John Vasquez, a former municipal judge, community advocate and San Antonio native, will serve as the AARP Texas volunteer state president.
Vasquez’ two-year appointment is announced by AARP Texas Director Tina Tran. The pair share the responsibility of leading the AARP Texas Executive Council, and they will work with AARP Texas staff and volunteers to establish strategic goals and objectives that are consistent with AARP’s national strategies.
Vasquez is a University of Texas Law School graduate who has worked as a bank accountant, legal services attorney, assistant Texas attorney general, special counsel for the Texas State Auditor’s Office, and as a private attorney. He was an Austin municipal judge between 1996 and 2015, as well as an adjunct professor at St. Edward’s University in Austin, where he taught juvenile justice.
Retired since 2015, Vasquez has been an active volunteer for AARP Texas and other community organizations. He replaces as AARP Texas state president Charlene Hunter James of Houston, who remains a volunteer for AARP.
“John is a compassionate and knowledgeable advocate who understands the needs of older Texans and their families,” said Tran. “Having served on the AARP Texas Executive Council, he is positioned to be a strong leader who will fight for the age-50+ community.”
Vasquez said, “Everyday AARP staff and volunteers work on issues that matter to older Americans. With the growth in the age 50+ population, the importance of AARP’s work on issues and provision of services that matter to older Americans will only increase. It is an honor and responsibility to serve the members of AARP. I hope and believe that the AARP Texas Executive Council will continue to be a voice and advocate for older Texans.”
Tran also announced new appointments to the AARP Texas Executive Council. Dr. Beverly “Jeanie” Gor of Houston, Charlotte McKenzie of Frisco, and Kenny Scudder of Odessa will be joining the leadership group.
Gor is a registered dietitian who, in 1994, established with colleagues the Asian American Health Coalition, and in 2002, created the HOPE Clinic, a federally qualified health center providing culturally and linguistically appropriate care to more than 30 language groups. In 2019, she retired from the Houston Health Department, where she focused on community health issues, such as food insecurity, health communication with minority communities, and capacity building. She also worked as a researcher and faculty member at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, where she conducted studies on childhood obesity and minority health and cancer disparities.
McKenzie brings to the Executive Council more than 35 years of experience working at Fortune 500 corporations, start-up companies and nonprofits. Much of her professional experience has been in the biotech and pharmaceutical industry. She retired in 2017 as a clinical specialist with an international biotechnology firm. She has extensive volunteer experience, and currently serves on several boards and a number of community organizations.
Scudder is an experienced oilfield drilling and production equipment sales manager who has an extensive community service background, including achievements through the Boy Scouts of America, in which he holds Eagle Scout and Order of the Arrow honors. He serves as a member of the Governor’s Broadband Development Council, which he was appointed to in 2020.
Continuing to serve on the AARP Texas Executive Council is Jon Weizenbaum of Austin. Weizenbaum is a health and human services consultant with more than 36 years of experience in public policy and state government leadership, including as commissioner of the Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services. He served as policy director for the Texas Senate Health and Human Services Committee, and he currently serves on a number of boards and advisory committees.
WATCH BELOW: A 2016 AARP Texas video featuring John Vasquez: