Harris County has elected its first Black Treasurer

The newly elected Harris County Treasurer has made history. Why? Harris County has elected its first Black Treasurer, ever. Carla Wyatt worked in the county building 20 years ago as an Intern. She’ll soon return as an elected official. 

"It’s very special for me because don’t make me cry," smiles Wyatt. 


It’s an emotional accomplishment because not only has Carla Wyatt made history. "It’s really exciting to be the first African American Treasurer in the history of Harris County. It is an honor and a privilege to stand on the shoulders of my ancestors and the people who have come before me to take on this challenge," she says. The historical achievement also reminds the Houston native of a potentially discouraging discussion that could have kept her from her dreams.

"One of my high school counselors told me college wasn’t for everyone and I said you’re absolutely right, and I graduated three times. I have a Bachelors Degree in Biology. I have a Master’s Degree in Biology with a minor in Chemistry. I have a PhD in Environmental Toxicology," Wyatt explains. 

Wow! So we know Dr. Carla Wyatt is smart. She's also funny. "I’m Carla like the hurricane. Wyatt, like Earp. Some people call me trouble, but that’s ok," she laughs.

Since Election Day everyone’s been asking what does a doctorate in Environmental Toxicology have to do with keeping county funds? "Well it has absolutely nothing to do with being the Treasurer. However, I am a Researcher and a Statistician, which means I can count real good, and I can find stuff," quips the witty Wyatt.  


A county Treasurer, by the way, keeps track of all the money coming in and going out. "Whether it’s your tags, your taxes, whether it’s payroll. Whether we owe you money or you owe us money. That’s what the Harris County Treasurer does. The Treasurer is the person who’s responsible for keeping the books," Wyatt explains, and she adds.

"One of my goals is to paint a better picture of understanding of where your taxpayer dollars are going, bringing information technology and finance together. (Why is that a priority for her?) For people like my mother and my grandmother and my cousins, my neighbors and my friends who call me to ask me questions about 'hey what are they doing in my neighborhood?' I'd like to have that available to everybody in Harris County".  

Wyatt’s worked for Harris County in a slew of different positions for two decades.

"Every program that I’ve worked in Harris County I’ve created an internship program because I came in as an intern. I started out as an intern in the El Franco Lee internship program via Sylvia Garcia. Sylvia got my resume, and she gave it to El Franco Lee and I became an El Franco Lee intern in the Public Infrastructure Department". 

"I had the privilege of working for Harris County Toll Road, Flood Control, Right of Way, Construction, Engineering, became a Communications expert working all the hurricanes. You know when you’re an intern something comes up they say oh just give it to the intern. So I learned a lot".  

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She currently works for Harris County Precinct 3 Constable’s Office. "Constable Sherman Eagleton is a fantastic person, and I’m indebted to him for teaching me the things he’s taught me".

Wyatt is also a youth group volunteer and Harris County’s first Black Treasurer hopes to inspire youngsters to accomplish their dreams. "People can make a judgement about you just by looking at you, but you have to decide what you’d like to do and who you’d like to be and if you fall it’s ok just get up and try again". 

Dr. Carla Wyatt will begin her new duties as Harris County Treasurer January 1, 2023.