Dr. Elba Garcia embodies a new breed of professional woman in the 21st century. She is not only a community leader, but is also a mother and wife, a dentist with her own private practice, and a role model for Hispanic women from all walks of life. Dr. Garcia is a former Dallas City Council Member and current Dallas County Commissioner for District 4.
Born and educated in Mexico City, Dr. Garcia earned her first Doctorate in Odontology from the Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana in 1984. She later immigrated to the United States, where she continued her education at Baylor College of Dentistry, earning her second Doctorate in Dental Surgery (DDS) in 1990. She is a small business owner having run her own private practice since 1998. Dr. Garcia also served as an assistant professor at the Baylor College of Dentistry. She is married to former Texas State Representative Domingo Garcia. They are the proud parents of two sons.
Dr. Garcia has always dedicated herself to community service, but began her service in public office in 2001 when she was elected to the Dallas City Council to represent the citizens of District 1. Besides representing her own District, she served on numerous committees and task forces, including Chair of the City of Dallas Domestic Violence Task Force and the Chair of Public Safety, where she spearheaded efforts that led to a record reduction in crime rates for the City of Dallas. She was also chosen unanimously by her colleagues to serve as Deputy Mayor Pro Tem and Mayor Pro Tem.
While serving on the Dallas City Council, Dr. Garcia was instrumental in steering a number of important public projects to completion, including securing critical funds for the Latino Cultural Center and spearheading the development of a new Animal Shelter and the Oak Cliff Cultural Center. Additionally, she worked with the Environmental Committee to institute LEED standards for City of Dallas buildings.
In addition to her service to her constituents in Dallas County District 4, Dr. Garcia bears a myriad of other public service responsibilities. She is a current or past member of the Duncanville Chamber of Commerce, the Cedar Hill Chamber of Commerce, the Grand Prairie Rotary Club, Grand Prairie Chamber of Commerce, Greater Grand Prairie Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Greater Irving/Las Colinas Chamber of Commerce, Henry Holmes Breakfast Group, Irving Heritage Society, Safer Dallas Better Dallas, Irving Women’s Network, League of Women Voters of Dallas, Irving Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Dallas Summit, Hispanic 100, Dallas Assembly, Oak Cliff Chamber of Commerce, Oak Cliff Lions Club, and St. Cecilia’s Catholic Women.
She is also a current or previous board member of Children’s Medical Center of Dallas, Greater Dallas Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Dallas Zoological Society, Salvation Army, Dallas Convention Visitors Bureau, New Friends New Life Advisory Board.
Dr. Garcia was elected to serve as Dallas County Commissioner by the citizens of District 4 in November 2010, becoming the first Latina ever to serve on the Dallas County Commissioner’s Court. During this first term in office, Commissioner Garcia has focused on making county government more transparent, saving millions in tax dollars by fixing Dallas County’s bail bond system, pushing projects forward like the long delayed Hunter-Ferrell Road project in Irving and Grand Prairie, and championing initiatives like the District Attorney’s new Animal Cruelty Unit. She is the Chair of Dallas County Criminal Justice Advisory Board, Bail Bond Task Force and the DWI Task Force. Dr. Garcia is a member of North Texas Behavioral Health Authority (NTBHA), Greater Dallas Homeless Policy Alliance, Public Employee Benefits Cooperative (PEBC), Prostitute Diversion Initiative (PDI) and an alternate for the Regional Transportation Committee. In her role as a Dallas County Commissioner, Dr. Garcia also appoints community members to various Dallas County Boards including the Parkland Board of Managers, the Dallas County Trail and Preserve Program Board, the Citizen Election Advisory Committee as well as several other boards and commissions.
Dr. Garcia has been the recipient of many awards for her community service. Some of these include:
- 2015 IGNITE – Trailblazer
- 2014 DCET/Believe in Yourself, Inc – Silent Hero Azteca Award
- 2014 Dress for Success Dallas – Inspirational Leader Award
- 2014 Greater Southwest Black Chamber of Commerce-Woman of Distinction Leadership Award
- 2014 Keep Irving Beautiful – Green Government Award
- 2014 Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation – August Héroe en la Comunidad
- 2013 Greater Grand Prairie Hispanic Chamber of Commerce – Los Amigos Philanthropy Award
- 2013 Dallas County Democratic Party – Democratic Elected Official of the Year
- 2013 Dallas Convention & Visitors Bureau – High Tea With High Heals Award
- 2012 Mi Esquelita – Hero Award
- 2012 Stonewall Democrats – Distinguished Service Award
- 2012 Telemundo – Hispanic Business Salute
- 2012 Texas Democratic Party – Rising Star Award
- 2012 Immigrant Journey Awards – Immigrant Spirit Award
- 2012 National Assoc. for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) – President Award
- 2011 Oak Cliff Chamber of Commerce – Public Servant of the Year
- 2011 League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) – District 3 – Woman of the Year
- 2011 Low Birth Weight Development Center – Awards of Hope 2011 Visionary Leader
- 2010 Stonewall Democrats – Democrat of the Year
- 2009 Women’s Council of Dallas County – Woman of the Year
- 2009 Rotary Club of Dallas & Safer Dallas/Better Dallas – Citizens Public Safety Award
- 2009 Dallas Fire and Rescue – Recognition Award
- 2008 Oak Cliff Chamber of Commerce – Best Oak Cliff Public Servant Award
- 2008 Texas Animal Control Association – Presidential Citation
- 2008 Institute of Mexicans Abroad (IME) – OHTLI Award
- 2008 American Jewish Congress – Women of Spirit Award
- 2008 American Assoc. of Univ. Women (AAUW) – AAUW 100 Women of Distinction Award
- 2008 Greater Dallas Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (GDHCC)- Chairman’s Award
- 2007 Selected for the Aspen Rodel Fellowship in Public Leadership Program
- 2006 Northeast Texas Library System – Government Official of the Year
- 2006 Dallas Film Commission – Advocacy in Film Award
- 2006 Texas Can Academy – Motherhood Lifetime Achievement Award
- 2006 Greater Dallas Hisp. Chamber of Commerce (GDHCC) – Chairman’s Leadership Award
- 2005-2006 Oak Cliff Tribune – Citizen of the Year Award
- 2005 Greater Dallas Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (GDHCC) – Chairman’s Award
- 2005 El Centro College – Outstanding Alumnus Award
- 2005 Dallas Observer – Best Dallas City Councilmember
- 2005 McDonald’s® – Salute to Local Leaders Hispanic Faces of Leadership
- 2004 Greater Dallas Hispanic Chamber of Commerce – Chairman’s Award
- 2003 Dallas Can Academy – Most Outstanding Community Leader
- 2002 Dallas Observer – Best Dallas City Council Member
- 2000 YWCA – Women of Oak Cliff Achievement Award