City Cast

How This Houstonian Fell In Love With Politics

Brooke Lewis
Posted on November 3   |   Updated on November 9
Taral Patel poses inside a neighborhood wearing a blue shirt and khaki pants.

Taral Patel is running for Fort Bend County Commisioner Precinct 3. (Provided by Patel)

Taral Patel is no stranger to Fort Bend politics. As chief of staff for Fort Bend County Judge KP George, he navigated flooding events, the challenges of COVID-19, and protecting residents during Winter Storm Uri. Now, he’s running for Fort Bend County commissioner where he plans to upgrade broken roads, ensure better emergency services during hurricanes, and provide other solutions to help the county improve.

What first sparked your interest in local government?

“I got involved in local government as a Fort Bend high school student when my favorite teachers were handed layoff notices due to the state legislature's focus on defunding public education at the time. We created a campaign called "No Teacher Left Behind" where we staged walk outs, sit-ins, letter writing campaigns, and more to engage with our local representatives like the superintendents of Fort Bend ISD, Katy ISD, LCISD, state reps, and more. Through that effort fighting for Fort Bend teachers, my journey in community engagement was forever sparked.”

Why did you decide to run for commissioner?

“Fort Bend County is at a crossroads. In the next couple of years, about a million people will call Fort Bend County home. As the community I have always called home continues to grow exponentially, I want to bring my experience from local, state, and federal sectors and the private business I've run and worked for to help build a more effective, efficient, and engaging Fort Bend County for all the diverse communities that live here.”

If you could pick one restaurant in Houston area to eat at every weekend, what would it be?

“Definitely Nirmanz. Not only did they step up to help feed our Fort Bend County community families during COVID, their unique touch on dishes is both creative and delicious. You can see a splash of ingenuity put into all of their work just in the decor, which is a mix of traditional Indian (Gujarati and Rajasthani styles) in a modern art deco like environment.”

Want to learn more about another Houstonian running for office? Chris Hollins shares what it's like to run for city controller.

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