By Gary Gillen
Judge Cannata Appointed by Governor Abbott
After more than 10 years on the Justice of the Peace bench in Fort Bend County Precinct 3, Judge Ken Cannata was appointed by Governor Greg Abbott to be presiding Judge of the newly created 458th Judicial District Court of Fort Bend County.
A graduate of the University of South Florida, Judge Cannata received his Doctor of Jurisprudence with honors from the South Texas College of Law in 1983. During his tenure as Justice of the Peace, the growth of Precinct 3 caused his court to become the busiest in Fort Bend County. The filings in the court tripled yet he was able to operate the court efficiently with virtually the same staff, while maintaining the same high level of service to the public.
Judge Cannata will bring that same common sense administration he perfected at the Justice of the Peace level to the District Court. Taxpayers will see that he is always careful with taxpayer dollars. Further, Cannata is the first Fort Bend County District Court Judge to be Board Certified by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization in Civil Trial Law.
I have had the opportunity to see Judge Cannata in the courtroom on several occasions. Since juvenile cases, particularly truancy, flow through Justice of the Peace courts, I have watched him talk to these young people. He connects with them in a way that most adults are unable, then converses with attorneys on very complex and complicated cases with the same ease and success.
His court is efficient, moving a high volume of cases quickly but making certain everyone feels they receive time to present their side and they feel they got a fair hearing of the facts. Our courts must be fair and even handed. I believe Judge Cannata sets the standard for fairness.
As taxpayers, seeing an elected official handle a tripling of work without significant increases in staff, while still maintaining a high level of service, is refreshing. Our judges are guardians of justice both to the parties in court and to the taxpayers as well. Judge Cannata proves that every day.
Judge Cannata has been an active member of our community serving as executive director and board member of the Fort Bend Youth Football League for over ten years. He has previously served as a Committeeman with the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo and is presently a volunteer for the West Fort Bend Women’s Charity. He is a former director and President of the Fort Bend Dispute Resolution Center and is a life member of both the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo and the Fort Bend County Fair Association. He and his wife Susan celebrated their 39th wedding anniversary this past July. They have 3 children and 2 grandchildren. Ken and Susan have resided in the Pecan Grove subdivision in Richmond since 1993.
Judge Cannata’s experience and his reputation for fairness have resulted in his appointment being positively received. The Fort Bend legal community and community leaders agree that his appointment by Governor Abbott is well deserved. The people of Fort Bend County are fortunate to have a respected, legal mind on the bench, in the 458th District Court.
Gary Gillen owns and operates Gillen Pest Control in Richmond. He is the only person in history to have served on both the Richmond City Commission and the Rosenberg City Council. He was the Chairman of the Republican Party of Fort Bend County 2006-2007. He can be reached at Gary@GaryGillen.com