Austin. Gov. Greg Abbott officially nominated former state senator Jane Nelson as Texas’ 115th secretary of state Thursday.
In December, Abbott announced his intention to select Nelson following the resignation of John B. Scott, who served as Secretary of State from October 2021 until the end of 2022.
The secretary of state, among other things, is the highest elected official, appointed by the governor and confirmed by the state senate. According to the Texas Constitution, they serve as long as the governor is in office.
“I am honored to continue my career as a public servant as Texas Secretary of State, and I am grateful for the trust (Abbott) has placed in me to fulfill this important new role,” Nelson said in a statement. state, I hope to continue to ensure the integrity of our state elections and increase transparency so that all Texas voters can have confidence in fair and accurate elections in each of our 254 counties.”
Nelson added that she also looks forward to working with many of the state’s international partners, including Mexico, the state’s largest trading partner, as a senior adviser and spokesperson for the governor on Texas border and Mexican affairs.
Nelson is a businesswoman and former teacher who was first elected to the Texas Senate in 1992 after serving two terms on the state Board of Education. As a state legislator, she chaired the Senate Health Committee longer than anyone in history before becoming the first woman to chair the Senate Finance Committee.
She oversaw four balanced budgets, as well as the creation of the Texas Institute for Cancer Research and Prevention. The press release said she was also influential in overhauling the state’s foster care system, expanding access to mental health care, and passing more than 30 bills to protect victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and human trafficking.
Nelson was due to be formally sworn in by Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice Nathan L. Hecht on Saturday.