20+ years ago my husband, Ian and I moved to Cedar Park because we wanted to raise our children in a community where neighbors knew and truly cared about one another. We wanted a community that offered our family the opportunity to explore nature, participate in community events, have access to great libraries and public spaces. Cedar Park gave us this while also giving us a sense of belonging. Now more than ever, it is an exciting time to be a Williamson County Resident! So many things are happening in our community in terms of growth, economic development, and diversity. All of these changes bring more opportunities to build our community to be the open and inclusive community that first drew my family to Cedar Park.
My name is Sara Groff and I am running to be your next Justice of the Peace for Precinct 2. I believe there is a unique opportunity through the Justice of the Peace position to change lives and ensure justice is accessible to everyone, regardless of race, income, or zip code. I look forward to bringing a fresh approach to the role of Justice of the Peace for the folks of Precinct. 2. I believe that courts should be accessible to everyone, that the law should be applied in a non-biased manner, and that low level offenses should not ruin someone’s life. I will work to modernize the court, remove barriers to the court, and help cultivate a legal resource community available to low income and indigent folks. I will bring weddings back to the JP 2 court. I will administer the law fairly and equally without bringing in biases or preconceived notions.
I was raised in a family that valued community and community involvement. Most of my family are either public servants or work in the non-profit sector and all are politically active. I was taught that democracy is not a spectator sport at a very early age. We learned the value of voting by accompanying our parents to the polls, being involved in political campaigns, and helping my grandmother with her League of Women Voters registration drives. We were not a wealthy family growing up but knew that service to our community and others brought its own riches. My father runs the smallest PBS station in America. He started with KEDT as the 3rd employee, literally built the station from the ground up, and now, 50 years later, is still there serving the people of South Texas. I have always admired my father’s ability to see the best in his community and his work ethic to help his community. He truly taught my brothers and me what it means to serve.
I believe that my personal and professional backgrounds have prepared me for the role of JP. I have worked in both the private and public sector. In the private sector, I started out my career in crisis customer service, where tensions are already high before even beginning to solve a problem. I also spent time working in corporate training, which allowed me to develop my communication and interpersonal skills. My last role in the private sector was as a project manager for a large telecommunications company where I managed large scale IT projects, which required clear communication and successful management of diverse teams and large budgets.
I left the private sector to stay home with my children. When I re-entered the workforce, I knew I wanted to work in the public sector, specifically in government. I went back to school to seek a degree in government and public health. I graduated from UT in 2018 with an honors degree in Health and Society, which is public health and sociology, and a minor in government. I then went to work for State Representative John Bucy as his District Director putting a premium on communication, problem-solving, and inclusion. I love that I get to work for the community in which I live.
I also volunteer my time serving on Cedar Park’s Planning and Zoning Committee, where I also served as chair for two years. This role provided me with vital experience in working with a diverse group of stakeholders. I believe in this role, I have demonstrated the ability to synthesize complex information, hear both sides, and work toward a decision in a fair and unbiased manner.
For the past 2 years, I have run a food delivery program ensuring our neighbors in Pct. 2 have access to fresh food and meat. I manage a team of volunteers and coordinate all logistics involved. Many of the volunteers have been with me since March 2020, the beginning of the program and together we have delivered food weekly for 2.5 years, totaling more than 90,000 lbs. of food. I love this type of volunteer work because of the personal connections that are created.
This race is about what unites us: caring for our neighbors, building community, and ensuring justice is available to everyone. I will treat all who enter my court with respect and dignity and perform all duties prescribed by law to the Justice of the Peace. Together, I know we can build the Williamson County we all deserve.