2015-2016 TRTF Scholarship and Grant Recipients

During the 62nd Annual TRTA Convention April 6-7, 2015 in Austin, TRTF announced the winners of the 15 $500 Classroom Assistance Grants and 16 $500 Student Scholarships.

Below please find a complete list of the 2015-2016 Texas Retired Teachers Foundation (TRTF) Classroom Assistance Grant and Student Scholarship recipients. 

TRTF 2015 Classroom Assistance Grants

Randy Mayer teaches secondary science and social studies at the Impact Center (The Ranch) in Buda. His $500 grant will help him advance an aquaponics greenhouse project, allowing him to purchase much-needed tools such as shovels, seeds and a wheelbarrow.

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Left to right: TRTA Graphic Designer Laura Rios Escareno, TRTA Director of Communications Cindee Sharp, TRTA Executive Director Tim Lee, Grant Recipient Randy Meyer, Principal Sylvia Villejo.

Andrea Whetstone teaches mathematics and science at Eastwood Middle School in El Paso, where she is starting an after-school robotics program. Her grant will be used to purchase the ROBOT-C for Lego Mindstorms software program, which teaches programming language.

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Teresa Carroll teaches math at Williams Elementary School in Georgetown. She will use her funds to purchase the Do the Math intervention program for her Tier III students who struggle with addition, subtraction, division, multiplication and fractions.

Left to right: TRTF Trustee Jamie Larson, grant recipient Teresa Carroll and Williams Elementary Principal Natasha Drumgoole

Left to right: TRTF Trustee Jamie Larson, grant recipient Teresa Carroll and Williams Elementary Principal Natasha Drumgoole

Louise Prihoda teaches physics and chemistry at Danbury High School in Danbury. Her grant will allow her to purchase tools for classroom projects such as model rockets, water rockets and hot air balloons.

TRTF grant recipient Louise Prihoda, featured with TRTA member Rebecca Gaconnet, Danbury ISD Superintendent Greg Anderson and several school board members.

TRTF grant recipient Louise Prihoda, featured with TRTA member Rebecca Gaconnet, Danbury ISD Superintendent Greg Anderson and several school board members.

Robert Barbosa teaches world geography at Sharyland High School in Mission. His TRTF grant will fund his “Landmark Ideal” project, allowing his students to use 3D doodler pens to create three-dimensional representations of landmarks from around the world.

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Left to right: TRTA member/Foundation Representative for Palm Valley ARSP Ofelia Estevis, grant recipient Robert Barbosa, Sharyland High School Principal Carolyn Mendiola.

Kim Cotcher teaches culinary arts at Nellie Reddix Center in San Antonio, a community-based transitioning program for students with disabilities. Her “Friendship Garden Project” will be enhanced with a new aeroponic Tower Garden purchased with her grant.

Left to right: Francesca Neal, Reddix Center Vice-Principal, grant recipient Kim Cotcher, and TRTF Trustee Carlos Ortiz.

Left to right: Francesca Neal, Reddix Center Vice-Principal, grant recipient Kim Cotcher, and TRTF Trustee Carlos Ortiz.

Angelica Garza teaches 4th grade bilingual education at Cromack Elementary School in Brownsville. Her grant will allow her to buy several sets of children’s novels with companion Spanish language novels for her “Le Conmigo, Come Read with Me” family engagement and literacy development project.

Left to right: TRTA member Chiqui Guerra, TRTA member Ofelia Estevis, grant recipient Angelica Garza, Cromack Elementary Principal Frank Ortiz, TRTA member Esther Waters.

Left to right: TRTA member Chiqui Guerra, TRTA member Ofelia Estevis, grant recipient Angelica Garza, Cromack Elementary Principal Frank Ortiz, TRTA member Esther Waters.

Dianne Aldridge teaches technology applications at Mineral Walls Junior High School in Mineral Wells. Her $500 grant will purchase Code Combat, an online service that promotes computer science by teaching students how to code using a gaming environment.

Left to right: Wendell Barker, Mineral Wells Jr. High Principal, Dianne Aldridge, Grant recipient, and Jamie Larson TRTF Trustee.

Left to right: Wendell Barker, Mineral Wells Jr. High Principal, Dianne Aldridge, Grant recipient, and Jamie Larson TRTF Trustee.

Keri Reynolds teaches art and painting at Elsik High School in Houston. Her project includes a field trip to George Ranch Historical Park in Richmond, as well as sketchbooks, paint and brushes that will allow her students to document their experiences through art.

Left to right: TRTF Trustee Carolyn Lance, grant recipient Keri Reynolds

Left to right: TRTF Trustee Carolyn Lance, grant recipient Keri Reynolds

Shelby Lawson teaches algebra and geometry at Benito Juarez Abraham Lincoln High School in Mission. With her grant, her geometry students will construct doghouses. She will purchase lumber, paint, tools and nails then pay for travel to the Humane Society where the doghouses will be donated.

Left to right: TRTA member Chiqui Guerra, TRTA member Ofelia Estevis, grant recipient Shelby Lawson, Juarez Lincoln High School Principal Eduardo Alaniz.

Left to right: TRTA member Chiqui Guerra, TRTA member Ofelia Estevis, grant recipient Shelby Lawson, Juarez Lincoln High School Principal Eduardo Alaniz.

Marie Montalvo teaches science at Sullivan Elementary School in San Benito. $500 will allow her to create a monarch butterfly garden which also serves as a conservation effort to restore milkweed and nectar-producing plants to the area.

Left to right: TRTA member Esther Waters, grant recipient Marie Montalvo, Sullivan Elementary School Principal Bobbie Jo Hushen, TRTA member Ofelia Estevis, TRTA member Chiqui Guerra.

Left to right: TRTA member Esther Waters, grant recipient Marie Montalvo, Sullivan Elementary School Principal Bobbie Jo Hushen, TRTA member Ofelia Estevis, TRTA member Chiqui Guerra.

Rebecca Gutierrez is a counselor at Cromack Elementary School in Brownsville. Rebecca has created a “Bibliotherapy” program, using books to spark conversations about bullying, low self-esteem, family problems, peer pressure and more. Her grant will allow her to expand the program.

Left to right: TRTA member Chiqui Guerra, TRTA member Ofelia Estevis, grant recipient Rebecca Gutierrez, Cromack Elementary School Principal Frank Ortiz, and TRTA member Esther Waters.

Left to right: TRTA member Chiqui Guerra, TRTA member Ofelia Estevis, grant recipient Rebecca Gutierrez, Cromack Elementary School Principal Frank Ortiz, and TRTA member Esther Waters.

Sherrie Cordero teaches anatomy, biology and physics at Mason High School in Mason. Her grant will allow her to increase the amount of classroom human models for dual-credit anatomy and physiology courses.

Left to right: Mason High School Principal Chris Habecker, grant recipient Sherrie Cordero, TRTF Trustee Ronnie Jung.

Left to right: Mason High School Principal Chris Habecker, grant recipient Sherrie Cordero, TRTF Trustee Ronnie Jung.

Barbara Stockon teaches at Cherokee Junior High in Cherokee. Barbara will purchase two iPads for her Anti-Bullying and Character Education courses, where students will be able to create scripts and make short films about social issues.

Left to right: Grant recipient Barbara Stockon, TRTF Trustee Jamie Larson and Cherokee ISD Superintendent Chris Perry

Left to right: Grant recipient Barbara Stockon, TRTF Trustee Jamie Larson and Cherokee ISD Superintendent Chris Perry

Martin Lenard teaches band at Tivy High School in Kerrville. His grant will be used to buy new music curriculum, which has not been updated in several years. He will be able to purchase up-to-date and modern music choices that are relevant to his students’ interests.

Left to right: Tivy High School Vice-Principal Chris Cook and grant recipient Martin Lenard

Left to right: Tivy High School Vice-Principal Chris Cook and grant recipient Martin Lenard

TRTF 2015 Student Scholarships

Katherine Bastian is related to Mary B. Steuer, a member of Ennis RSPA. Katherine attends Texas Tech University, where she is earning her Ph. D. in Family and Consumer Science Education.

Kelsey Faykus is related to Jimmy Michna of Georgetown, an at-large member of TRTA. She is a senior at Thrall High School and will go to Southwestern University in the fall.

Bailey Bohlken is related to David Maxton of the Franklin County RSEA. She attends the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, where she is earning her degree in Mathematics Education.

Jessica Brown is related to Nancy Best of the Woodlands, an at-large member of TRTA. Jessica is a senior at The Woodlands High School and will major in Elementary Education.

Michael Craig is related to Emily O’Connor of the Lamar-Delta RTSEA. He is a high school senior at North Lamar in Paris, Texas and will major in Education with a minor in Science.

Carly Myers is related to Linda Nelson of the Wylie RSE. Carly attends Sasche High School.

Kari Nunemaker is related to Claudia Parker of the Gillespie County RTA. She is a high school senior in Harper, Texas and she plans to major in Early Childhood Education.

Glendie Cornelison is related to Harold Cornelison of Abilene, an at-large member of TRTA. She attends the University of North Texas in Denton.

Kady Hackley is related to Harold Reynolds of Bee County RSP. She attends Nocona High School and plans to become a special education teacher.

Rikki Boden is related to Odette Hill of Port Arthur ARSP. She attends Bridge City High School and will attend Lamar University in the fall.

Maranda Kahl is related to Janice Kahl of the El-Paso Lower Valley RTA. She attends Southwestern University and will teach secondary Latin and Economics.

Rebekah Noey is related to Margaret Noey of Spring, an at-large member of TRTA. Rebekah attends Texas Tech University and is a Family and Consumer Sciences major.

Ryan Davis is related to Catherine Jane Davis of West Grayson RSPA. He attends the University of North Texas in Denton.

Taylor Damron is related to Patricia Evans of Swisher-Briscoe RSP. She attends Nazareth High School, and will attend South Plains College to major in Elementary Education.

Claire McGrath is related to Linda Pease of Wylie RSE. She is pursuing a Master’s in School Counseling from the University of North Texas.

Hannah Chambers is related to Donald Love of Fredericksburg, an at-large member of TRTA. She attends Tarleton State University.