History

The first Silver-Haired Legislature was organized in 1973 in the State of Missouri. Since its inception,the concept and implementation of a Silver-Haired Legislature has been adopted in thirty-one (31) states.


The Texas Silver-Haired Legislature (TSHL)idea was first conceived in 1979. By 1983, the Citizens Advisory Council of the Texas Department on Aging identified the creation of TSHL as one of the council's legislative priorities. A resolution to establish the TSHL was passed by the Texas Board on Aging in 1984. The 69th Texas Legislature adopted the enabling legislation, Senate Concurrent Resolution 37, April 3, 1985,which authorized the creation of the Silver-Haired Legislature.


A State Steering Committee, TDoA staff,Area Agency on Aging Councils, and hundreds of volunteers throughout the state completed planning and implementation responsibilities. The elected members of the TSHL met for the first time for a training session in July 1986. The first legislative session began when the group took the oath of office on September 29, 1986, but the work of the organization was just beginning.


The Texas Silver-Haired Legislature is a nonpartisan and a nonprofit organization. Funding is managed by the Texas Silver-Haired Legislature Foundation,a 501 (c) 3 organization. TSHL is composed of 116 representatives elected by older Texans 60 years and older to serve two-year terms.