Class Notes


Selva Roark Lawson, BA '52, of Colorado Springs, CO, wrote her autobiography for her seven grandsons to know her story. She had a career in journalism.

Robert Flynn, BA '54, authored Holy Literary License: The Almighty Chooses Fallible Mortals to Write, Edit, and Translate GodStory (WingsPress 2016: 256 pages). Flynn grew up in West Texas, attended seminary, joined the Marines, became a war correspondent in Vietnam, and taught creative writing and literature for 40 years at Trinity University in San Antonio. With a deep sense of the irony of his project, he sets out to explain how the Bible came to be, delving into historical misconceptions, errors in translation, political and cultural biases, as well as the editorial failings of the Bible's many authors, arriving at a place of ultimate faith. Contact at 101 Cliffside Dr., Shavano Park, TX 78231 or

Dr. Richard Schlomach, BS '56, MD '59, of Wichita Falls, TX, authored an autobiography, Adventures of a Texas Country Doctor (Tate 2016: 160 pages). All profits will be donated to the International Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention. Schlomach practiced medicine in Archer City for 32 years, after which he and his family moved to Wichita Falls, where he practiced until he retired in 2002.

David McHam, BA '58, of Houston retired in 2015 after teaching journalism in Texas colleges for 54 years. He was inducted into the Gardner-Webb University Gallery of Distinguished Alumni this fall. McHam served in the Marine Corps before completing his undergraduate work at Baylor, where he later taught. He also worked at The Houston Post, SMU, the University of Texas at Arlington and the University of Houston. The Society of Professional Journalists chose McHam as the outstanding journalism teacher in the nation in 1994. He was named a legend of Dallas journalism by the Dallas Press Club in 2015 and one of the outstanding graduates at the Columbia Journalism School in 2016. McHam also holds a degree from Columbia University.

Dr. Gene Russell, BA '58, wrote and published a new book The Silence of God: Sock It to Me! Contact at 10680 FM 941, Nacogdoches, TX 75965 or


Dr. Ervin E. Zvolanek, BA '60, and his wife Nadine recently celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary. They live in Longview, TX.

Artwork by Jane Felts Mauldin, BA '62, was featured at the November 2016 Weihnachts-markt (German Christmas Market) to benefit the Sophienburg Museum in New Braunfels, TX. Her painting is a 1960s New Braunfels street scene. Contact at 145 Timber Wild, New Braunfels, TX 78132 or


Dr. Glyndle Feagin, BA '71, retired as a full-time professor of religion at Wayland Baptist University in August 2016. A retirement dinner was held in his honor in Plainview, TX. Dr. Paul Sadler, dean of the School of Religion and Philosophy at Wayland, presented him with a number of gifts in honor of his 24 years of service at Wayland. Among the gifts presented was a BU flag and turf, both taken from Floyd Casey Stadium. These items are now proudly displayed along with other Baylor memorabilia in his home. Feagin served 16 years as a pastor for Baptist churches in Texas, Oklahoma and Kentucky. While in Plainview, he has served 15 churches as interim pastor. In 1997, his dissertation, Irony and the Kingdom in Mark, was published by Mellen Press. He will continue to serve as an adjunct professor and interim pastor. Contact at 2901 Edgemere Dr., Plainview, TX 79072 or

Fran Mason Freeman, BA '73, retired from AT&T after working 28 years. She volunteers at Mission Waco's school supply and toy store, FBC Lorena (TX), Food For Families and Caritas. She has been married to Jadie Freeman for 20 years. They have three children and five grandchildren. Contact at 936 Crested Butte, Hewitt, TX 76643 or

Roslyn Dawson Thompson, BA '73, of Dallas was recently featured in D Magazine. She is president and CEO of the Dallas Women's Foundation, the largest regional women's fund in the world. It has granted more than $30 million to help create opportunities and solve challenges for women and girls in North Texas. As she built a career in marketing, Dawson Thompson also held leadership roles in numerous North Texas groups, including Girls Inc. of Metropolitan Dallas, Junior League of Dallas and YWCA.

Mark Hayes, BM '76, was interviewed Aug. 17 on the Kansas City NPR Radio (KCUR-FM) program Central Standard. Hayes, of Kansas City, MO, discussed his 40-year career as an arranger and composer of choral music. His work ranges from church choir anthems to piano solos, new arrangements of old hymns and jazz numbers.

Paul Shultz, BBA '76, MBA '77, of Allen, TX, was elected president of the board of directors of the WaterTower Theatre, one of the leading regional theatres in North Dallas and Texas. Shultz is general manager of Slalom Consulting's south region businesses. He has decades of experience as an executive leader, business strategist, systems integration and organizational improvement professional. He served as managing director of enterprise applications at Protiviti and managing vice president of the Southwest market at Hitachi Consulting.

Rick Brown, MBA '77, and Grant Brown, BBA '08, of RL Brown Financial, joined investment advisor 360 Wealth Management LLC of Dallas. Rick founded RL Brown Financial. A member of the American Institute of CPAs, he holds the Personal Financial Specialist certification. He is also a deacon at The Heights Baptist Church. After Baylor, Grant studied finance at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland.

Cheryl Parrish, BM '77, opened the 2016-2017 Arts Series at First Presbyterian Church of Bristol, TN, Sept. 11. She has performed in major operatic, symphony and recital venues around the world. Her career began at the San Francisco Opera where she was chosen to participate in the inaugural group of Adler Fellows and gained prominence by the televised program Pavarotti Plus! Live from Lincoln Center. Parrish, known for her portrayals of Mozart and Strauss heroines, is in her 12th year at Texas State University in San Marcos, TX, where she is assistant professor of voice.

Rev. Ken Massey, BSEd '78, of Greensboro, NC, is co-author of The Skeleton Code: A Satirical Guide to Secret Keeping. The book is a humorous and serious look at a spiritual issue, written for a secular audience. It exposes the secrets people keep, the problems they cause and a path to deeper honesty and freedom. Ken is a transitional pastor and conference speaker. Contact at

Bob Roberts, BA '79, was featured in the Baptist Standard's "Deep in the Hearts of Texans" column, where he answered questions about his history and ministry. Roberts is the senior pastor and a founding member of Northwood Church in Keller, TX. Roberts planted the church 31 years ago.


Joe Burlison, BBA '82, of Conroe, TX, established two music groups, Joe Burlison's Uptown Jazz and the Joe Burlison Trio, that play regularly in The Woodlands and Conroe areas. Visit for more information.

Mark Perkins, BBA '83, MBA '84, of Cedar Park, TX, was named CEO of Kimbia, a provider of online fundraising solutions and crowdfunding events. Kimbia enhances donor relationships for more than 25,000 nonprofits, universities and community foundations. Perkins helps companies focus on customer care and support, developing market leadership and implementing best practices. Previously, he held leadership roles at Tenura Holdings, Leasing Group and Dell.

Dr. Mark Adickes, BBA '84, joined Baylor College of Medicine as chief of the division of sports medicine and associate professor of orthopedic surgery. A member of Baylor's Hall of Fame, Adickes was an All-American with the Bears before a seven-year NFL career. After retirement, he completed his medical training at Harvard Medical School. Adickes has over 10 years of experience in treating injured athletes in Houston and specializes in multiple areas of orthopedic surgery and sports medicine, including knee, shoulder and hip surgery. He is also the sports medicine expert for ESPN and DirecTV. He sees patients at the Baylor College of Medicine Medical Center on the McNair Campus.

Patricia Moser Herbelin, BBA '84, MBA '87, was promoted to lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Air Force Reserve, 301st Medical Squadron, NAS Fort Worth Joint Reserve Base. Commissioned in the Medical Service Corps in 2001, she is the chief administrative officer. Herbelin was a lecturer in the Hankamer School of Business from 1998 to 2007. She and her husband, Joe, have two daughters, Michelle and Elise. Michelle graduated from Baylor in 2015 with a BA in history. Elise is in the paramedic program at McLennan Community College. Contact at 1410 Chapel Hill Dr., Waco, TX 76712 or

Dr. Robert Parham, PhD '84, is executive editor of the Nashville, TN-based Baptist Center for Ethics/, which has produced The Disturbances--a new film and book looking at the role Christian missionaries and Nigerian pastors played saving thousands of lives in Nigeria in 1966. Missionaries of various denominations were working in the country when tribal killing followed military coups, placing the missionaries in a tough spot: as foreigners, they were to "stay out of politics," but their Christianity and humanity sparked their actions in the conflict. The violence and genocide were frequently called "disturbances" in newspaper headlines, minutes, mission memos and family correspondence. The story is now being told on the 50th anniversary of the events. Three other Baylor folks were involved with the film. Zach Dawes Jr., BA '05, MDiv '08, is managing editor of Jake Moore and Alayna Hudson are in their junior years at Baylor in the film department. Learn more at

Jeff Rice, BMEd '85, and Jannifer Rice, BMEd '85, were featured in the Oct. 22 edition of the Waco Tribune-Herald. They taught in the same classroom with shared lesson plans at Midway High School for the past 17 years. Jeff is choir director and Jannifer is assistant director. Together, they teach more than 300 students each day.

Clark Hood, BBA '85, of Prosper, TX, left the medical device industry after 20 years to join VICIS Inc. as the vice president of U.S. sales. The Seattle-based sports technology company has launched the ZERO1, a new football helmet designed to mitigate impact forces. VICIS works with the NFL and the NCAA. Soon they will expand to the high school and youth markets. Contact at

Shawn Nicholas, BBA '86, of Lee's Summit, MO, is CFO at the Trabon Group, a marketing services and technology provider to the U.S. restaurant industry. Nicholas won the 2016 National CFO Photo Contest. He has held various accounting and finance positions with U.S. and European based companies over the last 30 years. Nicholas has served as the Meat Industry Suppliers Alliance chairman and on the board of directors of the U.S. Poultry and Egg Association.

Elizabeth Walker-Fenton, BS '86, won a prestigious Sand Dollar Award for 2016 Best Interior Design of the Year in Multi-Family for the Carrara private residence in Talis Park. Contact at 1626 Serrano Cir., Naples, FL 34105 or

Doug Welch, BBA '86, who had served as associate general counsel at Baylor University since 2006, was named as the university's chief compliance officer (CCO). The CCO position, which will help identify compliance needs in a range of areas, assess the effectiveness of existing systems, procedures and controls, and create and deliver training to ensure compliance, was among the 105 recommendations from the external Pepper Hamilton investigation. Welch earned his law degree from Texas Tech. In addition, he is a certified public accountant. Welch and his wife Nadine, BSEd '86, MS '87, clinical assistant professor in the department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, have three children. They are members of First United Methodist Church of Waco.

Shelby Davidson, MPPA, '87, earned his doctor of education degree from Lamar University in 2015. He was honored with the Outstanding Doctoral Student Award at Lamar, and his dissertation was awarded the Chance Memorial Dissertation of the Year by the National Rural Education Association. Davidson made a presentation of the dissertation at the NREA annual convention at The Ohio State University in October. Davidson is principal at Van Middle School in Van, TX, and he serves as pastor of New Beginning Baptist Church in Edom, TX. Contact at

Maj. Gen. Gale Pollock, MHA '87, is the first woman and non-physician to serve as the acting surgeon general of the U.S. Army. In October, she spoke at Heidelberg University in Tiffin, OH. She became a certified nurse anesthetist soon after graduation from the University of Maryland. While in the Army, Pollock served as commander of the U.S. Army Medical Command in addition to her surgeon general role. She was the 22nd chief of the Army Nurse Corps. Pollock also established the Louis J. Fox Center for Vision Restoration in 2008 and was an associate professor at the University of Pittsburgh Schools of Medicine and Nursing. In 2011, Pollock was named a Harvard University Fellow in the Advanced Learning Initiative. Retired from the U.S. Army, Pollock is the owner of Pollock Associates LLC. She is a fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives, the American Academy of Nursing and the National Board of Corporate Directors. She also holds degrees from Maryland, Boston University and the National Defense University.

Scott Salmans, BBA '87, of McGregor, TX, was appointed by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott to the Judicial Compensation Commission. His term expires in 2021. Salmans is owner and CEO of WRS Group Ltd. He is a member and forum officer of the Young Presidents Organization and a member of the Waco Industrial Foundation Board, Baylor University Hankamer School of Business Advisory Board and the Waco Business League. He is former president of the Baylor/ Waco Foundation and a member and former board member of the Greater Waco Chamber of Commerce. Salmans is chair of the Care Net Guesthouse Capital Campaign Committee and board member of the Care Net of Central Texas and a board member of Texas First State Bank. He holds an MBA from the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

Christopher Caddell, BBA '88, was promoted to chairman of the board of Heritage Bank in Burlington, KY. Caddell has worked for Heritage Bank for 20 years and served as vice chair the past two years. He succeeded his father, who founded the bank and held the position for 25 years. He and Eleni, BA '88, his wife of 28 years, have two children and a granddaughter.

Victor Carrillo, MS '88, was appointed to the board of directors of Energy Hunter Resources Inc., an oil-focused energy company headquartered in Dallas. Carrillo is CEO of Zion Oil & Gas Inc., a publicly traded company engaged in onshore oil and gas exploration in Israel. He has served on numerous committees, commissions and boards including the Texas Railroad Commission, the Texas Energy Planning Council, the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission and as the former chairman of the West Texas Energy Consortium. Carrillo holds a JD from the University of Houston. He serves on the advisory board of the Maguire Energy Institute at Southern Methodist University and on the board of directors of the Texas- Israel Chamber of Commerce. Carrillo served as chairman of the Governor's Texas Energy Planning Council, chairman of the Outer Continental Shelf Advisory Committee to the U.S. Secretary of the Interior, and vice chairman of the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission. He also was elected as Taylor County (TX) Judge.

Stephen C. Raffaele, BBA '88, of Frisco, TX, is senior executive vice president and COO for Corpus Christi, TX-based American Bank, which has 12 branches. He is responsible for all the non-lending operations areas of the bank and serves on the bank's executive management team. During his more than 25-year career, Raffaele has experience in banking, wealth management, financial management, acquisitions, operations, investments and capital markets while serving as CFO, Chief Strategy Officer and/or COO for several large financial services organizations in Houston and Dallas. He is also a chartered financial analyst.

Jacob Y. Garrett, BA '89, of West Plains, MO, was appointed to the West Plains Bank and Trust Company Board of Directors. He holds a law degree from the University of Missouri. In 1998, he started the firm of Garrett & Silvey with Christena Silvey-Coleman, where he still practices today. Garrett and his wife of 26 years, Erika, BBA '88, MBA '90, have three children. They own Garco Properties Inc.

Christopher Holmes, BA '89, of Waco was appointed as Baylor University's general counsel by interim president David Garland. Holmes has been at Baylor since 2002. He and Dawn Ridley Holmes, BSEd '89, have four children, two of whom are currently Baylor students. Dawn is in her eighth year of teaching at Live Oak Classical School. Contact at

Allyson Altimore Johnson, BA '89, is early childhood director for Timberline Church in Fort Collins, CO. After receiving her BA at Baylor in communications, she earned master’s degrees in religious education and counseling from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Contact at


Tracy Patterson Dew, BA '90, joined Preferred Properties Inc. in Asheville, NC, as a real estate broker. She and her husband Joel Dew, BBA '90, have lived in the mountains of western North Carolina for more than 20 years. They have two children, ages 11 and 9. Contact her at

Todd Harper, BBA '90, the founder and president of Generous Giving, authored Abundant: Experiencing the Incredible Journey of Generosity (Generous Giving 2016: 81 pages). Harper invites readers to seek first God's kingdom, even with finances, and the opportunities and adventures that come with it. Harper has experience in ministry leadership, major donor development and philanthropic advising. He and his wife, Collynn, BA '87, have five children and live in Orlando, FL.

Brett Graham, BBA '90, of Denison, TX, was appointed by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott to the Board of Motor Vehicles, which is responsible for overseeing the development of the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles. He is CEO of Graham International. Graham is a board member of the Texas Association of Business, and he is a member of the Texas Automobile Dealers Association and the Texas Tire Dealers Association. He is a trustee of Pottsboro (TX) ISD, board secretary of Grayson Central Appraisal District, board chair of Texoma Health Foundation and Denison Development Foundation and a board member of Ameristate Bank.

Gloria Meraz, BA '90, is assistant state librarian for the Texas State Library and Archives Commission. She previously served as the director of communications at the Texas Library Association for 17 years. Meraz supports the provision of library and archival resources and services to state and local government, researchers, communities and people across Texas. She holds a master's in library and information science from the University of Texas at Austin and is working toward her doctorate. Her past work experience includes the National Museum of American History in Washington, D.C., Baylor and the University of Texas at El Paso.

Brent Boydston, BBA '91, was appointed vice president of sales for North Venice, FL-based PGT Inc., a manufacturer and supplier of residential impact-resistant windows and doors. Boydston has 25 years of sales experience. Previously, he served as the VP of sales for Liberty Hardware. He holds an MBA from Wake Forest.

Renee Wansik Cartwright, BSEd '91, MSEd '92, scaled Colorado's Grays Peak 14,278 above sea level. "When I reached the top, another BU alumni noticed my coat and we did Sic 'em, Bears, at the top of the mountain," she writes. Contact at 4118 Scarlet Oak Ct., Castle Rock, CO 80109 or

Ashley Ferguson, BBA '91, of Tyler, TX, was honored in October by the Mentoring Alliance of Tyler, TX, for her support of youth and the agency's programs. She is CEO of Marburger Farm Antique Show. Ferguson serves as a volunteer in the Gospel Village program, a one-on-one mentoring program. She is also involved in the Parental Care Ministries and Grace Community School. She is CEO of Marburger Farm Antique Show, a family business. She and her husband John, BA '89, have three daughters.

Mark Wege, JD '91, is a partner with Dentons, a law firm in the restructuring, insolvency and bankruptcy practice. He will work in the firm's Houston office. Wege advises corporate clients on reorganizations, out-of-court restructurings and formal bankruptcy proceedings. He clerked for Judge William Greendyke, Chief Judge of the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Texas.

Elizabeth Ingram Carlyle, BBA '92, JD '95, was named vice president and associate general counsel for Vision Source, North America's largest network of independent optometrists. Carlyle has spent the last 13 years at Houston's Second Baptist Church as general counsel and director of planned giving.

Meeryung Hall, MM '92, recently performed nine of Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore's compositions during a performance at Rabindra Satabarshiki Bhavan in Agartala, India. "Music is a universal language. It can bond people of different countries irrespective of caste, creed and religion," said Hall, who sang in Bengali. Hall has performed for more than 25 years in solo recitals, choirs and with orchestras in the United States, Indonesia, Australia, South Korea and India. Her husband is U.S. Consul General Craig Hall, PhD '94.

Candice Millard, MA '92, of Sarasota, FL, authored Hero of the Empire: The Boer War, a Daring Escape, and the Making of Winston Churchill (Doubleday 2016: 400 pages). Covering the Boer War in 1899, Churchill was captured in South Africa after the soldiers he was accompanying on an armored train were ambushed. She discussed the book Sept. 28 at the Dallas Museum of Art. Millard has sold more than a million copies of her previous books, including The River of Doubt on Teddy Roosevelt and Destiny of the Republic on James Garfield.

Mike O'Quin, BA '92, of Austin authored Growing Desperate: The Favor of God for the Poor in Spirit (Mantap Publishing, 2016: 148 pages). He writes that God meets people in desperate places, fights and delights to restore them, and sends them out into a world full of desperate people. O'Quin also authored Java Wake (Mantap Publishing, 2015: 332 pages), a travel suspense novel set in Indonesia where he and his wife Stephanie Richart O'Quin, BA '92, served as missionaries and social entrepreneurs for nearly 14 years. Contact at

David Phelps, BM '92, of Culleoka, TN, held his inaugural Christmas Barn Bash concert series on his family farm in Tennessee this November. The Grammy and Dove Award-winning singer and his wife Lori Purtle Phelps, BSEd '93, have hosted sold-out Labor Day Barn Bash concerts for the last seven years. The new Christmas concert featured Phelps performing his holiday hits. Phelps has performed in venues from the White House to New York City's Carnegie Hall. Phelps is best known as a phenomenal tenor and member of the Gaither Vocal Band. Learn more at

Robin Battershell, EdD '93, was a finalist for the 2016 Texas Association of School Boards Superintendent of the Year Award. Since 2008, she has served as superintendent of Temple (TX) ISD. Battershell has 18 years of experience in education administration and serves about 8,600 students. Noted by the committee was her outreach to business partners to discover what specific job skills were needed and implementation of programs to address those needs. Battershell also holds degrees from Texas Tech and the University of Houston.

Dr. Chad Rodgers, BA '94, a pediatrician in Little Rock, AR, cares for his patients and their families beyond the exam room to childhood literacy, early childhood care and newborn screening. He also serves on numerous state and nongovernmental bodies devoted to children's health in Arkansas. Rogers was honored at the 2016 Friends of Children annual luncheon Oct. 31. The event benefits Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families, one of many organizations in which Rodgers has been active.

Douglas Bryan Hughes, JD '95, was named partner at Beard & Harris law firm in the Tyler, TX, and Dallas areas. Hughes, who will be sworn in as District 1's state senator in January, has practiced at a solo law firm in Mineola, TX, since 2001.

Robert Lang, BBA '95, is managing director of global professional services firm Alvarez & Marsal in Dallas. For more than 20 years, Lang has worked on complex commercial disputes and measured the financial impact of external events, operational changes and other market factors. Lang assists companies across many industries with a particular expertise in the oil and gas industry. He is a frequent guest lecturer in the graduate accounting program at Baylor, where he also serves on the advisory board for the accounting and business law department.

Bill Layer, BA '95, MS '97, is an attorney at the Law Offices of Linda Hem in Dallas. He focuses on family, elder, probate, real estate and corporate law. Layer earned his JD from Texas A&M. He lives in Dallas and is married to former Baylor Pom Squad member, Lisetta Coates Layer, '94. They have two daughters, Emma, 12, and Maddie, 11. Contact at

Chris Trowbridge, BBA '95, JD '98, was selected to the Communities Foundation of Texas Advisory Council (CFT), joining a distinguished group of 90 business, governmental, community and philanthropic leaders throughout North Texas. CFT is a Dallas-based foundation dedicated to raising the quality of life for individuals, families and businesses in North Texas. CFT manages more than 950 philanthropic funds, totaling $1.1 billion in assets. Trowbridge is a partner at Bell Nunnally & Martin LLP in Dallas. He is a commercial litigator with a particular emphasis on complex business and intellectual property matters.

Marty Crawford, BSEd '96, superintendent of Tyler (TX) ISD, was honored in October by the Mentoring Alliance of Tyler for his support of youth and the agency's program. He led a collaboration between The Mentoring Alliance and the school district over the last two years. Twelve Boys and Girls Clubs of East Texas sites are housed in Tyler ISD elementary locations, providing computer labs, gymnasiums, playgrounds and cafeterias for after-school programs. Crawford also holds degrees from the University of Oklahoma and Texas A&M University-Commerce.

Retired U.S. Army Col. Michael E. Hershman, MHA '96, is director of the Veterans Administration Northern Indiana Health Care System, which operates the VA hospitals in Fort Wayne and Marion, IN. Hershman recently retired from the Army's Medical Service Corps after 28 years of service.

Dr. Gerald "Jerry" R. Ledlow, MHA '96, joined the UT Health Northeast School of Community and Rural Health in Tyler, TX, as the inaugural chair of the Department of Health Policy, Economics and Management. Ledlow has almost 30 years of experience in academic leadership and management in military, corporate, educational and academic programs. He also has co-authored eight volumes of text, including a nationally recognized textbook on health care leadership. Ledlow most recently served as the professor and chair of health policy and management at Georgia Southern University.

Doug Bacon, BBA '97, is a corporate partner in Kirkland & Ellis LLP's Houston office. He advises private equity firms, companies and corporations on complex multinational mergers and acquisitions. He recently represented clients such as Novartis and Honeywell International, and previously advised many private equity firms including The Blackstone Group, KKR, TPG, Apax Partners, MSD Capital and First Reserve Corp. Bacon was previously a partner in the New York office of Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP. He holds a degree from the University of Virginia School of Law. In 2016, he was named a "Rising Star" by the New York Law Journal and an "Emerging Leader" by the M&A Advisor.

David Crowder, '97, of Atlanta is back on tour following the release of Crowder's latest album, American Prodigal (sixsteprecords/Sparrow Records) in September. This is his second album since launching his solo career in 2012. For more info, visit

Joseph Parker, MDiv '97, celebrated the 24th anniversary of becoming senior pastor of David Chapel Missionary Baptist Church in Austin in September. For 10 years prior, the native of Birmingham, AL, who began his career as an attorney, was an associate minister/pastor at the congregation. He also holds degrees from Morehouse College, the University of Georgia, the University of Texas at Austin, and Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary.

Christian Ellis, JD '98, and several partners formed Bonds Ellis Eppich Schafer Jones LLP, a new law firm in Fort Worth. The partners are John Bonds, Ellis, Josh Eppich, Rollie Schafer and Brandon Jones. Other attorneys at the firm include Joe Spence, JD '83, and Patrick Sheridan, BA '08, JD '11. Previously, Ellis was a partner at Shannon Gracey Ratliff & Miller LLP. Learn more at

Chip Gaines, BBA '98, and Joanna Gaines, BA '01, of Waco released their first book in October, titled The Magnolia Story, which was written with New York Times bestselling collaborator Mark Dagostino. That same month, they also released a new magazine, The Magnolia Journal. The Gaineses also recently shared their testimonies in an "I Am Second" video. Season four of their hit HGTV show Fixer Upper premiered Nov. 29.

Ben Gatzke, BM '98, MBA '00, MSIS '00, of Fort Worth was appointed to the Department of Information Resources Board by Governor Greg Abbott. His term runs until February 2021. Gatzke is CEO of Total Management Inc. He is a member of the Jewel Charity and serves on the advisory board for the School of Music.

Dr. Jun Qian, BM '99, assistant professor of clarinet at Baylor's School of Music, released his East Meets West II CD. The album received high marks in the International Clarinet Association's Clarinet magazine (Sept. 2016). Qian started his East Meets West series in 2010. The latest CD is supported by the University Research Committee Grant. It features composers such as Pulitzer Prize winner Zhou Long and a group of musicians that includes Dr. Kae Hosoda-Ayer, Baylor assistant professor of piano. Qian received his master's and doctoral degrees from the Eastman School of Music.


Alexander Blue, JD '00, joined the Dallas law firm Hermes Law. Blue is a distinguished U.S. Marine Corps veteran and will focus his practice on construction law, professional liability, real estate, premises liability and commercial litigation.

James Franklin, BMEd '00, director of choral activities at the East Carolina University School of Music, is also director of the adult Concert Choir of the Greenville (NC) Choral Society. At ECU, Franklin conducts the Chamber Singers and the men's choir. He also teaches undergraduate conducting and directs the graduate program in choral conducting.

Mark Stoneman, BA '00, is assistant U.S. attorney for the criminal division of the Western District of Oklahoma. Since 2009, he has served as assistant district attorney for Comanche County in Lawton, OK. Stoneman served as a nuclear missile operations officer in the Air Force and holds a law degree from the University of Oklahoma.

Anne Stuhlman, EdD '00, was named principal of the Immanuel Lutheran Church school in Bristol, CT. She is serving in her first parochial school position. Stuhlman was a principal in three public districts in Texas before moving to Connecticut in 2000. Originally from Missouri, Stuhlman also holds degrees from Lincoln University and Texas A&M.

Susan Cox Westhof, BBA '00, of Denver completed the Regional Institute for Health and Environmental Leadership's (RIHEL) Advanced Leadership Training Program in May. RIHEL provides training and professional development experiences for public health, health, environmental health and environmental professionals in Colorado, Wyoming and New Mexico. Approximately 50 applicants are chosen each year to participate as fellows in the program. Contact at

Col. Noel Pace, MHA '01, is commander of the 345th Combat Support Hospital at Jacksonville Naval Air Station in Florida. Pace had been commander of a 1,000-bed Army Reserve hospital in Colorado. He also worked as senior health care administrator in Falls Church, VA, with the office of the U.S. Army Surgeon General. Pace is a board-certified health care administrator and fellow at the American College of Healthcare Executives, a certified-fellow and diplomat in the American Academy of Medical Administrators and fellow in the American College of Contingency Planners. He also holds degrees from Tulane, the University of Denver and the University of Miami School of Law.

Paul Sikes, MM '01, joined Texas Wesleyan University as assistant professor of instrumental studies. He plans to bring an orchestra and a pep band to university. While at Baylor, Sikes served as director of the pep band and assistant director of the marching band. He earned a BA from Texas Tech and a doctorate from the University of Houston. Sikes then worked at Texas A&M, where he directed two concert bands, the pep band, assisted with the marching band, and eventually became the director of orchestras and associate director of bands. Isaac Kohlbacher, BBA '02, joined First Oklahoma Bank's Jenks, OK, banking center as a vice president and lender, with a focus on commercial lending. Previously, he was a vice president with JPMorgan Chase. He holds a master's degree from the University of Virginia.

Chris Watson, MDiv '02, serves as the command chaplain at the Defense Information School (Fort Meade, MD), where he provides advice to service members, civilian employees and the commander. In his 22 years of military service, Watson went from being an enlisted airman to a chaplain. In May, Watson assumed duties as the command chaplain at the Defense Information School, providing advice to service members, civilian employees and the commander.

Bill Cornelius, BBA '03, was named director of investment banking firm Crutchfield Capital Corp., headquartered in Houston. He has 12 years of investment banking, principal investing, commercial banking and business operations experience. He has executed private company mergers and acquisitions, sourced and provided debt and equity capital, and managed company restructurings and bankruptcies. Cornelius was CEO or CFO of several operating businesses. He holds an MBA from Duke, where he graduated as a Fuqua Scholar.

Christian Pallas, BA '04, married Teresa Woller Oct. 24, 2015, at Saint Patrick Cathedral in Fort Worth. The reception followed at the Colonial Country Club. Many Baylor alumni were in attendance, including: Shawn Polak, BA '03, Keith Kleinhans, BBA '03, Rob Crain, BBA '04, and Kyle Burton, BA '05. The bride surprised her groom with a Baylor football locker-room themed groom's cake to honor his football career at Baylor. The couple resides in Fort Worth.

Dr. Debbie Rarick, MDiv '04, DMin '12, of Waco authored her second book, Outside Words: Simplify Conversation, Strengthen Connection and Solidify Community, (Author Academy Elite, 2017: 206 pages). Using the power of words, Rarick wants to put an end to blame, shame and other word games. She coaches readers to discover their God-given worth and then unlock potential in others. Contact at

Dane Gates, BBA '05, a Realtor with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Anderson Properties, was named one of the "Top 20 under 40" by the Houston Association of Realtors.

Jody Moore, BSEd '05, of Waco, was in Rio de Janeiro this summer as part of a select training team to assist the USA Olympic athletes. He worked with athletes in injury prevention, evaluation, manual therapy and stretching to prepare for their competitions. Moore also worked the Pan-American Games in Toronto. He is an athletic trainer at Southwest Sports Medicine.

Casey Morgan, BA '05, is executive vice president and CEO of the Greater Houston Builders Association, a trade association for a consortium of top homebuilding professionals. She was featured in the Oct. 1 issue of Houston Lifestyles. Morgan began her role in February after serving as GHBA's director of government affairs since 2012. After Baylor, she worked as a staff assistant to Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchinson and the White House in the Office of Legislative Affairs for President George W. Bush. In 2007, Morgan transitioned to the U.S. Department of Transportation working as a policy assistant to Secretary Mary Peters, and she also earned a master's degree in public policy from George Mason University in 2011.

Graham Gourley, BA '06, was promoted to regional mitigation coordinator/estimator with Jenkins Restorations, a national Christian restoration firm, whose mission is to "Restore property and lives with a Servant's Heart." Graham has a passion for helping those whose homes have been damaged by fire, flood or storm and is excited to be able to minister to those in need. He oversees all work, training and estimates for mitigation from Newark, DE, through Atlanta and frequently assists training and development of technicians throughout Texas. He lives in Charlotte, NC, with his wife Lori and children, Connor and Kaylin. Contact at

Amy Woody, BMEd '06, is director of the Wildcat Band at Guyer High School in Denton (TX) County. After completing a master's degree in clarinet performance from the prestigious Eastman School of Music in 2008, she has directed the band, which has grown from 80 to 175 students.

Brad Cunningham, BBA '07, of Hartsburg, MO, is part of the The Brad Cunningham Band, which has recorded its debut album, Every Inch of Texas, distributed by Sony/RED. Cunningham wrote or co-wrote every song on the Red Dirt Texas Country album. Formerly known as Man in the Ring, the band has played with the Turnpike Troubadours and the Marshall Tucker Band.

Hunter Lewis, JD '07, of Dallas made the 2016 Texas Super Lawyers list for his work in family law. This is the fourth listing for Lewis, an associate of Orsinger, Nelson, Downing & Anderson LLP.

Mary Perez, BS '07, was recognized as the 2016 Distinguished Alumna by the McLennan Community College Foundation. Perez is a senior associate at Texas Life Insurance Co. in Waco and serves on several local nonprofit committees and boards, including The Cove, Habitat for Humanity, Communities in Schools and the American Cancer Society. She is a 2005 graduate of McLennan Community College and obtained a degree in mathematics from Baylor after transferring from MCC.

Jordan Simmons, BA '07, MSEd '08, was named assistant principal at McDonald Middle School in Mesquite (TX) ISD. He previously worked for Gatesville (TX) ISD and Rockwall (TX) ISD. Simmons spent the last three years as a social studies teacher at Mesquite High.

Dr. Barry Jackson, DPT '08, was promoted to director of therapy operations for New Braunfels (TX) Regional Rehabilitation Hospital (NBRRH), which is part of the Ernest Healthcare organization, based in Albuquerque, NM. NBRRH has been recognized as being in the top 10 percent of all rehabilitation hospitals across the U.S. four years in a row. Contact at 149 Dew Fall Trail, Cibilo, TX 78108 or

Dustin Little, MBA '08, of Austin, joined Novotus as director of talent solutions. He is responsible for driving, building, and managing the strategic and tactical delivery of Novotus's NSS team.

Katie Nicol, BA '08, married John Ellis April 2 at First Baptist Dallas. The reception was at the Adolphus Hotel. The bridal party included Whitney Sellers, BBA '08, and Laura Remson, BA '10. John is an electrical engineer for Schneider Electric, and Katie is a human resource generalist for Weir's Furniture Inc. They reside in Frisco, TX.

Fotolanthropy, founded by Katie Norris, BS '08, a non-profit organization that documents inspiring true stories of people who have overcome adversity, has a new short film. Howdy features Dallas ice cream shop Howdy Homemade owner Tom Landis and vice president and employee Coleman Jones. The small business hopes to erase boundaries for those with special needs and challenges people to "expect the unexpected" in others. Norris was Baylor's Young Alumna of the Year in 2014. Visit to watch the film.

Dr. Erin Wait, BS '08, joined Birmingham (AL) OB/Gyn. She is a summa cum laude graduate of Baylor. Wait received her doctorate of medicine from the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, where she received AOA honors. She completed her residency in obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Wait is married and has two children.

Joanna Price Lamkin, BA '09, completed her PhD in clinical psychology from the University of Georgia. Her clinical internship was at Baylor College of Medicine. Lamkin is employed as a postdoctoral research fellow with Veterans Affairs in Houston.

Joe Pawelek, BBA '09, was appointed by Denver-based Lilis Energy Inc. as vice president of corporate finance and investor relations. Since 2012, Pawelek was associate and head of business development at Brushy Resources Inc. Pawelek was a Baylor linebacker from 2005 to 2009 and played professionally for the Seattle Seahawks and Jacksonville Jaguars. Pawelek holds an MBA from the University of Texas at San Antonio.


U.S. Air Force Capt. Shawn Jensen, BS '10, is an RC-135 Rivet Joint pilot with the 763rd Expeditionary Reconnaissance Squadron. The RC-135 Rivet Joint is a reconnaissance aircraft that provides near real-time, on-scene intelligence collection, analysis and dissemination capabilities. Jensen followed his father and grandfather, both pilots, into the Air Force. Jensen also wears the 379th Bombardment Group patch his grandfather wore in WWII as a B-17 Flying Fortress pilot.

Meredith Lockhart, BBA '11, owns the jewelry company Meltgoods, where she employs refugee women in Dallas. Lockhart traces her inspiration to serve others as well as her love for traveling and embracing other cultures back to her time at Baylor. "It is ingrained in the Baylor culture to think beyond yourself and glorify God with your gifts," Lockhart told the Baylor Lariat in October. She currently employs two refugee women who work from home. One of them is an Iraqi civil engineer who applied for 10 years before she was allowed to move to the U.S. The goods are sold on and at local markets.

Kymberly MacNeal, BA '10, of La Crescenta, CA, earned her PhD in political science and international relations from the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. She specializes in international security and weapons of mass destruction. MacNeal wrote her dissertation on the state use of chemical weapons in the 20th and 21st centuries. While at Baylor, MacNeal was a University Scholar, and unofficially majored in chemistry and international relations and minored in Middle Eastern studies.

Kyndall Rae Rothaus, MDiv '11, senior pastor of Lake Shore Baptist Church in Waco, was the fourth pastor featured in the Baptist Standard's new "Deep in the Hearts of Texans" column in August. Rothaus was the pastor of Covenant Baptist Church in San Antonio, interim pastor at a United Church of Christ church in West, TX, and a resident chaplain at Baylor. She also holds a degree in theology from Southern Nazarene University.

Kelsey Fitzgerald, BSEd '13, is youth librarian for the Ozark (MO) Regional Library. Fitzgerald oversees programming, story time, summer reading club, festivals and outreach to schools and daycares for all seven libraries of the Ozark system. Fitzgerald, who is originally from St. Louis, received her master's degree in library science from University of North Texas. Katherine Adkins Makowsky, BFA '13, of Waco opened an art exhibit at the Art Center of Waco on the McLennan Community College Campus. The 41-piece "Works on Paper" exhibit, largely inspired by walks in the woods of Cameron Park, ran through Jan. 7, 2017. Makowsky formerly was artist-in-residence at Art Center of Waco. Her husband is Dr. Reid Makowsky, BA '04, MA '06, PhD '13. Learn more about her work at

Peter Vanderbeek, BS '13, married Katie Webb Sept. 3 at the Retreat at Balcones Springs on Lake Travis near Austin. Katie attended Baylor before transferring to Texas Tech. They live in Goldsboro, NC.

Aynsley Young, BA '13, JD '16, joined Munsch Hardt Kopf & Harr PC's Dallas litigation practice groups. Young was a Dean's Academic Excellence Scholarship recipient and involved in the Baylor Public Interest Legal Society. She clerked at Munsch Hardt, KoonsFuller PC and Naman, Howell, Smith & Lee PLLC.

Bayleigh Dayton, BBA '14, of Lee's Summit, MO, became the first African-American woman to win the Miss Missouri USA title. The 23-year-old flight attendant and print model was first runner up and Miss Congeniality for 2016. Dayton advances to the nationally televised Miss USA Pageant. If she wins Miss USA, she would advance to the internationally televised Miss Universe Pageant. Elizabeth Hebert, BMEd '14, and Stephen Farrell, BM '15, played Carnegie Hall on tour with Rice University's Shepherd School Symphony Orchestra. The program included Smetana's "Overture to The Bartered Bride;" Prokofiev's Piano Concerto No. 3, Op. 26; Pierre Jalbert's "In Terra" (world premiere); and Lutoslawski's "Concerto for Orchestra." "We're glad to be flinging that green and gold afar," Stephen writes.

Kira Townsend Rockwell, BFA '14, of Frisco, TX, is pursuing her MFA in playwriting at Boston University and The Boston Playwright's Theatre. She is one of only three accepted into the program every other year. Rockwell's plays have been produced in Texas, Alaska, Kansas, Iowa, Arizona, Boston and Los Angeles. Her plays Nomad Americana and With My Eyes Shut both premiered consecutively at WaterTower Theatre' Out of the Loop Fringe Festival. Learn more at

Megan Wilkie, BS '14, and Samuel Rajaratnam, BA '14, were married April 9 in Belton, TX. They live in Waxahachie, TX. He commutes to Baylor Law School while she pursues a nursing degree at Baylor's Herrington School of Nursing in Dallas.

Jake Conkerill, BBA '15, and Kevin Renois, BBA '16, organized the first Waco meeting of 1 Million Cups, a national program that promotes entrepreneurship, "based on the notion that entrepreneurs network and discover solutions over a million cups of coffee." Conkerill is manager of entrepreneurship and innovation for the Greater Waco Chamber of Commerce, while Renois is director of City Venture Waco and a local organizer of 1 Million Cups. Conkerill also helps promote the "After 5" mixers held at the Baylor Club at McLane Stadium, and the Waco Collegiate Forum, which focuses on keeping college graduates in Waco.

Rebekah Wallin, BA '15, was a guest speaker at HomeAid Houston's annual Amazing Ladies Organization luncheon in October. Wallin shared the challenges and victories of children facing homelessness. She shared her story of being rescued and restored by Boys and Girls Country and attending Baylor University, funded by an anonymous Boys and Girls Country donor. She now works for Oracle in Austin.

Shelby Armstrong, BS '16, is one of an inaugural class of students who began classes with the New York Institute of Technology College of Osteopathic Medicine on the Arkansas State University campus. Armstrong is a Fayetteville, AR, native.

Anna Barrett, BA '16, a first-year teacher at Founders Classical Academy of Lewisville, TX, received her training through the American Teacher Initiative. She was a University Scholar at Baylor.

Molly Francis, BBA '16, MAcc '16, was featured in the Baptist Standard in October for researching payday lending for her thesis as a Baylor Business Fellow, saying that Christians in Texas should lead the way in advocating for comprehensive payday lending reform. Francis' home congregation, Wilshire Baptist Church in Dallas, and its partner congregation, Friendship-West Baptist Church in Dallas, worked together with the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship to develop a model for congregational advocacy regarding payday and auto-title lending.

Therese Goncalves, BA '16, and Tyler Ellis, BA '13, were married in July.

Iván Hernández, MM '16, won the International Clarinet Association's Orchestral Audition Competition during the 2016 International ClarinetFest at the University of Kansas's Inge Memorial Hall in August. The ICA's annual competitions are recognized as some of the most important clarinet competitions in the world, and this is the second consecutive year that students from the Baylor clarinet studio have won the grand prizes in the same category. Hernández is from Matamoros, Tamaulipas, Mexico.

Lindsey Trozzo, PhD '16, is now assistant professor of New Testament in the Campbell University Department of Christian Studies in Buies Creek, NC. A native of Houston, Trozzo attended Biola University and Talbot School of Theology in California before returning to Texas to enter the doctoral program at Baylor. She has given lectures at Perkins School of Theology, TCU, Baylor and Truett Theological Seminary.