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 September.
#1 John Courage
San Antonio Councilmember|San Antonio, TX
Councilmember John Courage proposed placing “baby boxes” at fire stations to protect newborns who might be abandoned. The boxes would allow women and families to anonymously place unharmed newborns in the boxes to receive immediate care from first responders. Councilmember Courage said the measure would save lives after Texas’ abortion ban left many women without options.
#2 Martin Cuellar
Webb County Sheriff | Laredo, TX
Sheriff Martin Cuellar implemented an “Adopt a School” initiative to encourage law enforcement agencies to protect campuses. Participating officers will patrol the schools, communicate with staff and teachers, and engage with students. Sheriff Cuellar believes the program, developed in the wake of the Uvalde school shooting, will add an extra layer of protection for campuses.
#3 Wawi Tijerina
Webb County Commissioner | Laredo, TX
Commissioner Rosaura “Wawi” Tijerina worked with the Community Action Agency Self-Help Reconstruction Program to provide new energy-efficient mobile homes to three families. The families previously lived in dangerous and unrepairable homes. The project is part of Commissioner Tijerina’s promise to assist residents living in unincorporated areas.
#4 Sylvester Turner
Mayor of Houston | Houston, TX
Mayor Sylvester Turner is advocating for relocating North Houston residents whose health has been affected by contamination at a nearby Union Pacific rail yard. The request came after the city’s health department found toxic, cancer-causing chemicals in soil samples near the property. Mayor Turner said remediation measures discussed by the railroad and the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality are inadequate and some residents should be moved to new homes and away from the contaminated site.
#5 Mackenzie Kelly
Austin Councilmember | Austin, TX
Councilmember Mackenzie Kelly secured unanimous approval of a resolution to help combat sex trafficking among Austin’s homeless. The resolution calls for providing resources to businesses that work with the city to help identify people experiencing homelessness who are at risk of human trafficking. Councilmember Kelly said she developed the proposal after meeting with a distressed woman at a homeless encampment who said she had been sex trafficked.
Read more about Councilmember Kelly’s accomplishments here.
#6 Javier Salazar
Bexar County Sheriff | San Antonio, TX
Sheriff Javier Salazar launched an investigation into Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ action to fly undocumented Venezuelan immigrants to Martha’s Vineyard. Sheriff Salazar said immigrants were flown from Bexar County to Florida and then to Massachusetts under false pretenses. He described the act as a “tragedy” and said he is investigating because it is “the right thing to do.”
Read more about sheriff Salazar’s accomplishments here.
#7 Ellie Torres
Hidalgo County Commissioner | Edinburg, TX
Commissioner Ellie Torres installed streetlights in the San Carlos subdivision under the Hidalgo County Unincorporated Subdivisions Street Lights Program. The program was initiated after local activists solicited signatures from the residents and petitioned the commissioner’s office. A grant from the commissioner’s court pays for the installation of the streetlights in the once-dark subdivision.
#8 Clay Jenkins
Dallas County Judge | Dallas, TX
County Judge Clay Jenkins moderated a webinar to inform public employees about a government program to help reduce their debt. The webinar explained the types of eligible loans and how to apply for debt forgiveness. The program was created in the wake of public scrutiny regarding the administration and management of federal debt forgiveness.
Read more about County Judge Jenkins’ accomplishments here.
#9 Derek France
Mayor of Flower Mound | Flower Mound, TX
Mayor Derek France proposed banning people from wearing facial and neck coverings while carrying firearms. Mayor France proposed the ban after seeing photos of masked and armed protestors in nearby Roanoke. Mayor France believes the proposal will protect the community.
Read more about mayor France’s accomplishments here.
#10 Glen Whitley
Tarrant County Judge | Fort Worth, TX
Republican County Judge Glen Whitley crossed party lines to endorse Democrat Mike Collier in the race against incumbent Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick. County He said Mr. Collier “understands local control.” Judge Whitley accused Lt. Gov. Patrick of “waging a war against local government.”
Read more about Judge Whitley’s accomplishments here.