Our Attorneys

Michael D. Kelley

Mike was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico and was raised in Georgia. He and his family settled in the Griffin area in 2000. For his undergraduate education, he first attended Gordon College where graduated summa cum laude with his Associate of Arts in 2003. After graduating from Gordon, he worked while continuing his studies at Georgia State University. In 2007, he graduated magna cum laude from Georgia State with his Bachelor of Arts.

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Mike entered law school in 2009 at the Claude W. Pettit College of Law at Ohio Northern University – one of the oldest law schools in the country. While at Ohio Northern, he excelled academically and was ranked in the top 10% of his first year class. In his second and third years, he served as an editor on Law Review, took elective courses in criminal practice and procedure, and also completed summer internships at an immigration and criminal defense firm in Atlanta and then at a municipal prosecutor’s office in Ohio. He graduated cum laude from Ohio Northern with his Juris Doctor in May 2012 and then returned home to Georgia where he took and passed the July bar examination. He was sworn in as an attorney on November 1, 2012.

Mike began his legal career in January 2013 as an Assistant Public Defender in the mountains of northwest Georgia where he handled felony, misdemeanor, and juvenile cases. In 2016, Mike transitioned to working as an Assistant District Attorney and sought justice while gaining the invaluable experience of working on the other side and learning how prosecutors think. In 2018, Mike relocated back to Griffin and returned to practicing his true passion – criminal defense – as an Assistant Public Defender in the Griffin Judicial Circuit.

After spending over a decade in public service practicing criminal law, Mike joined Virgil Brown & Associates in August 2023 as an Associate Attorney. We hired him because in his many years of service as an Assistant Public Defender, Mike has successfully defended thousands of indigent clients in the Superior, Probate, Magistrate, and Juvenile courts of this State. Most recently, he was instrumental in securing an acquittal in a felony drug sale case where the client was facing life in prison. It is one of many trial victories that Mike has secured on behalf of his clients. Mike also has a keen interest in Fourth and Fifth Amendment jurisprudence and successfully litigated several motions to suppress evidence at the trial court level which resulted in the cases being dismissed.

As stated by U.S. Supreme Court Justice Joseph Story in 1829, “The law is a jealous mistress and requires long and constant courtship. It is not to be won by trifling favors, but by lavish homage.” This is especially true in the practice of criminal defense where it is not only our client’s wallet that is at stake, but more importantly his or her very liberty. Mike takes this to heart and does everything within his power to secure the best possible outcome for each and every one of his clients.

Although he is a self-admitted workaholic, Mike enjoys spending time relaxing with his close friends and loved ones – especially his beloved German Shepherd companion “Honey” (who is known to join him at the office on nights and weekends).


Professional Admissions:

State Bar of Georgia: 2012 – present
Georgia Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers

Ranking and Membership:

This attorney and law firm does not participate in any online ranking sites. Nor does this attorney or law firm believe an attorney should be able to pay a website to gain a higher ranking or be held hostage through public information to “claim” a profile on any online ranking site. This firm encourages you to come in and talk to us, then ask our peers and prior clients and make your own decision how we rank.

Courts Admitted to:

  • Court of Appeals of the State of Georgia – 2013 – Present

  • Superior Courts and all other lower Courts of the State of Georgia – 2012 – Present