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Thursday, December 02, 2010

An update on little known facts about local elected officials

L-R: First Bexar County Judge of Asian decent Judge Peter Sakai with two left-handed JPs from Pct. 2, Bill Donovan & Steve Walker

Some little known facts about local Elected Officials that you might not know or recall.

Did you know?

Five Bexar County Judges served in Viet Nam.
1. Probate Judge Tom Rickoff (JAG Officer)
2. Justice of the Peace Pct. 2, Pl. 2 Bill Donovan (Medic)
3. Justice of the Peace Pct. 3 Keith Baker (Hospital Admin)
4. County Court #14 Judge-Elect Bill White (unknown)
5. Justice of the Peace, Pct. 2, Pl. 1 Steve Walker (Unit Mail Clerk)
* State Rep. Joe Farias also served in Viet Nam
* Also Constable Pct. 2 Val Flores

Did you know?

A number of local officials taught in public school before their election to higher office.
1. Bexar County Commissioner Paul Elizondo (Marine) served as a Band Director for 18 years in SAISD. He also served as a State Rep.
2. Judge Barbara Nellermoe (13 yrs.-History)
3. 4th Court of Appeals Judge Marilyn Barnard (7 yrs.-English)
4. 73rd District Court Judge Renee McElhaney (taught with Judge Barnard @ McArthur HS-English)
5. Justice of the Peace Pct. 1 Judge Edmundo Zaragosa taught in Harlandale ISD as well as serving on HISD School board
6. Bexar County Clerk Gerry Rickoff (Sp. Ed.)
7. JP2 Steve Walker (retired teacher) (English-Sp. Ed)
Rickoff & Walker taught @ Southwest Middle School together (87)
7. Walker also taught Judge Edmundo Zaragosa's daughter, State Senator Carlos Uresti's son & State Rep. Joe Farias' son in Harlandale ISD when State Rep. Joe Farias served on the Board
8. Judge Walker also taught incoming County Judge Walden Shelton @ Roosevelt HS 35 years ago & @ Fox Tech when Judge Catherine Torres-Stahl was a sophomore

Did you Know?

1. County Court Judge David Rodriguez is the nephew of former Judge Hippo Garcia.
2. County Court Judge Ray Olivarri was a former probation officer.
3. County Judge Monica Gonzalez, along with District Judges Toni Arteaga, & Catherine Torres-Stahl served as Municipal Judges.
4. State Reps. Roland Gutierrez, Ruth Jones McClendon & Jose Menendez were former city councilmen.
5. Pct. 1 Justice of the Peace Edmundo Zaragosa, along with State Rep. Joe Farias, & Congressman Ciro Rodriguez, all served on the Harlandale ISD School Board. (not at the same time)
6. District Judge Sol Casseb's father Sol Casseb Jr. also served as a District Judge.
7. District Judge Lori Valenzuela is the daughter of retired Army Major Gen. Freddie Valenzuela.
7. Congressman Charlie Gonzalez served as a Judge & Mediator before being elected Congressman to succeed his father Henry B. Gonzalez.
8. Tax-Assessor Collector Sylvia Romo also served as a State Rep. & as Bexar County Democratic Party Chair.
9. 4th Court of Appeals Justice Steve Hilbig, currently the only male on the court & the only one on the current court elected to the office without being appointed first, served as Bexar County DA before his election on the 4th Court
10. District Judge Peter Sakai is the first elected Judge of Asian descent.
11. Distict Judge Barbara Nellermoe is known by her peers as the singing Judge due to her opera-like voice.
12. Former El Rey Feo Ronnie Gabriel is the younger brother of District Judge Johnny Gabriel.
13. Texas Speaker of the House Joe Straus is only the second San Antonio native Speaker in nearly 100 years.
14. Probate Judge Tom Rickoff & brother Bexar County Clerk Gerry Rickoff are one set of three brothers currently serving in public office in Bexar County, the other two being Congressman Ciro Rodriguez & Commissioner Chico Rodriguez, Mayor Julian Castro & State Rep. Joaquin Castro.
15. County Judge Nelson Wolff & Commissioner Kevin Wolff are the first father & son currently serving on the Commissioner's Court. Newly elected County Judge Jason Wolff is cousin to Comm. Kevin Wolff & nephew to County Judge Nelson Wolff.
16. District Judge Ray Angelini & 4th Court of Appeals Justice Karen Angelini are the only husband & wife Judges in Bexar County.
17. Outgoing State Rep. Frank Corte is the only Bexar County Elected Official to serve in Afghanistan with the Marines during his tenure as a State Rep.
18. DA Susan Reed is the first Female DA in Bexar County history as well as serving as a District Judge.
19. Bexar County Commissioner Paul Elizondo is Godfather to State Senator Leticia van de Putte's children.
20. County Judge Nelson Wolff is the ony current officeholder with a building named after him. (Nelson Wolff Stadium)
21. District Judge Larry Noll taught Law courses @ St. Mary's Law School to the majority of Judges in Bexar County.
22. Former 4th Court of Appeals Chief Justice Alma Lopez was the first Hispanic female to serve as a Chief Justice of a higher court in the United States. 23. 4th Court of Appeals Chief Justice Catherine Stone who followed Chief Justice Alma Lopez, is only the 2nd female 4th Court of Appeals Chief Justice.
24. Judge Sol Casseb played in a band that opened for Rock Legends Steppinwolf, Iron Butterfly & Three Dog Night.
25. County Judge-Elect Jason Pulliam is only the second African-American to win countywide election in Bexar County. The last African-American Judge in the 70's was Judge Ben Samples who also held the same county court (#5) as Judge- Elect Jason Pulliam.
26. Three Judges-elect previously served as Judges to include District Judge Richard Price, County Court Judges Bill White & Wayne Christian.
27. District 6 Councilman Ray Lopez also served as President of the NISD School Board.
28. Justice of the Peace Pct. 2, Pl. 2 Bill Donovan is certified to practice before the Supreme Court.
29. State Rep. Mike Villarreal won his first race as State Rep. by one vote.
30. State Senator Jeff Wentworth also served as a County Commissioner and in the Junior Chamber of Commerce with Judge Steve Walker.
31. Justice of the Peace Pct. 2 Steve Walker is the only Judge to serve as a union president (Harlandale Federation of Teachers-AFL-CIO) President of the San Antonio Junior Chamber of Commerce & as a City Councilman. (Balcones Heights)
Also only Judge to work as a local media reporter in televison, radio & print. KENS-5, KONO Radio & Express-News.

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