September 24, 2023

Houston Black History: Senfronia Thompson

Texas Representative Senfronia Thompson has been a true champion fighting for social, economic and criminal justice reform throughout her career, which has earned her the respect and admiration of many people from Texas and beyond.

Rep. Thompson’s legacy is one built from a strong principle of faith, an unwavering defense of freedom, and a staunch belief in fairness. She exemplifies the American ideal that one person can make a difference.

Thompson was born in Booth, Texas and raised in Houston. She represents District 141, which includes northeast Houston and Humble.  She has the distinct honor of being the longest-serving woman and African American in Texas history.

Thompson received her high school diploma from Booker T. Washington High School and a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Texas Southern University. She has a Master of Education from Prairie View A&M University, a Juris Doctorate degree (JD) from Thurgood Marshall School of Law and a Master in International Law from the University of Houston.  She is also a proud member of the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority.

A Houston attorney and award-winning legislator, Rep. Thompson, affectionately known by her colleagues as “Ms. T,” was inducted into the Texas Women’s Hall of Fame on May 6, 2014.

Among her many accomplishments, Thompson has sponsored laws banning racial profiling, secured state funding to install video cameras and audio equipment in every police car to be used at all stops; ended “debtor’s prison” to prevent people from ending in a cycle of debt, jail time and license suspension simply because they cannot afford to pay their traffic tickets or other fine-only offenses, and has led the fight against human trafficking long before people even recognized what human trafficking was.

She also authored the Chief Justice Jack Pope Act which increases funding for legal aid to help low-income Texans with their civil cases and the Michael Morton Act, to create a fairer criminal justice system in Texas.  She is a true Texas Treasure and has become one of the best symbols of all that is possible.


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