By: Chelsea Davis-Bibb, Ed.D.

FORT BEND-Growing up in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Commissioner Grady Prestage had a great upbringing as he was exposed to a lot of positive things. He spent a lot of time around the campus of Southern University and even lived close to the campus as his parents were both professors there. “My parents kept us grounded. We had all the opportunities you could possibly afford a child,” Commissioner Prestage stated.

Commissioner Prestage received his bachelor’s degree in civil engineering because of his guidance counselor, who encouraged him to pursue that degree. During the 1970’s, counselors were encouraging high achieving students to go into engineering, science, accounting, and computer science. “I chose civil engineering as it fit my interest and I had an entry level job when I got out of college.”

Since his mother was a political science professor, Commissioner Prestage has always been involved in politics. “We were always exposed to local politics and always had discussions about national politics.” Since his mother was the department chair at Southern, there were always speakers who would come to campus and sometimes they would come to their home for receptions, or even stayed as a guest since Black people did not have “total access to public accommodations” back then.

He was also very active in high school as he was involved in student council and was active in college. When he moved to Houston in 1980, within two years, he was Civic Club President in his neighborhood. Being a leader has always come naturally for Commissioner Prestage as he stated, “I was ready to serve in leadership positions in any type of situation I found myself in.”

Commissioner Prestage has had a career span of 32 years. He was elected to the Fort Bend Commissioners in November 1990, and this became the first time an African American has served on the Fort Bend Commissioners Court since the 1880’s reconstruction period.

When discussing his role as commissioner, he mentioned that he is in one of those roles or levels of government where you can actually do something. “You don’t have to build consensus, send things to committees, you don’t have to go through a lot of the processes that you have to at other levels of government,” he stated. The commissioner’s court is made up of five members, which include one county judge elected countywide and four commissioners elected from single member precincts. According to Commissioner Prestage, “you only need three votes to get something done.”

As commissioner, there are some obstacles that can make his job challenging. One of these obstacles is responding to the rapid growth of Fort Bend County. “Since I’ve been in office, Fort Bend County has grown from 225,000 to 850,000.” This makes it hard in regard to budget demands. “When the population grows, so does the jail population and juvenile population, roads have to be improved, widened, and extended to account for the mobility needs. More rooftops and new subdivisions cause drainage problems, and the public health demand is more.”

Another issue is the revenue cap that the state legislator placed on counties. Regardless of what situation the county may be in, “you can’t increase your budget three and a half percent stating, “They put the cap on us but have no responsibility to provide any of the services.”

Two budgets have been done since that law took effect, and last year, Fort Bend County was fortunate that they had federal money from the pandemic. They will be able to get by for a few years, but it will “only be a temporary fix.” Commissioner Prestage described his county as “one of the best counties in the world.” Fort Bend County is very diverse, and people live there in “peace and harmony.” Commissioner Prestage said that “folks brag about being from Fort Bend County,” and he wants to keep that going.

He also wants to make sure that the next generation is ready to assume their position in leading and progressing the county forward. “I try to mentor, train, and expose the next generation to the benefits of my experience, so they won’t make some of the same mistakes that I did. I would like someone to come behind me who’s ready to serve and do a better job than I have done and move forward.”

When discussing his legacy, Commissioner Prestage wants to be remembered as a “transformative figure.” I want people to know that “I came to the county when it was still a rural county and we turned it into an urban county and made the quality of life better for everybody.” People had high expectations and fear when he took office, but he never let their thoughts impact his confidence and his ability to lead. He confidently stated, “I’ve been able to prove to them that I was ready to lead.” Commissioner Prestage won the primary seat in March and is looking forward to the November election.


October 16, 2023, HOUSTON, TX – Congressional Candidate Amanda Edwards has raised over $1 million in less than 4 months, a substantial sum that helps bolster the frontrunner status of the former At-Large Houston City Council Member in her bid for U.S. Congress. Edwards raised over $433,000 in Q3 of 2023. This strong Q3 report expands on a successful Q2 where Edwards announced just 11 days after declaring her candidacy that she had raised over $600,000. With over $829,000 in cash-on-hand at the end of the September 30th financial reporting period, Edwards proves again that she is the clear frontrunner in the race. “I am beyond grateful for the strong outpouring of support that will help me to win this race and serve the incredible people of the 18th Congressional District,” said Edwards. “We are at a critical juncture in our nation’s trajectory, and we need to send servant leaders to Congress who can deliver the results the community deserves. The strong support from our supporters will help us to cultivate an 18th Congressional District where everyone in it can thrive.” Edwards said. “Amanda understands the challenges that the hard-working folks of the 18th Congressional District face because she has never lost sight of who she is or where she comes from; she was born and raised right here in the 18th Congressional District of Houston,” said Kathryn McNiel, spokesperson for Edwards’ campaign. Edwards has been endorsed by Higher Heights PAC, Collective PAC, Krimson PAC, and the Brady PAC. She has also been supported by Beto O’Rourke, among many others. About Amanda: Amanda is a native Houstonian, attorney and former At-Large Houston City Council Member. Amanda is a graduate of Eisenhower High School in Aldine ISD. Edwards earned a B.A. from Emory University and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. Edwards practiced law at Vinson & Elkins LLP and Bracewell LLP before entering public service. Edwards is a life-long member of St. Monica Catholic Church in Acres Homes. For more information, please visit

As September 13th rolls around, we extend our warmest birthday wishes to the creative powerhouse, Tyler Perry, a man whose indomitable spirit and groundbreaking work have left an indelible mark on the world of entertainment. With his multifaceted talents as an actor, playwright, screenwriter, producer, and director, Tyler Perry has not only entertained but also inspired audiences worldwide, particularly within the African-American community, where his influence and role have been nothing short of powerful. Born in New Orleans, Louisiana, in 1969, Tyler Perry’s journey to stardom was a path riddled with adversity. Raised in a turbulent household, he found refuge in writing, using it as a therapeutic outlet. This period of introspection gave rise to one of his most iconic creations, Madea, a vivacious, no-nonsense grandmother who would later become a beloved figure in Perry’s works, offering a unique blend of humor and profound life lessons. Despite facing numerous challenges, including rejection and financial struggles, Perry’s determination and unwavering belief in his abilities propelled him forward. In 1992, he staged his first play, “I Know I’ve Been Changed,” which, although met with limited success, was a pivotal moment in his career. Unfazed by initial setbacks, Perry continued to hone his craft, and by 1998, he had successfully produced a string of stage plays that showcased his storytelling prowess.

Calling all teenage student-athletes! If you have dreams of playing college soccer and wish to represent an HBCU, the HBCU ID Camp is your golden opportunity. From 8 am to 5 pm on November 11-12, Houston Sports Park will transform into a hub for aspiring male and female soccer players. Coaches from HBCUs across the nation will be present to evaluate, scout, and offer valuable feedback. Moreover, they might even spot the next soccer prodigy to join their collegiate soccer programs. This camp is not just about honing your soccer skills but also a chance to connect with the HBCU soccer community. You’ll learn the ins and outs of what it takes to excel on the field and in the classroom, which is crucial for a college athlete. The HBCU ID Camp is an excellent platform to network with coaches, learn from experienced athletes, and take the first steps toward your college soccer journey. To secure your spot at this incredible event, don’t forget to register [here](insert registration link). Space is limited to 120 participants, so make sure to reserve your place before it’s too late. It’s time to turn your dreams of playing college soccer into a reality.

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