Justice Julie Countiss
Justice Julie Countiss is proud to serve you as Justice, Place 7, on the Court of Appeals for the First District of Texas. She won the November 6, 2018 general election with 906,180 votes—over 83,000 more than her opponent.
Justice Countiss was sworn in on January 1, 2019 by her father, retired Justice Richard Countiss, who served as District Attorney, District Judge and Appellate Justice throughout his long career in service of the law.
Justice Countiss was born and raised in the Texas Panhandle. She graduated from Southern Methodist University in Dallas and joined Teach for America in 1993. Her experience teaching elementary school in the South Bronx, New York City with TFA, ignited her passion for public service. After graduating from the Law Center at the University of Houston in 2002 and years of working in private practice, Justice Countiss returned to serve her community as Assistant County Attorney in the Office of the Harris County Attorney. One of her proudest pro-bono accomplishments was working as a volunteer attorney for Kids in Need of Defense where she represented unaccompanied minors from Honduras and El Salvador in immigration court and in their applications for permanent residency.
Justice Countiss is actively engaged in the judiciary statewide and nationally.
In 2019, Justice Countiss was appointed by the Supreme Court of Texas to serve on the Children’s Commission–a judicial commission for children, youth and families in Texas. She also serves on the Legislative Committee of the State Bar of Texas Judicial Section, she co-chaired the Houston Bar Association’s 2021 Civil Trial and Appellate Bench Bar Conference, and she is co-chair of the Membership Committee for the National Association of Women Judges.
Justice Countiss is passionate about providing opportunities for law students from all backgrounds to intern in the courts and to find mentors they can look to for support. The practice of law can often seem like a private club meant only for those with the right connections or pedigree. But the law is there to serve everyone equally and our lawyers and judges should reflect the diverse backgrounds of our community. So along with judicial colleagues from other courts in Harris County, in April 2021, Justice Countiss co-chaired the Color of Justice Program. Color of Justice encourages girls and minorities of all age levels to consider legal and judicial careers by bringing them together with judges and lawyers, and providing them with resources to pursue their goals.
Justice Countiss is a proud mother and step-mother of three wonderful young adults. She lives in the Montrose neighborhood with her terrific husband. Her other passions include cooking/entertaining, swimming, traveling, working on the NYT crossword puzzle, reading sci-fi books, listening to true crime podcasts, watching PBS News Hour and walking her mini-Schnauzer Marge in Buffalo Bayou Park.