- Life of Public Service: Military, Prosecutor, and Teacher
Ted completed a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science at Abilene Christian University and enlisted in the Air Force Reserves in a C-130 Unit stationed at Ellington Air Force Base. He then completed a law degree from University of Houston Law Center.
With his driving ambition to serve those in need, Ted accepted a position as Prosecutor with the Harris County District Attorney’s Office. During his eight years of service, he became a Chief Felony Prosecutor and tried the most serious of all criminal cases. He never lost a jury trial.
During this time, Ted chose to share his experience with students and taught criminal justice courses at the University of Houston.
- Judicial Experience
When Ted Poe was appointed as a felony court judge in Harris County he became one of the youngest judges ever appointed in Texas. Judge Poe was one of the first Republicans elected to the bench since Reconstruction.
Judge Poe was elected to serve Harris County six times over the 20+ years and moved over 20,000 cases during his time on the bench. Judge Poe saw problems with the punishment of criminals in Harris County and he believed that individuals convicted of crime are served best by a sentence that teaches the consequences of their actions. His innovative punishments included, ordering thieves to carry signs, requiring abusive spouses to publicly apologize, ordering murderers to place a photo of their victims on the wall of their prison cell.
Judge Poe delivered over 500 training sessions and keynote speeches to law enforcement, attorney’s and judge’s organizations and private citizens in the areas of: leadership techniques, gang investigation, probation and parole, narcotics, school safety, punishment techniques, victim’s rights and docket management. In addition, Judge Poe conducted training at the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Virginia and at West Point. In his over 20 years in the judiciary, Poe was named:
- Outstanding National Victim Advocate, National Victim’s Center.
- Outstanding Judge, Foundation for Improvement of Justice.
- Outstanding Instructor, Texas District Attorneys Association.
- Best Judge, Kansas Peace Officers Association.
- Outstanding Young Lawyer, Houston Bar Association.
- Outstanding District Judge, Houston Police Officers Association.
- Outstanding District Judge, Harris County Deputy Sheriffs (twice).
Judge Poe saw the tragedies of victims of crime and the abuse of children. It is this deep passion that resulted in his service to the following initiatives.
- The Children’s Assessment Center of Houston
- The National Children’s Alliance in Washington DC
- Child Abuse Prevention Council
- Parents of Murdered Children
- Mothers Against Drunk Driving
- CASA-Child Advocates.
- U.S. Congressman – 2nd District of Texas
Judge Poe took his desire to serve the greater good to another level when he decided to run for United States Congress in 2004.
First elected in November, 2004 to the 109th Congress, Congressman Poe carried with him the passion to help those hurt most by crime: the victims. The abused, assaulted and the neglected need a voice in Congress and the first piece of legislation he introduced was the Adam Walsh’s Child Predator Act of 2005. This bill creates a National Sex Offender notification requirement which was incorporated into the Child Safety Act of 2005 that was passed by the House.
Carrying his grandmother’s examples forward, Congressman Poe continues to serve the public. Since 2007 he has spoken on the floor of the House of Representatives more than any other member of Congress on the issues most important to him and the district. The most frequent areas of concentration include:
Energy independence which is vital to the area. Congressman Poe introduced the DRILL NOW Act the last two terms in Congress to end off shore moratoriums on domestic drilling and allow states to share in federal oil lease revenues.
Border security is essential to our great state of Texas. Congressman Poe has traveled to the Texas-Mexico border over a dozen times to see the problems caused by a lack of border security. Combating illegal immigration and supporting law enforcement on the local border led to Congressman Poe’s push to exonerate wrongfully convicted Border Patrol Agents Ramos and Compean for doing their job and protecting our border. He was appointed by President Bush as the U.S. House of Representatives delegate to the United Nations General Assembly and selected for a Congressional delegation to visit and observe conditions at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba which allowed him to focus upon national security.
Support of our military and visiting our Troops. This is so important to Congressman Poe that he spends many holidays going to see firsthand the sacrifices made by our fighting men and women. Congressman Poe has traveled to Iraq and Afghanistan numerous times. Additionally, he was honored as one of only two U.S. Representatives asked to observe the first free elections in Iraq in 2005.
Fighting for lower taxes, less government control, jobs creation and upholding our Constitutional Rights are core to Texas and conservative values. One example of his fight for these areas is summed up in the debate over healthcare. Congressman Poe introduced legislation in 2009 that challenges the constitutionality of government-mandated healthcare coverage. Nowhere does the Constitution allow for the government to force us to buy anything.
- Congressional Committees
Few members of Congress have served as a judge. This unique perspective allows him to contribute significantly to his work in the House. He currently serves on the following committees.
House Committee on the Judiciary
- Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism and Homeland Security
- Subcommittee on Immigration, Citizenship, Refugees, Border Security and International Law Membership
- Subcommittee on Intellectual Property, Competition and the Internet
House Committee on Foreign Affairs
- Subcommittee on Europe
- Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation and Trade
- Subcommittee on International Organizations, Human Rights, and Oversight
Fighting for improved infrastructure for the Second Congressional District, Congressman Poe served for two terms on the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.
- Congressional Awards and Honors
Congressman Poe’s core areas of concentration are exhibited here in awards he received for his work in the following areas.
U.S. Chamber of Commerce – Spirit of Enterprise Award for work on behalf of small businesses.
Southeast Texas Congressional Partnership Award – A warded for his work on economic and community development in Jefferson County by the Southeast Texas Regional Planning Commission.
Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council – “Small Business Champion” award for protecting small business and promoting entrepreneurship.
National Association of Manufacturers – “Award for Manufacturing Legislative Excellence” in recognition of his strong voting record in support of American manufacturing and a pro-growth, pro-jobs agenda.
Alliance for Worker Freedom – “Guardian of Worker Freedom” award for supporting freedom and opportunity for American workers.
Americans for Tax Reform – “Hero of the Taxpayer Award” in recognition of leadership on behalf of taxpayers.
The 60 Plus Association – “Super Friend of Seniors” for his strong support of Senior Citizens and senior issues.
American Shareholders Association – “Friend of the Shareholder Award” for his strong record of protecting shareholders and promoting investment.
Property Rights Alliance – “Protector of Property Rights” for defense of both intellectual and physical property rights including his outspoken views on eminent domain abuse.
Friends of the Border Patrol – “Border Defender of the Year” for his leadership on border security, combating illegal immigration, his support of law enforcement and his efforts to exonerate Border Patrol Agents Ramos and Compean.
Federation of Americans for Immigration Reform – “We the People Award” for being a leader in the immigration reform movement.
Port Arthur News – “Best Politician Award” in recognition of his representation of Jefferson County in Congress.
Family Research Council – “True Blue Award” for leadership in defense of faith, family and freedom.
National Network to End Domestic Violence – “Visionary Leadership Award” for commitment ending violence against women through federal legislation building a stronger safety net for victims of domestic and sexual violence.
Texas Association Against Sexual Assault – “Social Change Award” awarded for dedication to federal Child Victim legislation.
National Organization for Victim Assistance – “NOVA Morton Bard Award” awarded for preserving federal funding for national crime victim programs and for outstanding advocacy on behalf of victims of crime.
Texas Department of Criminal Justice Victim’s Services – “Senator Ralph Yarborough Allied Professional Award” for outstanding leadership by a non-victim service professional who has made a contribution to victim rights and services.
Trees For Houston – “Jim Rylander Memorial Award” for an extraordinary contribution to the greening of Houston.
The Park People – “Visionary Award” for Congressman Poe’s work in securing $22.8 million for freeway landscaping in the Houston area. The Park People are a Houston non-profit citizens’ organization that advocates for and participates in restoring, preserving and expanding parks, natural areas and trails for present and future generations.