John Devine began his career in Houston, Texas where he attended law school while working for Shell Oil and later Engineering firm Brown & Root.
After graduating from law school and meeting his wife Nubia, John planned to start a family and open a law practice. However, a Houston court ruling drew John out of his plans and into a different career entirely.
In 1992, a liberal Democrat judge in Houston made headlines when she prohibited “Christian activists from praying…on public sidewalks in front of abortion clinics.” (Suburbia Reporter 9-17-92 A1) “Making it a crime to pray and counsel on public property outside abortion centers,” violated the public’s First Amendment rights.
John had had personal experience with this kind of liberal judicial abuse before and he knew something had to be done. He knew he had to take a stand. He mounted a hugely successful grassroots write-in campaign to run against the unopposed Judge Eileen O’Neill in the upcoming election. John’s supporters brought in a record 40,000 write-in votes, and while he didn’t win, these votes were credited for unseating 5 incumbent Democrats in other races. Two years later, and on the ballot this time, John Devine defeated O’Neill, the Democrats rising star. The papers called it a “Devine Intervention.” Judge Devine was reelected by a wide margin in 1998. Republicans in Harris County have been in control ever since.
John served 8 years on the bench and compiled an impressive judicial record:
- John Devine’s court ranked #1 in reducing the court’s case load
- John Devine’s decisions were reversed in appeals court less than any other judge at the time
- During his tenure, John was named the “Best Republican Surprise” by the Houston Press in 1995, along with another up-and-coming Republican named George W. Bush.
- He has also been named the “Judge of the Year” by Police Organizations and awarded the title of “Texas Size Hero” by Focus on the Family magazine.
John Devine has also served our community in many official capacities including:
- District Judge, 190th District Court, 1995 – 2002
- Special Judge, Harris Co. J.P. Courts, 2002 – 2011
- Harris County Juvenile Board
- Harris County Juvenile Justice School Board
- Board of Civil District Judges Mass Torts Comm.
- Board of Civil District Judges
- Texas Association of State Judges
- American Judges Association