Jerry E. Patterson

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This article is about the Texas Land Commissioner. For the former California Congressman, see Jerry M. Patterson. For the gambling author, see Jerry L. Patterson.
Jerry Emmett Patterson
27th Commissioner of the General Land Office
In office
January 21, 2003 – January 2, 2015
Governor Rick Perry
Preceded by David Dewhurst
Succeeded by George P. Bush
Member of the Texas State Senate from District 11
In office
Succeeded by Mike Jackson
Personal details
Born (1946-11-15) November 15, 1946 (age 70)
Houston, Texas, US
Political party Republican

(1) Divorced

(2) Jennifer Patterson
Children 4
Residence Austin, Texas
Alma mater Texas A&M University
Military service
Service/branch United States Marine Corps
Years of service 1971-1993
Rank Lieutenant Colonel
Battles/wars Vietnam War

Jerry Emmett Patterson (born November 15, 1946) is the former Commissioner of the General Land Office of Texas and a former state senator. He is the second Republican since Reconstruction to serve as land commissioner, a post which he held from 2003 to 2015. He served from the Houston area in District 11 in the state Senate from 1993 to 1999.

As the Republican nominee for his third and final term in the November 2, 2010, general election, Patterson easily defeated the Democrat Hector Uribe, a former member of both houses of the Texas State Legislature.

Patterson did not seek a fourth term as Land Commissioner. He was instead an unsuccessful Republican candidate for Lieutenant Governor of Texas in the primary election held on March 4, 2014. Victory went instead to Dan Patrick.

Political career[edit]

In 1984 Patterson ran for the a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives for Texas' 25th congressional district. He faced freshman Democratic Representative Michael A. Andrews and lost, 64 to 36 percent. The district comprised mainly blue collar Democratic areas around eastern Harris County in cities like Pasadena and Deer Park.

In March 1998, Patterson lost the Republican primary for land commissioner to David Dewhurst, also from Houston, who left the position after a single term to become lieutenant governor. Dewhurst led with 265,363 votes (51.2 percent). Patterson trailed with 216,250 votes (41.7 percent), and a third candidate, Don Loucks, held the remaining 36,706 votes (7.1 percent).[1]

In the 2002 Republican primary for Texas land commissioner, Patterson defeated Kenn George of Dallas, a member of the Texas House of Representatives from District 108 and an assistant United States Secretary of Commerce in the administration of U.S. President Ronald W. Reagan.[2]


Patterson was born to Jerry Patterson and the former Georgia Lee Scheaffer in Houston.[3] Patterson graduated from Texas A&M University in College Station in 1969 with a degree in history. In 1972, he volunteered for duty in Vietnam. He was later designated a naval flight officer in Pensacola, Florida, and he served in Marine fighter squadrons until his retirement from the Marine Corps Reserve as a Lieutenant Colonel in 1993.

Patterson resides in Austin and has four children: twins Samantha and Cole, born in 2004, and, from a previous marriage, Emily Patterson and Travis Patterson. Emily Patterson is a graduate of the South Texas College of Law and works for the OSCE as a Human Rights Officer in Kosovo. Travis Patterson graduated from Texas A&M University in College Station, where he was commissioned a Marine second lieutenant. He has served on active duty as a Marine attack helicopter pilot.


On June 5, 2007, Patterson was named "Texan of the Year" by Celebrate Texas, a nonprofit organization dedicated to raising public awareness of Texas history. "Each year, we select one person who performs outstanding work in furthering the goals of our organization, namely, the promotion of Texas history education and the strengthening of Texas Independence Day as a day of celebration for all Texans," said Harvey L. Ford, III, board president of Celebrate Texas.[this quote needs a citation]Ford said that Patterson has shown "dramatic leadership" by promoting such projects as the "Save Texas History map conservation initiative" and weekly radio features which accent state history.

Western States Land Commissioners Association[edit]

In August 2007, Patterson was named president of the Western States Land Commissioners Association, an organization that consists of 23 states that together manage 447,000,000 acres (1,810,000 km2) of land, mineral right properties, and land beneath navigable waterways.

The association was formed in 1949. The group seeks to help states maximize earnings from trust lands and share information regarding natural resource management in the American West.

Race for lieutenant governor[edit]

In July 2011, Patterson announced that he would run for lieutenant governor in 2014. [1] Patterson in 2012 endorsed three-term incumbent Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst, who ran for the United States Senate.[4][5] However, Dewhurst was defeated by former Texas Solicitor General Ted Cruz in the Republican primary runoff election on July 31, 2012.

In his race for lieutenant governor, Patterson polled 165,787 votes (12.5 percent) and ran last among the four candidates. A runoff election was held on May 27, 2014 between the top votegetter and the successful nominee with 41.5 percent of the ballots cast, Dan Patrick, a state senator and radio talk show host from Houston, and the incumbent David Dewhurst, who finished a weak second at 28.3 percent. In third place at 17.8 percent was the departing Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples of Palestine, Texas.[6]

Patterson carried the endorsement of former U. S. Representative Ron Paul, twice an unsuccessful candidate for the Republican presidential nomination. At a candidate forum in College Station, Patterson described himself as "the liberty guy", or one who trusts individuals, rather than government, to make decisions in their interest.[7]

Patterson said that even had he won the 2014 race would have been his last campaign because he is "more concerned about the next generation [than] ... about the next election."[7]

Electoral history[edit]

2010 Texas General Land Commissioner General Election
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Jerry Patterson (Incumbent) 3,001,736 61.7
Democratic Hector Uribe 1,717,518 35.3
Libertarian James Holdar 148,271 3
2006 Texas General Land Commissioner General Election
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Jerry Patterson (Incumbent) 2,317,554 55.1
Democratic VaLinda Hathcox 1,721,964 41
Libertarian Michael French 164,098 3.9
2002 Texas General Land Commissioner General Election
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Jerry Patterson 2,331,700 53.2
Democratic David Bernsen 1,819,365 41.5
Libertarian Barbara Hernandez 180,870 4.1
Green Michael McInerney 54,130 1.2
2002 Texas General Land Commissioner Republican Primary Election
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Jerry Patterson 328,523 56.5
Republican Kenn George 252,802 43.5
1998 Texas General Land Commissioner Republican Primary Election
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican David Dewhurst 265,363 51.2
Republican Jerry Patterson 216,250 41.7
Republican Don Loucks 36,706 7
1994 Texas State Senate District 11 General Election
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Jerry Patterson (Incumbent) 73,959 55.61
Democratic Mike Martin 59,047 44.39
1992 Texas State Senate District 11 General Election
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Jerry Patterson 98,671 49.21
Democratic Chet Brooks (Incumbent) 92,702 46.24
Libertarian Marshall Anderson 9,121 4.55
1984 Texas U.S. Congressional District 25 General Election
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Mike Andrews (Incumbent) 113,946 64
Republican Jerry Patterson 63,974 36

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Texas Republican primary election returns, March 10, 1998". Retrieved March 30, 2011. 
  2. ^ "Kenn George for Texas Land Commissioner". Retrieved March 30, 2010. 
  3. ^ Texas Department of State Health Services, Vital Records (1946-11-15). "Birth Certificate for Jerry Emmett Patterson" (Third party index of birth records for Harris County). Retrieved 2007-01-03.  External link in |publisher= (help)[dead link]
  4. ^ Texas Insider » PATTERSON Says, “I support my fellow veteran David Dewhurst.” Archived March 3, 2016, at the Wayback Machine.
  5. ^ The Dallas Morning News | Options Archived March 4, 2016, at the Wayback Machine.
  6. ^ "Republican primary election returns". Retrieved March 6, 2014. 
  7. ^ a b "Beth Brown, "GOP lieutenant governor candidates reach out to Bryan-College Station voters," January 9, 2013". Bryan-College Station Eagle. Retrieved January 9, 2014. 

External links[edit]

Texas Senate
Preceded by
Chet Brooks
Texas State Senator
from District 11 (Pasadena)(1)

Succeeded by
Mike Jackson
Political offices
Preceded by
David Dewhurst
Commissioner of the General Land Office
Succeeded by
George P. Bush
Notes and references
1. For the 73rd Legislature, Patterson’s home city was Houston.