McALLEN — An attorney here announced her intention to fill the seat Commissioner Javier Villalobos is vacating to run for mayor.

Attorney Lucia Thompson announced Wednesday she is running for the district 1 commission seat in May. The seat is currently occupied by Villalobos, but he announced last month he is running instead for the mayoral seat Jim Darling is vacating once Darling’s term ends in May.

“Having lived in the great city of McAllen for nearly 45 years, it gives me great pleasure to announce my candidacy to serve on the McAllen City Commission,” she said in a news release. “Now more than ever, it is important to ensure that our community continues to operate under principled leadership, and I am prepared to serve our community in this effort.”

Thompson, a partner at Palacios, Garza and Thompson Attorneys at Law in Edinburg, was born and raised in McAllen, a city where the quality of life is “unmatched,” she said.

“I recognize that this is in large part due to our leadership from the mayor to each city department and the city commission,” Thompson said. “But just as important, it’s the great citizens of our community who have built McAllen.”

Still, the city isn’t perfect and there’s room for improvement,

“As a city commissioner she intends to focus first on helping our businesses and families recover rapidly from this pandemic,” the news release stated. “She also believes that developing smart growth strategies alongside developers can create a thriving economy and good paying jobs.”

Thompson is also hoping to focus on mobility, with an emphasis on improving the city’s main traffic corridor by reducing congestion and widening streets. She’s also intent on forging stronger partnerships with the public and private sector to address drainage issues and street lighting.

“McAllen needs to continue on this upward trajectory to see that our families, businesses and neighborhoods flourish (by) creating smart initiatives without raising city taxes and burdening taxpayers,” she said.

The 20-year board certified attorney graduated from McHi in 1993, earned her undergraduate degree from Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas, and later earned her Juris Doctorate from South Texas College of Law in Houston.

“My education is probably the most important journey I have experienced; and then practicing family law and volunteering in McAllen for the last 20 years has taught me so much about the importance of family and community,” she said. “It has given me a well-rounded perspective that will serve me well as a city commissioner.”

Thompson is also a member of the Texas Academy of Family Law Specialists, Hidalgo County Bar Association, Hidalgo County Women’s Bar, Lamar Academy Friends of IB and the McAllen Leadership Class of 2006.

She said she looks forward to meeting new faces along the campaign trail and hearing about their concerns.

“I understand that every one of my decisions will impact someone’s life or business,” she said. “I respect the significance of this responsibility and I am ready to serve District 1.”