Doug Keller

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Doug Keller has spent most of his legal career focusing on appeals and complex litigation. He has represented hundreds of clients on appeal in civil and criminal cases, and he has worked on complex cases in state and federal courts around the country. He graduated from the University of Texas at Austin and the University of Texas School of Law. 

Doug began his legal career at a large, national law firm, where he focused on commercial litigation. He then clerked for the Honorable Thomas Reavley of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. Later, he was a fellow in the appellate-litigation clinic at Georgetown University Law Center where he supervised law students working on civil appeals. While a fellow, he also handled cases of his own, including a case in which he successfully defended a federal district court’s decision to hold several federal prosecutors in contempt for their handling of the prosecution of the late Senator Ted Stevens. In re Contempt Finding in United Sates v. Stevens, 663 F.3d 1270 (D.C. Cir. 2011). 

For nearly a decade, Doug worked as a federal public defender at Federal Defenders of San Diego, Inc. While there, he regularly appeared before the Ninth Circuit on behalf of indigent criminal defendants. He has won many published decisions, including United States v. Corrales-Vazquez, 931 F.3d 944 (9th Cir. 2019), which led to the reversal of convictions for 500 people. He also filed the successful petition for certiorari in Tapia v. United States, 564 U.S. 319 (2011), in which the Supreme Court held that federal law prohibited a federal court from imposing a longer sentence to rehabilitate a defendant. Some of Doug’s other significant legal victories include: United Sates v. Moran-Garcia, 966 F.3d 966 (9th Cir. 2020); United Sates v. Martinez, 850 F.3d 1097 (9th Cir. 2017); United Sates v. Argueta-Rosales, 819 F.3d 1149 (9th Cir. 2016); United Sates v. Rodriguez-Vega, 797 F.3d 781 (9th Cir. 2015); and United Sates v. Espinoza-Morales, 621 F.3d 1141 (9th Cir. 2010). 

Doug is also an accomplished scholar, and his publications have been cited by the Ninth Circuit and other federal courts. Doug grew up in Texas—but his Yankee parents deprived him of a charming Texas accent. He spends most of his free time with his wife and daughter. Both keep him on his toes.

 

United States v. Corrales-Vazquez, 931 F.3d 944 (9th Cir. 2019), caused the reversal of not only his client’s conviction, but the convictions of 500 others as well.

Tapia v. United States, 564 U.S. 319 (2011), filed the successful petition for certiorari in which the Supreme Court held that federal law prohibited a federal court from imposing a longer sentence to rehabilitate a defendant.