The election has begun. Voters deserve to know who their candidates are and what they represent. Up until November 8, Local Profile will publish Q&A with politicians running for this year’s election.
What position are you running for and why?
Justice of the Peace, Pct. 3. I am the incumbent Judge and running for re-election. I am a retired Police Officer with over 23 years of experience. I have extensive knowledge of both criminal and civil law. I am certified as a subject matter expert in civil law with the state of Texas. I received numerous awards during my service as a public servant. I have advanced education, including 2 master’s degrees and a Doctoral degree in Psychology. I am married with three adult sons. All have been raised in Plano and Collin County. I am a member of the Plano Sunrise Rotary and a commissioned officer in the Texas State Guard.
What policies do you hope to enact and why?
During my tenure as Justice of the Peace, I have worked with our county vendors and partners to increase access to the court through the use of technology. I am the only court that has a 24-hour night drop box for court filings and payments. Before the pandemic, I added one evening court docket every quarter to provide time after hours. During the pandemic, I was the first Justice of the Peace court in the county to offer virtual appearances for hearings and to broadcast hearings on YouTube. Virtual appearances using Zoom are still available.
What are the biggest challenges facing your district?
The biggest challenges to Pct. 3 are housing and evictions. Rent has increased by over 17% in the last year in Collin County. This, along with inflation and issues with the economy means people are having a difficult time affording rising rent. As I Judge I have to remain neutral but to help my community I have partnered with Legal Aid of Northwest Texas to provide legal representation to residents and landlords. Legal Aid is at our court for every eviction docket.
How will your policies affect North Texas as a whole?
Creating better access to justice is a benefit to all who may be served by the court. Better technology translates to more efficient access and better options for people who may otherwise not be able to come to the court in person. Working with community partners means better service to the citizens and the ability to provide resources to citizens in need.
What are the biggest challenges facing Texas?
Housing and education are major issues for Texas. The justice courts see cases relating to both areas with evictions and truancy. A Judge who is knowledgeable and experienced in these areas can make a greater positive impact on the citizens served by the court.
How is your district changing?
The district is growing, which also translates to greater diversity. Growth and diversity are very positive for a community. As a JP, it is also my job to be involved in my community and I do so on several levels. First, as a member of a local Rotary club where we work to serve our community with various outreach programs. Second, as an officer in the Texas State Guard where I serve my community, state and country and help in times of disaster.
What book that you’ve read has had the biggest impact on you?
I have read several books during my life that have made an impact. The most important and impactful is the Bible. This is one of the greatest books with numerous positive messages and lessons for life. It was in this book alone where I first learned of servant leadership principles, which are the principles I follow as a manager.
What does the future hold for your district and Texas?
Growth. The need to focus on housing solutions, rising rents, increasing property taxes and household income not keeping pace with inflation. Working with the community to figure out these problems in a manner that benefits everyone involved. Lastly, with growth, the need to increase and improve access to the courts through technology and adding extra hours for working adults.
Local Profile will continue to release Q&A segments with politicians running for various positions in this upcoming election.