Kevin Vela is a graduate of the University of Texas in Austin, Texas, where he earned his BBA in Finance and J.D. with Honors.

Prior to law school, Kevin spent seven years in Dallas, working in finance and marketing. Although he began his career working for Fortune 500 companies, an entrepreneurial spirit led Kevin to pursue roles in several startup companies. Later, he started his own business, a test preparation company. Having scored in the top five percent on the GMAT, LSAT, and GRE, Kevin used his test taking expertise to help thousands of students increase their scores and gain admission to graduate school.

Kevin is active in the business and startup communities. He currently teaches an entrepreneurship course at SMU’s Cox School of Business and a venture law course at SMU’s Dedman School of Law and The University of Texas School of Law. Kevin is a mentor for RevTech Ventures, a leading venture fund and accelerator, and co-manages Blossom Street Ventures, a Dallas-based SAAS and software venture capital fund. He is also a part of the Dallas Business Journal Leadership Trust, a network of influential business leaders in Dallas, a board member of Digital Fight Club, and the Chairman of the Board of the Greenville Avenue Area Business Association (which puts on the annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Dallas).

Kevin is also active in promoting a responsible gaming agenda in Texas and is a board member of the Fantasy Sports Gaming Association.

Kevin has been selected as a Super Lawyer in 2021-2023, a Super Lawyer Rising Star in 2014-2018, a Top Latino Lawyer three times, a Best Lawyer in Dallas by D Magazine six times, including most recently in 2024, and is a Texas Bar Foundation Fellow, an honor granted to 1/3 of 1% of Texas attorneys.

Raised in Arlington, Kevin is an avid Dallas sports fan. Although he used to enjoy spending time at the local sporting arenas around town with his wife, Layla, they now spend most of their time pandering to their two children, Ariana and Arman.

Select Representations

  • General Counsel to numerous venture funds and accelerators
  • Has facilitated over 600 Seed stage through C rounds ranging from $250k to $20M
  • Represented defi SOLUTIONS in its $55M equity investment from Bain Capital Ventures and subsequent merger with Sagent Auto for an undisclosed sum
  • Represented Modern Message in its exit to RealPage for an undisclosed sum
  • Represented a California-based AI company in its $40M exit to a private equity firm
  • Represented Olivia AI in its exit to Nubank, Ltd, a publicly traded company
  • Represented a Dallas-based content platform in a $49M exit to a private equity firm
  • Represented a Dallas-based software company in a $12M exit
  • Represents dozens of DFS and Fantasy Sports Companies

Fun Facts:

  • If you need a favor from Kevin, ask him on a day when one of his favorite teams, the Detroit Tigers, Mavericks or Cowboys, win.
  • Can name every World Series Winner since 1970.
  • Kevin’s entrepreneurial spirit began early on when he owned a beer vending machine after college.
  • Was named “best cooker in the world” by Ariana Vela, then age 5.


  • University of Texas Law School, J.D., Honors
  • University of Texas at Austin, BBA, Finance

Kevin Vela's Recent Blog Posts
Funding & Capital Raising
Venture in the Middle: Bridge Rounds in a Down Funding Environment

Venture financings are at a two-year low, which is predictable given the current state of the economy. But startups need capital even during downtimes, so bridge rounds tend to increase. Here are a few tips for navigating bridge rounds in a down funding environment.

Funding & Capital Raising
Comparing Convertible Instruments

In this blog, we explain the key similarities and differences between convertible notes and post-money Safes so you can understand the nuances between convertible instruments before you get to the negotiation table.

VW Abroad
What We Learned From A Month Working Abroad

Over half the firm and their families traveled to Lisbon, Portugal for Vela Wood’s first VW Abroad trip, and it was an astounding success. In this blog, we walk through the logistics of the trip as well as what went well and what we’ll do differently next time.