FRISCO — Chris Hill announced his candidacy for Collin County Judge on Saturday, Oct. 28 in front of family, friends, candidates and many other supporters during a fundraising reception at the Omni Frisco Hotel at The Star in Frisco. The evening kicked off with a social gathering before those in attendance were treated to a speech from special guest former congressman and Lt. Col (ret.) Allen West. Early voting for county judge is scheduled to begin on Nov. 7.


“Laura and I are so blessed by all of you who have been with us throughout this journey,” Hill said. “When we heard that our county judge was going to retire we got that announcement and we began this process of exploring.” After serving five years as County Commissioner for precinct 3 in Collin County, Hill announced his resignation on Oct. 26 in order to throw his hat into the ring for the upcoming 2018 Collin County judge election.


“We began to explore what we are going to do next as Keith announced he was going to be retiring as our county judge,” Hill said as he stood with wife Laura Hill and their family as he announced his candidacy to a warm reception from those in attendance.


“The one thing that kept coming home to us is we need strong, conservative leadership on the commissioners’ court, we need someone who will stand up strong who will continue the legacy of Keith Self and my colleagues on the commissioners court,” Hill said, “and that is what for Laura and I was the most important, that we would have somebody who would lead this county and lead this court in that way and I am proud to tell you today, I am excited to tell you today that I am now officially a candidate to be your next Collin County Judge.”


“My family and I are blessed by you we are so encouraged by you,” Hill said. “The reality is all of you have helped us tremendously. Many of you were there with us that very first night we launched our very first campaign and you’ve been with us every step of the way, so thank you so much.”


A number of candidates have announced their intentions to fill the now-vacant Precinct 3 county commissioners’ seat as Hill makes his exit to focus on his bid for County Judge. The winning candidate for the county commissioner will serve through 2020 to finish the remainder of Hill’s term.


Among those candidates in attendance was Briana Andor, who will be working towards filling Hill’s shoes as Andor begins running for the office of county commissioner of precinct 3.


While the current efforts are centered upon the future, Hill recounted his time serving Collin County.


“As we look back I’ll tell you it has been the last five years serving as your county commissioner have been such a blessing to me it has been a true honor a sincere blessing, a privilege to serve as your county commissioner,” Hill said. “It is the best county, the best state, the best nation and what a blessing to be a part of that.”


Hill thanked those who offered their voice and thoughts as he was exploring the potential bid for the county judge election.


“I wanted to tell you that today we have over 1500 endorsements to run for county judge and we haven’t even announced that we were going to do it,” Hill said. “We have spent the last several weeks and months as a family praying together and asking you to pray with us and reaching out to you for your wisdom to find out to see really what we ought to do next.”


Hill spoke proudly of his time and service to all those in attendance. Hill remembered those who stuck with his campaigns from the beginning up to now and of his dedication to the ideals upon which he was elected.


“When I ran five years ago I promised you that I would be a steadfast servant to the people, that I would stand strong for private property rights, for limited government, low taxes and I am proud that I can stand in front of you today and say that I have kept my promise and I have done those things and I have kept my word to you and served you well, I hope that you agree with that, that I am proud that I can tell you that is what we have done for the last five years,” said Hill.


For those readers who may be unfamiliar with the position, the county judge of Collin County serves as the presiding officer of the county commissioners’ court, judge of the county court and budgeting officer of the county. Among many other responsibilities, the county judge of Collin County also has numerous duties regarding elections. For those who may be wondering why the voters living in the smaller cities such as Anna and Melissa would be concerned with a county-wide election, the race for Collin county Judge is the only election in which all county voters are able to vote to select a county-wide policy maker and leader of the commissioners’ court. While there are other races that are county-wide elections, none of those positions can pass county laws.


“Thank you for joining us, thank you for supporting us, now we need your help there are already opponents in this race there are folks that want to change the direction of the county and I know that you don’t want it to be changed,” Hill said.


County Judge Keith Self recently announced his retirement and stated that he will not seek re-election or other public office after his current term ends in 2018. Self published a statement on his official website regarding Hill’s bid.


“What you probably don’t know is this,” Self wrote, “(Hill) decided that he would not ‘holdover’ as commissioner for an extended period.” Self elaborated in the statement that following resignation a “holdover” will continue to collect a normal salary until “a replacement is named, as allowed by state law.” Self wrote with high regard of Hill’s handling of the transition from commissioner to candidate.


“Instead, he made a clean break and cleaned out his office. He didn’t play games with a long-term ‘holdover’,” Self said in the statement.“I will appoint his replacement soon,” Self continued. “I thank Chris for his integrity and his excellent work on the Commissioners Court. It has been a pleasure to work alongside him on myriad important issues.”


2018 is shaping up to be an eventful election season as Collin County embraces the longstanding American tradition of democracy through the voice of the people. The filing period for 2018 primary candidates is Nov. 11 through Dec. 11, 2017. Commissioners for Precincts 2 and 4 are up for re-election in 2018. Those interested in more information, volunteering, registering, contacting their local and county representatives or wish to become involved in any other election and voting related activities are encouraged to refer to the Collin County website at www.CollinCountyTX.gov.