Early voting is underway, with election day right around the corner. Bowie County is voting for County Judge. Each candidate wrote their own profile for Txk Today, so voters can learn a little about them and their reasons for running.
Judge Bobby L. Howell, Republican candidate, Bowie County Judge
I have successfully practiced law in Bowie County for over 33 years. I have a background in real estate and business development. I have been serving as Bowie County Judge since being appointed on October 1, 2019.
First, I want to maintain the county finances in good shape. In other words, monitor expenses and revenues. I will use my business and legal experience to be a competent Chief Executive of Bowie County. I will work with the other elected officials to provide the best services to our citizens. I want to work on long term solutions for mental health needs and the burden of crime on the County.
Mainly, Bowie County needs more well-paying jobs. I will continue to work with our local economic development groups and community leaders to attract new business and jobs. I will continue to work closely with the Texas Department of Transportation to implement and plan new roadways and improve our existing roadways.
I am a lifelong resident of Bowie County. I graduated from Texas High. I have a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Houston. I graduated from the University of Arkansas School of Law, with Honors. I am licensed to practice law in Arkansas and Texas.
I am happily married to Lisa Roberts Howell. We have two sons. John and his wife, Andrea, live in Nacogdoches and are busy raising two teenagers, Mason and Whitley. Matt and his wife, Katherine, live in Aurora, Illinois, where he is in his last year of Optometry School.
Armani Valentino, Democrat Candidate for Bowie County Judge
Place of Residence: Texarkana, TX
Education: University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration Major: Finance — Minor: Marketing
Occupation: Publisher, National Bestselling Author, Real Estate Investor, General Contractor, Community Activist
Employer: College Boy Publishing, LLC & ArmaniValentino.com
Leadership & Recognition:
CEOE, Director of Marketing of College Boy Publishing, LLC 2015 – Present
Greater Texarkana NAACP Business & Economics Award – 2019
Fabulous 40 & Under Recipient (Four States Living Magazine) – 2018
Candidate Statement: “Leadership is an ever changing role that must be willing to serve and be up-to-date with the needs of those being led.” Armani Valentino
Throughout my life, I’ve been a dedicated servant leader. I have dedicated my youth to serving people in need, educating, motivating, and inspiring growth and development, through my example. I stand firm on principles, values, and morals that are in line with God and our constitutional rights. My top priorities are as follows:
1. Jobs and business development. Many people struggle to find decent paying jobs to take care of themselves and their family. People in Bowie County want to work. However, they also want to work with companies that at least pay a livable wage. The stress of working two and three jobs to make ends meet can cause people real life nervous breakdowns and irreversible health challenges. Therefore, my top priority would be to attract companies to the area that will focus on building PEOPLE and profits, in that order. We are often losing much of our best talent to other cities like Dallas, Shreveport, Houston, Little Rock, etc. We also have to make sure we are supporting our small businesses in the area to help them recover from the challenges of Covid. I’m formalizing an initiative called #BuyBowieCounty that should help.
2. Housing. Housing is a basic need. We must have affordable housing to handle the current housing challenges, as well as housing to handle the potential job growth that will be produced. Lack of readily available housing has become an issue that I’m passionate about helping to remedy. Home ownership is the foundation for building individual, family, and community wealth. The building and remodeling of one home employs many people and brings revenue to the county, school districts, colleges, cities, water/gas/light companies, waste management, mortgage companies, banks, and much more. I’m in full support of the Housing Authority, organizations, and developers of all sizes who also have a passion to help solve this challenge.
3. Transparency and accountability. This should never be a problem within the government. People aren’t expecting perfection, but they are expecting transparency. Citizens should at least be able to trust that their government is being transparent and thinking about the overall benefit of the people in their decisions.
4. Education and training, especially financial literacy. I’m in full support of Texarkana College, Texas A&M University -Texarkana, and all trade and training schools in the area. These educational centers are essential if we plan to be The Beacon of Light for the region.
Financial literacy is the one subject that isn’t taught in school, but it’s the one area in which we should all be literate. Other than work and education, financial literacy is essential if anyone plans to attain some level of prosperity in life. The more people who learn, understand, and apply the principles of financial literacy throughout the county, the better for us all. A rising tide lifts all boats.
5. Public Safety – By definition, safety is defined as the condition of being protected from or unlikely to cause danger, risk, or injury. People should generally feel safe. Poverty creates lack, and lack creates crime. Poverty is an issue of public safety.
6. Public Health – Having an overall healthy county is important to creating a better future for all citizens in Bowie County. Making sure that individuals with disabilities, terminal illnesses, mental health challenges, preventable diseases, and the likes, are provided with access to health services is very important. HEALTH is WEALTH.
7. Drastically reduce the number of women living in poverty. Women in Texarkana and surrounding areas are the top 3 demographics living in poverty. To me, that’s unacceptable. During a woman’s healthiest and most productive years, ages of 25-55, in Bowie County, a woman is likely to end up impoverished. It doesn’t matter what her race is, religion, or political party affiliation, a woman could spend 30 years of her life in poverty in this area. We have to do whatever we can as a community to improve this. WHEN WOMEN DO BETTER, WE ALL DO BETTER because they are the ones who take care of the children, men, other women, elderly, and much of the administrative duties in the majority of businesses, and also in city and county government.
8. Community involvement – Getting individuals from all walks of life together in Bowie County to make it a great place now and in the future is ideal. People who have a love and passion for people are invaluable to the place we call home.
9. #KeepBowieCountyClean initiative – Multiple places throughout the county have dumping sites that are an absolute mess. Even in my neighborhood, I’ve held multiple cleanups because of the trash issue. Hopefully, we can fill the people’s hearts throughout the county with the desire to clean up and keep Bowie County clean. I believe this will help to instill a sense of pride.
10. #FutureForward initiative to help modernize the infrastructure
To elect a fair, fiscally conservative, common sense county judge, who will look out for the better interest of the future for all citizens in Bowie County, please cast your vote for me, Armani Valentino.