Election Day is May 6 and the Fort Worth Report is committed to keeping you informed through our Election Central. 

To help voters make informed decisions at the ballot box, we asked every candidate to respond to a candidate questionnaire intended to touch on the most pressing issues candidates may face while serving in elected office. 

The candidate’s responses may be edited for grammar. 

District 11 includes parts of east and south central Fort Worth. To find out what district you live in, input your address here

Municipal elections are coming up. Here are some key dates:

April 24: Early voting begins 
May 2: Early voting ends 
May 6: Election Day    

Candidate survey 

 Tara Maldonado-Wilson is a candidate for District 11. (Courtesy: Maldonado-Wilson campaign)

Name: Tara Maldonado-Wilson

Age: 38

Occupation: Registered Nurse

What are your qualifications to serve on Fort Worth’s City Council?

I am a nurse, a small business owner, and a single mother of three. I was raised by my single mom and grandmother. I grew up in a household where putting food on the table, staying safe, and having clean clothes were a struggle my family and I had to face every day. I’m the oldest daughter of three, and played a big role in raising my two siblings. My family responsibilities helped me develop a strong resiliency to hardships.

I am a frontline hero. I served Fort Worth throughout the Covid pandemic, and answered the call to help fight Covid-19 in Chicago where they needed Spanish speaking nurses to assist hard hit Hispanic communities. I stepped up for my community by serving Fort Worth during the worst of times. When the electrical grid failed across Texas, I ensured my neighbors were safe by delivering food and water throughout the community.

All of the hardships I faced growing up are the same struggles that families in District 11 face every single day. I am the only candidate who still walks a day in the shoes of my community, and I know firsthand what it is like to be the one who never has a seat at the table. That’s why I stepped up to run. I am running in a district that was newly drawn, specifically drawn to be a hispanic opportunity district. I am ready to bring the care that Fort Worth needs just like I do every day in the ER to those who need help.

Following the murder of Atatiana Jefferson, I felt compelled to stand up and seek answers for this senseless act. I decided to go to City Hall and attend a city council meeting for the first time. To my dismay, I along with numerous other distressed community members, was locked out and silenced. At a time when worried residents should have been comforted and reassured, we were met with arbitrary rules and loaded down with procedure. As Covid spread, the absence in leadership from our elected officials was never more apparent. Something as simple as creating an online forum to get information out to the district was just too much work. I decided to step up and run for City Council.

Today, the same issues that motivated me to run in the first place are still the reality that residents of District 11 deal with everyday. This district is majority working class and communities of color. As a mom, frontline worker, and Latina from humble roots, I’m as ready as ever to amplify the voices of those so often ignored in this city.

My other experiences include:

Executive Board, LGBTQ Saves
Executive Board, Texas Latina List
Fort Worth Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Ambassador
Leadership Fort Worth Leading Edge 2022 Class, Emerging leaders in Fort Worth under 40
Leadership ISD 2022 Cohort, Community leaders advocating for public school systems
Hispanic Women’s Network of Texas (HWNT)/Fort Worth Chapter Education Committee
Mentor, in the Latinas in Progress (LIP)
Tarrant County Democratic Election Judge

What are your top two priorities if elected to City Council? Describe briefly how you would approach these priorities.

Community Inclusion: The neighborhoods in District 11 have been shut out of the decision making process for far too long. As somebody who has been boots on the ground and on the receiving end of this, I am committed to ensuring the voice of the community I represent is heard. This means actually being allowed and included in the decision making process of Fort Worth. One of my priorities is to create an equitable and more inclusive city for all residents.

Affordable Housing: I am concerned about the current zoning policies in Fort Worth, as they are causing problems for many neighborhoods. Access to affordable housing is a critical issue for working families in our city, especially considering that the average age of Fort Worth is 35, and in District 11 it is 32. Unfortunately, owning a home is out of reach for many in this age group. Additionally, our community block grant program is highly underutilized, primarily due to the complexity of the application process. To address this issue, we need to provide education and workshops to help residents navigate the application process, particularly for communities of color who have historically faced barriers to homeownership. We also need to provide rental and eviction assistance to prevent displacement of households of color, which is crucial for promoting economic growth and stability for all.

How would you characterize the performance of city management over the past five years?

It depends. If all you care about is the financial performance of the city then you would say that city management did a good job. But otherwise for the past five years city management has ignored the needs of and neglected the people of Fort Worth. They do not get a good grade at all.

What is the single biggest issue your particular district faces?

District 11 is a predominantly low-income residential area with limited access to public transportation, healthy food options, and community resources. Our community faces significant challenges related to poverty, unemployment, and health disparities. It also experiences difficulties accessing quality education, affordable housing, and funding. As a result, zip codes in District 11 have lower life expectancies and face significant barriers to economic mobility.

To address these issues, we need to focus on improving public transportation infrastructure, expanding access to fresh and healthy food options, and promoting economic development and workforce training programs. I will also advocate to increase access to affordable housing and address systemic inequities that contribute to poverty and inequality. Through community engagement and collaboration, we can work towards creating a more equitable, inclusive, and thriving community for all residents.

How will you balance the concerns of your district vs. the city as a whole?

I understand that the needs of my district are interconnected with the needs of the city as a whole. The success of Fort Worth relies on the success of each district, and the needs of one cannot be fully addressed without considering the needs of the other. By focusing on the needs of my district and advocating for necessary funding and investment, we can strengthen our local economy and improve the quality of life for residents in District 11, while also contributing to the overall growth and prosperity of the city. This will help to create a ripple effect of positive change throughout Fort Worth, ultimately benefiting all residents and communities.

How can city leadership work to ensure all Fort Worth residents have equal access to city services regardless of race, ethnicity, gender and income?

We need to engage with community groups and actual stakeholders of the community to identify community needs, build trust, and foster relationships that support inclusive and equitable decision-making.

Fort Worth’s annual general budget is currently around $915 million; do you feel this budget is appropriate, too large, or too small? If too large or too small, briefly describe how you would propose amending the budget.

I think the annual general budget is appropriate around that number. However, the way that the city spends this money is disappointing. For example, when the Transit Alliance asked for $10 million the city gave them $1 million. But when City Hall was doing renovations they didn’t blink at going $50 million over budget. That is why we have so many avoidable problems in our city. Our priorities are not where they should be.

In 2023 the city will levy a tax rate of $0.7125 per $100 of assessed evaluation. If you would advocate for decreasing/increasing the tax rate what would you cut/add?

I am against raising taxes. The tax levied on all of us is a very complicated system. Fort Worth’s tax rate is just one small piece of a homeowner’s overall tax rate. If somebody tells you that we as a municipality can alter your taxes so significantly that you can actually notice it, they are lying to you because it is a part of a bigger system that creates the tax bill that you see.

As Fort Worth grows, how can the city ensure it keeps up with the pace of development?

As Fort Worth continues to grow, it is pertinent for the city to have a comprehensive and proactive approach to development. The city must create a long-term growth plan that takes into account population growth, economic trends, and infrastructure needs. This plan should be regularly reviewed and updated to ensure it is meeting the needs of the city equitably.

We also need to invest in infrastructure to support growth. This includes improving our roads and sidewalks, funding a competent public transportation system, and upgrading water and sewer systems. The city can encourage mixed-use development. This can help to create more vibrant neighborhoods and reduce urban sprawl. As the city grows, it is important to prioritize affordable housing to ensure that all residents have access to safe and affordable housing. The city can work with developers and non-profit organizations to create affordable housing options and provide incentives for developers to build affordable housing units.

In the last year, the city council has limited opportunities for public comment and changed meeting schedules. How would you approach community engagement as a council member?

It’s apparent that I would need to spend most of my time out in the community and neighborhoods. I’d rather be there anyways. But I don’t agree with the rules of public comment right now, and feel it’s a way that residents are being shut out.

What role does the City Council have in policing? Please describe how city council members should work to ensure the safety of their constituents.

The biggest role that City Council has in policing is maintaining accountability to the general public. Our police department is very well funded and makes up almost 40% of the general budget, and that does not even include CCPD funding. Fort Worth commissions studies, creates special boards, and pays for expensive audits and does literally anything other than listen to all the feedback that is given to them from all of these mentioned entities. It is hard to build trust with the general public when you only act like you care but in reality your actions say that you really don’t. I think constituents of Fort Worth will feel safe whenever the City Council actually carries out practices that make them safe.

Have you ever filed for bankruptcy? If so, when.


Have you ever been convicted of a crime, in Texas or another state? If so, what crime and when.


You can find other candidates’ responses by reading our voter guide here. The candidate’s responses may be edited for grammar.

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