A Next Level Salute to... the Honorable Ronald C. Green

With honor, Ronald Green has served the city of Houston as city controller over the last 8 years. As his term has expired this year, Green will soon embark on a new career. Independent of his future endeavors, I will always admire Mr. Green as one of Houston's venerable statesman.

Green was elected to serve as the first African American in history to hold the very prestigious financial position in the city of Houston on December 12, 2009. He was reelected on November 8, 2011 and again in November 2013.

If you are not familiar, the City Controller serves as the watchdog over the city’s finances. While the finance department has a roll in monitoring the cash and issuing the checks, it's Green’s job to watch them and every department in the city. On a monthly basis, over $6 billion is controlled by his department.

But that doesn't tell the real story of his commitment to service.

Ronald Green is also a litigation attorney. His expertise ranges from real estate and commercial litigation to public finance, personal injury and white collar criminal defense. The Green Firm has been operating for over 20 years with Green at the helm... but again, that doesn't tell you the real story of just how much he is admired.

I met Ronald Green back in April 2009. My job moved me from New York to Houston around that time. As I'm sure most of you can relate to the nuances and challenges of a transitional move, building a new social life was one of my biggest challenges. A friend from New York introduced me to entrepreneur and social innovator Rob Wright; and he always knew where to go to have a good time. The parties and social soirees were a healthy respite from my work schedule, but at the end of the day, I still didn't have too many friends here.

As I began to develop a love for all things Houston, I was anxious to develop my own social platform, so I built my own blog and began writing op-eds, short stories, and doing local interviews. A few years later, I started a weekly internet show. 

On February 9, 2012, Ronald Green agreed to be a guest on my show. My interest in interviewing him at the time centered around learning and marketing many of his local efforts. In recognition, I was eager to learn more about his successes - with hopes that one day, more men in the city would find inspiration to emulate him, including myself.

His efforts have helped improve city programs, from competitive bidding and capital projects to pension protection and customer service.

He is an advocate for effective financial management of the city’s enterprise funds, equipment acquisition, and fair housing initiatives. And his efforts on behalf of quality of life issues have won praise from every corner of the community.

Green is also a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., 100 Black Men of America, Inc., UH Alumni Organization, UH Black Alumni Association,Thurgood Marshall School of Law Alumni Association, Government Finance Officers Association, National Association of Bond Lawyers, Houston Lawyers Association, and Leadership Houston Class XXIII. He is a husband, a father, an active member of the community and Windsor Village United Methodist Church.

I will always fondly remember February 9, 2012, thanks to Mr. Ronald C. Green. On that day, he came to our radio show to spend time with us. As we laughed and talked, our discourse covered a range of topics, from cars and whips to sports and music, to his role in shaping our wonderful city. His depth of knowledge about Houston politics was immeasurable, and his energy was infectious. Anyone who has spent time with him can attest to this.

But little did Green know that he was shaping my understanding of service with integrity.  From respect to reverence, Brandon and myself truly admire Ronald C. Green for his committment to serve us on that day. As an incredibly respected man in our community that leads by example, his sustenance has and will continue to be such an important part of Houston.

So what's next for Ronald C. Green? Honestly, I don't know. A mayoral campaign perhaps? If so, he has my vote.

And coincidentally, today, December 30, is also his birthday. If only he were DELTA THETA. Just kidding.

Happy Birthday Ronald... and thank you. 

People around the globe are envious of the enormous opportunities that most Americans have. I believe the greatest advantage we have is the ability to choose our leaders—and our history is rich with brilliant, humane and thoughtful leaders. Democracy is synonymous with America. I am personally proud that I have served my community through elected office. In the larger scheme, I am proud of the ingenuity that defines America: our industrial and commercial strengths, our medical and scientific breakthroughs, our arts and cultural geniuses. As an African-American, I take special pride in that heritage and the many individual accomplishments made to this country by those of my race who came before me.
— Ronald C. Green