Ellen Cohen has lived and worked in the city of Houston for the past 43 years. She served for 10 years as the Executive Director of the American Jewish Committee, and for 18 years as the CEO of the Houston Area Women’s Center, working with survivors of sexual and domestic violence. In 2006, she was elected as the Texas State Representative for District 134. After serving two terms in the Texas State Legislature, Ellen continued her public service career at home. She ran for Houston City Council, and was sworn into office in January 2012 as the Council Member representing District C.
During her tenure on Council, Ellen has championed the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance, the elimination of the sexual assault kit backlog, the creation of a dedicated Human Trafficking Unit within the Houston Police Department, the introduction of a Parking Benefit District for the Washington Corridor, and many other initiatives to improve the quality of life of her constituents. Ellen served eight years on council and last four of which she was Mayor Pro Tem. She was term limited December 31, 2019.