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For Immediate Release

April 15, 2014 Art Fernandez, Supervisory Deputy U.S. Marshal
Southern District of Texas (713) 718-4259
Formal Ceremony Installing New U.S. Marshal for the
Southern District of "The Great State of Texas"

The U.S. Marshals Service for the Southern District of Texas, announces the Investiture Ceremony of newly appointed Marshal Gary Blankinship, U.S. Marshal for the Southern District of Texas. The investiture will be held on Thursday April 17, 2014 at 2:30 p.m. The ceremony will be at The Historical 1910 Courthouse, 301 Fannin St, Houston, TX 77002. Distinguished guests already scheduled to attend include Texas State Senators Joan J. Huffman and John Whitmire (The Dean of the Texas Senate), and U.S. Congressman Gene Green. "It is truly a humbling honor to be joining the first federal law enforcement agency in the country, and to lead it in this capacity gives me great pride" said Marshal Blankinship.

Nominated by President Barak Obama and sworn-in as Marshal on March 12th, 2014, Marshal Blankinship replaces Chief Deputy U.S. Marshal Elizabeth Saenz, who served as Marshal since 2009. "Throughout his distinguished career, Gary Blankinship has served his country with great courage and commitment," said President Obama. "It is my honor to nominate him to continue protecting the American people as a United States Marshal."

Marshal Gary Blankinship, a former Top Cops Award winner, was employed by the Houston Police Department from 1982-2012 and retired as a Senior Police Officer. Prior to his service with the Houston Police, Marshal Blankinship was employed by the Harris County Sheriff’s Office. He served as Vice President for the National Association of Police Organizations, and he was one of the 4 founders of the Assist the Officer Foundation following the death of his partner in the line of duty.

The U.S. Marshals Service employs 3,829 Deputy U.S. Marshals nationwide and in foreign field offices. The Southern District of Texas employs 202 deputies and 52 administrative employees in Houston, Galveston, Victoria, Corpus Christi, Brownsville, McAllen and Laredo, TX. The Southern District includes 43 counties and covers 44,000 square miles. The district has the largest federal prisoner population of all of the 94 federal districts. The U.S. Marshals are the lead agency of the Gulf Coast Violent Offenders & Fugitive Task Force, a stalwart force of law enforcement agencies hunting the most violent local and federal offenders in the Southern District of Texas.

*For this event, cameras will be permitted in the courtroom.

Anonymous tips can be made by texting 411TIPS (847411) keyword GULFCOAST or by going to

Additional information about the U.S. Marshals Service can be found at


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