Born in 1978, I bounced around the country before finally settling back in my birthplace of Houston in 1990. My mother, my sister and I moved back to the southwest side of Houston that we left in the eighties, but things had changed. The drug activity and robberies had gotten out of control. Growing up in southwest Houston in the nineties was an everyday struggle. From witnessing random drug sales to being arrested myself, I was definitely exposed to a ‘non-traditional’ life before the age of 17.
Throughout my time at Sharpstown High School, I was active in many organizations and managed to maintain good grades which led to a Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo Scholarship. I was eventually accepted to the University of Texas at Austin and graduated in 2001 with a degree in Electrical Engineering. Following graduation, I worked as a Technical Sales Engineer in the Semiconductor industry for a Fortune 100 company.
My role as a sales engineer moved me to southern Ohio for two years before returning to Houston. In 2004, I continued my education at the historic Thurgood Marshall School of Law at Texas Southern University where I earned my Juris Doctorate. I was a member of various organizations in law school, including the Law Review where I became the Executive Editor. I also earned my license to practice before the United States Patent and Trademark Office before graduating from Thurgood.
At the beginning of my legal career, I focused primarily on patent and civil litigation in the private sector. In 2009, I accepted a position with the Harris County District Attorney’s Office. Having visited my mother in state prison and having been arrested myself, I had a very different understanding of my role as a prosecutor than that of a lot of my colleagues.
During my four years at the Harris County D.A.’s Office, I handled thousands of cases. The cases ranged from minor misdemeanor matters to serious felonies, including capital murder. I gained first chair jury trial experience trying over 37 cases to verdict in County and District Courts.
After leaving the District Attorney’s office, I entered into private practice defending both employees and employers in labor litigation. I also represented plaintiffs and defendants in various complex commercial litigation matters involving a wide range of financial, shareholder, and trade secret issues. In 2016, I became a founding partner of what is now Stephens Reed & Armstrong, PLLC.
In 2013, I was appointed to the Pearland Planning and Zoning Commission and in 2015, I became the first African-American elected city-wide to sit on the city council in Pearland. Throughout my tenure serving the citizens of Pearland, I’ve always advocated and fought for their interest in a way that was effective, while never compromising their core values.
As your U.S. Representative for Texas’ 22nd Congressional District, I will bring that same sense of advocacy and fight to make our healthcare system one that is fair, has affordable coverage options, and works for everyone. As a small business owner I understand how hard it is to make payroll, and keep the lights on while building a quality good or service for the community. I will make sure that small businesses receive the support and assistance they deserve. I plan on developing legislation that will assist in decreasing the recidivism rate for non-violent offenders in our criminal Justice system; and work to enact comprehensive immigration reform that reflects our country’s values.