Annise Parker

Professor in the Practice, Rice University. Senior Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer at Neighborhood Centers, Inc.

Annise Parker served six years as Mayor of Houston, after terms as Council Member and Controller.  A Fellow at the Doerr Institute for New Leaders and Professor in the Practice at Rice University and Senior Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer at Neighborhood Centers, Inc., she is also a FirstNet board member and Department of Homeland Security Secretary’s Advisory Council member.

She's only the 10th woman and first openly GLBT mayor of a major American city.  In 2010 Time magazine named Mayor Parker one of the 100 most influential people in the world.  She was named top US and seventh ranked world mayor in 2014 by City Mayors Foundation. Honors include Scenic Houston’s Scenic Visionary Award, Guardian of the Human Spirit Award from Holocaust Museum Houston, Guardian of the Bay Award from Galveston Bay Foundation, Rice University Distinguished Alumna, and Local Arts Leadership by Americans For the Arts. 

Parker was a member of President Obama’s Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience, chaired the U.S. Conference of Mayors Criminal and Social Justice Committee, was a steering committee member of the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group, and served on the boards of Texas Environmental Research Consortium and Houston Galveston Area Council. 

She is a past Fellow of the Institute of Politics at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government.  She worked for 20 years in oil and gas prior to entering politics, and co-owned Inklings, a lesbian/feminist bookstore for 10 years.