(Note: As I have done in past elections, I am running a series of Q&As for Democratic judicial candidates. This is intended to help introduce the candidates and their experiences to my readers. This year it’s mostly incumbents running for re-election, so it’s an opportunity to hear that talk about what they have accomplished. I am running these responses in the order that I receive them from the candidates. For more information about these and other Democratic candidates, including links to interviews and Q&As from the primary and runoff, see the Erik Manning spreadsheet.)
1. Who are you and in which court do you preside?
My name is Beau Miller and I am seeking re-election as the Judge of the 190th Judicial (Civil) District Court.
2. What kind of cases does this court hear?
A civil district court hears, among other things, matters involving constitutional questions, business disputes, land disputes, personal injury claims, and expunctions.
3. What have been your main accomplishments during your time on this bench?
During the Pandemic, I was the first judge in Harris County to preside over a Zoom bench trial during the COVID-19 pandemic, and the first judge in Harris County to preside over the first in-person jury trial during COVID-19.
In addition, I was responsible for producing the District Court of Harris County’s COVID-19 in-person jury trial information campaign which consisted of a website, www.HarrisCountyJuryService.com, pamphlet, and video highlighting the safety procedures and protocols in place for in-person jury trials in Harris County.
While on the bench, I have served as Chair of the Harris County District Courts’ Civil Trial Division’s Ethics and Continuing Legal Education Committee in 2020 and 2021 as well Co-Chair of the Houston Bar Association’s 2021-2022 LGBTQ+ Committee for which I received the Houston Bar Association’s President’s Award.
Currently, I am the Administrative Judge for the Harris County District Courts’ Civil Trial Division, Co-Chair of the Houston Bar Association’s 2022-2023 Civil/Appellate Bench Bar Conference Committee, and Co-Chair of the Houston Bar Association’s 2022-2023 LGBTQ+ Committee. In addition to my own docket, I am the Pretrial Judge of the Multidistrict Litigation In re July 27 Chemical Release Litigation and In re Channelview Flooding Litigation.
4. What do you hope to accomplish in your courtroom going forward?
My goal over the next four years is to continue to work hard to get cases resolved timely, fairly, efficiently, and effectively all the while treating everyone with respect who participates in our legal process.
5. Why is this race important?
As you might expect, judges have great power in how cases move through our judicial process. Without the right person on the bench, a case or dispute important to you or to someone you know may not get resolved as fairly and efficiently as it should. That could needlessly delay justice and increase costs and fees.
6. Why should people vote for you in November?
Over the last four years, I have a proven track record of treating everyone with respect and disposing the cases in my court fairly and efficiently. Before I took the bench in 2019, it took about 4-6 weeks for a case to get a hearing on any motion in 190th Civil District Court and the court had the average number of total cases across the entire civil trial division (24 civil courts). In my first month on the bench, we worked very hard to reduce the time to get a hearing to 2-3 weeks, which is still the case. And over the last three years, even despite the pandemic, the 190th now has one of the lowest case inventories across the entire division. If re-elected, I will keep working hard for our broader Houston community to be even more efficient while continuing to ensure everyone is treated fairly and with respect.