Hon. Dean Rucker, Presiding Judge Seventh Administrative Region

Hon. Dean Rucker

The Honorable Dean Rucker is the Presiding Judge of the Seventh Administrative Judicial Region of Texas, Senior Judge of the 318th Family District Court, sitting by assignment, and serves as Supreme Court Children's Commission Jurist in Residence (JIR).

Judge Rucker is board certified in family law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. He is the 2015 recipient of the Judge Sam Emison Memorial Award given by the Texas Academy of Family Lawyers and the 2014 recipient of the Samuel Pessarra Outstanding Jurist Award presented by the Texas Bar Foundation. In 2015, Judge Rucker received the Judicial Excellence in Education Award from the Texas Center for the Judiciary. He is also the 2014 recipient of the Harriett Herd Founders Award from Centers for Children and Families of Midland. In 2006, he was awarded the Chair’s Award of Excellence by the Texas Center for the Judiciary. Judge Rucker was also honored as the 2005 Jurist of the Year by the Texas Chapter of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers. In 1997, Texas CASA recognized Judge Rucker as the Clayton E. Evans Judge of the Year. Judge Rucker is Past Chair of the Judicial Section, State Bar of Texas and the Texas Center for the Judiciary. He is a member of the Family Law Section and serves on the Family Law Council, the Formbook Committee, and the Legislative Committee. He previously served as the Judicial Advisor to the Family Law Council for many years. He is a member of the Texas Family Law Foundation and serves as the Judicial Advisor on its Board of Directors. Judge Rucker is the Vice-Chair of the State Bar Pattern Jury Charge Oversight Committee and a past member of the State Bar Pattern Jury Charge-Family/Probate Committee. He is a member of the Texas Academy of Family Law Specialists and the Midland County Bar Association. Judge Rucker was a charter Commissioner on the Supreme Court of Texas Permanent Judicial Commission for Children, Youth and Families and is the Past Chair of the Texas Children’s Justice Act Task Force.

As JIR, Judge Rucker assists with developing curriculum for the annual Child Welfare Judges Conference, reviews updates of the Child Protection Law Bench Book, and provides technical assistance during the Texas Legislative Session and other special matters. 

Judge Rucker has spoken at conferences for the Texas Center for the Judiciary, the National Council of Family and Juvenile Court Judges (NCJFCJ), the State Bar of Texas, and the Texas Academy of Family Law Specialists. He earned a B.S. in Business Administration from Trinity University in 1977 and a J.D. from St. Mary’s University School of Law in 1980.

Hon. Rob Hofmann, Judge of the 452nd District Court 

Judge Rob Hofmann

The Honorable Rob Hofmann recently completed 20 years of public service for the State of Texas, having served five years as Mason County Attorney, twelve years as judge of the Child Protection Court of the Hill Country and three years as the District Judge of the 452nd Judicial District of Edwards, Kimble, Mason, McCulloch and Menard Counties.

As judge, he has presided in over 14,000 dependency hearings and adoptions in fifteen Texas counties. Judge Hofmann is chair of the Children's Commission's Foster Care and Education Committee. Has served on several committees and boards of state and national organizations as well as presented at numerous state and national conferences on the subject of child welfare. In 2011 he was named Texas CASA judge of the year. In 2016 Education Reach for Texans recognized his work to improve educational outcomes for children in care with a service award. He is the immediate past vice-chair of the Children's Commission and currently serves as Jurist in Residence.