The special election lineups are set

From the Trib:

Rep. Jessica Farrar

Democrats in HD-28 have coalesced around Elizabeth “Eliz” Markowitz, who was the only Democrat to file. Markowitz, a Katy teacher, unsuccessfully ran last year for State Board of Education District 7, which overlaps with HD-28.

Six Republicans, meanwhile, filed for the seat, making it likely that there will be a runoff featuring one of them and Markowitz, who will not have to split the Democratic vote. The GOP contenders are:

  • Anna Allred, a Houston anesthesiologist from the same doctor group as [outgoing Rep. John] Zerwas
  • Gary Gates, a Rosenberg businessman who has unsuccessfully run for several other offices, most recently railroad commissioner in 2016
  • Gary J. Hale, a Katy business owner who has his own intelligence firm and is a retired intelligence official with the Drug Enforcement Administration
  • Tricia Krenek, a Katy attorney and former member of the Fulshear City Council
  • Sarah Laningham, a Richmond woman who works in sales and unsuccessfully ran for House District 14 in 2018
  • Clinton D. Purnell, a Katy man who works in logistics and customs compliance


The HD-148 candidates:

  • Rob Block (D)
  • Kendra Yarbrough Camarena (D)
  • Chris Carmona (I)
  • Carol Denson (D)
  • Anna Eastman (D)
  • Adrian Garcia (D)
  • Terah Isaacson (D)
  • Michele Leal (D)
  • Ryan McConnico (R)
  • Mia Mundy (D)
  • Anna Núñez (D)
  • Luis La Rotta (R)
  • Penny “Morales” Shaw (D)
  • Alva Trevino (D)
  • Chris Watt (D)

See here for my interview with Markowitz. Most of these HD148 candidates we’ve discussed before. One of the four new names is Ryan McConnico, who was Farrar’s Republican opponent in 2018. Of the other three, the only one I can positively identify is Michele Leal, though there’s not yet any biographical info on her Facebook page or nascent campaign webpage. Here’s the public part of her LinkedIn profile, which notes her past presidency of the Latin Women’s Initiative, which in turn tells me she also goes by Michele Leal Farah. As for Rob Block and Carol Denson, I can find people with those names, but none that I can say with any degree of certainty are the people who filed for this election. If you know something about them, please leave a comment.

Three other points of note: Like Campos (who lists each candidate’s occupation), I don’t know what the deal is with the quotes around Penny Shaw’s maiden name. I don’t know if longtime Republican Chris Carmona is calling himself an independent due to a pure-hearted change of mind or a cynical attempt to differentiate himself from the other Republicans. And despite filing a CTA, it appears that Anna Nunez did not follow through and enter the race. Not sure what happened there.

I do plan to do some interviews, how many is yet to be determined. In the meantime, there’s your field. The candidates from the third legislative special election, in HD100 to succeed new Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson, are also in the Trib story. What do you think?

UPDATE: Apparently, the omission of Anna Núñez from the Trib list of HD148 candidates was the result of an error by the Secretary of State, which has now been corrected. My apologies for my role in extending that error.

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4 Responses to The special election lineups are set

  1. Rob Block says:

    Hello! I’m Rob Block, I’m a Houston Firefighter, a former community organizer with Avenue CDC in the Near Northside and a Social Worker that was a legislative intern for Representative Farrar in the 85th Legislature. I’m on the Community Leadership Team (board) of the Near Northside Super Neighborhood Council and my civic club Avenue Place Civic Club.

    You can learn more at and

  2. Hi Charles- actually you and I have met on numerous occasions at the home of mutual friends on Norhill. I am a Heights resident for 20 years, used to live in Lindale Park and a short time in Oak Forest. I’ve followed your blog for years. I look forward to an interview. Alva Treviño

  3. blank says:

    What do you think?

    If Eliz wins, she will be the Connor Lamb of the Texas House, meaning that the House will probably flip in 2020.

  4. asmith says:

    The best candidate in HD100 to replace Mayor Eric Johnson is Daniel Davis Clayton, who has worked for Senator Royce West and Rep Toni Rose in the legislature. He’s got the relationships with other state reps and knows the issues facing the district. 100 is probably the most diverse house district in North Texas. The heart of the district is still south dallas and far east dallas. The GOP packed it some more in 2011 by adding affluent liberal enclaves east of white rock lake.

    Lorraine Birabil has backing from the Frost/Veasey machine since she worked as a district aide to Congressman Veasey. I would imagine Clayton and Birabil will be in the December runoff.

    This will be a long election cycle in 100 as more candidates will run in the March 2020 primary with a higher turnout than the special election.

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