The Texas Council on Family Violence is the only 501(c)(3) nonprofit coalition in Texas dedicated solely to creating safer communities and freedom from family violence. With a statewide reach and direct local impact, TCFV shapes public policy, equips service providers with essential tools and initiates strategic prevention efforts. Since 1978, we have been a nationally recognized leader in our efforts to end family violence.
A member-focused organization, TCFV is committed to mobilizing people and megaphoning voices to make an impact for Texas’ thousands of victims and their families. We are one of the largest domestic violence coalitions in the nation, strengthened by a membership of more than 1,000 family violence service providers, businesses and business professionals, communities of faith, concerned citizens and family violence survivors.
We host an array of signature conferences, summits, training events, webinars and prevention efforts throughout the year. From training law enforcement to working with domestic violence abusers, our mission is to encourage safe, healthy relationships and create a future that is free from domestic violence.
The Texas Council on Family Violence was born in April 1978 when Deborah Tucker, executive director of the Austin Center for Battered Women, hosted the first TCFV meeting.
At the meeting, several founding members spoke about the challenges they had encountered in working at rape crisis centers. They’d heard time and time again victims asking, “Can you help me? I wasn’t raped by a stranger. I was beaten and raped by my husband.” Representatives from nine Texas communities—Austin, Corpus Christi, Dallas, Denton, El Paso, Fort Worth, Houston, San Antonio and Waco—resolved to form an organization that would provide a unified statewide presence. They began to coordinate efforts with community service providers and political office holders.
Toby Myers with the Houston Area Women’s Center was selected as the first Board Chair. As a formerly battered woman who was providing help to others, she perfectly embodied the mission of TCFV.
Beginning of Policy Advocacy
From the beginning, TCFV planned to approach the Texas legislature to ask for law changes and gain financial support for prevention and intervention.
In 1979, TCFV worked alongside Senator Chet Brooks of Houston/Galveston to establish a pilot funding program through the Texas Department of Human Services (TDHS) that appropriated $200,000 to the initial nine agencies.
In 1981, Senator Brooks and El Paso Representative Mary Polk followed TCFV’s recommendations and sponsored a bill that established the Family Violence Program in the TDHS. The Texas Legislature increased funding to $1 million, which made it possible to support more than 30 programs. Since then, every subsequent legislative session has continued to increase funding and the number of programs receiving state support!
In 1981, TCFV also pushed for criminal sanctions, making violating a protective order worthy of a Class A misdemeanor.
Beginning of Technical Assistance and Training
In January of 1982, a three-year challenge grant from the Levi Strauss Foundation made a staffed office for TCFV a reality. It was matched with donations from the Haas Foundation, The Trull Foundation and dues from programs and members who believed in the organization’s mission. Eve McArthur and Debby Tucker, both from the Austin Center, became the first official staff.
TCFV toured every shelter and family violence program in the state over the course of its first year and was contracted by the TDHS to provide significant technical assistance and support for local programs. TCFV also wrote manuals such as A Stitch in Time Saves Nine: Administering a Family Violence Shelter.
The Family Violence Prevention and Services Act, the Beginning of the National Network to End Domestic Violence, and the passage of the Violence Against Women Act
When the Family Violence Prevention and Services Act (FVPSA) passed in 1984, TCFV set aside a percentage of what Congress appropriated to fund state-level work and coordination. Before the creation of the set-aside funding for state coalitions in FVPSA, only half of the states had established an office to perform state-level work and coordination. By the time TCFV came together to form the National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV), almost every state had an office for their coalition.
In 1989, TCFV advocated for the establishment of the Battering Intervention and Prevention Project (BIPP) and secured an initial allocation of $400,000 to fund 14 programs working with men committing violence against family and household members. This was one of the first — if not the first — state-funded civilian programs for intervention with offenders. National organizations and stakeholders such as Men Stopping Violence, Emerge and Dr. Edward Gondolf advised TCFV in the development of the program standards.
The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) passed in 1994, after the NNEDV worked closely with Joe Biden, Charles Schumer, and Representatives Patricia Schroeder and Jack Brooks to write the legislation.
Founding of the National Domestic Violence Hotline
The original national hotline, operated by the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, closed when funding ran out. TCFV stepped up to reestablish it, working with Senator Edward Kennedy to draft legislation that promised federal funding for the hotline. In February 1996, TCFV opened the National Domestic Violence Hotline.
TCFV, headquartered in Austin, Texas, is a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization with an integrated funding base of federal, state, private and public support.
Support to Service Providers: TCFV educates and trains criminal justice personnel, victim advocates, service providers, health care providers, faith communities and businesses throughout Texas and the nation. We host hundreds of local, statewide and online trainings each year. We also answer thousands of technical assistance calls from family violence, battering intervention and prevention programs every year. We’re committed to supporting every program in Texas with the expertise and materials needed to keep survivors safe and hold batterers accountable.
Public Policy: The TCFV Public Policy Team is a unified voice before the Texas Legislature on behalf of domestic violence victims. We support drafting and passage of laws that assist victims and survivors.
Prevention: The TCFV Prevention Team seeks to accomplish long-term social change. We support prevention efforts through technical assistance, consultations, trainings and online resources, and provide a larger framework for communities across the state to engage in violence prevention.
Board of Directors
Frances Wilson | Chair
President/Chief Executive Officer
The Purple Door
Jim Womack | Vice Chair
Chief Executive Officer
Family Support Services
Lyndia Allen | Treasurer
Gateway Family Services, Inc.
Staley Heatly | Secretary
46th Judicial District
Jim Womack | Region 1
Chief Executive Officer
Family Support Services
Lorie Dunnam | Region 2
Crisis Center of West Texas
Lyndia Allen | Region 3
Gateway Family Services, Inc.
Toni Johnson-Simpson | Region 4
Denton County Friends of the Family
Marta Pelaez | Region 5
President/Chief Executive Office
Family Violence Prevention Services, Inc.
Ryan Shriver| Region 6
SAFE-T Crisis Center
Deborah Tomov | Region 7
Family Services of Southeast Texas
Frances Wilson | Region 8
President/Chief Executive Officer
The Purple Door
Julia Spann | Region 9
Co-Chief Executive Officer
The SAFE Alliance
Twila D. Carter
Sales Manager – Public Finance: Non-Profit and Governments
Frost – Banking, Investments, Insurance
Victim Rights Group Coordinator
Texas Rio Grande Legal Aid, Inc.
46th Judicial District of Texas
Texas Clean Energy Coalition
General Counsel, Executive VP
Texas Rangers Baseball Club
Jamie Esparza | Ex-Officio Member
34th Judicial District
Catagory I | Family Violence Programs
Aid to Victims of Domestic Abuse (AVDA) | Houston
The Ark Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Shelter | Brownwood
Bastrop County Family Crisis Center | Bastrop
Bay Area Turning Point | Houston
The Bridge Over Troubled Waters | Pasadena
Brighter Tomorrows | Grand Prairie
Casa de Misericordia | Laredo
Center Against Sexual and Family Violence (CASFV) | El Paso
Crisis Center of Anderson and Cherokee Counties | Jacksonville
Crisis Center of Comal County | New Braunfels
Crisis Center of Matagorda and Wharton Counties, The | Bay City
Crisis Center of the Plains | Plainview
Crisis Center of West Texas | Odessa
Daya | Houston
Denton County Friends of the Family, Inc. | Denton
Domestic Violence Prevention, Inc. | Texarkana
East Texas Crisis Center | Tyler
Eastland County Crisis Center, Inc. | Eastland
Families in Crisis, Inc. | Killeen
Family Abuse Center, Inc. | Waco
Family Crisis Center of East Texas | Lufkin
Family Crisis Center of the Rio Grande Valley | Harlingen
The Family Place | Dallas
Family Services of Southeast Texas | Beaumont
Family Support Services | Amarillo
Family Violence Prevention Services, Inc. |San Antonio
FamilyTime Crisis and Counseling Center | Humble
Fannin County Family Crisis Center | Bonham
First Step, Inc. | Wichita Falls
Focusing Families | Hempstead
Fort Bend County Women’s Center, Inc. | Richmond
Freedom House | Weatherford
Friendship of Women, Inc. | Brownsville
Gateway Family Services, Inc. | Snyder
Genesis Women’s Shelter & Support | Dallas
Grayson County Crisis Center | Sherman
Guadalupe Valley Family Violence Shelter | Seguin
Hays-Caldwell Women’s Center | San Marcos
Highland Lakes Family Crisis Center | Marble Falls
Hill Country Crisis Council, Inc. | Kerrville
Hope Alliance | Round Rock
Hope, Inc. | Mineral Wells
Hope’s Door New Beginning Center | Plano
Houston Area Women’s Center | Houston
Hutchinson County Crisis Center, Inc. | Borger
Johnson County Family Crisis Center | Cleburne
Mission Granbury, Inc. | Granbury
Mujeres Unidas/Women Together Foundation, Inc. | McAllen
NewBridge Family Shelter | San Angelo
Noah Project, Inc. | Abilene
Phoebe’s Home | Bryan
The Purple Door | Corpus Christi
Resource and Crisis Center of Galveston County | Galveston
SAFE Alliance, The | Austin
Safe Place of the Permian Basin | Midland
Safe Place, Inc. | Dumas
SafeHaven of Tarrant County | Fort Worth/Arlington
Shelter Agencies for Families in East Texas (SAFE-T) | Mt. Pleasant
Southwest Family Life Centers, Inc. | Hondo
Wintergarden Women’s Shelter, Inc. | Carrizo Springs
Wise Hope Shelter & Crisis Center | Decatur
Women In Need, Inc. | Greenville
Women’s Center of Brazoria County | Angleton
Women’s Center of East Texas | Longview
Women’s Protective Services of Lubbock, Inc. | Lubbock
Category II | Supporting Family Violence Programs
Abigail’s Arms – Cooke County Family Crisis Center | Gainesville
Asian Family Support Services of Austin | Austin
Cross Timbers Family Services | Stephenville
Deaf Smith County Crisis Center | Hereford
Dove Project, Inc. | San Saba
Families to Freedom | Addison
Family Crisis Center of the Big Bend, Inc. | Alpine
The Family Peace Project | Athens
The Haven Family Shelter of McCulloch County, Inc. | Brady
Healing Hearts Center | Waxahachie
Kendall County Women’s Shelter | Boerne
Mid-Coast Family Services | Victoria
The Montrose Center | Houston
Mosaic Family Services | Dallas
One Safe Place | Fort Worth
Safer Path Family Violence Shelter | Pleasanton
The Salvation Army Domestic Violence Program | Dallas
Texas Muslim Women’s Foundation, Inc. | Plano
Category III | Community Partners
All About Recovery | Houston
Alternative at Emergence Health Network | El Paso
Asians Against Domestic Abuse | Sugarland
BCFS Health & Human Services | Del Rio
Behavioral Adjustment Counseling Center (BACC) | Houston
Bexar County Family Justice Center | San Antonio
Burleson County Attorney | Caldwell
The Center for Cognitive Education, LLC | Georgetown
Comal County Criminal District Attorney | New Braunfels
Dallas Area Rape Crisis Center (DARCC) | Dallas
Evangelical Covenant Church (ECC) | Coppell
First Choice Social Services | Dallas
First Judicial District of Texas | Jasper
Freedom From Fear Project | Pasadena
The Harbor Children’s Alliance & Victim Center | Port Lavaca
Jane’s Due Process, Inc. | Austin
Katy Christian Ministries | Katy
Nueces County Attorney’s Office | Corpus Christi
Parkland Hospital Victim Intervention Program/Rape Crisis | Dallas
Path of Righteousness Ministries | Dallas
Rio Grande Valley Empowerment Zone | McAllen
Tahirih Justice Center | Houston
Tarrant County Pct. 1 | Fort Worth
Texas Advocacy Project, Inc. | Austin
Travis County Counseling & Education Services | Austin
Val Verde County Attorney’s Office | Val Verde
Your New Beginning | Houston