Judge Lina Hidalgo is the head of Harris County’s governing body. She is the first woman to be elected County Judge and only the second to be elected to the Commissioners Court.
Harris County is the third largest county in our nation. Its population of more than 4.5 million rivals that of the entire state of Colorado. The Harris County Judge and four County Commissioners oversee a $4.3 billion budget that helps fund key county services and institutions.
The County Judge is the presiding officer on the Commissioners Court. As the main governing body of Harris County, the Commissioners Court plays a critical role that is part administrative, part legislative, and part judicial. Its many responsibilities include adopting a budget; setting tax rates; calling for bond elections; building and maintaining county infrastructure such as roads and bridges; and overseeing county courthouses, jails, libraries, parks, and the Harris County Flood Control District.
By state law, the County Judge is also the county’s director of emergency management, leading the Harris County Office of Homeland Security & Emergency Management (HCOHSEM). In addition to her formal duties, Judge Hidalgo plays an important advocacy role for the County.
Judge Hidalgo believes that our region will remain competitive only through proactive and creative leadership on issues like flood control, transportation, criminal justice reform, and education. She is committed to ensuring that Harris County government is transparent, accessible, and accountable to every resident. She wants Harris County to be a place where everyone can attain the American Dream.
Judge Hidalgo’s leadership has been recognized through numerous awards and national honors. She received the prestigious John F. Kennedy New Frontier Award for her swift response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and was recognized with the Jack Brooks Foundation Leadership Award for her work to protect voting rights and access to the ballot box. Judge Hidalgo has also been named to the TIME Magazine 100 Next list as well as Forbes 30 Under 30.