Ray Bonilla leads the Office of General Counsel of The Texas A&M University System and serves as its chief legal officer. The A&M System is one of the largest systems of higher education in the nation, with a budget of $4.2 billion. Through a statewide network of 11 universities, seven state agencies, two service units and a comprehensive health science center, the A&M System educates more than 148,000 students and reaches more than 22 million persons through service programs each year. Externally funded research expenditures exceed $970 million and help drive the state’s economy.
Ray joined the Office of General Counsel in September 2011, and since that time has managed a number of highly significant legal matters, including: Texas A&M University’s departure from and settlement with the Big 12 Conference, and its admission into the Southeastern Conference; execution of a $285 million contract with the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services providing for the creation of pandemic vaccine and bioterrorism response facilities in College Station; execution of a contract outsourcing dining services, building maintenance, landscaping and custodial services at A&M facilities across the state, generating over $300 million in additional revenue and cost savings over a 10 year period; completion of a $70 million transaction regarding acquisition of the Texas A&M University School of Law; and the multimillion dollar acquisition of Kalon Biotherapeutics LLC, previously owned by the A&M System and the State of Texas through the Emerging Technology Fund, by a FUJIFILM Corporation subsidiary.
In November 2015, Ray was recognized for professional achievement by the Texas General Counsel Forum as the Outstanding General Counsel, Non-profit or Government Agency.
Prior to joining the Office of General Counsel, Ray was a partner in the law firm of Ray, Wood & Bonilla in Austin. Ray previously served as General Counsel of the Texas Comptroller’s Office. In that position, Ray served as the primary legal advisor to Comptroller Sharp in his role as the State’s chief tax administrator and chief financial officer. Prior to his service at the Comptroller’s Office, Ray served on the Washington staff of former U.S. Senator Lloyd Bentsen, and as an attorney at the law firms of McGinnis, Lochridge & Kilgore and Baker & Botts.
J.D. with honors, The University of Texas School of Law
B.B.A. in Accounting with honors, The University of Texas at Austin
State Bar of Texas
Austin Bar Association, Member and Past Board Member
Hispanic Bar Association of Austin, Member and Past President
University of Texas Center for Public Policy Dispute Resolution, Fellow
St. David’s Foundation, Board of Directors
United Way Capital Area, Former Board Member
Texas Lyceum Association, Former Director
Mexic-Arte Museum, Former Board Member
Ballet Austin, Former Board Member
Our Lady of Guadalupe Church, Former Finance Committee Member
Austin Community Development Corporation, Former Board Member