Scott Hochberg represented southwest Houston in the Texas House of Representatives from 1993-2013. He was elected from two different districts, starting in a district that included the Texas Medical Center, Rice University, the Astrodome, and communities that included Meyerland, Hiram Clarke, Southampton, Southgate and Fondren Southwest. After redistricting in 2001, Mr. Hochberg served a district that included Gulfton, Sharpstown, Briarmeadow, Shenandoah, Piney Point and nearby communities, a district that was then the most densely populated district in the state, and one of the most diverse.
In the Texas House, Mr. Hochberg served as a member of the House Committee on Public Education for his entire twenty years in the Legislature, and is well-respected by members on both sides of the aisle as an expert on education policy and school funding. Mr. Hochberg served three terms as Chair of the Education Subcommittee of the House Committee on Appropriations, served as Vice-Chair of the House Committee on Public Education, and represented Texas as a Vice-Chair of the education panel of the National Conference of State Legislatures.In addition to the Public Education and Appropriations committees, Mr. Hochberg served on various other committees of the House as well as joint House-Senate committees, and served as Vice-Chair of the House Committee on Corrections.
In 2012, Mr. Hochberg was appointed by Houston Mayor Annise Parker to chair the board of directors of the Houston Forensic Science LGC, Inc., which will assume responsibility for operating major parts of what is currently the Forensic Division of the Houston Police Department. Mr. Hochberg is also a Lecturer on education policy at Rice University.
Mr. Hochberg has been recognized twice as one of the Texas' "Ten Best Legislators" by Texas Monthly magazine, and as the "Best Local Democrat" for 2011 by the Houston Press.
In 2012, Mr. Hochberg was honored by the Anti-Defamation League with the Milton Popkin Award, given for "exceptional leadership in furthering ADL's mission to promote respect for all".
Mr. Hochberg's work on the Public Education Committee included passage of a parents' bill of rights, funding for second-chance high school classes during evenings and weekends, additional school district performance audits, the state's first program to fund school building construction and renovation, and the creation of a medical safety board for student athletics. His many awards from education groups include being honored as a "Legislative Hero" by the Texas Freedom Network, Legislator of the Year by the Texas PTA, and a Champion for Children by the Equity Center.
Mr. Hochberg has been honored by two organizations for his work on health care issues. He was named Texas Legislative Session Patient Care Champion by the Harris County Medical Society, and received President's Award for Outstanding Promotion of Nursing in the Houston Area from Texas Nurses Association District Nine.
Mr. Hochberg has been recognized by Mothers Against Drunk Driving for his work to lower the state's DWI alcohol level, and has passed legislation to make it easier to close bars and nightclubs that generate crime. His work on consumer issues has strengthened consumer rights against rebate rip-offs, protected patients from late billing by hospitals, and provided fair workers compensation payments for Texans injured while working second jobs. Mr. Hochberg has been honored by the Pakistan American Council of Texas for his legislation prohibiting deceptive advertising of Hallal foods.
Mr. Hochberg led a successful effort to hold polluters responsible for unplanned air pollution caused by poor maintenance. As an advocate of open government, he led in the effort to post all legislative actions and state agency rules on the Internet. Mr. Hochberg was appointed by Chief Justice Wallace Jefferson and former Chief Justice Tom Phillips to serve on the Judicial Committee on Information Technology, where he served for ten years.
Mr. Hochberg is a Houston native. After earning his Master in Electrical Engineering degree from Rice University, he co-founded an electronic manufacturing firm that he headed for 12 years before selling his interest. He currently operates a software development company.
Mr. Hochberg is the recipient of an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Houston Baptist University. He serves on the boards of the local chapters of the Anti-Defamation League and the American Jewish Committee, and on the Community Relations Committee of the Jewish Federation of Houston. He has served as president of the board of Houston Taping for the Blind and as trustee of the Citizens' Environmental Coalition. Mr. Hochberg is a graduate of Leadership Houston, and is an Associate Member of the Sharpstown Civic Association.
Rice University has recognized Mr. Hochberg's volunteer efforts by naming its (now-former) radio broadcasting tower in his honor.