From Acres Home to Downtown, A Dream Realized
Born in 1954, Mayor Sylvester Turner is one of nine children raised in a modest two-bedroom home in Acres Homes, and despite much economic hardship he always dreamed of becoming a CEO.
After his father lost his battle with cancer, his mother was his first example of a Chief Executive Officer. Although she never finished high school or learned to drive a car, she inspired Mayor Turner and his siblings to obtain an education. From a young age he excelled, graduating valedictorian from Klein High School, serving as the speaker of the University of Houston Assembly, and attending the Harvard Law School.
Prior to becoming Mayor of Houston, Turner was a successful entrepreneur with his own law firm Barnes & Turner that he founded in 1983. He also had a stellar career serving in the Texas House of Representatives, including serving as Vice-Chairman of the Appropriations Committee.
Pragmatic, logical, and consistent best describe the Mayor’s tenure. He has kept his campaign promise of “shared sacrifice,” allowing this mantra to lead Houston’s vision for tomorrow.
His vision is clear and track record speaks for itself. In just under one year, Turner has addressed the pothole crisis filling 95% of reported potholes within 24 hours. In an unprecedented manner, Turner passed the City of Houston annual budget unanimously in less than three hours. When disaster struck in the spring of 2016, he sprung into action, assisting Houstonians with aid from the City and its partners. And to ensure a long-term solution, he hired the City of Houston’s first Resilience Officer to tackle the ongoing flooding issue. Perhaps most notable is Turner’s negotiated $7.7 pension reform plan that will provide benefit across all three pension funds.
His life’s work has been to the serve the City of Houston, and for that the Greater Houston Black Chamber of Commerce is proud to announce this year’s Lifetime Achievement Awardee, Mayor Sylvester Turner.