Bill Brannon to Become Next Texas Democratic Party Executive Director

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Normally this news would want to make me go bang my head against the wall slowly. But I half to admit that I wasn't really expecting much from the state party anyways until a new chair is elected at the 2012 state party convention. Of course, somebody has to fill in until then. Best of luck to outgoing ED Ruben Hernandez on his next venture. And best of luck to Bill for taking on a thankless job.

(Austin, TX) – Today, Texas Democratic Party Chairman Boyd Richie announced that he will appoint Bill Brannon as TDP Executive Director, effective July 1. Outgoing TDP Executive Director Ruben Hernandez will transition out at the end of July.

“I've thought long and hard on this decision, and I'm very confident that Bill will do a tremendous job at the helm of the TDP,” said Boyd Richie. “Bill has spent a lifetime working to foster inclusion, coordination and cooperation in Texas Democratic politics and he works well with grassroots organizers, officeholders and major donors, all of whom are important to Democratic success.  Bill's leadership will allow the TDP to continue and strengthen its fundraising, political, organizational and communications tasks.”

“I cannot say enough about the job Ruben Hernandez has done for the Texas Democratic Party,” Richie added. “In six years as Executive Director, Ruben's guidance has enabled TDP to build an infrastructure that is second to none among state Democratic parties, and he has earned the respect and appreciation of Texas Democrats.”

Bill Brannon has been professionally involved in politics for over 30 years. He has been part of over 150 campaigns at all levels and in virtually all positions. As an administrator, Bill has directed numerous campaign staffs and has over ten years experience as the District Director for two congressional offices. Bill has participated in the Texas Democratic Party at all levels – as an activist, Precinct Chair, County Chair and SDEC member.

Bill currently serves as Deputy Political Director for Party Operations. He lives in Sulphur Springs with his wife Vali and will relocate to Austin.


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Former Publisher & Owner of the Burnt Orange Report. Political Thinker, Digital Explorer, and Time Traveler.


  1. Keeping Up Appearances
    Bill Brannon is keeping up appearances and trying hard to mitigate the financial problem that both state and county parties are facing. I suspect that Boyd Richie and Rick Cofer will attempt to fill a big hole where Dennis Speight, the AFL-CIO office in Austin, and the TTL used to be.

    I guess there will be a state convention in Houston next year, but I wonder if the TDP will not have to borrow money to stage it.

    I am afraid that the old hands and, for that matter, the young fogies, do not recognize and will ignore fundamental problems that the state party has.

    That is why innovation at the regional level is critical.

    Both the “Speaker's Claque” and the “Local Chapter of the DCCC” financial models are still twitching but essentially dead. This will doom whatever desperate measures can be improvised in the absence of real strategy, including a viable new business model, scalable technology, robust infrastructure, or just a secure forum for serious party-building.


    • John
      As a member of the State Democratic Executive Committee (SDEC), what have you done to make changes in the TDP, and what have you done to create buy-in among your fellow SDEC members for that change?

      You are part of the TDP, not an outsider of it. That you're so negative on it — and appear so unwilling to do anything to fix it — suggests you are exactly the problem with the TDP right now.

  2. well, then
    unfortunately boyd continues to uninspire, unimpress and do the bare minimum. i'm working on a diary on this topic, so i'll be as brief as possible.

    state convention can't get here soon enough…although it will be way to late.

    if boyd actually cares about the TDP even a little bit, he should resign no later than 9/15 so that the new chair has the opportunity to staff up with professionals, recruit candidates, raise money and chart a new course.

    waiting until state convention would be the ultimate act of selfishness, shortsightedness and malpractice.

    when Molly Beth decided to leave, she left early so that the incoming chair (i don't remember his name) could get the new administration up and running.

    it was a class move on her part and sets an important benchmark for responsible behavior for an outgoing state party chair.

    • I believe that was Charles Soechting
      I also believe that the Malcolm scenario, as you posit, is what Boyd plans to do, which is why he named Brannon as his proxy. Further, I expect we will see a Boyd Richie for Congress campaign launched in short order, in the 19th against Noogie Boogie (or wherever Graham, TX may be redistricted to).

  3. Bill will do fine
    Ok, it's been a long time since I posted and PDiddie, thanks for remembering my name.  Colin, I hope you are well.  It's been a while since I ran into you.  Regarding Bill,  the E.D. position can be as much or as little as it needs to be. There is too much to be done for it to be a “caretaker” position.  I was blessed to be Chair at a time when Tom Delay, Tom Craddick, GWB, RP, Dick Cheney and the rest of the characters had done so much evil.  The names and faces have changed but there are still a lot of bad people in government whose only concern is moving up and not doing the people's business.  Back on point,  I had the good fortune to have Kelly Fero and Mike Lavigne helping me (some say) make mischief but I prefer to call it, keeping the other side accountable.  Ultimately, the job of Chair can be fun and exciting and as much as you want it to be.  I would hope that the next chair has the energy and independence (financial and political ) to do the job as it needs to be done.  The job can be most rewarding and the people on the SDEC and in the counties are, for the most part, a delight to be around.  Today, more than 5 years later, I still visit nearly daily with one of the former committee members and on a regular basis with others. I enjoyed it and then one day I ran out of gas and it was time for someone else.  I have enjoyed my life and family since then with a new found appreciation. You are correct, Molly Beth left things so that the convention was a smooth transition.  My election however was anything but a given.  I campaigned statewide and the next set of candidates better be prepared to go out and meet the people and not count on some insiders to get the job done.  BTW, money for conventions is always hard to come by.  Back to the topic, Boyd will make a call on this on his own terms. It is his call to make.   What I encourage people to do is get involved in the process because this Chair's race is wide open and Democrats in Texas are starved for the chance to engage the Republican agenda.  I don't have a clue if Bill is in it for the long run but I suspect if you call him he will tell you.  Hope all is well otherwise.  CES

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