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Government/Politics

For the First Time Two Women — Clay-Flores, DeBerry — Added To Bexar County Commissioners Court

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Trish DeBerry (left) won her Commissioners Court seat for Precinct 3. Rebeca Clay-Flores (right) won her seat for Precinct 1.

The Bexar County Commissioners Court will include two women for the first time in its history: political newcomers Trish DeBerry and Rebeca Clay-Flores.

Clay-Flores, a Democrat, won the seat for Precinct 1 on the South Side with about 65% of the vote. Republican Trish Deberry claimed victory for Precinct 3 on the North Side with about 54% of the vote. Both precincts held true to their historical party preferences.

Clay-Flores is a special projects manager with San Antonio Metro Health and previously worked in the office for former San Antonio Mayor Ivy Taylor. Her victory in the primaries earlier this year was an unexpected surprise when she forced long-time commissioner Sergio “Chico” Rodriguez in a runoff election and then ultimately won in July.

She defeated Gabriel Lara, a retired paramedic, Tuesday night.

Clay-Flores said her priorities include community economic development.

“Which includes supporting more small, minority owned, women owned, and veteran owned businesses so we really need to do a review on how contracts are given out and processed,” she said. “And another one of my campaign points has been mental health – so developing better dialogue with the community.”

Flores will be the first woman of color on the court. She plans to leave her position at Metro Health when work on the court begins.

DeBerry is a public relations mogul in San Antonio who owns The DeBerry Group. She previously ran for mayor in 2009 but was unsuccessful. The Precinct 3 seat was an open seat as incumbent commissioner Kevin Wolff opted not to seek re-election.

DeBerry said she wants the county to focus on small business support, especially those who have been damaged by COVID-19.

“I think we have to continue to think outside the box and what we are going to do for small businesses whether its micro-loans or what have you, to help them be able to continue to recover,” said DeBerry. “As a small business person myself I understand that.”

She defeated Christine Hortick, an attorney who advocates in child cases, on election night.

DeBerry has held public contracts for her PR work including promoting the redevelopment of The Alamo and Alamo Plaza. Those contracts caused her to lose the endorsement of the San Antonio Express-News.

The last time Bexar County had a woman on the Commissioner’s Court was in the 1990s when Judge Cindy Krier served as the head of the court. Currently the court has five men on it.

Outgoing Commissioner Kevin Wollf – who is being succeeded by DeBerry – said having more perspectives on the court will be a benefit.

“I think we’ll change the dynamic and I think we’ll see a lot of positive things there and like I said it’s always good to get in some new perspectives and I’m sure Rebeca and Trish will bring those to the table.”

Wolff opted not to run for re-election this year.

The seat for Bexar County Judge will be an open race in the 2022 election cycle. The incumbent, Nelson Wolff – who is Kevin Wolff’s father – has previously stated he does not plan to run for re-election.

Clay-Flores and DeBerry will be sworn in as commissioners in January.

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