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Hon. Andy Brown

County Judge, Travis County, Texas

About Hon. Andy Brown

Andy Brown serves as the Travis County Judge. The County Judge presides over the Commissioners Court which oversees the county’s $1.4 billion annual budget, acts as the County’s chief administrator, and is the Director of Emergency Management for Travis County.

Judge Brown has prioritized criminal justice reform, health justice, and economic justice by modernizing the county government to work better for people, He has focused on improving public safety by investing in evidence based best practices and promoting options that get to the root causes of community instability.

Judge Brown has supported a community driven approach to reforming the county’s criminal justice system, He stopped the construction of a new jail facility and instead is focusing resources on evidence-based reforms. This includes leading a community-wide initiative supported by grassroots organizers, law enforcement, the business community, and other stakeholders to support the construction of a new mental health diversion center. More than 40% of people in the Travis County jail have a serious mental illness. The diversion center will help to end the cycle of incarceration by providing care outside of the criminal legal system. He has also led an effort to improve access to justice and enhance fair representation by creating an office of holistic legal services for low-income residents and expanding access to counsel at a defendant's first appearance before a magistrate.

Since taking office, Judge Brown has significantly increased health care resources to historically underserved communities, including starting a mass COVID-19 vaccination effort prioritizing communities of color. He also passed Travis County’s first paid parental leave program, providing eight weeks of leave to parents for the birth, adoption, foster, or kinship placement of a child, and has advocated for abortion access and to protect trans kids and their families from harmful discrimination.

As one of the fastest growing communities in the country, Judge Brown has invested significant resources to improve access to affordable housing. Under Judge Brown’s leadership, the Commissioners Court voted to fund $110 million for housing for people experiencing homelessness which is anticipated to create as many as 3,000 additional housing units in Austin and Travis County through models like the Community First Village.

Before taking office, Judge Brown helped create the Sobering Center-Austin to serve as an alternative to jail for intoxicated people, started a successful law firm, and served on local boards and commissions. He grew up in Austin and graduated from The University of Texas School of Law. Andy previously served as legislative aide to former Texas Speaker of the House Pete Laney, campaign manager for Congressman Lloyd Doggett, law clerk for the US District Court in McAllen, finance director and senior advisor to Beto O’Rourke, and Travis County Democratic Party Chair.