Royce West was first elected to the Texas Senate in November 1992. Since taking office, he has represented the 23rd Senatorial District on behalf of the citizens of Dallas County in the Texas Legislature. During his tenure, Senator West has been named by Texas Monthly as one of the 25 most powerful people in Texas politics, been selected for the magazine's biennial “Ten Best Legislators in Texas” list, and has twice been named as an “Honorable Mention.” Senator West has also received mention on the Associated Press' “Movers and Shakers” list, as well as the Texas Insider's "Best Legislators" list.
Senator West is Vice Chair of the Senate Higher Education Committee and is a member of Senate committees on Education Finance, and Transportation. Following the 85th Legislative Session (2017) Senator West was appointed to the Texas Commission on Public School Finance and the Senate Select Committee on Violence in Schools and School Security. During the 83rd Legislative Session (2013), the senator served on the Senate Select Committee on Redistricting and the Joint Committee on Oversight of Higher Education Governance, Excellence & Transparency.
Senator West’s key initiatives include the creation of college admission opportunities for all students, including the establishment of the University of North Texas at Dallas, Dallas' first state-supported, four-year university, a new law school in downtown Dallas, and a Pharmacy school. Increasing financial aid for college students and funding for the TEXAS grants programs have been priorities for Senator West as well. His legislation created the Texas Juvenile Crime Prevention Center at Prairie View A&M University; increased funding for at-risk youth programs, awarded greater compensation to victims of violent crime, established new standards for child care, enhanced enforcement of protective orders and made better use of criminal justice resources through legislation that created a system of progressive sanctions.
Senator West passed legislation which created a kinship care program whereby qualified relatives can receive state support to help raise children who could otherwise become part of the foster care system. During the 2017 Session, he was able to pass legislation to make the kinship care provisions permanent. As chairman of the Senate Intergovernmental Relations Committee in 2011, the senator also successfully authored a package of bills to address burdensome practices of homeowners' associations.
Senator West is a champion for public education, including new programs that provide curriculum choices for public schools. He has promoted school and student accountability efforts, opposed A-F implementation and fights tirelessly for more funding and educational resources for Texas school children.
As one of the original authors of the Top 10% Rule that provides automatic admission to state universities for Texas high school students who graduate at the top of their classes, Senator West has continued his advocacy for the program and has successfully lead efforts to oppose those who would abolish it.
Senator West passed the original legislation that placed in-car video in Texas law enforcement patrol vehicles. In 2015, he continued this precedent of equipping law enforcement with up-to-date technology by passing comprehensive legislation that established statewide policy on the use of body-worn cameras and provided funding to assist police and sheriffs' departments with the costs of a body camera program.
Senator West's advocacy for public safety and criminal justice reform continued during the 2017 Legislative Session with his work to pass a bill which will provide grant money to law enforcement agencies for the purchase of high-grade, bulletproof vests. SB30 will instruct citizens and officers on how they should respond during traffic stops and other interactions. Updates to the state's driver training manual will include similar information. In addition, other legislation passed by Senator West during the 85th Session will require Texas law enforcement agencies to record the interrogations of those arrested on felony charges.
In addition to his senatorial duties, Senator West is the managing partner in the law firm of West & Associates, L.L.P. He is also a caring father to his children, a grandfather and devoted husband to Carol R. West, CPA, as well as an active deacon of Good Street Baptist Church.
Molly Bradley Hudgens is in her twentieth year as an educator in the Cheatham County School System where she works as a school counselor at Sycamore Middle School in Pleasant View, Tennessee. In addition to her counseling role, Mrs. Hudgens is also a member of SMS’s Crisis Management and Response Team and the Cheatham County School System’s Safety Team. She has also served as a trainer for the Cheatham County Sheriff’s Department.
After a personal experience in college, her interest in violence prevention and safety sparked a desire to educate others who work with intervening in the lives of potentially violent teenagers. Her in-depth study on school shootings and the teenagers who commit these acts, “Recognizing Red Flags,” has been utilized to train professionals in the fields of education, law enforcement, juvenile probation, and juvenile court. The training focuses on understanding the three types of school shooters and how to use threat assessment tools as an intervention to prevent violent acts in a school and community setting.
Mrs. Hudgens put her training to use on September 28, 2016, when she talked a student with a loaded handgun out of committing a mass shooting at Sycamore Middle School. The 2004-2005 and 2016-2017 Sycamore Middle School and Cheatham County Middle School Teacher of the
The Conference was very informative and had practical roundtable sessions. I recommend this conference to any Head of Security. Its a great way to network with fellow professionals.