Carter Casteel

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Frances Carter Barron Casteel

Texas State Representative for
District 73 (then Bandera, Comal, Gillespie, and Kendall counties; now Comal, Gillespite, and Kendall)
In office
January 2003 – January 2007
Preceded by Robert Ray "Bob" Turner
Succeeded by Nathan Macias

Comal County County Judge
In office
January 1, 1991 – December 31, 1998
Succeeded by Danny Scheel

Born December 10, 1942
Monahans, Ward County,
Nationality American
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Thomas Ralph Casteel (married 1962-2020, his death)
Children Cheryl Lynn Casteel

Thomas Barron Casteel

Residence New Braunfels,

Comal County

Alma mater Monahans High School

University of Texas at Austin
Texas State University
(San Marcos)
St. Mary's University School of Law (San Antonio)

Occupation Former educator

Attorney since 1985

Religion United Methodist Church

Frances Carter Barron Casteel, known as Carter Casteel (born December 10, 1942), is an attorney and Republican politician from New Braunfels, Texas. She served as the county judge of Comal County from 1991 to 1998 and a state representative from 2003 to 2007 for District 73, currently held by another Republican, conservative Kenneth Kyle Biedermann, who is bowing out in 2023 after three two-year terms.


A native of Monahans in Ward County in West Texas, Casteel graduated in 1961 from Monahans High School.[1] In 1965, Casteel received her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Texas at Austin. She subsequently procured her Master of Arts in 1971 from Texas State University, then known as Southwest Texas State University in San Marcos (the alma mater of Lyndon B. Johnson), and her Juris Doctorate in 1985 from St. Mary's University School of Law in San Antonio, Texas.[2]

Casteel was a classroom teacher at Porter Junior High School for the Austin Independent School District from 1965 to 1973 and then at Canyon Lake High School for the Comal Independent School District from 1974 until 1982.[3] In 1978, she was elected president of the Comal Educators Association.[2] After working for two years with another attorney, Casteel opened her own law practice in 1987.[3] In 1989, she was the president of the county bar association.[2]

In 1988, Republican Governor Bill Clements named her to a two-year appointment to the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Board. She is a past director of both Citizens Bank and Norwest Bank as well as KLRN-TV, the PBS outlet in San Antonio. She has been affiliated with the American Association of University Women, United Way, the Comal County Fair Association, and the boards of Battleship Texas and the restored historic Brauntex Theatre in downtown New Braunfels. She is a member of Rotary International and the Chamber of Commerce, through which capacity she is a past chairman of the Guadalupe River Study Group. She is a member of several Republican women's organizations in her area. A United Methodist, Casteel is also a former charter member of the non-denominational Church in the Valley in Canyon Lake.[2]

Casteel and her husband, Thomas Ralph "Tom" Casteel (1934-2020),[4] have two children, Cheryl Lynn Casteel (born 1963), formerly Cheryl Land, a Certified Public Accountant, and Thomas Barron Casteel, her law partner in the firm Casteel & Casteel.[5] Casteel is a specialist in Family Law, handling divorces, adoptions, and child custody disputes. A certified mediator, she also works to help families to resolve their differences.[3] She has four grandchildren.[1]

Barron Casteel (born April 17, 1971), as he is known, was an unsuccessful candidate for the open District 73 seat in the Texas House of Representatives in the runoff election held on May 24, 2022. He polled 10,892 votes (49.4 percent) to Carrie Issac's 11,171 (50.7 percent), a margin of 279 votes. He is a former New Braunfels mayor and describes himself as a "lifelong conservative."[6]

Political life

From 1984 to 1990, Casteel held the nonpartisan position of trustee of the Comal Independent School District. She was elected county judge in 1990 and remained in that post for two terms until 1998.[2] As county judge, she wrestled with the urban sprawl into Comal County from San Antonio and the need to find new water resources to compensate for inadequate wells and to conserve what is already available.[7]

In her first legislative race on March 12, 2002, Casteel defeated Diane Sue Dasher (born c. 1954) of Bulverde, 9,290 votes (54 percent) to 7,916 (46 percent) in the Republican primary. The incumbent Democrat, Robert Ray "Bob" Turner, did not seek reelection.[8] In the general election, Casteel defeated the Democrat Virgil Yanta, 35,314 votes (79.1 percent) to 9,305 (20.9 percent)[9] In May 2003, Castell and John Mabry, Jr., a Democrat from Waco, were named "Freshmen Members of the Year" by their colleagues.[1]

Casteel ran without primary or general election opposition in 2004, but in the 2006 Republican primary, she lost her bid for a third term by forty-six votes. Her more conservative challenger, Nathan Macias, an Hispanic businessman and public policy analyst from Bulverde, polled 10,183 votes (50.1 percent) to her 10,137 ballots (49.9 percent).[10]

In the 2008 Republican primary, Moderate Republican Douglas Ray Miller, I, a former mayor of New Braunfels, unseated Macias by 17 votes, 14,684 (50.02 percent) to 14,667 (49.97 percent)[11] In a special legislative session on May 15, 2006, after she had been defeated for re-nomination, Casteel voted against a reduction in property taxes, but the measure passed the House, 89–56. A few weeks earlier she voted to raise tobacco taxes.[12]

As a legislator, Casteel was rated 67 percent conservative in 2003 by Phyllis Schlafly's Eagle Forum, then managed in Texas by Cathie Adams, a former chairman of the Texas Republican Party. Her Eagle Forum rating dropped to 52 percent in 2005. By contrast, her successor Nathan Macias had a 96 percent Eagle Forum score in his one term in the office. The Young Conservatives of Texas ranked her 53 percent. She was rated 90 percent by Texas Right to Life Committee in 2003 but 75 percent in 2005. The National Abortion Rights Action League ranked her 27 percent in 2005. The Texas League of Conservation Voters rated her 21 percent in 2003 but only 8 percent in 2005.[13]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 House Membership: Representative Carter Casteel. Texas Legislative Reference Library. Retrieved on July 29, 2020.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 Carter Casteel's Biography. Retrieved on July 29, 2020.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Carter Casteel: Dancing with the Stars of New Braunfels. Retrieved on February 22, 2014; material no longer accessible on-line.
  4. Thomas Ralph Casteel obituary. Doeppenschmidt Funeral Home (December 10, 2020). Retrieved on December 19, 2020.
  5. Casteel & Casteel. Retrieved on July 29, 2020.
  6. Barron Casteel for Texas. Facebook. Retrieved on January 2, 2022.
  7. Comal County, Texas, Grapples with Rapid Development, Critical Water Situation. (January 21, 2002). Retrieved on July 29, 2020.
  8. Texas Secretary of State, Election Returns (state House of Representatives), March 12, 2002.
  9. Texas Secretary of State, Election Returns (state House of Representatives), November 5, 2002.
  10. Texas Secretary of State, Election Returns (state House of Representatives), March 7, 2006.
  11. Texas Secretary of State, Election Returns (state House of Representatives), March 4, 2008.
  12. Carter Casteel's Voting Records. Retrieved on July 29, 2020.
  13. Carter Casteel's Interest Group Ratings. Retrieved on July 28, 2020.