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Friday, August 7, 2020

2020 40 Under 40 Jonathan Cranz

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Paul Harral
Paul is a lifelong journalist with experience in wire service, newspaper, magazine, local and network television and digital media. He was vice president and editor of the editorial page of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram and editor of Fort Worth, Texas magazine before joining the Business Press. What he likes best is writing about people in detail and introducing them to others in the community. Specific areas of passion are homelessness, human trafficking, health care and aerospace.



Jonathan Cranz specializes in public finance with experience representing both borrowers and lenders. As bond counsel, Cranz has represented municipalities, counties and a variety of special districts, including school districts, hospital districts, municipal utility districts, fresh water supply districts, water control and improvement districts, and various other improvement districts, Kelly Hart & Hallman said in his nomination.

He has already brought to the finish line some of the most important projects in North Texas, including TEXRail, the City of Fort Worth, FWISD, Tarrant County and the massive and complex Dallas Fort Worth International Airport’s innovative taxable refunding which included international marketing and sales – and which resulted in the financing being named The Bond Buyer’s Deal of the Year, one of the most prestigious honors in the public finance industry, the nomination said.

Helping others succeed is a key element of Cranz’ character. He’s actively involved with the Texas Bar Foundation and the Tarrant County Bar Foundation, which support programs including Texas Lawyers for Texas Veterans and TVAS Family Law and Wills Clinics. TVAS offers support and information on pro bono work, mentors for pro bono matters and opportunities for attorneys to accept representation of indigent clients.

Cranz devotes hundreds of hours each year on pro bono work for those less fortunate. In addition, he mentors students at Como Elementary.

“With Jonathan, what you see is what you get, and what you get is someone in whom you can place total and complete trust, be it a client, an attorney or a person from any station in life. You know that Jonathan will exhaust every source and spend every ounce of his energy and soul to find the right and workable path and solution to the desired result if one is to be found,” said Dan Settle, Partner and Chair, Banking & Finance Practice at Kelly Hart & Hallman.

Cranz graduated from the University of Texas at Arlington, B.S., summa cum laude, and the Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law, cum laude.

– Paul K. Harral

Where did your first paycheck come from?

From the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, working as an usher and selling tickets to

the Omni Theatre.

What movie, TV series, play or video game influenced you growing up?

Cheers and Star Trek: The Next Generation had a surprising influence on a middle-schooler sneaking out of bed to watch TV every weeknight.

What other profession would you like to try?

I would like to try my hand at carpentry or working as a mechanic. I like working with my hands.

Tell us about an influential person in your life, how they influenced you and why he or

she was important.

It is incredibly difficult to narrow this one down.

Without my mother, my father and my stepfather, I simply would not be where I am today. Professionally, I cannot overstate the influence of Dan Settle and Dirk Eshleman. Dan is the consummate attorney, with an unbelievable intellect and boundless generosity of spirit. Dirk showed me how to advocate for myself and for others in my profession. Finally, my wife, Caroline, is a constant reminder to me of what one person can achieve.

How she manages a successful career, two small children, and me, I will never know!

When did you know what you wanted to be when you grew up?

This question assumes I have grown up.

What is your favorite song?

Turn It On, Turn It Up, Turn Me Loose, Dwight Yoakum

Tell us about your photo shoot prop.

My prop is a Lego model of downtown Fort Worth that I built with the help of my daughters. It combines my love for my daughters and my love for Fort Worth. It also reflects my hope that I am contributing to the development of both.

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