H.R. No. 18
         WHEREAS, The Honorable Tom J. Vandergriff, whose name has
  become a byword in North Texas for outstanding public service and
  vigorous, visionary leadership, is retiring from the post of
  Tarrant County judge in January 2007; and
         WHEREAS, This distinguished Texan has held elective office
  for the better part of six decades; his career in government began
  with a highly regarded, 26-year tenure as mayor of Arlington, a
  tenure that coincided with one of the most transformative periods
  in that city's history; between 1951, when he was first sworn in,
  and 1977, when he concluded his final term as mayor, the population
  of Arlington soared from fewer than 8,000 inhabitants to
  approximately 120,000; and
         WHEREAS, During those years, Judge Vandergriff helped to
  facilitate the construction of the Dallas/Fort Worth International
  Airport and the elevation of Arlington State College, now The
  University of Texas at Arlington, to senior college status; he also
  worked to stimulate the region's tourism industry, notably through
  the instrumental role he played in bringing major-league baseball
  to North Texas; Judge Vandergriff persuaded the owner of the
  Washington Senators to move his club to Arlington, where the team
  took the field as the Texas Rangers; for a time after the club
  relocated, Judge Vandergriff even served as a broadcaster for the
  Rangers' games; and
         WHEREAS, Six years after retiring as mayor, Judge Vandergriff
  became the first person to represent the newly created 26th
  Congressional District in the United States House of
  Representatives, an office he held until 1985; and
         WHEREAS, Since returning to public service in 1991, Judge
  Vandergriff has continued to use his formidable skills and
  experience to help address the challenges and opportunities facing
  his community; the scope of efforts undertaken by the county
  commissioners court under his guidance is reflected in several
  recent achievements; in December 2005, Tarrant County implemented
  an expanded, online tax-payment system that subsequently won the
  county an Excellence Award from the Texas Association of
  Governmental Information Technology Managers; the year 2005 also
  saw the opening of a $41 million Family Law Center and the
  commencement of work to clear the site for the new Dallas Cowboys
  stadium; and
         WHEREAS, Widely respected both in and out of government
  circles, Judge Vandergriff served as founding president of the
  North Central Texas Council of Governments, as the first chair of
  the Texas Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations, and
  as a member of a White House Commission on Urban Problems; he has
  also been named Citizen of the Year in Arlington, Dallas, and Fort
  Worth; and
         WHEREAS, Born and raised in Carrollton, Tom Vandergriff holds
  a bachelor's degree from the University of Southern California; in
  addition to his achievements as a public servant, he has enjoyed
  notable success as a businessman in the private sector, where his
  interests have included a car dealership and an insurance agency;
         WHEREAS, Throughout his long and illustrious career, Tom
  Vandergriff has worked tirelessly to advance the common good, and
  the tremendous dedication and energy he has brought to his offices
  of public trust have justly made him a Tarrant County legend; now,
  therefore, be it
         RESOLVED, That the House of Representatives of the 80th Texas
  Legislature hereby recognize the Honorable Tom J. Vandergriff on
  the occasion of his retirement as Tarrant County judge and extend to
  him deepest appreciation for the example and legacy of his
  outstanding public service; and, be it further
         RESOLVED, That an official copy of this resolution be
  prepared for Judge Vandergriff as an expression of high regard by
  the Texas House of Representatives.
  Smith of Tarrant
  Speaker of the House     
         I certify that H.R. No. 18 was adopted by the House on May 4,
  2007, by a non-record vote.
  Chief Clerk of the House