2,000,000 in real property on past financial statements, an error she admitted but said was made by mistake as the properties had been managed by her father. That fine was reduced to $25,000 by the commission in 2013.