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About Blakely

Blakely Latham Fernandez focuses her practice in the space where business and government intersect, recognizing that complex business issues and solutions often exist in a political environment, just as complex public issues and solutions often benefit from private partnerships. 

She represents both governmental entities and private sector clients in structuring projects that include public benefit and, often, incentives. As a former elected official, she recognizes the stewardship and political considerations that are an important part of project development. 

Blakely's representation of public entities includes acting as traditional bond counsel, public law and administrative law counsel, and special counsel on economic development. Her representation of private sector clients includes acting as developer's counsel, corporate counsel, and special counsel on public contracting and procurements. 

Experience

Recent Notable Matters

City of El Paso, Texas — economic development counsel on developing large scale quality of life projects, including a downtown arena and two museums

Hidalgo County Regional Mobility Authority — general counsel to a Texas toll road authority, including the development of the 365 Toll Road and International Trade Corridor Connector

LNG refinery — special counsel on public incentives for a $10 billion export facility to mitigate tax consequences

Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization — general counsel to a multi-county MPO in designing and negotiating a $230 million plan to finance transportation projects, creating the first Regional Infrastructure Fund in Texas

Various multi-family housing developers — general counsel to private multifamily developers in development of captive projects for large industrial employers

Public-private water delivery project — special counsel to corporate entity structuring a proposal to a public utility for large water delivery project including, and advising on legal issues including right of way acquisition, water options, water leases, project construction and development, and take or pay contracts

City of Laredo, Texas — economic development counsel developing tax reinvestment strategy and negotiating terms for a 750 acre development

Texas Department of Transportation — disclosure counsel on initial Texas Mobility Fund Obligations

Publications and Speeches

“85th Texas Legislature – Legislative Update,” Texas Women in Public Finance, Austin, January 20, 2017.

“Leveraging Private Sector Know-How for Successful Public Projects,” The Bond Buyer, October 24, 2016.

“Parity in Pay,” San Antonio Equal Pay Summit, San Antonio, October 21, 2016.

“Talking Eagle Ford Infrastructure,” San Antonio Business Journal, February 27, 2014.

“Charter School Parent Supports ‘Go Public Campaign,’” Rivard Report, November 17, 2013.

Best Practices Handbook to Assist Communities in the Eagle Ford Shale, San Antonio River Authority, September 2013.

“TAAS and GI Forum v. Texas Education Agency: A Critical Analysis and Proposals for Redressing Problems with Standardized Testing in Texas,” St. Mary’s Law Journal, Vol. 33, No. 143, 2001.

Credentials

Education

St. Mary's University School of Law,
J.D.
2002
summa cum laude
St. Mary's University,
M.A.
1998
Pepperdine University,
B.A.
1991

Bar Admissions

Texas

Affiliations

Texas Bar Foundation
Leadership San Antonio Class 30
LSA Steering Committee Class 37
Alamo Community College District
District 7 Trustee, 2010 - 2012
San Antonio Education Partnership
Board of Directors
San Antonio Chamber of Commerce
Board of Directors, 2013 - 2016, 2007 - 2011
Austin-San Antonio Corridor Council
Executive Committee

News

Noteworthy

Noteworthy

San Antonio Chamber of Commerce
Brenda Vickrey Johnson Award for Small Business, 2013
Thomson Reuters
Texas Super Lawyers
Rising Star, 2006; 2009 - 2013
American City Journals
San Antonio Business Journal
Woman’s Leadership Award, 2012; Top 40 Under 40, 2006
St. Mary's School of Law
St. Mary’s Law Journal
Symposium Editor