Meet Our Staff
Melissa R. Hamilton
Public CounselThe current Public Counsel, Melissa Hamilton, was appointed by Governor Greg Abbott in December 2017 and began serving as Public Counsel on January 2, 2018.
Before being appointed, Ms. Hamilton served as the Director of Government Relations for the Texas Department of Insurance. Prior to her tenure at TDI, Ms. Hamilton worked as Staff Counsel for Texas State Senator Glenn Hegar. Ms. Hamilton has also previously served as a regulatory attorney for the Nationwide Insurance Company, as a staff attorney for The Justice Project, and as a Fair Trial Initiative Fellow at Texas Defender Service.
Ms. Hamilton graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree from Texas A&M University and received her Doctor of Jurisprudence degree from the University of Texas at Austin School of Law.
Deputy Public CounselKara Mace is our Deputy Public Counsel, who assists the Public Counsel in her administrative and legal duties.
Deputy DirectorAs Deputy Director, Ken Lovoy is responsible for review and analysis of personal lines rate filings as well as insurance market research.
Chief of OperationsPatricia Zapata serves many functions under the title of Chief of Operations. Patricia periodically prepares agency reports to the Legislative Budget Board and produces annual HMO reports for the public. She helps Spanish speaking consumers and serves as the agency’s Accessibility Coordinator.
Chief Policy AnalystKimberly Donovan is our Chief Policy Analyst responsible for overseeing all agency activities related to personal lines insurance including policy form review and analysis; maintenance of the agency’s Policy Comparison Tool; and representing the agency at the Texas Legislature and various board and committee meetings.
Government Relations & Policy AnalystPatrick Tyler serves as OPIC’s government relations specialist and health insurance policy analyst.
Riki Lee Burhans
Communications & Media Specialist, ISO, IRMRiki Lee Burhans is our Communication & Media Specialist, helping with any and all communication and design needs at OPIC. Riki manages our website, social media channels, and creates our communications materials. She also serves as the agency’s Information Security Officer and Information Resource Manager.
Annette S. Collie
Legal Assistant VAnnette S. Collie is the agency’s Legal Assistant, but also wears many other “hats,” including safety officer, Human Resources assistant, office manager, and travel manager.
PurchaserEricka Gonzales is our Purchaser.
Mary Alice Costilla
Administrative Assistant IIIMary Costilla started as an Administrative Assistant at OPIC in 2002.
Administrative Assistant II, Wellness Liaison
Christina Muniz joined OPIC as an Administrative Assistant in 2012 and is in charge of the office’s wellness program.
Chief AccountantMark Patterson has been our part time accountant since August 2009. Beside state accounting functions, other duties are payroll, ERS benefits and budgeting.
Law ClerkVictor Moya is our Law Clerk, helping review and summarize auto and home policies for the comparison tool on the OPIC website.