Senator Lois W. Kolkhorst is a fifth-generation Texan, with ancestral roots to the Texas War of Independence. A Brenham native, she went on to graduate from TCU where she played collegiate golf.
In December 2014, Kolkhorst was elected to the Texas Senate in a special election, after previously serving fourteen years in the Texas House. Recognized as a fiscal conservative, she is a member of the Senate Finance Committee, and has served three times on the state's budget conference-committee, most recently during the final negotiations on the states $209 billion budget passed in 2015. She also serves as Vice-Chair of the Senate Committee on Health and Human Services and has written landmark legislation to toughen Texas laws on medical privacy. She earned statewide attention for crafting alternatives to Obamacare for healthcare providers.
Senator Kolkhorst is a member of the Senate Committee on Education, and is considered a longtime friend to parents and teachers as well as colleges and universities. Representing all or part of twenty-one Texas counties, she serves on the Senate Transportation Committee as well as the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Water and Rural Affairs, drafting many laws to protect private property rights.
Known for common sense solutions, Kolkhorst has led many statewide initiatives and written bills that impact every code of Texas law. She made national news for organizing resistance to the Trans-Texas Corridor network of foreign-owned toll roads. Her fight to remove regulatory barriers for small food producers has in recent years sparked a "food freedom" movement across Texas that was featured in Forbes Magazine. Her longtime efforts to promote Texas tourism earned her the Texas Tourism Industry Association's statewide Silver Spur Award.
To fight human smuggling and drug trafficking, she has helped secure over $900 million for border security, and has served on the Texas Sunset Commission, where she cut government waste and worked with law enforcement officials to reform and realign the Texas Department of Public Safety. She has frequently collaborated with CASA and has received their statewide award for her efforts to protect foster children.
Senator Kolkhorst has repeatedly been awarded and endorsed by the Texas & Southwestern Cattle Raisers, Texas Farm Bureau, Texas Wildlife Association, the NRA, Texas State Rifle Association, Texans for Lawsuit Reform, the Combined Law Enforcement Association of Texas, Texas Department of Public Safety Officers Association, Texas Right to Life, Young Conservatives of Texas and the Texas Association of Business among many others.
Married to her high-school sweetheart Jim, together they have two children, Lois Kate and Jake. Her hobbies include hunting, fishing and gardening. She also coaches Youth Basketball and is a volunteer at her church.