Donna M. Bahorich served as Chair of the State Board of Education (SBOE) from 2015–19. She was elected to represent District 6 in the Houston area in 2012 and reelected in 2016. She was recognized for her commitment to stronger policies and supports that prepare all children to be productive, engaged citizens. Her leadership in expanding public transparency and participation, increasing parent and educator voices, and incorporating broad collaborative processes was impactful. Having served on all three SBOE committees, she completed her service as a member of the committee overseeing investments of and distributions from the nation’s largest educational endowment.
After graduating from Virginia Tech University with a Bachelor of Science in financial management, Bahorich began a career in the telecommunications industry. She worked for Chesapeake & Potomac Telephone under the AT&T umbrella and later with Mountain Bell. During her time at Bell, she secured multimillion-dollar contracts. Bahorich left Mountain Bell in 1985 to raise a family with her husband Mike. She later earned her Master of Arts degree in counseling from Liberty University.
Bahorich became the campaign manager for Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick during his first run for state senate. After his election, she worked as district director, communications director, and campaign treasurer for Sen. Patrick. She was named the Senate District 7 Volunteer of the Year in 2007. She served as the 2010 Harris County Republican Party Primary Director, responsible for polling locations and personnel for 885 precincts.
Bahorich served as a member of the West Houston P-16 Council, president of the Daughters of Liberty Republican Women, and as a member of the pastor’s council at the Vineyard Church of Houston. She is a Senior Fellow with the American Leadership Forum Houston. She has been recognized with numerous awards, including the League of United Latin American Citizens’ State Director's Leadership Medal, Leadership Award, and Consensus Builder Award. In 2020, Gov. Abbott commissioned her with the Yellow Rose of Texas Award. In 2021, the City of Houston recognized her for exceptional community service.