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|Member of the Texas House of Representatives
from the 50th district
September 10, 1967 |
Thomas Mark Strama (born September 10, 1967) is a former Democratic member of the Texas House of Representatives, representing the 50th District from 2004 until 2013. He served as chairman of the House Committee on Technology, Economic Development & Workforce and on the House Committee on Energy Resources. He resigned from his seat in the Texas House to become the head of Google Fiber in Austin.
Early life, education, and career
Strama was born in Dallas, Texas, to Thomas and Brenda Victoria Trabulsi. He has one brother, Richard Keith Strama. He graduated from Houston's Memorial High School in 1986. He earned an undergraduate degree in both political science and philosophy from Brown University in 1990.
Early political efforts
After his graduation from Brown, Strama worked for the Ann Richards gubernatorial campaign in 1990. He then worked as chief of staff to State Senator Rodney Ellis. During Strama's tenure, the magazine Texas Monthly named Senator Ellis one of the state's ten best legislators. In 1995, Strama began work on Rock the Vote which is credited with helping over one million people register to vote.
Strama returned to Austin to found NewVoter.com, the first company to register voters online. Working to bring the economy, efficiency, and convenience of new technology to the democratic process, Strama’s company was acquired by New York-based Election.com in 2000, and helped over 700,000 Americans register to vote online in the 2000 election cycle. Strama was also considered a major factor in the success of the Arizona Democratic Party conducting their 2000 Presidential Primary over the internet He currently holds the franchise rights to the Sylvan Learning Centers in the Austin area.
Campaign Academy Program
In 2004, Strama created a program to involve college students in politics. The Campaign Academy allows them to work for his campaign and in turn, Strama invites speakers to give their insights on politics to the participants. In 2008, the Campaign Academy was opened up to people of all ages, including a 10 year old and a 50 year old, among many high school and college students. Speakers at the Campaign Academy have included Chairman Howard Dean, Christine Pelosi, Admiral Bob Inman, Garry Mauro and Congressman Lloyd Doggett.
Strama speaks Spanish fluently. He married Austin television reporter Crystal Cotti soon after his 2004 election to office. Their first child, Victoria Rose Strama, was born in January 2007. Their second daughter was born recently.
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- Texas House of Representatives - Mark Strama official TX House website
- Mark Strama for State Representative campaign website
- Project Vote Smart - Representative Mark Strama (TX) profile
- Follow the Money - Mark Strama
- Koh, Elizabeth (June 26, 2013). "Strama Resigns to Lead Google Fiber". The Texas Tribune.
- Texas Birth Index, 1903-1997
- Amy Smith, District 50: Has Stick done jack?, Austin Chron. (Oct. 22, 2004)
- Clean Coal Tech. Found., 2009 Clean Carbon Policy Summit Speaker Biographies (accessed Sept. 20, 2009).
- Election.com Acquires Premier Online Voter Registration Technology Provider, Election.com Press Release
- Net Out the Vote, The Industry Standard
- Burnt Orange Report
- Austin American Statesman