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Annise Parker

Annise Parker, 2008

Assumed office 
January 2, 2010
Preceded by Bill White

In office
January 2, 2004 – January 2, 2010
Preceded by Judy Gray Johnson
Succeeded by Ronald Green

Member of the Houston City Council from At-Large Position 1
In office
January 2, 1998 – January 2, 2004
Preceded by Gracie Saenz
Succeeded by Mark Ellis

Born May 17, 1956 (1956-05-17) (age 53)
Houston (Texas, USA)
Political party Democratic[1]
Domestic partner Kathy Hubbard
Residence Houston, Texas
Alma mater Rice University
Profession Software analyst, entrepreneur, civil servant[2]
Website Mayor's Office
Annise Parker

Annise Danette Parker (born May 17, 1956) is an American politician and the mayor of Houston as of January 2, 2010. She served as an at-large member of the Houston City Council from 1997 to 2003 and city controller from 2004 to 2009.

Parker is Houston's second female mayor, and the first openly gay mayor of a U.S. city with over a million residents.[3][4][5] Houston has 2.2 million residents within its city limits.[6]


Personal life and education

Parker was born and raised in the community of Spring Branch in West Houston, where she attended public schools. Her mother was a bookkeeper, and her father worked for the Red Cross. In 1971, when Parker was 15, her family moved to a U.S. Army base in Mannheim, Germany for two years. In Germany, she volunteered as a candy striper in the Red Cross youth service organization and worked at the base library.[7]

Parker began attending Rice University on a National Merit scholarship in 1974, working several jobs to pay for her room and board.[7] A member of Jones College, she graduated in 1978 with a bachelor's degree in anthropology and sociology.[8]

Prior to serving as an elected official, Parker worked in the oil and gas industry as a software analyst[9] for over 20 years, including 18 years at Mosbacher Energy. In addition, she co-owned Inklings Bookshop with business partner Pokey Anderson from the late 1980s until 1997 and served as president of the Neartown Civic Association from 1995 to 1997.[7] In 1986, she was president of the Houston GLBT Political Caucus.

Parker currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Holocaust Museum Houston and Girls Inc. and the Advisory Boards of the Houston Zoo, the Montrose Counseling Center, Bering Omega Community Services, and Trees for Houston. She is also involved in historic preservation efforts in Houston and received the “Good Brick Award” from the Greater Houston Preservation Alliance for her restoration of historic properties in the Old Sixth Ward.[7]

Parker and her domestic partner, Kathy Hubbard, have been together since 1990.[7] They have two adopted daughters and one foster son.[10][7]

City Council

Parker ran unsuccessfully for City Council District C in 1991 and again in 1995, finishing third in the special election for At-Large position 4, the seat vacated by Sheila Jackson Lee after her election to Congress.

In 1997, Parker prevailed in the runoff election for At-Large position 1 to become Houston's first openly gay elected official.[11] She was re-elected twice to the same seat in 1999 and 2001 without being forced to a run-off.[12] As a councilmember, she was recognized as "Councilmember of the Year" by the Houston Police Officers Union and earned the "Distinguished Local Elected Official Award" from the Texas Recreational and Park Society.

City Controller

In 2003, Parker was elected City Controller. She was re-elected in 2005 and 2007 unopposed. In addition, Parker also secured a seat for a controller's appointee on the Houston Municipal Pension System Board of Trustees, marking the first time the city's chief financial officer has had any involvement in the pension system."[10]

Election as Mayor

In 2009, Parker announced her candidacy for the office of Mayor of Houston in a video posted online to her campaign website.[13] She was endorsed by several organizations and campaigned on a platform of better city security and budget cuts.[14] Other people who were in the running for mayor included Houston City Council Member Peter Brown and Harris County school board trustee Roy Morales; they were eliminated from the race on November 3, 2009. She entered the run-off election with the most votes to face former Houston City Attorney Gene Locke who garnered the second most votes.

During the run-off election, Parker was endorsed by former rival Peter Brown and the city's primary newspaper, the Houston Chronicle. On December 12, 2009, Parker made history when she was elected mayor of America's fourth largest city.[15] When she assumed office on January 2, 2010, Houston became the largest U.S. city to ever have an openly gay individual serve as mayor.[16] After the election, Parker declared that the top priorities of her administration will be improving transportation, balancing the city's budget, and selecting a new police chief.[17]

Electoral history


Houston Controller Election 2003[18]
Candidate Votes % ±%
Annise Parker 109,393 42%
Bruce Tatro 52,366 20%
Mark Lee 40,103 15%
Gabriel Vasquez 30,784 12%
Steve Jones 26,303 10%
Houston Controller Election 2003, Runoff
Candidate Votes % ±%
Annise Parker 127,280 62.05%
Bruce Tatro 77,849 37.95%


Houston Controller Election 2005
Candidate Votes % ±%
Annise Parker


Houston Controller Election 2007
Candidate Votes % ±%
Annise Parker


Houston Mayoral Election 2009[19]
Candidate Votes % ±%
Annise Parker 53,919 30.82%
Gene Locke 43,974 25.14%
Peter Brown 39,456 22.56%
Roy Morales 35,802 20.47%
Houston Mayoral Run-Off Election 2009[20]
Candidate Votes % ±%
Annise Parker 81,971 52.8%
Gene Locke 73,331 47.2%


  1. ^
  2. ^,8599,1947648,00.html
  3. ^
  4. ^ Olson, Bradley (December 13, 2009). "Annise Parker elected Houston's next mayor". Houston Chronicle. Retrieved December 13, 2009. 
  5. ^ James C. McKinley Jr (2009-12-12). "Houston Is Largest City to Elect Openly Gay Mayor". New York Times. Retrieved 2009-12-13. 
  6. ^ "Table 1: Annual Estimates of the Population for Incorporated Places Over 100,000, Ranked by July 1, 2008 Population: April 1, 2000 to July 1, 2008" (CSV). 2008 Population Estimates. United States Census Bureau, Population Division. 2009-07-01. Retrieved 2009-07-01. 
  7. ^ a b c d e f "About Annise". Annise Parker for Houston. The Annise Parker Campaign. Retrieved 2009-03-09. 
  8. ^ Brotzen, Franz (2009-12-13). "Rice alumna Annise Parker elected Houston mayor". Rice University. 
  9. ^,8599,1947648,00.html
  10. ^ a b "Office of the City Controller". Retrieved 2009-03-09. 
  11. ^ Verhovek, Sam Howe (December 8, 1997), "Houston Elects Lee Brown As Its First Black Mayor", The New York Times,, retrieved 2007-11-25 
  12. ^ [1]
  13. ^
  14. ^ "Annie's List Makes Early Endorsement of Annise Parker for Houston Mayor in 2009", OutSmart Magazine, August 14, 2008,, retrieved 2008-09-01 
  15. ^ Martin, Jonathan; Smith, Ben (December 16, 2009). "Houston election signals key trend". Politico ( Retrieved December 16, 2009. 
  16. ^ "Locke Concedes In Mayor's Race - Politics News Story - KPRC Houston". Retrieved 2009-12-13. 
  17. ^
  18. ^ Localvoter Houston election results
  19. ^ Harris county election results
  20. ^ Houston Harris County Election Results (Harris including Fort Bend and Montgomery counties)

External links

Political offices
Preceded by
Bill White
Mayor of Houston

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