As a woman in East Texas politics, Kristen Ishihara is making a difference in her community and giving back in every way she can. Though not raised in Texas - or even in the southern region of the United States, for that matter - Kristen Ishihara has found that her family, friends, and Christianity have shaped her into the politician she is today. After graduating from Western Michigan University, Ishihara moved to Waco, Texas, where she attended Baylor Law School. She moved to Longview, Texas, and was first exposed to small-town politics when she noticed there was not a public dog park in the area.
Juli Mathew is running for County Court of Law #3 in Fort Bend County which encompasses twelve cities outside of Houston, Texas. As an immigrant woman from India, Juli has led an uphill battle to bring more intersectional Asian representation across elected office in the area. Her journey hasn’t been easy: she has faced a variety of disparaging remarks during her time campaigning, especially regarding her comingling roles as a mother and candidate. Her campaign focuses on cost-saving measures that can be brought to the Fort Bend County court system with hopes of embracing the diverse community and understanding the obstacles they may face. But to accomplish this, Juli must stand strong in the face of adversity.
Christi Craddick was elected Texas Railroad Commissioner in 2012 and has held her seat for two terms. She works in Austin to assure the oil, gas, and railroad industries of Texas are operating at their top performance. Experiences in oil and gas law, in combination with a parent as a politician, has contributed to her knowledge of being an elected official. Born and raised in Midland, Texas, Christi grew up in the heat and surrounded by conservative republicans. Because of father, Tom Craddick, has been a Texas Congressman since before her parents were married, Christi was exposed to the life of a politician and the duties that comes with it. That never stopped her father from putting his family first, she says, and it was his example of family first that has inspired her to work hard but always come home to her family. Despite the time that requires her to work away from home, Christi places emphasis on time spent with her family.