Meet Judge Maria T. Jackson
Judge Maria T. Jackson presided over the 339th State District Felony Court in Houston, Harris County, Texas for 11 years before stepping down to run for county commissioner. She oversaw more than 100 jury trials that ran the gamut from low-level drug offenses to capital murder cases.
While on the bench, Judge Jackson implemented sweeping reforms for how DWI probationers were handled in her court. The changes were so innovative they have since been adopted by the Harris County Probation Department as a best practice countywide.
Judge Jackson was appointed to serve as the presiding Judge in Cameron County, Texas by the chief justice of the Texas Supreme Court.
The United States Secret Service, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the District Attorneys of Alabama, and the National Judicial College selected Judge Jackson as one of twenty-four judges from across the country to receive training at the National Computer Forensics Institute.
In 2003, Judge Jackson was appointed as a full-time municipal court judge for the City of Houston. During her tenure with the City, she also served as a trainer and instructor for the Texas Municipal Courts Education Center.
Prior to taking the bench, she was a municipal bond attorney and a certified mediator.
B.A., Political Science – University of Texas at Arlington
Doctor of Jurisprudence –Texas A&M School of Law, formerly Texas Wesleyan School of Law
Awards and Recognition
First African American to receive “Best Criminal Court Judge of 2011” from the Houston Press
People’s Choice Award in 2012 and 2013 from D-Mars.com Business Journal
Named “Top 30 Most Influential Women of Houston” in 2014
Recognized by the Lebanon Times magazine in 2015
Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo Black Heritage Honoree
Houston Bar Association-CLE Distinguished Member
Houston Influential 40 Under 40
“Women of Power and Purpose” Award in 2013 from the Houston Sun.
“Woman of Now” Hall of Fame Honoree, U.S. House of Representatives, 18th Congressional District.
Professional Activities and Memberships
As a judge, Maria chaired the Security Committee of the Board of District Judges and served as a member of the board’s Administration of Justice and the Legislative Committees.
She served on the Mental Health Task Force Board and is currently a member of the State Bar of Texas, Texas State Bar College, Garland R. Walker American Inns of Court, American Bar Association, Houston Lawyers Association, Houston Bar Association, and the Mexican American Bar Association. She serves on the Harris County Bench Bar Pro Bono Awards Committee and is a fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation and the Houston Bar Foundation. She previously served as past Co- Chair on the Speakers Bureau Committee for the Houston Bar Association and on the Board of Directors for Texas A&M University School of Law.
Judge Jackson volunteered as a mentor for at-risk youth, high school students, law students and young lawyers. She is a lifetime member of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo and an alumni member of the Houston Chapter of Links, Inc., where she served as chair of the Services to Youth program.
Judge Jackson is a sustaining member of the Harris County Democratic Party, a member of Lakewood Church and a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority.