Attorney to run for county commissioner

Waits believes it's time for a new face, new vision and a new voice on the Commissioner's Court.
Waits believes it's time for a new face, new vision and a new voice on the Commissioner's Court.

Posted by Ellen Krafve - bio | email

Released by Jennifer Cobbins:

On Thursday, September 24th at 3:00 p.m. in the Central Jury Room of the Smith County Courthouse, 100 N. Broadway, local attorney Valita F. Waits will announce her plan to run for the position of Smith County Commissioner, precinct 4. The public is invited. Waits believes it's time for a new face, new vision and a new voice on the Commissioner's Court. Her bio is below for review.

• Juris Doctor from Thurgood Marshall School of Law, Texas Southern University, 1980
• Master of Arts, Broadcast Management and Production, from American University, Washington, D. C., 1974
• Master of Divinity, from Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University, 2003
• Bachelor of Arts, Business Administration, Marketing concentration and Economics
• Minor, from Howard University, Washington, D. C, 1969
• Certificate in Economic Development, from University of Oklahoma, American Economic Development Council sponsoring entity
• Certified Family Mediator, 1988

Professional Licenses
• Member of the Texas Bar (1980 to present)
• Admitted to the United States District Court, Eastern District of Texas
• Licensed minister, Christian Methodist Episcopal Church

Former Employers
• United Methodist Church, Kilgore College
• University of Texas at Tyler, School of Business
• National Labor Relations Board
• United States Department of Energy
• Houston Community College, Business Division
• Texas Southern University, School of Communications and KTSU-FM Manager
• Southwestern Bell Telephone Company
• WRC-TV, NBC owned station, Washington, D.C.,
• United States of Commerce, Washington, D. C.

Past and Present Associations
• State Bar of Texas 1980 to Present
• Past Member State Bar of Texas Advertising Committee
• Past Member, Supreme Court, State of Texas Bar Admissions Committee
• Smith County Bar Association (Law Day and Library Committees)
• Smith County Bar Foundation Board of Directors (Program Committee)
• Bethesda Health Clinic Board of Directors (2009-2012)
• American Bar Association
• National Bar Association
• Houston Lawyers Association
• Leadership Texas, Class V, 1987
• Past member, Leadership Texas Board of Directors
• Leadership Tyler, Class II, 1988
• Past Member, Board of Directors, State Job Training Coordinating Council,
• Chaired Oversight Committee, Co-Chaired Program Committee, Member Executive Committee
• Founding President, Tyler Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, Inc.
• Member, Metropolitan Black Chamber of Commerce
• Member, Tyler Area Chamber of Commerce
• Past Member, Institute of Management Consultants
• Member and Past President, Tyler Alumnae Chapter, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
• Life Member, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
• Member, East Texas Chapter, The Links Incorporation
• Past Member, Board of Directors, National Association of African American
o Chambers of Commerce
• Past Member Board of Directors and Secretary, Texas Association of African American Chambers of Commerce
• Past Member, Houston Minority Business Council
• Past Member Top Ladies of Distinction, Rose City Chapter
• Past Member, Rose Bud Civitan Club
• Past Member and past president, Black Women for Social Change Houston, TX
• Past Member Board of Directors, Women's Credit Union, Houston, TX
• Past Member Board of Directors, Model Inner City Community Organization,
• Washington, D. C. (1970 to 1973)
• Izzak Walton League, Washington, D. C.
Washington, D. C. Black Economic Development League (1970-1973)

City of Tyler and Smith County Service
• City Council Appointee as Alternate Municipal Court Judge, 1984 to 1994
• City of Tyler Housing Committee
• City of Tyler Industrial Development Committee (2008 to present)
• City of Tyler Half-Cent Sales Tax Committee that studied and developed the strategy for the vote campaign to collect the Sales Tax for economic development
• Revolving Loan Fund, served on the committee that developed the revolving loan fund to small
• businesses
• Member, First Smith County Overall Economic Development Committee
• Founding Member, Board of Directors, East Texas District Economic Development Board,
• Founding Member, Court Appointed Special Advocates of Smith County, Texas

Pro Bono Service
• International
o Ethiopian Arbitration and Reconciliation Center, Addis Abba, Ethiopia; Taught the basic 40-hour mediation course to attorneys, engineers, Insurance company owners, business owners, and other (2007)

• NAACP Legal Clinic (Tyler)
• Smith County Bar Association Pro Bono Program

• Outstanding Young Women in America 1972 Edition
• United States Bureau of Prisons
• Thurgood Marshall School of Law, Law Review
• Distinguished Tyler Independent School Graduate, 1983
• Who's Who in Texas
• Who's Who in the South and Southwest, 26th Edition
• 2000 Notable Women in America, 8th Edition
• Omega Psi Phi, Sigma Omicron Chapter
• Longview Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce
• Top Ladies of Distinction
• Tyler Alumnae Chapter, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
• Texas College Alumni Association
• Lone Star Legal Aid

She is the daughter of Melvin Waits, Jr. a retired business owner and barber and the late Sibbie Waits, deceased educator and Tyler Independent School administrator. Her brother, Melvin B. Waits, 1971 graduate of Robert E. Lee High School, Tyler, TX is married to, Jean Waits, both of Houston. She is the doting aunt of Melanie Janelle, a Columbia University School of Business graduate student, New York and Monica Renee Waits, a civil engineering student at the University of Florida.