About Norma

Norma Chávez

All politics is local. No one understands this precept more than Norma Chávez. It has been the hallmark of her career as a community organizer and the touchstone for her success as a Texas legislator. From the neighborhood to the statehouse, Norma has never lost her touch with the people, or her instinctive ability to bring together coalitions of stakeholders with common interests and organize them to affect policymaking decisions. She possesses a rare, panoramic perspective on lawmaking – a view of the legislative process not only from the inside out but also from the ground up. 

A community organizer at heart, Norma’s career began at the grassroots level, walking blocks and knocking on doors in her native El Paso, educating her neighbors on local issues. Her early organizing activities focused on cultural, environmental, and human rights matters. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, Norma spearheaded efforts to preserve Mexican-American culture in her home city, teamed with other concerned citizens to successfully oppose efforts to build a low-level nuclear waste site in Sierra Blanca, and spent two years as a public action organizer for the United Farm Workers Union. 

In 1990, Norma embarked on a citizen’s campaign that ultimately launched her career in public service. After receiving notice of federal legislation that would impact NCN Texaco, the Chávez family-owned gas station, Norma intensively studied and researched proposed amendments to the 1990 Federal Clean Air Act, she organized a successful citizens’ lobby of El Paso small businesses, and car dealers from across the state, and other interest groups to defeat centralized automobile emissions testing. As part of this five-year statewide and national effort, Norma testified before the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in Washington and the Texas Air Control Board in Austin. Ultimately, she was instrumental in the passage of state legislation that preserved the rights of small businesses to perform emissions testing and repairs, protect the environment, and ensured a balance between business and environmental interests, while saving thousands of Texas jobs. 

Shortly after this successful campaign, Norma announced her candidacy to represent the people of Texas House District 76 in El Paso. She was elected and took office in January 1997, the first Latina elected to the Texas Legislature from El Paso. As Norma gained experience and seniority, she served in increasingly influential roles, including as Chair of the House Border and International Affairs Committee and Vice Chair of three standing House committees – Rules and Resolutions, Human Services, and Calendars. As a member of the House Appropriations Committee, she became intricately familiar with the budget-writing process. During her 14-year tenure as a state representative, Norma authored and passed dozens of bills, amendments, and appropriation riders, but she also became adept at killing bills harmful to her constituents’ interests and the State of Texas. Her legislative career was marked by dramatic achievements in the areas of accountability and transparency in government; the arts and Mexican-American culture; bank lending practices; the courts; economic development; education; financial responsibility; financial assistance for economically distressed areas; gaming; health care and medical research; immigration; pension solvency; public safety; skills development for workers; senior citizen care; transportation; veterans affairs; and voting and civil rights, among others. 


Norma served in the Texas House of Representatives from 1997 to 2011. She produced and hosted an independent radio talk show in El Paso called “Border Talk,” leading an ongoing public dialogue on issues affecting the borderlands, Latino interests, politics, culture, music, and the arts. Norma is the founder of Texico Communications, a communications and public strategy consulting business, she is an Airbnb Superhost, and is a dedicated caregiver of her parents. Norma draws on her intricate knowledge of grassroots organizing and consensus-building, her insider’s understanding of parliamentary procedure and the legislative process, and her media and communications skills to help advance issues. Norma Chávez graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a Bachelor of Arts in Government, Business Minor.

Pol. Adv. Paid for by Norma Chávez Campaign, Carlos Rivera Treasurer       ©Copyright. All rights reserved.

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