We have compiled a list of what we believe to be the Top 10 Texas local officials who showed extraordinary leadership in the month of March.
#1 Mattie Parker
Mayor of Fort Worth | Fort Worth, TX
Mayor Mattie Parker, the lone Republican mayor among Texas’ five largest cities, spoke in-depth about her disappointment in her own party. In a sit-down conversation with Texas Tribune, Mayor Parker spoke of the predatory nature of her party going after their own and how she could not bring herself to run as a Republican in the primaries. A supporter of expanding Medicaid and protecting transgender children’s rights, she reaffirmed her positions on those issues and condemned her own party’s actions.
Read more about Mayor Parker’s accomplishments here.
#2 Andy Brown
Travis County Judge | Austin, TX
Judge Andy Brown testified before a U.S. House subcommittee on House Administration against the new Texas law which makes voting in the state more difficult. During the “Voting in America: Ensuring Free and Fair Access to the Ballot” hearing, Judge Brown criticized Texas Senate Bill 1’s efforts to limit alternate voting methods, arguing that the law makes the job of election workers more difficult. He says the law also emboldens partisan poll watchers and adds criminal penalties based on unclear restrictions.
Read more about Judge Brown’s accomplishments here.
#3 Edward Pollard
Councilmember of Houston | Houston, TX
Councilmember Edward Pollard announced 100 license plate readers will be installed in his district to combat rising crime in Houston. The cameras will take continuous still photos of passing vehicles and send them to the Houston Police Department. The cameras will help HPD to identify vehicles involved in crimes. In addition, Councilmember Pollard launched the website “District J Jobs” to help reduce crime by providing residents with employment opportunities.
#4 Kathie Tovo
Councilmember of Austin | Austin, TX
Councilmember Kathie Tovo was the driving force behind an Austin City Council move to rename Austin’s Confederate Street in honor of Maggie Mayes, a Black educator from the late 1800s. The change is part of a larger initiative to distance the city from Confederate references by renaming streets and parks to highlight women and people of color. In addition to renaming the street, the city is conducting research on the life of Ms. Mayes to better honor her legacy.
#5 Tammy Douglas
Mayor of Cisco | Cisco, TX
Mayor Tammy Douglas continued her mayoral duties of leading her city during a disaster even after a wildfire destroyed her own home. The wildfire swept through 275 acres of land between Cisco and Eastland, leaving hundreds homeless. Mayor Douglas commended the compassion of her city as residents came together to support those affected by the fire.
#6 Thurman Bartie
Mayor of Port Arthur | Port Arthur, TX
Mayor Thurman Bartie formed the Port Arthur Homeless/Advisory Board to combat rising homelessness in the city. The advisory board will have 14 members appointed by the city council. Mayor Bartie also began working with the U.S Housing and Urban Development program Housing First to secure housing for anyone who is “homeless with the desire to do better.”
#7 Ruben Becerra
Hays County Judge | San Marcos, TX
County Judge Ruben Becerra approved a study to be conducted by Team Shelter USA to assess the feasibility of creating a centralized animal shelter for the county. Judge Becerra has worked for years to help prevent animal cruelty and neglect within the county. Funding was secured for the study in October and the commissioners court has taken another important step toward addressing the need to addressing loose and abandoned pets.
Read more about Judge Becerra’s accomplishments here.
#8 Jim Ross
Mayor of Arlington | Arlington, TX
Mayor Jim Ross announced the Sister Cities United Aid for Ukraine campaign. All the money raised will go to Arlington’s Sister City, Bad Königshofen, Germany, to provide assistance to Ukrainian refugees fleeing war. The Russian invasion of Ukraine has forced over two million Ukrainians to flee to other countries and cities, including Bad Königshofen.
#9 Derek France
Mayor of Flower Mound | Flower Mound, TX
After three years of litigation, Mayor Derek France settled with EagleRidge, an oil and gas company. EagleRidge agreed to plug and permanently close 26 of its 35 wells within the city limits over the next 12 months. The settlement means the company will close four of its seven pad sites and about 75% of its wells in Flower Mound. The original lawsuit filed by EagleRidge centered around the city’s inspection fees, but thanks to Mayor Frances’ efforts it led to the closure of a majority of gas wells in Flower Mound.
#10 Sallie Alcorn
Councilmember of Houston | Houston, TX
Councilmember Sallie Alcorn has gained a “fresh perspective” by participating in the No-Car Fridays movement to demonstrate how people help counter climate change and traffic congestion. Councilmember Alcorn opts to use her bicycle on Fridays which also allows her the opportunity to identify issues to work on as a policymaker. Despite busy Houston intersections, potholes and damaged sidewalks, Councilmember Alcorn hopes to inspire Houston residents to try alternate transportation modes and build a sense of community by opting to walk, bike or ride a bus.