Representative Tommy Merritt is the founder of Gregg Industrial Insulators, Inc. and was first elected to represent HD-7 in1996.
He currently serves as chairman of the House Committee on Public Safety and serves on the Transportation, Local & Consent Calendars & Redistricting committees. His previous posts include membership on the House Energy Resources, State Recreational Resources, State Affairs, Border Affairs & International Relations, and Defense & State-Federal Relations committees. During the 77th Legislative Session, Rep. Merritt was vice chairman and & chairman of the Energy Resources committee.
Merritt was elected to the Gregg County Appraisal Board in 1986 and served as its director until 1993. He was appointed to the Sabine River Authority in 1990 and concluded his term in 1995.
Merritt served from 1971 to 1974 as the United States Postal Inspector. In 1984, he traveled with the Council for a Secure America to Israel to gain a better understanding of how to combat terrorism.
Following the 76th Legislature, Merritt received the “G.J. Sutton Award” from the Legislative Black Caucus, the first Republican House member to receive the award in two decades. In 2006, he received the “Freedom to Teach Award” from the Association of Texas Professional Educators twice, and in 2007 was named a Paul Harris Fellow by Rotary International.
Merritt was selected by President George W. Bush to serve on the Bush-Cheney Presidential Transition Energy Advisory team. He has been a member of the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission since his appointment by Gov. George Bush in 1996.
Merritt is a native of Kilgore and attended Kilgore College. He graduated from Texas Christian University with a Bachelor of Business Administration. Merritt and his wife Janet have been married for more than 35 years and have three children, Missy, Meredith, and Thomas.