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Interview with Dwight Jefferson

Dwight Jefferson

Dwight Jefferson

We come to the end of our week of interviews with candidates to succeed term limited City Controller Ronald Green. Dwight Jefferson was appointed to the 215th Civil District Court bench in 1995, and when he won a full term in 1996 he became the first African-American to be elected to a District Court in Harris County. He has worked with multiple law firms, including one he founded, as a litigation, arbitration, and mediation specialist, and has been called upon frequently to serve as an ad litem or special master in Harris County State Courts. He was appointed to the Metro board by Mayor Parker in 2010 and served until this year. He was co-captain of the UT Longhorn football team when he played as an offensive lineman. We had a lot to talk about:

You can see all of my interviews as well as finance reports and other information on candidates on my 2015 Election page.

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2 Comments

  1. Mainstream says:

    I was surprised to see the assertion that Judge Jefferson was the first black elected district court judge in Harris Co. He may be the first black CIVIL district court judge elected. He is certainly the first black Republican elected in recent memory. I would have assumed that Sen. Cuney or some other black Republican person was elected during the Reconstruction period for the judicial district including Harris County and Galveston. Judge Mark Davidson would probably know.

    At least a couple of black judges were elected in Harris County to the Harris County criminal district courts before him, and several black judges were appointed but got swept out by the rising tide of the GOP in local elections for the civil benches. Judge Carl Walker won in 1986 and 1990, before losing in 1994. Judge Andrew Jefferson served in the 1970s. Judge Thomas Routt was appointed in June 1977, re-elected in 1982, 1986, 1990, before dying in office. Judges Alice Bonner (1977), Weldon Berry (1983), Kenneth Hoyt (1981), and Matthew Plummer (1986) were appointed to civil benches, but I am sure the first three lost in their next election, and I cannot find what became of Judge Plummer.

    Judge John Peavy, Jr. was elected 1978 to a family district court, re-elected 1982, 1986, 1990 unopposed, and then lost in the 1994 GOP sweep. At least 4 blacks served by appointment in the Harris County criminal courts, and Judge Carolyn Day Hobson held a county civil court bench elected in 1986 and 1990, before also losing in the 1994 GOP sweep.

  2. Mainstream says:

    Further research found that Judge Plummer was ruled not eligible to run for re-election. He sued the county Democrat Party chair to get onto the next election ballot, but it turned out that his petitions lacked enough signatures to qualify.