Image: Montgomery County Attorney B.D. Griffin (right) took the Oath of Office on Tuesday, March 19, 2019, immediately after the Montgomery County Commissioners Court unanimously approved his appointment as County Attorney to succeed JD Lambright. Montgomery County Judge Mark Keough (left) administered the Oath of Office.
Conroe, March 20 – Taxpayers, meet your friend and ally B.D. Griffin, brand new Montgomery County Attorney, who succeeds JD Lambright, the man of extraordinary integrity and managerial acumen who went into the arms of the Lord on March 9 after a brief battle with cancer.
Griffin is a highly-respected attorney who served as First Attorney Montgomery County Attorney under Lambright’s leadership. Griffin is Board-Certified in both Commercial and Residential Real Estate, one of the rare double-Board-Certified attorneys in Texas. Griffin was in the private practice of law for almost thirty (30) years before he went to work for Lambright on January 1, 2013, as the Head of the Real Estate Division of the Montgomery County Attorney’s Office. Lambright sought to bring “the best and the brightest” into his Office, so Griffin was an obvious choice to lead the County Department’s Real Estate law section.
Montgomery County Judge Mark Keough swore Griffin into office immediately after the Commissioners Court voted unanimously to appoint Griffin, on Precinct 3 Montgomery County Commissioner James Noack’s motion and Precinct 1 County Commissioner Mike Meador’s second.
After Judge Keough swore Griffin into office, Griffin gave a very brief acceptance speech, which he assured the members of the Commissioners Court “will be under 3 minutes.”
Griffin then made a dramatic announcement to the thrill of Montgomery County citizens: “As my first act in office, I’m reducing my salary.” Griffin received a standing ovation from the jubilant audience. Griffin reduced his annual salary by $22,418.50.
Griffin reduced the salary of the County Attorney from $202,049.64, with benefits of $81,426.01, totaling $283,475,65, in compensation, to $179,631.14, with benefits of approximately $72,391.35, totaling $252,022.49. Griffin’s total reduction in compensation will save Montgomery County taxpayers $31,453.16 per year.
Griffin’s action was a terrific start to his tenure as County Attorney. He made a similar move to County Judge Keough and Keough’s Chief of Staff Jason Millsaps who both took substantial salary reductions when they came into office on January 1, 2019.
Lambright named Griffin his First Assistant County Attorney in 2015. Griffin has continued to manage the Real Estate Division of the County Attorney’s Office as well. As the lead real estate attorney for the County government, Griffin has been responsible for legal issues pertaining to roads, subdivisions, ordinances, land use, eminent domain, sales or other dispositions of real estate, and acquisition and leasing of real estate. He also represents Montgomery County in state and federal litigation involving real estate, land use regulation and flood plain enforcement.
Griffin, whose legal name is Benjamin Devane Griffin, is a life long citizen of Montgomery County whose family has lived in this area for well over a century. The Texas Bar admitted Griffin to practice in 1984. He also has attorney admissions before the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit as well as several of the United States District Courts in Texas.
Griffin is a double-board certified attorney in the fields of Commercial Real Estate Law and Residential Real Estate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. He became a board-certified attorney in 1997. Griffin is also a member of the Real Estate, Probate and Trust Law Section, the Litigation Section, and the Government Law Section of the State Bar of Texas. He served as President of the Montgomery County Bar Association from 1994 to 1995.
BD Griffin graduated from Conroe High School in 1975. He received a Bachelor of Music degree, cum laude, in 1975 from Trinity University. Griffin’s musical specialty is playing the pipe organ. He is the replacement organist for St. James Episcopal Church where he and his wife, Chevis, attend regularly. Griffin also plays the piano and the harpsichord. In fact, Griffin and his sister donated a harpsichord to the Church.
Griffin spoke fondly of his years at Trinity University, which regularly ranks as one of the strongest liberal arts schools in the United States. “When I was at Trinity, we had the largest pipe organ in Texas with seventy-five hundred pipes and one hundred and eight ranks.”
He graduated from South Texas College of Law, summa cum laude, in 1983.
Montgomery County’s next County Attorney is actually a fifth generation public servant in Montgomery County. His great great grandfather, BD Griffin, was the Montgomery County Clerk in the late 1800s. His great grandfather, WF Griffin, was the County Clerk until his death in 1928. His grandfather, BD Griffin, served on the Conroe Independent School District Board of Trustees. Griffin’s father, William F. Griffin, was Montgomery County District Attorney for one term from 1960 to 1964. (Yes, Griffin confirmed that the names “WF” or “William F.” and “BD” or “Benjamin Devane” skip generations in his family!)
Precinct 4 Commissioner James Metts noted that he had “done some business” with some of Griffin’s ancestors during the Commissioners Court meeting yesterday.
Griffin said he doesn’t anticipate any major policy changes in the County Attorney’s Office, although “I will probably reorganize the office somewhat to make it more accessible to clients.”
Griffin said his primary goal as Montgomery County Attorney would be “to provide the highest quality representation to the County and to protect the citizens’ interests.”