Nix Former Whitehouse Wildcats basketball coach C.L. Nix ’56 received a plaque and key to the arena during a ceremony recognizing the renaming of Whitehouse High School’s arena to the C.L. Nix Wildcat Arena. The ceremony took place Jan. 19 on the 40th anniversary of the Wildcats’ 2A basketball state championship in 1978. During his career, Nix compiled a record of 715-232. Nix’s Whitehouse teams won 18 district titles and made seven appearances in regional tournaments. Photo by Chelsea Purgahn, Tyler Morning Telegraph


Keith Allred ’60 of Lufkin won third place in the Texas State Genealogical Society’s 2017 Writing Awards Contest in the quarterly category. Allred is newsletter editor for the Angelina County Genealogical Society.

John Vaught ’69 of Denver, Colorado, received the 2017 Colorado Governor’s Service Award for outstanding veteran volunteer. Vaught is a partner at the national litigation boutique Wheeler Trigg O’Donnell and the president-elect of the Colorado Bar Association.


Arnie Burke ’72 of Rowlett was inducted into the United States Specialty Sports Association Hall of Fame in November during the association’s 50th anniversary celebration. Burke has been involved with USSSA as a player, coach and director since 1980.

Dr. Horace D. Stearman ’73 & ’87 retired from his position as assistant vice president for accreditation, planning and policy at the University of North Texas at Dallas.

Clinton Dr. Ron Clinton ’76 of Gilmer was appointed president of Northeast Texas Community College.

Littlejohn Dr. Robert Littlejohn ’79 was appointed head of The Covenant School of Dallas.

Munsell Debra S. Munsell ’79 of Missouri City was selected to lead Mississippi State University-Meridian’s Master of Physician Assistant Studies program.


Nancy Kershaw ’81 of Tillamook, Oregon, was recognized in December for her 30 years as the family and community health and 4-H extension agent for Tillamook County.

Nell Fortner ’87 of Santa Rosa Beach, Florida, will be inducted into the Texas Sports Hall of Fame in Waco in April. Fortner was a women’s college basketball coach and led the 2000 Olympics women’s basketball team to a gold medal.

Jason Petersen ’88 of Hallsville received the 30-year service award from Austin Bank for his work with the company. Petersen is the bank’s executive vice president/regional president for Gregg County.

Dr. Eric Wright ’88 of Fredericksburg was named Hays Consolidated ISD superintendent in January.


Shackelford Cliff Shackelford ’90 & ’94 of Nacogdoches has co-hosted and co-produced a live radio show called “Bird Calls” for four years on the National Public Radio’s Red River Radio station based in Shreveport, Louisiana. In spring 2017, he had his first on-air guest, SFA biology major Kelli Bashaw, discuss what’s involved in obtaining a science degree and answer callers’ questions about her major. Podcasts from past shows can be found online on redriverradio.org.

Jonas E. Schwartz ’91 of Austin was reappointed by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott to the Texas State Independent Living Council. Schwartz is a program manager for the vocational rehabilitation program at the Texas Workforce Commission.

Neita Fran Ward ’91 of Tyler was guest speaker at McMillan Memorial Library’s Book Talk in Overton. Ward is an employee at Valerosa Designs and Gallery in Tyler.

Ronald Barlow ’92 of Pineland was named the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service’s agriculture and national resources agent for Sabine County.

David Kassaw ’92 was promoted from corporal detective to sergeant by the Palestine Police Department.

Gary Malaer ’92 of Victoria was named CEO of DeTar Healthcare System.

Kristy Curry ’94 of West Lafayette, Indiana, is in her seventh year as Purdue University women’s basketball head coach.

Michael Briski ’97 was featured in an episode of the HGTV series “House Hunters International.”

Eva Thomas ’97 of Mount Vernon was named executive vice president and chief compliance and audit officer of Pilgrim Bank.


Kara Sewell ’05, left ,WXIX-TV Fox 19 in Cincinnati, Ohio, in January to become the News 8 Daybreak co-anchor at WFAA Channel 8 in Dallas — the No. 5 TV market in the nation. A Houston native, Sewell started her career at KOSA-TV in Midland-Odessa in West Texas after interning at KTRK-TV in Houston.

Dustin Harrell ’01 of Crowley, Louisiana, was named research coordinator of the Louisiana State University H. Rouse Caffey Rice Research Station.

Todd Anthony ’02 of San Antonio was named vice president of corporate development for First Majestic Silver Corp., a Canadian silver mining company.

Wolf Erin Wolf ’02 of Princeton, New Jersey, was appointed the inaugural associate director of international travel and safety at Princeton University.

Paradis Kristin Knox-Paradis ’03 & ’07 of Edmond, Oklahoma, joined Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Anderson Properties office as a residential real estate sales agent.

Wells Taryn Chambers Wells ’03 of Lumberton won the A.E. Alton Mott Mosley Educational Award at the Greater Texarkana Branch of the NAACP’s 2017 Freedom Fund Awards banquet.

Pesina In celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, attorney Nick Pesina ’04 of Tyler spoke at Tyler Junior College’s inaugural Distinguished Lecture Series.


Hegseth Dina Hegseth ’10 of Kingwood became a Realtor® in January at Keller Williams Heritage in San Antonio.

Zevin Spears ’11 of Washington, D.C., joined the event management department at the Calvin L. Rampton Salt Palace Convention Center.

Jamie Haskins ’12 of Pasadena won a Ruby Award from the American Society of Interior Designers – Texas Gulf Coast Chapter in the category Emerging Professional: Best of Residential.

King Catherine King ’13 of Katy married Saurabh Patel in September in Houston.

John Hughes ’15 and Sarah Volkman ’15 of Houston were married in Lufkin and now reside in Houston.

Johnson Stephanie Johnson ’17 received the Texas Council of Professors of Educational Administration’s Outstanding Dissertation Award, which recognizes an exceptional doctoral-level dissertation that expands the knowledge of educational administration at postsecondary or K-20 levels.