Heritage - Fall 2020

Class Notes

Dr. Thomas L. Ely ’64 was installed as the 124th president of the American Osteopathic Association (AOA). Ely is an AOA boardcertified osteopathic family physician and fellow of the American College of Osteopathic Family Physicians and the American Academy of Family Physicians. The 20-year combat veteran resides in Clarksville, Tennessee.

Charles “Chuck” Andrews ’85 was ranked No. 1 by IFSEC Global as a top influencer in security. Working in lawenforcement and security since 1976, he has served in many roles of leadership as Chief of Police, Chief Security Officer (CSO), Adjunct Professor Computer Science, CJ & Security Asst’ Dean and Global Security Advisor & Strategist.

Catrin Glynn ’93 is the new director of Admission and Access at the Menninger Clinic where she is responsible for all initial patient contact operations, including the care coordination team, welcome desk team and admissions. Glynn brings more than 25 years of operational leadership in the field of mental health care. For the past six years, she worked at Behavioral Health Hospital of Bellaire, serving as director of Intake, Clinical Services, Outpatient and Utilization Review.

Kelley McKethan ’93 a Bryan native has retired from Bryan Police Department after 20 years of service. Before joining BPD in 2000, McKethan taught for several years at Bryan High School. Since then, she has held positions as a patrol officer, detective, member of crisis negotiation and crisis incident management teams, and public information officer. She was also a member of the department’s honor guard for 15 years, recognizing officers and firefighters who lost their lives in the line of duty.

Mandi Bronsell ’94 was elected as vice president of Lamar Consolidated ISD board of trustees. Bronsell also serves as the community relations manager for Fort Bend County Precinct 1 Commissioner Vincent Morales

Emily Tawater ’94 has retired after 26 years as the librarian at Woodway Elementary School of Midway ISD. She spent her time there making reading fun for all students she encountered, leading her to be hailed as a “giant of the school.”

Stephanie McElroy ’98 has been appointed as the principal of Bear Creek Elementary School in Katy. McElroy started her teaching career at Katy ISD as a fifth-grade reading teacher and has since built a reputation as a leader by serving as principal for Sealy ISD, associate principal of curriculum and development for Fort Bend ISD and as principal (again) for Lamar Consolidated School District.

Johanna Chryssikos Watson ’98 has been announced as one of The Houston Business Journal’s Most Admired CEO honorees for 2020. She currently serves as CEO of ARTEMIS Partners of Houston.

Ashley Brasher Powell ’04 was hired as the new principal of Kirbyville Junior High School. Powell has been teaching for 10 years, with her first position being in her hometown of Jasper, TX. She then held a teaching position at Brookeland ISD for six years and served as the FCCLA advisor, career and technical education director and rounded out her time there as the assistant principal. Before taking the position at KJHS, Powell was the principal at Evadale Elementary and Junior High Schools.

Chad Jones ’04 has been selected as the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s new Law Enforcement Director. Col. Jones became a game warden in 2004 and has held duty stations in Brazos and Trinity Counties, has served as a Team Lead for the Forensic Accident and Reconstruction Team, a Lieutenant at the Game Warden Training Center in Hamilton County, Texas, a Captain in Uvalde and a Major in both Corpus Christi and in the Pineywoods region of East Texas.

Priscilla Arungwa ’06 was appointed director of students at the Blanding campus of Utah State University. She most recently served as manager of academic and career advising at Lone Star College Cy-Fair. Earlier, she was a career services coordinator at Prairie View A&M.

Brittany Drake ’10 began her educational career in Mesquite ISD in 2012 as a special education teacher/department chair for eight years at North Mesquite High School. She has been an assistant principal in Plano ISD for the past two years.

Miranda Landsman ’13 worked as a TV news reporter in Texas and New York City, and then spent a year doing humanitarian aid work in South America, Asia, Europe and Africa. She produced and aired a series of profiles of people she encountered during her work in those regions by partnering with CBN News. This, alongside her work as an ambassador for a U.S.-based antitrafficking organization and marketing and public relations manager for a conservation nonprofit, has landed her a marketing post with the Magowitz Foundation.

John Toland ’13 recently opened a new business near Huntsville’s downtown square. The Half Avenue Coffee and Mercantile shop on University Ave. offers inhouse roasted coffee, baked goods and live music. The space is also home to Toland’s professional recording studio, Half Avenue Productions.

Amanda Beeman ’15 is a licensed professional counselor serving Trinity, Walker, Montgomery, and Fort Bend counties. She works with law enforcement agencies on how to approach and understand people with Autism and how their reactions during traffic stops, police interviews and crime reports.

Billy Couch ’17 was named the new police chief for the city of College Station after serving as the assistant chief since 2013. Chief Couch has a bachelor’s degree from Texas A&M University and a master’s degree from SHSU and also graduated from the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s National Academy.

Wende Wakeman ’20 has been promoted to Texas Ranger Captain after serving the DPS for 22 years. She served as a Texas Highway patrol trooper in Sulpher Springs and New Caney before she was promoted to narcotics sergeant in 2003. In 2008, Wakeman joined the Texas Rangers in Conroe. In 2014, she was stationed in Laredo as a lieutenant, becoming the first woman promoted to the rank of Ranger lieutenant. Wakeman is still making history as one of the first women promoted to Ranger captain.

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