Mayor and Council
The City of Brenham is a home-rule city governed by the City's Charter, adopted September 7, 1920. The charter provides for a Council-Manager form of government. The council-manager form is the system of local government that combines the strong political leadership of elected officials in the form of a City Council, with the strong managerial experience of an appointed local government manager. The City of Brenham has had 10 City Managers with the first being appointed in May 1968.
The City Council is the principal legislative body of the City. The Mayor and two (2) Council Members are elected from the City at large to serve four (4)-year terms. Four (4) Council members are elected by ward, one from each of the four (4) wards, to serve four (4)-year terms.
All City Council Meetings are held in Council Chambers in City Hall at 200 W. Vulcan Street, in downtown Brenham. City Council meetings are held on the first (1st) and third (3rd) Thursday of each month at 1:00 pm.
All meetings are posted seventy-two (72) hours prior, as required by the Texas Open Meetings Act.
Left to right - back row: Atwood Kenjura, Shannan Canales, Albert Wright, Leah Cook
Front row: Adonna Saunders, Milton Tate, Clint Kolby - image by Scott Hill - Brenham Portrait Gallery
Mayor and Council Biographies
Milton Y. Tate Jr. first took the helm as Mayor in September 2003 after the death of former Mayor Walter Schwartz. He was re-elected in May 2005 and again in May 2008.
As Mayor, Tate represents the whole City and is elected by all the citizens. He has been a resident of Brenham since 1963. Mayor Tate is an attorney at law, practicing with the firm of Moorman, Tate, Moorman, Urquhart & Haley, LLP. He is also president of the Washington County Abstract Company, issuing title insurance. Tate holds a bachelor's degree in business administration from the University of Texas and graduated from the University of Texas School of Law in 1963. He was admitted to the bar that same year. He has served as the county attorney for Washington County and was the city attorney from 1982-1992.
Mayor Tate is a former member of the Board of Directors for the Lower Colorado River Authority, the Brenham Economic Development Foundation, and Trinity Medical Center. He is currently a member of the Brenham Rotary Club, First United Methodist Church, and several organizations with The University of Texas.
Mayor Tate and his wife, Twila, have two daughters and six grandchildren. One daughter and her family live in Pflugerville, Texas and one daughter and her family live in Brenham. Mayor Tate enjoys walking, swimming, watching most sports, and traveling with his family.
Mayor Pro Tem Councilmember Clint Kolby
Position 5 - At Large
Clint Kolby is a local attorney with the Brenham law firm Betts, Walters & Mutscher, P.C. He graduated from the Mays Business School at Texas A&M University and South Texas College of Law Houston. He previously served 7 years as the Project Manager with the Brenham Economic Development Foundation. Kolby has also been a volunteer member of the A. W. Hodde, Jr., Technical Education Center at Blinn College, LCRA Regional Council, Washington County A&M Club, City of Brenham-Board of Adjustments, Blinn Alumni & Friends Association, and the Washington County Bar Association.
"I believe in servant leadership and want to take this opportunity to serve my community and the citizens of Brenham as the Position 5 At-Large City Councilmember," said Kolby. "With my education and professional background working on large capital projects with businesses and governmental agencies, I believe I offer a unique perspective for the challenges that the City of Brenham will face. As Brenham continues to grow and experiences new business and residential developments, we must be mindful of our budget while we promote public safety, economic development, and community values to ensure that Brenham is a great place to live, work, and visit," Kolby said.
He is married to Elizabeth Kolby, who is a Pre-AP and AP Physics teacher at Brenham High School. They have a daughter, Catherine, and a son, Thomas. Kolby and his family are also members of the Champion Fellowship church.
Shannan Canales is co-owner of Las Americas Latin Cuisine and is an Account Manager at KTEX/KWHI Radio where she partners in branding companies and marketing them to the area. Shannan’s interest in restaurants started at age 14 at the Southern Flyer Diner at the Brenham Airport. From there she went on to BT Longhorn where she later met her husband Jose Canales Jr.
Shannan has been actively involved with many of Brenham’s youth organizations over the years, including Girl Scout Troop leader, WCYSL soccer coach, and Maifest. She also has a passion for Downtown Brenham where she was a co-founder of Brenham Bounce. Shannan holds board positions with, Texas Arts and Music Festival, sits on the Main Street promotions committee and just recently stepped down from board position from Brenham Main Street. She is an avid supporter for all of Brenham and Washington County, and was recently awarded the Hometown Hero award for organizing and participating in feeding the children of Washington County during the COVID BISD Lunch Shut down.
Shannan was born in this great state and raised between Texas and Michigan. She has been a Brenham resident since attending Brenham High School, where she graduated as Battalion Executive Officer of the second highest rank in the MCJROTC program. Shannan credits that program with helping her build structure, listen to her peers, execute orders and build organizational skills.
In her spare time, she enjoys traveling with her husband Jose Canales Jr. and her 2 daughters, Carter (10), and Camryn (7).
“I ran for City Council because I want to help maintain the historical value of Brenham. I want to seek change by being proactive, but also want to respect the values and culture of our downtown district. I am grateful for the opportunity at a chance to help navigate the way with fellow City Council Members and the community of Brenham. I’m proud to be a part of the future of Brenham and making it a successful place for our youth.”
I am a native Washington County Texan and have called Brenham home since marrying my wife Emma in 1970. Together, we have 3 sons Chad, Justin, and Landan and enjoy our 5 beautiful grandchildren.
John Maxwell once said that "A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way." Servant leadership is not a goal I seek, but rather a core value I attempt to exemplify daily.
I believe true and effective leadership does not come with titles, but from people who are dedicated to serving others. I am committed to the spiritual and social advancement of this community. Some of my faith-based work includes being a pastor of the New Life Church of God since 1981 and Southern Interstate Ministries Conference (SIMC) Vice-Chairman. I have worked and volunteered for many community organizations including PTO president, BISD Mentor Program, Brenham Crime Stoppers, Washington County Youth Soccer Committee, and the Optimist Club to name a few.
I will align my passions for youth development, community enrichment, and ministry with my talents of community engagement, service, and outreach to serve the citizens of Brenham.
Councilmember Atwood C. Kenjura
Atwood Kenjura is a fourth-generation resident of Brenham. He is a proud graduate of Brenham High School, Blinn College, and the University of Houston College of Pharmacy. After 50 years as the lead pharmacist and owner of Kenjura Pharmacy, a mainstay in the community, Atwood retired from his practice in April 2021 to spend more time with his family and serve the residents of Brenham.
Atwood has a passion for community engagement and servant leadership. Prior to serving as a Council Member, he served as a Trustee for Blinn College for 43 years, board member for Baylor Scott and White Board (past), chairman for the Washington County Chamber (past), and chairman for the Brenham Community Development Corporation (past). He is also a lector at Saint Mary's Catholic Church; and his faith inspires him each day.
Atwood believes in being a great role model, a diplomatic leader, being responsible for your decisions, and remaining unbiased.
“Brenham is one of those unique cities for its size in the state. It has a lot of history, natural beauty, and small-town charm. Our proximity to Austin and Houston makes it an attractive place to live. I want to continue to build upon the many accomplishments that the previous leaders of our community have achieved; this will make Brenham the obvious choice to live, work and play for many generations to come.”
Atwood and his wife, Marilyn, have five children and 10 grandchildren. He is a true outdoorsman that loves to play golf and travel with his family.
Councilmember Adonna Saunders
Bio coming soon.
Councilmember Leah Cook
Position 6 - At Large
Leah Cook was born and raised in Brenham and is proud of the community's rich history! Leah briefly moved to Austin for work, but quickly realized she missed her family, the community, and the culture of her hometown. She returned to Brenham and opened LJ's BBQ, one of Texas Monthly's Top 25 New BBQ joints and the 2019 Washington County Chamber of Commerce Small Business of the Year.
Cook streamlined her love of serving and partnered with other Brenham stakeholders to plan and initiate several community engagement events including the Brenham Better Together Community Picnic, providing meals to BISD students during the pandemic shutdown, and the Brenham Thanksgiving Blessing. Leah is also a member of St. Paul's Lutheran Church Social Concerns Committee, where she works to help find and meet the needs of others in Brenham. She is a true servant leader.
Cook believes in fostering the growth of the next generation while serving the current community with pride.
"Being an elected official should be a service driven position and I truly believe I have a servant's heart. I was blessed to have an amazing experience growing up in Brenham; and I want to make sure the Brenham I love can offer the same loving sense of community for my child and all future generations. I want to assist in ensuring we have a prosperous future and making sure that the people of Brenham have their voices heard at City Hall."
Cook and her husband, Corey, have one son.