Dr. Frank B. Ashley, III, is the Vice-Chancellor for Academic Affairs for the Texas A&M System. Before his appointment in May, 2007, he was the Dean of the College of Education and Human Services at Texas A&M University at Commerce. Before joining TAMU-Commerce, he served as Acting Assistant Provost for Enrollment at Texas A&M University at College Station. His research focuses on the sociologic and economic aspects of sports. An international authority on sport management, Dr. Ashley is a contributing editor for the Research Digest of the Journal of Sport Management, and the author of articles in such journals as The International Journal of Sport Management, Sport Marketing Quarterly, The Journal of Legal Aspects of Sport and The Journal of Applied Research in Coaching and Athletics. Ashley is past president of the North American Society for Sport Management and has lectured on international perspectives on sport management throughout the United States and in Australia, Canada, Mexico and South Africa. Visit website

The Honorable Eliot Shapleigh has just completed his fourth session as a legislator. During the 2003 Legislative Session, Shapleigh was appointed to the Finance Committee as well as being named chairman of the subcommittee on BRAC (Base Realignment and Closure). He was also appointed to the International Relations and Trade Committee; the Infrastructure Development and Security Committee; and the Veteran Affairs and Military Installations Committee. Upon completion of the 78th Legislative session, Shapleigh was selected as one of the top legislators by the Classroom Teachers Association. After the 77th Legislative session, he was named the Texas Legislator of the Year by the Mexican American Bar Association. During his four sessions, he has authored or sponsored more than 350 bills, with particular focus on education, economic development, infrastructure, technology and health care. As an advocate for El Paso and other border communities, he is also interested in raising per capita income and boosting economic prosperity along the Texas Border. Visit website

The Honorable Rodney G. Ellis is currently serving his fifth term as a Texas State Senator (Democrat) and has earned praise as a legislative leader on tax cuts, civil rights, education, economic development and workforce development issues. Ellis is an attorney and investment banker who received his M.P.A. from the LBJ School of Public Affairs and his J.D. from the University of Texas Law School. Visit website


Dr. Rumaldo Z. Juarez is President of Texas A&M at Kingsville. Juarez’ subject areas of special interest are sociology of health, social gerontology, health services research, sociological theory, minority populations, social change and environmental health. He has published research pertaining to the Hispanic elderly, vital and health statistics, Texas-Mexico Border demographics and health statistics, diabetes in Hispanic populations and educational aspirations of Hispanic youth. Visit website


Dr. Diana Natalicio is President of the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP). She received her M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin and was a Fulbright scholar in Rio de Janeiro. She is the recipient of the Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Prize in Education and was inducted into the Texas Women's Hall of Fame. Natalicio serves on numerous boards including the National Science Board, the Space Foundation Board, and the U.S.-Mexico Foundation for Science. She also sits on the Advisory Commission on Educational Excellence for Hispanic Americans, the President's Committee on the Arts and Humanities, and the National Commission on Teaching and America's Future. Visit website

Dr. Raymund A. Paredes is the Commissioner of Higher Education at the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. Prior to coming to the Coordinating Board, Dr. Paredes was Vice President for Programs at the Hispanic Scholarship Fund (HSF) where he was responsible for scholarship and outreach programs. Before joining HSF, he was Director of Creativity & Culture at The Rockefeller Foundation from 2001 to 2003. Visit website

Dr. Alice Goodwin Reinarz began her career in research and has evolved to roles in undergraduate education and administration. Her current position is Interim Assistant Provost for Enrollment and Clinical Professor of Pathobiology at Texas A&M University. She was previously at the University of Michigan as Director of the Academic Advising Center for the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts and LS&A Director of Inteflex, a joint program of the undergraduate college and the medical school. Visit website


Dr. Ricardo Romo is President of the University of Texas at San Antonio. He is respected as an urban historian and is the author of: East Los Angeles: History of a Barrio. He received his Ph.D. from the University of California at Los Angeles and prior to assuming the presidency of UTSA, he was Vice Provost for undergraduate education at the University of Texas at Austin. Visit website


John Stevens is Executive Director of the Texas Business and Education Coalition and works toward the goal of improving Texas public schools. He is founder and Chairman of the Texas Principals Leadership Initiative and Chairman of the School Finance Data Mart Steering Committee. Stevens serves on several committees including the Commissioner's Advisory Committee on Accountability, the Texas ACT Council Advisory Committee, and Advisory Committee for the Eisenhower Science Collaboratives. He also created and served as Executive Producer of the award-winning television series, Inside Your Schools, which focused on major issues in public education. Visit website

Dr. Larry D. Terry is Executive Vice Provost and Professor of Public Administration at The University of Texas at Dallas. Dr. Terry received his graduate degrees from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Ph.D.) and University of Missouri-Columbia (M.S.). He is widely known for his book, The Leadership of Public Bureaucracies: The Administrator As Conservator 2nd ed. (M.E. Sharpe, 2002). This book is currently used in graduate and executive development programs throughout the world. Leadership of Public Bureaucracies is recognized by many as an emerging classic in the field public administration and public affairs. Visit website

Dr. Johnny L. Veselka has been Executive Director of the Texas Association of School Administrators (TASA) since January 1, 1986. He has been employed by TASA since August 1974. Veselka received a Bachelors of Arts degree from St. Mary’s University in San Antonio in 1969, a Master of Arts degree from St. Mary’s in 1973, and a Master of Education degree from the University of Texas at Austin in 1975. In 1979, Veselka was selected to participate in the Cooperative Superintendency Program, a doctoral superintendency training program jointly sponsored by The University of Texas at Austin and the Texas Education Agency. Veselka earned a Ph.D. in Educational Administration from The University of Texas at Austin in 1982. Visit website

Dr. Bruce Walker has served as Associate VP for Student Affairs and Director of Admissions at UT Austin, coming from an 11-year stint as Associate Provost for Admissions and Financial Aid at the University of Delaware. Bruce served, from 1977 to 1985 as Director for Admissions and Guidance Services in the Southwest Regional Office of the College Board following 4 years as Associate Director of Admissions at the University of North Texas. Bruce has been involved with the College Board for many years and currently serves on the SAT Committee and the National Guidance and Admission Assembly Council. He has served on the faculty of the College Board/North Carolina Summer Institute for Admissions and Financial Aid and as a visiting faculty member at the College Board/Harvard Summer Institute. Bruce holds an Ed.D degree from the University of North Texas; and M.Ed from Texas Christian University and an undergraduate degree from Southwestern College in Waxahachie, Texas.

The Honorable Royce West is Senator of the 23rd District in Texas. He received his B.A. and M.A. from the University of Texas at Arlington and his J.D. from the University of Houston. He is a senior partner with the law firm of Robinson, West and Gooden, P.C. Senator West has served on various boards and committees, including the Board of Directors of the Texas Defense Lawyers Association and the Texas Criminal Justice Task Force. He is also a sponsor of the Dr. Emmett J. Conrad Leadership Program.
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The Honorable Judith Zaffirini (D-Laredo), who represents the 21st Senatorial District, is the senior senator from the border and Bexar County. Elected in 1986, she is the first Hispanic woman senator in Texas, the first to serve as President Pro Tempore of the Texas Senate, and Texas Governor for a Day. Zaffirini was re-appointed to three consecutive terms as Chair of the Senate Health and Human Services Committee and to the Senate Committees on Finance and on Education. In 1999 she was appointed Chair of the Senate Human Services Committee and a member of the Senate Committee on Education, the Subcommittee on Higher Education, and the Special Committee on Border Affairs. Dr. Zaffirini, is an award-winning communications specialist with 13 years of teaching experience, both at the college and university levels, and more than 20 years of public speaking experience. A distinguished communicator, educator, and leader, she holds bachelor of science, master of arts and PhD degrees from The University of Texas at Austin. Visit website


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