Mr. Keller has been practicing law since 2006 and is a partner in the firm’s land use and bankruptcy practice groups. His areas of expertise include real estate and environmental litigation, land use entitlements proceedings, and creditor representation in bankruptcy cases.
One of Mr. Keller’s greatest strengths is a broad base of experience in litigation and transactional land use matters. As a litigator, he has defended housing and hotel projects against challenges under the California Environmental Quality Act; represented Fortune 500 retail chains in eminent domain proceedings; prosecuted commercial landlord-tenant and loan default cases; and resolved numerous disputes involving takings claims, boundary issues, easements, mechanic’s liens, and water rights. His litigation experience also informs his approach to other land use matters, such as representation of developers seeking entitlements, buyers and lenders conducting due diligence, and property owners impacted by development on neighboring parcels. In all of these settings Mr. Keller applies a practical approach that starts with a strong appreciation for his clients’ priorities and an understanding of his role as both advocate and advisor.
In addition to his land use practice, Mr. Keller has also built a nationwide practice representing landlords and other creditors in bankruptcy proceedings. He has represented everything from large institutional investors to small businesses in cases venued from San Diego to Connecticut. Mr. Keller’s experience includes large, complex cases such as Sanchez Energy, in which Mr. Keller represented the owner of the debtor’s corporate headquarters, and Sears, in which he represented three different landlords with nine separate properties. Mr. Keller has also served as court-approved attorney for receivers, referees, and bankruptcy trustees, helping them analyze claims, resolve disputes, and win authorization to sell distressed assets.
Mr. Keller is also actively involved in the legal community. He has served as the Chair of the San Francisco Bar Association’s Commercial Law & Bankruptcy Section; the President of the California Receivers Forum’s Bay Area Chapter; an officer of the Bay Area Bankruptcy Forum; and Co-Chair of the California Bankruptcy Forum’s 2022 Conference. He has been named a Super Lawyer for Northern California by Super Lawyers magazine for 2021 and 2022, and was named by the same publication as a Rising Star for every year from 2013 through 2020. Mr. Keller speaks fluent German and has done pro bono work representing Holocaust survivors applying for benefits with the German government, as well as fundraising work for the Bay Area Urban Debate League
Undergraduate School: University of California, Berkeley. Law School: University of California, Hastings College of the Law. While an undergraduate, Mr. Keller was the President of the UC Berkeley debate team from 2000 through 2002. As a law school student, he earned awards for academic excellence in Civil Procedure, Constitutional Law, Advanced Environmental Law, Negotiation & Mediation, and Legal Writing & Research. He also won the National Environmental Law Moot Court Competition in New York, and was a regional winner and national semi-finalist at the National Appellate Advocacy Competition in Chicago. He joined the firm in September 2016, after starting his career at Ellman Burke Hoffman & Johnson and spending six-and-a-half years at Buchalter in San Francisco.
Land Use, Litigation, and Bankruptcy