I’m a Round Rock native, a former public school teacher, and the former Central Texas Executive Director of a nonprofit that provides innovative technology to thousands of our students. Our community raised me to believe in responsibility. We take responsibility for ourselves and those around us. We do right by our families, our neighbors, our state, and our country. This commitment defines us, and it's missing at our State Capitol, where politicians care more about scoring political points than helping families get ahead. But there’s nothing wrong with our state government that can’t be fixed by what’s right with Williamson County.

James Talarico for State Representative with his mom as a child.

I grew up among people united not by political affiliations, but by shared aspirations. I was born at Round Rock Hospital. Back then, my mother and I lived in a one-bedroom apartment near McNeil High School. My mother dedicated herself to ensuring I graduated from that same high school 18 years later. She worked overtime at a hotel, eventually working her way up to assistant manager. She met and married the man I call Dad, and we moved to the house where they still live today.

Our new family climbed the ladder into the middle class. Two jobs, a safe neighborhood, a supportive church, and strong public schools helped us do it. While my mother didn’t get a college education for herself, my parents and the selfless educators in Round Rock ISD gave me the opportunity to earn degrees from the best universities in the world. With the help of financial aid — including a scholarship from the McNeil High School PTA — I earned a bachelor’s degree in government from The University of Texas at Austin and a master’s degree in education policy from Harvard University.

James Talarico for State Representative with his mom after graduating from Harvard.
James Talarico for State Representative teaching children as a public school teacher.

Like many in our community, I received these opportunities because my parents, teachers, and neighbors took responsibility for the next generation. I’ve tried to live by their example. In college, I organized students to advocate for affordable and accessible higher education. After graduation, I taught middle school on the westside of San Antonio, where I worked with kids and families to close gaps in my classroom. Then, as a nonprofit leader, I brought people together across different sectors and political parties to equip our classrooms with 21st-century technology.

In Williamson County, we’re builders, strivers, and dreamers. We make plans, we solve problems, we hold ourselves accountable, and we take care of each other. And that’s exactly what’s missing in politics today. We need a state government that believes in taking responsibility and creating opportunity. We need a state government that makes life easier for our families and puts our kids over politics. We need a state government that embodies the values we uphold to build the future we deserve.  With your help, we’ll get there.