Texas Politics
Profiling Texas Judges
Demographic Characteristics of Texas Judges by Court Type, 20031
  All
Judges
(n=3151)
Supreme
Court
(n=9)
Court of
Criminal
Appeals
(n=9)
Court of
Appeals
(n=80)
State
District
Courts
(n=420)
County
Courts
at Law &
Probate
Courts
(n=226)
Consti-
tutional
County
Courts
(n=254)
Justice
of the
Peace
Courts
(n=832)
Municipal
Courts
(n=1321)
Gender
Male (%) 72.4 77.8 55.6 59.5 73.9 71.2 90.9 69.4 69.7
Female (%) 27.6 22.2 44.4 40.5 26.1 28.8 9.1 30.6 30.3
Race/Ethnicity
African American (%) 2.6 22.2 0.0 2.5 3.2 2.6 0.4 3.3 2.2
Native American (%) 0.4 0.0 0.0 1.3 0.5 0.0 0.0 0.2 0.6
Asian/Pacific Islander (%) 0.2 0.0 0.0 1.3 0.2 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.3
Hispanic/Latino (%) 12.9 0.0 0.0 15.2 12.0 17.4 7.6 15.4 11.9
White, Non-Hispanic (%) 83.3 77.8 100.0 79.7 83.1 78.9 90.6 80.9 84.7
Other (%) 0.6 0.0 0.0 0.0 1.0 1.1 1.3 0.2 0.3
Average Age 55 50 60 57 52 57 54 58 55
Average Years Licensed2 26 24 30 27 26 25 26 24 26
long description of table

The typical Texas judge today is not a typical Texan. He is a non-Hispanic white male in his mid-to-late fifties. All appellate judges and judges in courts of general jurisdiction as well as many judges in courts of limited jurisdiction must compete in partisan elections. In recent years the state's judiciary has become more diverse than it once was, but as a group judges remain unrepresentative of the state's population. More than 83 percent of judges surveyed are non-Hispanic whites who, as of 2000, made up just over 52 percent of Texans. More than 72 percent are male, though just less than 50 percent of Texans are male. Only about 13 percent of judges are Latino and less than 2 percent are African American though these groups constitute 32 percent and almost 12 percent of the population respectively.

Source: Office of Court Administration. (full source, footnotes 1 and 2)