Mary Rose WilcoxMaricopa County Supervisor, District 5
Mary Rose Garrido Wilcox, District 5 Maricopa County Supervisor,
has played a major role in Maricopa County Government, embracing
its diversity as an organization. Born in Superior, deep in the mining
country of Arizona and a fourth generation native from a pioneer
Mexican-American family, Wilcox is the first Hispanic women to
serve on both the Phoenix City Council and the Maricopa County
Board of Supervisors. She is serving her fifth four-year term on the Board in Maricopa County –
named "best run county" by Governing Magazine and Syracuse University.
She has been in the forefront in the push for comprehensive Immigration Reform and serves as
President of the National Association of Counties Hispanic Elected Officials Board and co-chair of the
National Association of Counties Immigration Task Force. She has created numerous programs to
strengthen families and communities, including leading the County’s efforts to create a homeless campus to centralize services for the homeless in downtown Phoenix. Along with her husband, Earl
Wilcox, she coordinates a tremendously popular annual Late Night Basketball Program designed to keep kids off the streets.
Some of the highlights of Mary Rose's career include revitalizing downtown Phoenix through both
county work and efforts as a member of the City Council. Mary Rose cast the deciding votes in favor
of funding for the America West Arena and Chase Field Ballpark. She is a leader in comprehensive
land planning and has championed such projects as the El Rio Masterplan, Laveen Area Conveyance
Channel and Hassayampa Master Plan. Currently, she is leading the efforts in ushering in the Solar
Energy Industry in Maricopa County. She is a fearless, indefatigable advocate for her constituents,
particularly those who have very little clout in government policy circles.
In June 2012, the Instituto de los Mexicanos en el Exterior, an agency within the Secretariat of External Relations of Mexico that fosters ties between Mexico and Mexican communities in this country, presented Mary Rose with the prestigious Premio Ohtli. The Mexican government created the award to recognize persons who have promoted the prosperity of Mexican communities abroad. In granting the Ohtli, the Government of Mexico recognizes distinguished individuals who have blazed a path for and improved the lives of members of the Mexican community beyond Mexico's political borders.
Recent honors, awards and recognition she has received include: the 2012 “48 Most Intriguing
Women Award,” a Centennial Legacy Project from the Arizona Historical Society and the Arizona
Community Foundation, the 2011 Award of Excellence in Appreciation by the National Association of
Housing and Redevelopment Officials (NAHRO); 2011 Latina Trailblazer Award by Latino Perspectives
Supervisor Wilcox serves on various national boards including the Mexican American Legal Defense
and Education Fund (MALDEF), the National Association of Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO),
former chair of the NALEO Education Fund, former board member of the National Council of La Raza,
vice president of the NACo Health Services and Education Committee, co-chair of the National
Association of Counties (NACo) Immigration Task Force.
Mary Rose has been involved in numerous local boards and commissions, including her membership
on the boards of the, Greater Phoenix Convention Bureau, Friendly House, Downtown Phoenix Partnership,
ASU/U of A Medical School Advisory Board, and chairman and founding member of the Arizona
Diamondback Ambassador Club. She also serves on the Maricopa Association of Governments'
(MAG) Regional Council, MAG Air Quality Policy Committee, MAG Human Services Coordinating
Committee and Ryan White Planning Council and the Maricopa County Head Start Policy Council.
She and her husband, Earl, a former state legislator and justice of the peace, reside in downtown
Phoenix and continue to stay involved in the community. For more than a decade, the Wilcoxes have
been working to revitalize downtown’s Grant Park neighborhood. They are the owners of El Portal, a
local authentic Mexican restaurant. They also recently dedicated the Grant Park Boxing Club so
neighborhood kids can box for free. For Mary Rose and Earl, their greatest source of pride is their
daughter and five grandsons.