Meet Titus Benton, running for Texas State Senate in District 17
This district is largely rural, and encompasses parts or all of 8 counties! If elected to this position, Titus would help create and pass laws that impact all Texans.
Titus’ journey began in Missouri, where he grew up and took on the role of becoming a pastor in his community. He then moved to Texas, and has lived there ever since. Titus became more in tune with politics after the Trump administration caused so much division within this country. Titus saw it happen in his own state and felt as if this style of leadership didn’t match his values at all. This is when he began to think about the changes he would like to see in his home and the country as a whole. Throughout his time in Texas, Titus started a non-profit for vulnerable communities around the world and helped provide clean food and water, vitamins, and schools to communities in need. It was through this work that Titus began thinking bigger, wondering how else he could make an impact. He also told us that the murder of George Floyd was a huge wake up call for him in realizing that the voice of the people was not being heard by their own leaders. He decided to run for Senate and to take on these issues himself.
One of the most pressing issues in Titus’ community is healthcare. His state shot down the opportunity to expand Medicaid years ago, and they have not seen many improvements since then. Many rural hospitals have been closing and leaving rural residents without immediate access to healthcare. Titus also told us that mental health care doesn’t get nearly enough attention within his district and many people who suffer from these problems cannot find the help that they need. His wife works as a nurse practitioner at a charity clinic, so they are well aware of the problems of the community members.
Education is another issue in this state as Texas sits in the bottom 20% for public school funding in the nation. Titus told us that the Texas legislature has been doing nothing but depleting the resources of public schools and making it harder for them to pay their staff fair wages. Along with that, the minimum wage in his state has not been raised since 2009. Titus also noted that gun violence has hurt the lives of thousands of people within his state yet not much has been done about it. The Texas government’s response to these tragedies has been to make it easier to own a weapon without any training.
If elected, Titus wants to create a future with justice, equity, and inclusion. Since Texas has a huge, booming economy, Titus knows that they have the resources needed to make great changes—they just need to get their priorities straight. He aims to leverage the wealth of the world to help those who truly need it. Titus believes that everyone can win, and there is no sense in communities pitting themselves against each other to make sure someone else loses.
Titus wants you to know that Texas has beautiful, diverse communities. When he moved here, instead of the cowboy hats and horses that he expected, he found diversity and new experiences. He even told us that there are 60 different languages spoken at a school within his community! Titus is happy to run alongside people who represent different groups, cultures, and backgrounds. He knows that it’s important for all Texans to be represented by their leaders.
Titus has an amazing wife, two great children, and an 11 year old beagle! He likes to rock climb with his son, go running, read books, watch movies, and have an occasional cigar with bourbon. (Life is about balance!) He loves being out in the middle of nowhere, enjoying nature’s vastness, and has what he calls an “encyclopedic knowledge of country music”!