Judicial Branch

Featured Member of the Judicial Branch for Prayer

Judge Jennifer Walker Elrod, U.S. Court of Appeals fo the Fifth Circuit

Jennifer Leigh Walker Elrod was born in Port Arthur, Texas in September 1968. She earned an undergraduate degree in economics from Baylor University, and received her Juris Doctor from Harvard Law School. After law school, she spent two years clerking at the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas.

She engaged in the private practice of law for the next eight years. Texas Governor Rick Perry appointed Elrod to the 190th District Court in Harris County. She was subsequently elected and reelected to that post. She also is a former chair of the board of the Texas Center for Legal Ethics.

President George W. Bush nominated Elrod to the Fifth Circuit. She was confirmed by a voice vote in the Senate and assumed her seat in October 2007.

She is married to Hal Elrod, and they have two daughters.


A three-judge panel of the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans voted 2-1 to put a district court judge’s ruling barring implementation of a Texas voter identification law on hold while it considers the constitutionality of the law which was passed this year in the state legislature.

“The state has made a strong showing that it is likely to succeed on the merits [of the case],” Judges Jennifer Elrod and Jerry Smith wrote in a six-page ruling.

Backers say the laws are necessary to prevent voter fraud and are no more onerous than the requirements imposed by states for driving a motor vehicle. President Donald Trump, who campaigned on cutting voter fraud, has supported Texas’ bid to require that voters show a form of identification.