Kate Ballard graduated from the University of Texas School of Law in Austin, TX. While in law school, Kate was on the Texas International Law Journal, the Asian Law Students Association, and the Legal Research Board. Prior to law school, Kate graduated summa cum laude from Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut with a degree in Economics and Public Policy.

Prior to joining Vela Wood, Kate worked as an associate at McDermott Will & Emery, KPMG, and Martens, Todd, & Leonard, a boutique tax litigation firm. During her time at McDermott Will & Emery, she assisted in the updates of one of American Bar Association’s most popular publications, Effectively Representing Your Client Before the IRS: A Practical Manual for the Tax Practitioner with Sample Correspondence and Forms, Chapter 4 (Securing Information from Taxpayers by the IRS).

Born in Hong Kong and raised in Houston, Kate attended college in Hartford, CT and law school in Austin, TX. She now resides in Austin with her husband, Jason, where she enjoys tending to her garden and animals.

Select Transactions

  • Represented a range of businesses in state and local tax audits, administrative refund claims, SOAH proceedings, and state courts.
  • Assisted an internationally known consumer goods company with its intangible asset valuation.
  • Advised a manufacturing company with international tax compliance.
  • Assisted a consumer goods company with its international tax dispute.
  • Represented a variety of multinational companies in international tax planning, compliance, and disputes.

Fun Facts:

  • Kate has a hen named Todd and a sheep named Mr. Feeny.
  • Somebody has mistaken Kate’s pet care business, Camp Fuzzy Butt, as a Brazilian wax shop.
  • Kate was the dodgeball champion in her second grade class.


  • University of Texas School of Law
    • Legal Research Board Member, membership offered to the top memorandum writers of the class
    • Winstead Scholar, awarded to one law student at University of Texas School of Law for excellent academic achievement and commitment to diversity
  • Trinity College, summa cum laude 

Kate Ballard's Recent Blog Posts
Funding & Capital Raising
Equity Incentive Plans for Startups – An Overview

The purpose of this blog post is to provide an overview of some of the most important components of equity incentive plans, including the common types of awards granted, the timing provisions associated with the awards, and the typical share pool size of equity incentive plans.