Annise Parker
Former Mayor of Houston, Texas

Annise ParkerThe Honorable Annise Parker has spent many years in service to the people of Houston, America's 4th largest city.  She served six years as a City Council member, six years as City Controller, and six years as Mayor. She is one of only two women to be elected mayor, and is the only person in Houston history to hold the offices of council member, controller, and mayor.

As the City's chief executive officer, she was responsible for all aspects of the general management of the City and for enforcement of all laws and ordinances. The mayor’s tenure included passage and implementation of Rebuild Houston, a pay-as-you-go comprehensive street and drainage improvement program; voter approval of a $410 million public improvement bond program that included a $100 million private match to expand hike and bike trails throughout the city; creation of an independent organization to oversee the City’s crime lab operations; a unique sobering center for public intoxication cases; adoption of a long-term financial plan that ensures the stability of the City’s water department and reorganization of City departments to achieve cost savings and more efficient operations. She created a new City department focused on the needs of neighborhoods and the Office of Business Opportunity to help minority and women-owned small business enterprises compete for city contracts.

Fast Company magazine selected Houston as City of the Year for 2011.  In 2010 Time magazine named Mayor Parker one the 100 most influential people in the world.  She was named the top US mayor and seventh best mayor in the world in 2014 by the City Mayors Foundation. She has also been the recipient of numerous awards during her career, including the 2011 Guardian of the Bay Award from the Galveston Bay Foundation, Scenic Houston’s 2010 Scenic Visionary Award and the 2010 Guardian of the Human Spirit Award from the Holocaust Museum Houston.

In addition to her duties as mayor, Mayor Parker was a member of President Obama’s Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience, chaired the U.S. Conference of Mayors Criminal and Social Justice Committee, and served on the boards of the Texas Environmental Research Consortium and Houston Galveston Area Council.

She serves on the board of FirstNet, created by Congress to implement a nationwide broadband network for first responders and is a member of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary’s Advisory Council. She is an advisory board member of Holocaust Museum Houston, Center for Houston’s Future, and Montrose Center. 

Mayor Parker is a second generation native Houstonian. She graduated from Rice University with a Bachelor of Arts Degree. In the private sector, she spent 20 years working in the oil and gas industry, including 18 years with Mosbacher Energy Company. She also co-owned a retail bookstore for 10 years.