Meet The Winners of the Primary Runoff Election
Republican Primary Runoff Election
House District 10: John Wray, R-Waxahachie
Texas Parent PAC announced its endorsement of John Wray of Waxahachie for the Republican nomination for state representative in District 10. This district encompasses part of Henderson County and all of Ellis County, including the larger cities of Waxahachie, Midlothian, Ennis, and Red Oak. The Texas House seat became open due to Rep. Jim Pitts' retirement.
"John Wray knows first-hand that a high-quality public education can open doors to unlimited opportunities," said Pam Meyercord, Texas Parent PAC board of directors member. "While he had a humble beginning, John studied hard and became a successful local attorney and eventually Mayor of Waxahachie."
Wray is a seventh generation resident of Ellis County and a graduate of Waxahachie High School. After earning degrees from Texas A&M University and the University of Texas School of Law, Wray practiced law in Houston for six years. In 2002, he returned to his hometown and began his own general civil practice law firm. He heads up the firm's transactional and banking law practice, including matters such as real estate transactions, debt collection, secured lending, estate planning and probate.
A recognized community leader, Wray has been director of the Waxahachie ISD Education Foundation, Boy Scouts of America Circle Ten Council, Mid Way Regional Airport, United Way of West Ellis County, The Waxahachie Foundation, Crime Stoppers, Chautauqua Preservation Society, Waxahachie Senior Citizens Center, and more.
John and his wife, Michele, have a son and a daughter. They are members of First United Methodist Church of Waxahachie, where John served for eight years on the board of trustees.
House District 16: Will Metcalf, R-Conroe
Texas Parent PAC announced its endorsement of Will Metcalf of Conroe for the Republican nomination for state representative in District 16. This Montgomery County district includes the cities of Conroe, Cut and Shoot, Montgomery, Panorama Village, Patton Village, Roman Forest, Splendora, Willis, and Woodbranch. The Texas House seat became open when Rep. Brandon Creighton sought a seat in the Texas Senate.
"Will Metcalf is a dynamic, respected leader with a lengthy record of successful accomplishments on civic projects," said Darci Hubbard of Houston, a member of the Texas Parent PAC board of directors. "He will join the new generation of state leaders committed to economic development, job creation, quality education, and addressing important challenges with transportation and water."
Will Metcalf frequently repeats the statement that "children are the future of our state," and he will be an advocate in Austin for high quality elementary, secondary, and higher education, Hubbard said. His wife, Megan, is a former special education teacher in Conroe and Montgomery ISDs, and his immediate and extended family includes many school administrators and teachers.
Metcalf is a sixth generation resident of Montgomery County and a graduate of Conroe High School. He earned a bachelor's degree from Sam Houston State University. Professionally, he has worked his way through the local banking industry and currently is assistant vice president of Spirit of Texas Bank. Metcalf serves on the boards of the Conroe Industrial Development Corporation and the Greater Conroe Development Council. He also is a leader or member of the Conroe Family YMCA, Montgomery County Fair Association, Leadership Montgomery County, and Conroe Noon Lions Club.
Will and Megan Metcalf have twin daughters, and they attend Fellowship of Montgomery Church.
House District 58: DeWayne Burns, R-Cleburne
Texas Parent PAC announced its endorsement of DeWayne Burns of Cleburne for the Republican nomination for state representative in District 58. This is an open seat to replace retiring Rep. Rob Orr in a district that includes Johnson and Bosque Counties in north central Texas.
"Through his service as vice president of the Cleburne school board, DeWayne Burns has learned first-hand about the challenges schools face in helping every child to prepare for a successful future," said Ellen Jones of Euless, a Texas Parent PAC board of directors member. "When elected, he will be a strong advocate for quality education and expanded vocational and technical training."
House District 58 includes all or parts of 22 independent school districts, and top-notch public schools are critical to the life and success of each community. Burns comes from a family of professional educators, including his wife, mother, mother-in-law, and several aunts, uncles, and cousins.
"Because of his professional experience as a legislative analyst in Austin, DeWayne Burns will hit the ground running at the Capitol," Jones added. She said he will join the new generation of legislative leaders working to solve serious state problems related to school finance, economic development and job creation, water, and transportation. Earlier in his career, Burns also worked at the Texas Department of Agriculture under then-commissioner Rick Perry, where he was coordinator for special issues in the department's Intergovernmental Affairs Division.
In Cleburne, Burns contributes to his family's farm and ranch operation while managing property and business investments. He recently served as president of the Johnson County Farm Bureau, a member of the Johnson County Economic Development Commission, and fire commissioner for the Johnson County Emergency Services District #1.
Burns is a graduate of Tarleton State University. He and his wife, Jennifer, have three children and are active members of First Baptist Church of Cleburne.
House District 102: Linda Koop, R-Dallas
Texas Parent PAC announced its endorsement of Linda Koop of Dallas for the Republican nomination for state representative in District 102. This north Dallas County district includes parts of the cities of Dallas, Richardson, Garland, and Addison.
"Linda Koop is one of the smartest and most effective women in Texas, and she has a track record of successful achievements," said Dinah Miller of Dallas, vice-chair of Texas Parent PAC. Miller said no one in the Texas Legislature has Koop's combination of expertise--from transportation and water to public safety. "When elected, her colleagues at the Capitol will turn to Linda Koop for wise guidance on a range of public policy issues," Miller added.
Koop has worked for decades to improve Dallas and the metroplex. As a member of the Dallas City Council from 2005 to 2013, she chaired the Transportation and Environment Committee and was a member of the Housing, Trinity River Corridor Project, Judiciary, and Legislative Committees. Koop represented Dallas on the North Central Texas Council of Governments, where she was executive board president and on committees for regional transportation, rail services, and clean air. In addition, Koop has served her community on a number of boards of directors, including DART, McKinney Avenue Transit Authority, and Dallas Park and Recreation.
Koop earned a master's degree in international management studies from the University of Texas at Dallas and a bachelor's degree from Colorado State University. Earlier in her career, she was co-owner of National Shoes Inc., a county land use planner, and regional planner for a council of governments.
Linda and her husband, Myron, have two sons. Her "mom leadership credentials" are important to Texas Parent PAC as well. She was president of the PTA at Forestridge Elementary and was honored with a PTA Lifetime Membership award. While PTA president, Koop led in the development of a program that was recognized by National PTA as one of the top two reading and literacy programs in the nation. The Forestridge PTA received the "Advocates for Children Award" from Texas PTA, which is widely recognized as honoring the best local PTA in the state. Koop was a den leader and pack committee chairman for the Boy Scouts of America.
State Board of Education District 11: Pat Hardy, R-Weatherford
Texas Parent PAC announced its endorsement of career educator Pat Hardy of Fort Worth for re-election as the Republican nominee for State Board of Education District 11. This district encompasses all of Parker County and parts of Dallas and Tarrant counties.
"Pat Hardy has served with distinction on the State Board of Education since her first election in 2002, and she deserves re-election," said Ellen Jones, a member of the Texas Parent PAC Board of Directors. "Pat has wisdom based on academic pedagogy and years of classroom teaching, and her historical knowledge of board issues and the Permanent School Fund is invaluable."
During her tenure on the board, Hardy has served on all of the board’s committees. She currently is chair of the board’s Committee on School Finance/Permanent School Fund. Previously, she was vice chair of the board’s Committee on School Finance/Permanent School Fund and was a member of the Committee on Instruction and Committee on School Initiatives.
Hardy is a part-time instructional specialist in the Weatherford Independent School District. For five years she served the district as the Social Studies Coordinator. Earlier in her career, she taught high school world history and world geography for 30 years at Castleberry High School in Fort Worth.
She holds a master’s degree in secondary education and history from the University of North Texas and a bachelor of arts degree in social studies from Howard Payne University.
Hardy has served on many state and national education boards and committees, including the state geography textbook committee, the writing team for the state’s U.S. History end-of-course examination, and on the advisory team for the social studies portion of the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills. In addition, she is a teacher consultant with the National Geographic Society education division and for 21 years served as the Texas coordinator for the National Geographic Bee.
For the past three years Pat has mentored a student through Kid's Hope, part of the adopt-a-school program of Travis Avenue Baptist Church, where she has been an active member for many years.
She has also served on the board for the Texas Council for the Social Studies as well as the executive board for the Texas Social Studies Supervisors Association. Presently, Hardy is on the state Steering Committee for the Texas Alliance for Geographic Education as well as on a national panel on teacher alliances for the National Geographic Society.
Democratic Primary Runoff Election
House District 76: César Blanco, El Paso
Texas Parent PAC announced its endorsement of César Blanco of El Paso for the Democratic nomination as state representative in Texas House District 76. This is an open seat that includes western and southern parts of El Paso and Fort Bliss.
"César Blanco has a collegial leadership style that will help him to be a very effective leader in the Texas House of Representatives," said Carolyn Boyle of Austin, chair of Texas Parent PAC. She said parents can trust him to be a strong advocate for all the area's elementary and secondary schools and institutions of higher education.
"César understands that education is the key that opens doors to opportunity and success, and he will be a strong advocate for children," Boyle added. Texas House District 76 includes parts of Ysleta and El Paso ISDs, and public schools are a source of pride and the heart of every neighborhood in the district.
As both his parents are nurses and his sister is a teacher, Blanco has learned at home that children must be in optimal health to learn at their best.
After graduating from Ysleta's Eastwood High School and the University of Texas at El Paso, Blanco enlisted in the military just as his father and uncles did before him. He served six years in the U.S. Navy as an intelligence analyst, including a deployment in the Persian Gulf with the National Security Agency.
Following his military service, Blanco worked in Washington, D.C. for three congressmen who represented El Paso. Most recently, he was chief of staff to U.S. Representative Pete Gallego.