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THE TOWN | THE PEOPLE | THE PRIDE | WE ARE PROSPER May 2018 | Prosper’s Community Magazine Since 2012 | | Issue #82

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PER Maga




On The Cover: Prosper High School Class of 2018 Graduate Jackson Brown Photo courtesy of Jim Bird

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8 | Pro

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sper’s E PE Comm OPL E| unity Magaz THE ine Sin PRID ce 201 E | W 2 | We E ArePr ARE osper.c PRO SP om | Issue ER #82

What’s Inside 8 Letter From the Publishers 10 A Celebration of Heroes


12 RMS Earns Design Recognition 15 PHS Seniors 2018 21

2018 Senior Spotlights

24 Growing Prosper 26 Educational Summer Activities 28 To Whom Much is Given, Much is Required FIND OUT MORE ABOUT PROSPER! For up to date news, events and web-exclusive content visit Scan with your iPhone camera to go to our website!

28 6 | May 2018

As we continue to grow, we value your input on various articles and subject matter for PROSPER Magazine. If you’d like to be a part of our Editorial Focus Group, please email us at and we will send you the details!!

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The Town | The People | The Pride

Prosper’s Community Magazine Since 2012

Issue #82 | May 2018 Voted 2013 New Business of The Year by Prosper Chamber of Commerce PUBLISHERS Jason & Heather Reynolds EDITORIAL/MARKETING DIRECTOR Heather Reynolds CREATIVE DIRECTOR Jason Reynolds BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT Jodie Brownd

May 2018…it’s almost graduation time but it seems like just yesterday that we were welcoming everyone back to school. It hardly seems possible that these “kids” – the ones we’ve grown to adore as we’ve watched them over the last several years – are so close to taking the next step towards their future. We are so proud of the young women and men that they have become, and we are so blessed to have had the opportunity to get to know them and really showcase all of the wonderful things they’ve accomplished during their school years. Prosper ISD has been so fortunate to have had them…and Prosper High School will certainly miss them. They’ve left their mark on this town and on their school. And now it’s time for them to fly! Graduation is a time of celebration, a rite of passage. It’s an accomplishment just as much for the student as it is for us as parents. We obviously celebrate our child’s success, but let’s be honest…this is a huge milestone for US. We’ve been there from the beginning, watching them achieve success after success…and we’ve been there to pick them up after the setbacks. We’ve seen their first smile, first steps, first day of kindergarten, first game, first prom, first college visit. And although we knew this day would come, nothing could have prepared us for the emotions that Senior year brought. As their “firsts” turned into “lasts”, our hearts broke a little and soared at the same time. Each day brought us closer to the reality that this is REALLY happening. Our babies are growing up. The last 18 years has been full of hard work – parenting is tough. But the result can now be seen in the beautiful, competent adult that is about to walk across the stage as they say goodbye to Prosper High School and hello to the next chapter in their lives. We want to wish all of our kids in the Class of 2018 a HUGE CONGRATULATIONS on your graduation. You’ve worked hard, played hard and have made us so proud of you. We will miss seeing you in action on the field, the court and on stage. But we know that you will go on to do even bigger things – and we want to hear about them! Make sure you call home OFTEN, your parents will appreciate it. When you’re in town, stop by and see us. And never forget that WE ARE PROSPER! #WeAreProsper #WeAreOne #TownPeoplePride With Prosper Pride,

Heat her & Jason Reynolds 8 | May 2018

ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT Tish Cama EDITORIAL CONTRIBUTORS Joyce Godwin | Ray Smith | Dr. Drew Watkins Celso Martinez | Heather Reynolds | Leslie Scott Jodie Brownd | Jimmie Gibson PHOTOGRAPHY CONTRIBUTORS Cedarbrook Studios PRODUCTION/DESIGN Cedarbrook Media Group, LLC EDITORIAL CONSIDERATIONS Please send editorial considerations to ADVERTISING INFORMATION For our current media guide, contact Advertising at



PROSPER MAGAZINE P.O. BOX 405 Prosper, Texas 75078 972.347.6231 | A Cedarbrook Media Group, LLC Publication

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PROSPER Magazine is wholly owned and published by Cedarbrook Media Group, LLC. PROSPER Magazine is published 12 times a year. No portion of this publication may be reproduced or copied whole or in part without expressed written permission from the publisher, Cedarbrook Media Group, LLC. © 2017. All Rights Reserved Worldwide. The title and all material are protected by international copyright laws and are reserved. Although the greatest of care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of the information contained in this magazine at time of going to press, neither PROSPER Magazine nor Cedarbrook Media Group, LLC can be held liable for omissions, inexactness or errors.

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Town Matters


A Celebration of Heroes TM


By Tish Cama

As we honor Memorial Day, the Prosper Historical Society will host its 4th Annual “A Celebration of Heroes” on May 28 from 11:00am – 12:00pm at the Frontier Park Pavilion. Each year there have been hundreds in attendance while the numbers continue to grow and break records. The event is aimed towards growing awareness and giving back to those who serve our country. Note-Ably North Texas Women’s Chorus, a chapter of Sweet Adelines, will be performing at the event. Also performing are two Prosper ISD students who are reading “In Flanders Field” and Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address. As a tribute to those who serve, the Color Guard will be posting the colors and playing Taps. Along with all of this excitement, the Prosper Historical Society has invited well renowned author, Jody Davids, to speak and add her personal touch to the celebration. Davids is the author of “A Tale of Two Heroes” which is a novel dedicated to her sons, Wesley and Steven. Her inspiration for writing the book came

as she spent time with her granddaughter, Sophie. Jody’s hope is that, through this story, Sophie will know that she has two heroes watching over her every day, and that this story will serve to ignite a discussion with children about love, loss, and later, acceptance and perhaps peace.” In this book, Davids reaches out to the hearts of thousands where the boys were inspired by the events which took place on September 11, 2001. Wesley became a United States Marine, who served in Iraq, and later Steven became a Marine and began his calling into the life of service. All profits from the purchase of the book are put towards the donation to the Eyes of Freedom, Lima Company Memorial. To hear more and be a part of this exciting day, join us on May 28 at frontier park.

10 | May 2018

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Reynolds Middle School Earns Jostens National Yearbook Design Recognition

Soaring Eagle yearbook featured in 2018 Jostens Look Book By Wende Holland

Reynolds’ yearbook, Soaring Eagle, has been recognized for excellence and featured in the 2018 Jostens Look Book, celebrating the best-of-the-best in yearbook design and coverage. The Jostens Look Book is a collection of spreads and photos from outstanding yearbooks and their creative themes, cool covers, dazzling designs, relevant coverage, storytelling copy and action-packed photography. Along with design excellence, the annually published Look Book honors the important role well-crafted yearbooks play in helping schools chronicle the experiences, stories and achievements most relevant to students and that academic year. “It truly is an honor to have a spread from our book featured. This staff and I worked so hard over the year on this book [and] they quickly became my family. I wouldn’t have wanted to publish an award-winning book with anyone else,” said current freshman Felicia Holland. The Soaring Eagle was created by Carlie Bowler, Evan Cook, Logan Creel, Madison Curtis, Ashley Ellis, Olivia Frye, Felicia Holland, Lauren Holland, Jessica Malan, Sarah Smith and Sydney Smith under the direction of Wende Holland, Reynolds Middle School yearbook adviser. “To be honest, it came as a shock. I knew our book was great, but I never

thought it could achieve that kind of accomplishment. Our staff worked very hard on it and it feels amazing to receive the recognition the book deserves,” said yearbook editor and current freshman Ashley Ellis. The Reynolds Middle School Soaring Eagle was one of only 413 yearbooks selected from approximately 2,000 entries. The 2018 panel of judges, comprised of nationally recognized scholastic journalism professionals and award-winning yearbook advisers, selected the best examples of yearbook spreads and covers to make up the 304-page 2018 Look Book. “The Jostens Look Book showcases the hard work and dedication of students who tell the story of the school year through photos and words. It is their collaboration and communication, as well as creative thinking in challenging situations, that results in the fine designs shown in this book,” said Sara Sausker, Senior Manager of Customer Experience. “We are very proud to celebrate the ability of this country’s future leaders and communicators by showcasing their sophisticated designs and photography.” Ms. Holland and her yearbook staff received a copy of the 2018 Jostens Look Book and plaque from Jostens to recognize their outstanding achievement. The Jostens Look Book is a must-have resource for yearbook advisers and staffs seeking creative design and coverage ideas, trends and inspiration. The Look Book complements and JostensAdviserandStaff, Jostens online destinations for yearbook creation ideas. The Soaring Eagle yearbook is a student publication of the eighth-grade yearbook staff at Reynolds Middle School in Prosper under the direction of adviser Wende Holland. The first volume of the yearbook was published by Lifetouch for the 2010-2011 school year which coincided with the building’s first year as Reynolds Middle School. That same year, Soaring Eagle yearbook was awarded first place in the Lifetouch National School Studios Yearbook Showcase Contest. Current publishing company, Jostens, was selected as publisher for the Soaring Eagle yearbook in 2011.

12 | May 2018

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Prosper 972.346.5150 430 Business Park Drive

Garland 972.272.8821 2054 Forest Lane Suite 450


I played golf for three years and worked in Eagle Nation News for all four years. I was News Director, an anchor, as well as a reporter and videographer. My favorite memory from Eagle Nation News is our end of the year awards ceremony, The Talons. I cry every year because it’s sad to see the seniors go, but it is a great experience being able to recognize the work we put in throughout the year because it reminds me that journalism is truly what I love doing. I received second place and honorable mention for videography at state sophomore year. My junior year individually I was first in graphics in the state and second in producing. Me and my partner/best friend Sola Kantai won an Emmy for our package, and the program as a whole was ranked first in Texas as well as awarded a Pacemaker, the highest national achievement for a high school broadcast. I did some work for Cornerstone charity by making a few videos to help advertise their Cornerstone Christmas event.

Taryn Weber

I was involved in Prosper High School Varsity Volleyball, HOSA, Executive Mentor Council, Principals Council. My favorite memory from all four years would have to be winning the UIL 5A Volleyball State Champions in 2017. I have received JV Offensive MVP 2014-15, 1st All District 2017, Academic All District 2016-17, State Champions 2017. I was also involved in the CNA and Health Science Program. The funniest moment from all four years would have to be in the State finals game against Leander Rouse, my gum fell out of my mouth onto the court in the middle of the game. I chew gum at all times during games and I remember how freaked out everyone was because I didn’t have my gum. My favorite memory from high school is definitely Winning state with the best team ever and getting to share so many memories with them, like the billboard revealing and receiving our state rings. Moving to Prosper was the best thing I could have done. It surrounded me with the best people, gave me forever friendships, and so many opportunities. I am glad to walk the stage as an Eagle.

Katharine Ottenbreit

I was involved in the Prosper High School Talonettes, National Honors Society, HOSA (Health Occupations Students of America) - Future Health Professionals, CNA (Certified Nursing Assistant) and Fellowship of Christian Athletes. My favorite memory from Talonettes was at my final competition this year, Showtime, the Talonettes won the entire team and Officer categories for the first time. I have received sophomore lieutenant, junior lieutenant, best technique award 2016-2017, captain and Showtime solo finalist while in Talonettes. My favorite high school memory was most definitely the pep rallies and school spirit that defined Prosper, I always get chills looking around the arena or watching the sports or senior videos. The last four years of my life have been dedicated to Prosper High School. I have created lifelong friendships, countless memories, and learned innumerable lessons. I have cherished every moment I have been able to call myself a student at Prosper High School and a member of the Talonettes. The people here have helped mold me into the strong, confident young woman I have become today. To those who have been a part of my high school experience, I will never forget you and thank you for supporting me unconditionally.

May 2018 |



I started band when I was in 6th grade and continued it through high school. I played the oboe and performed with the drumline on the marimba. I was a drum major for the past two years and I was also a featured soloist in the marching band’s contest show all four years. My favorite memory from band happened this past year at the Bands of America Grand Nationals. I made the All-Region Band all four years, advanced to All-Area twice, and advanced to the All-State Band this year. I received seven division one ratings at the UIL Solo & Ensemble Contest and advanced to the State Solo & Ensemble where I received three division one ratings. I also was named Grand Champion at the Prosper Concerto Contest last year. While at PHS, I was the President of French Club, President of French Honor Society, Vice President of National Science Honor Society, Secretary of Mu Alpha Theta, and Secretary of National Honor Society. I also was involved in the Prosper Career Independent Study Program.

Cole Lantz

I have been in the golf program for 4 years now. My favorite memory of my High School Golf career is probably making the varsity team as a freshman because I beat out 2 seniors to take the spot. I earned 1st team all-district 3 years in a row and 2nd team all-district my freshmen year. I have also earned academic all-district all 4 years. I am very involved in Video Production which I have been doing for all 4 years as well. I am planning on continuing my YouTube channel. @ Cole Lantz, check it out. The funniest moment in golf was when Mason chunked his old putter into the water and watched Coach Kirkland’s reaction. It was hilarious because Kirkland thought he threw his actual putter into the water. My favorite high school memory was probably the blackout pep rally because the light show was super cool. Thank you to everyone that has helped me along the way of my High School career.

Blake Harrington

During high school I was involved in Football, baseball, and track. My favorite memory would probably be making a run in the playoffs my senior year, while also creating an incredible bond between the people on the football team. I have received 3 time alldistrict safety, 3rd team all- state safety and Academic All-state throughout the years. I was also involved in Student leadership and National Honors Society throughout high school. The funniest moment from all four years would have to be watching David Alvarez dance. My favorite memory from high school would have to be my entire football career at Prosper. I plan to play football and study engineering at the University of Wyoming after graduation.

22 | May 2018

Logan Riseling

Over the last four years, I have been involved in PHS’ theatre program and have worked on 13 shows. My favorite memory would be when Prosper’s UIL One Act Play advanced for the first time since my freshman year. I have won honorable mention all-star cast, three all-star cast awards, and best actress (the first in PHS history!) during the three years I have been a part of one act play. I am a National Honor Society member and a student mentor. I also have competed on the UIL speech team. I was alternate to region for prose interpretation sophomore year. The funniest moment in theatre was one rehearsal I had during an alumnus directed summer show. Something happened during one of the most dramatic moments of the play, and we just all absolutely lost it and couldn’t finish the run of the show. Needless to say, it was one of the least productive rehearsals I’ve ever had, but it was honestly one of the best. I would like to say thank you to my director, Mr. Stephens, for the amazing program that he has fostered at PHS. It is truly unlike any high school I’ve ever seen, and I am so lucky to have experienced it.

Cecelia Ange

Throughout high school I was involved in the Sports Medicine program. My favorite memory was Winning first round of 2017 playoffs for the varsity football team and making it to the regional tournament in 2017 for varsity girls soccer. I have received Academic All District as well as Academic All State throughout high school, through the training program. While in high school I was also involved in the Student Mentor Program, the Girls Soccer Manager, and in MU Alpha Theta. After high school I will be attending James Madison University and continue my education through a major in Athletic Training.

Isabelle Holman

I was involved in Marching and concert band, lacrosse, and basketball. My favorite memory from band would be having fun with my section in the stands at football games. I have received the Section Captain award 2017 in the Mighty Eagle Band. I was a member of the National Art Honor Society, and I also volunteered at the SPCA of Texas in McKinney. The funniest moments were honestly, probably all of the bus rides with the trombone section. My favorite High School memory is from the Pep rallies and doing “trombone suicides” at games and pep rallies. I am going to attend the University of Denver where the Lamont School of Music gave me an $180,000 scholarship for music, I hope to play and continue to learn more about playing the trombone there. I served as the band ambassador my senior year and both my junior and senior year of high school I was captain of the trombone section. Also, this year the girls lacrosse program started up and I, being one of the only girls on the team who has played before, was nominated as one of the captains.

May 2018 |



with Jimmie Gibson Jr.

The Grass is Always Greener Converting a Bermuda Lawn to St. Augustine How exactly, and maybe more importantly, why would you change your lawn from Bermuda grass to St. Augustine? There are many different reasons…wanting a new look, necessity due to shade from growing trees and landscapes and even allergies to Bermuda grass. LAWNS IN FULL SUN The transition will be the quickest in full sun situations. Most grasses are sun loving and St. Augustine is no exception. Its broad leaf blades shade Bermuda grass when competing for the same space. To start the process in full-sun areas, treat the Bermuda grass with systemic glyphosate product. This will kill most of the Bermuda. When the treated area has browned, usually within 10 to 14 days, set the mower on its lowest setting and make a pass over the lawn. Bag all the grass clippings. Next, prepare the soil by lightly tilling or using a verticutter or de-thatching machine, which loosens the soil with vertical knives. This is also an excellent time to level your lawn by filling in depressed areas with screened topsoil and lowering raised areas or high spots.

three times a year, April 15th, June 1st, and September 15th. While the new St. Augustine grass is establishing its root system, avoid pre-emergent applications for at least six months. AREAS IN PARTIAL OR FULL SHADE In areas with partial shade where the lawn is exposed to at least 4 hours of sunlight and the Bermuda grass is already thin, a process known as plugging can be utilized, since Bermuda grass competition will be minimal. This process involves using a spade to physically remove the existing grass and soil and replacing it with small “plugs” of the new St. Augustine grass. Plugs can range in size from 4 inches to any part of a standard size piece of sod, including installing the size in a checkerboard pattern. This method can also be used in full sun, with the understanding that it will need time to completely fill in the space. Solid sodding the St. Augustine in a partial shade situation is also an option. The instructions for water, fertilizer and pre-emergent remain the same as above.

Be prepared to install the St. Augustine sod as soon as it is delivered. Keep the new plantings moist, but not wet. This means watering once or twice daily for short periods of time until the new sod roots into the soil. Once rooting has occurred, reduce the number of days you water while increasing the duration each time, until you gradually reach the usual program for your lawn’s needs. This is generally about an inch a week.

Locations receiving less than 4 hours of sunlight would be best served by ending the frustration of trying to maintain turf grass. Instead, consider one of the many available ground covers that perform well in heavier shade environments. This can also be a good time to incorporate Zoysia Sod or expand accents flower beds. That is a column for another day though, my good friends!

Anytime after the third mowing, fertilize the new sod with one-half the normal rate of fertilizer. St. Augustine grass lawns do not require as much feeding as Bermuda: twice a year on April 15th and September 15th or

No matter the reason for the conversion, this would be the best time to formulate the plan and make the change to a St. Augustine lawn.

24 | May 2018

Question: Jimmie, every year I grow Hibiscus plants in containers. I don’t have a greenhouse, so I put them in the garage over the winter. Then, come late spring, they seem really lethargic. What can I do to speed them back to vigorous growth? Pam P. in Prosper Answer: Hi Pam, Hibiscus, bougainvilleas and most other tropicals really struggle with several months’ confinement to the garage. They often are set back so far that they do not recover at all. Consider building a cold frame or lean-to greenhouse for future winters. However, for this year’s crop, apply a high-nitrogen, water-soluble plant food and keep them in a bright, warm location. Trim them as needed if they have died back. Otherwise just be patient and hope for the best. Question: Jimmie, how can I eliminate dallisgrass in my St. Augustine lawn? Lyle T. in Prosper

M U S I C & O U T D O O R S F E S T I VA L


Answer: Hi Lyle, Sadly, that’s the toughest of all the weed problems. I’m going to state the same facts a couple of ways to prevent any possible confusion. There is no herbicide available that will eliminate dallisgrass without damaging your St. Augustine. While Bermuda lawn owners should use products containing MSMA to kill dallisgrass in their turf, it cannot be used in St. Augustine. That said, you have two options in St. Augustine. You can either hand-dig the dallisgrass or take the best possible care of your lawn so it will be able to resist further invasion, or you can spot-treat with a glyphosate such as Roundup. Use a handsprayer to apply the herbicide specifically to the weed area only. While it will kill both the dallisgrass and the St. Augustine on which it is sprayed, Roundup is the most effective grass killer we have. It does not contaminate the soil, and the St. Augustine can spread back across the bare ground fairly quickly. Note: Bermuda grass lawn owners should never use Roundup to control dallisgrass since MSMA is nearly as effective and will not kill their turf. Hope that helps you out! Until next time…Happy gardening!!


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Jimmie is a Prosper resident and the owner of Absolutely Bushed Landscaping Company, an award winning, family and veteran owned and operated business created in 1980 to provide the highest quality custom Outdoor Renovation available to homeowners in the Dallas Ft. Worth area.

M U S I C & O U T D O O R S F E S T I VA L






May 2018 |


Educational Summer Activities For All Ages By Rosh Ramanujam

The hazy, lazy days of summer don’t have to be boring for little ones. It’s an important season to keep their minds and bodies active, working and healthy. Parents can keep kids physically busy and mentally active during summertime by reinforcing the skills they learned during the school year. Make the most of your summertime by thinking outside of the box for projects and activities that are both fun and educational. Here are a few fun ideas, inspired by our curriculum at Kiddie Academy of Prosper: Create musical instruments from materials you already have at home •Gather the neighbors and create an afternoon jam session. •Make a guitar using a recycled tissue box, rubber bands and a pencil. •Craft a maraca from two paper plates, wooden spoons and dried beans.

Spend a warm summer evening under the stars. •Encourage your budding astronomer to find popular star constellations such as the Big Dipper, Little Dipper and Orion’s Belt. •Set up an outdoor movie watching nature themed movies, such as “A Bugs Life” as a fun variation on science. •Watch the firefly show and use your smart device to learn why they “glow.”

•Pull out the pots and pans, and wooden spoons for an impromptu drum set Cool down with gelato or Italian ice at a café with outdoor seating. There’s nothing like a cool treat on a hot summer day, with the opportunity to practice manners (please and thank you), and table etiquette without a lot of pressure. Couple that with good conversation with family and you have a fun, educational experience for all. Start a family or a neighborhood summer reading club. Get the family together, or other families in your neighborhood, and start a children’s book club by reading the same book and talking about it at the end of the week or month. Take a hike alongside a river or stream. Hiking in the shade by a moving body of water can cool down a steamy summer day. Pack a snack and find a place where you can dangle your feet into the water. Explore the nature around you and ask your children what they see and think about the environment they’re in.

Enjoy summer in ways that keep your child’s mind challenged and active, but keep their safety in mind on every adventure. It’s important to teach young children how to have safe fun in the sun. Rosh R, is the owner of Kiddie Academy of Prosper, located at 650 North Preston Road. We are excited to open our brand-new, state-ofthe-art academy in the fall of 2018 in the Prosper community. We serve children ages 6 weeks through 12 years. The educational programs at Kiddie Academy of Prosper emphasize continuous, open communication between teachers and parents concerning each child’s development. But most importantly, we learn while we’re having fun. We invite children to embark on the Kiddie Academy journey that will enable them to learn and grow socially, physically and intellectually. To learn more visit or call 469-356-2595 or email

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To Whom Much is Given, Much is Required By: Jodie Brownd

"We Are Prosper, We Are One. We Are Prosper, We Are One." You can hear it, if you close your eyes. The chant that became a towns motto a few years back. On any given Friday in the Fall you can hear it across town, at the well-known and high energy pep-rallies at Prosper High School. As the sun sets in the west and its fiery glow shines through the metal water tower of our town, you can still hear it. A simple chant, that instantly inspires unity and pride, moves our football team on to victory like toy soldiers ready for battle. It is a sense of belonging that isn't easily duplicated, a reality that is ever so clear once you leave and head on to greener pastures. For one man, (who just so happened to implement that chant) there are no greener pastures. He believes there's no better community in the world to raise a family and that's why, when Greg Wright retired as the Principal at Prosper High School and headed back home to Tyler, Texas, it didn't take him long to realize that home is where the heart is, and his heart has irremovable roots in Prosper, Texas. It takes a man like Greg Wright, skilled in hearing "His Call" to trust that not so still voice in his head that prompted him to pray for and about his vision and lifelong calling of being a Principal at a Christian School. Across town, in Plano, Texas another man prayed for his own vision as well, to have a group of leaders skilled and driven with likeminded love for our Heavenly Father and a passion for children, for a time such as this. He prayed for a person with a keen sense of who he is in Christ to share the vision put in place and the integrity to plant seeds that will bloom into the fruit bearing legacy that is Prestonwood Christian Academy North. With a leap of faith and a resume sent, prayers were answered. A phone call prompted a meeting of the minds in a way that could have only been the winds of change by the mighty hand of God. Both men had their prayers answered, they scheduled a divine appointment and just like that, he's back. The man behind the chant, known for his contagious spirit and the trail of students behind him whose lives he's impacted, Mr. Wright is back, and he brings a wealth of experience having served in Texas schools for 32 years. He spent 22 of those years in school administration, including five years as Principal of Prosper High School. He earned his Bachelor of Science Education at Texas A&I University, Kingsville, TX and his Master of Education Administration and Mid-Management Certification at Stephen F. Austin State University in Nacogdoches, TX. Prestonwood Christian Academy Head of School, Dr. Larry Taylor,

28 | May 2018

announced the appointment of Mr. Greg Wright as the Middle/Upper School Principal at PCA’s North Campus. With the foundation already put in place and an A Team that includes the one and only Donna Leadford, who has not only handled the reigns up to this point but has been an undeniable contribution to the success that calls for such abundant growth in a very short time. Dr. Taylor says that he could not have handpicked a finer team to lead this campus and its students into the world, to their futures and ultimately to God. This appointment is crucial to the school's expansion at the North Campus. PCA North is adding a grade every year through the first graduating class of 2023 and is part of the PCA School System which consists of two elementary schools (Plano and Prosper), two middle schools (Plano and Prosper), a high school (Plano, and soon to be Prosper), a virtual academy, and St. Timothy Christian Academy, a school for unique learning needs. PCA’s School System is fully accredited through AdvancEd and the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI). PCA is one of only eleven Christian schools in the nation earning Exemplary Level Accreditation. An important and impressive, fact about PCA North, is that 40% or more of the students that attend are there through financial assistance. With up to 2.7 million dollars set aside specifically for tuition assistance, no one is turned away from the school due to finances. That gives every child in our community an opportunity to benefit from the success of a Kingdom Education. The blessings that have been bestowed upon our youth from the standpoint of academics are astounding. With an exemplary and highly sought after public school system in place and growing, married with Prestonwood Christian offering excellence in Christian education it is no surprise that this area is one of the fastest growing in our nation. This abundance reflects the truth that "to whom much is given, much is required." With the above being said, it is crystal clear that Mr. Wright and the faculty and staff at PCA have their work cut out for them. There is also no doubt that if anyone can lead them to do it, he can. You need only spend a moment of time with him to feel a sense of calm in his presence. He isn't the type of man that talks just to fill a silent moment, and therefore; when he does speak, you listen. With what reminds me of a mix of Tom Landry and a little Billy Graham, I couldn't help but ask him to share of one of the favorite memories of his career. He spoke of a young man he knew many years ago when he was a track coach. The boy was underprivileged, raised by a single Mom

and because of a traumatic home life had little guidance. He was the kind of kid that would never know his potential if someone didn't intervene. Wright turned a corner in the gym at his school one day and heard a basketball bouncing and the screeching of shoes across the floor. He watched in disbelief at the untapped talent of the young man that, at that time, was already a Junior in High School who had never played a single sport due to his grades and constant discipline problems. As divine intervention would have it, Wright asked him to stay after class one day and the two spoke about the boys future and his athleticism. They made a deal. Coach Wright agreed to mentor and coach the young man with only two conditions, 1.) he had to stay out of trouble and 2.) he had to pass his classes. The boy agreed but showed reluctance at the idea of being a high jumper, to which Wright responded, "That's where I come in, I'll handle my part if you'll handle yours." That moment in the gym, some tough love and one man, caring enough to make a difference, produced a changed young man that never failed another class in his High School career or had another discipline problem. Because this student now knew that someone believed in him he went on to set a high jump, school record of 6'11” that still stands today! When one-man cares, another man rises. It is this integrity, devotion and mentorship that has contributed to the success of Mr. Wright. He is a family man, having been married for 31 years to his wife Lesli, raising twin daughters Brooke and Brittany (22) here in Prosper. He honors his Father as being his role model. He too, was a man with a 46-year career in education who at one point retired, only to return to his passion for several more years. His Mother taught him the importance of having a servant’s heart which is what he proudly claims his main role as an administrator has been and will continue to be. He is there to serve the students and staff to ensure that everyone is successful. You need only speak to a student who has been impacted by Mr. Wright personally to understand the impact he has and the legacy he leaves. Tish Cama, who graduated from Prosper High School in 2017 says," he made each student feel as if they were special which is quite the feat considering there were so many of us. He was influential in that he partnered with students to ensure their success in whatever they chose to pursue. He had a TRIPLE WOW factor that made high school some of the best memories of my life and whether it was crowd surfing, a simple encouragement or fireworks at a glow in the dark pep rally, he made a difference in my life and so many others." The parents, faculty and students whose life he has impacted are abundant and there will be significantly more by the time he retires in what he hopes will be another 20 years. It will be exciting to see the fresh ideas he comes up with, and the traditions implemented that he will continue. Dr. Larry Taylor and PCA are grateful and blessed to have heard the call that put the motion in place for this divine appointment. God is well-aware of the plans he has for Mr. Wright, a plan to Prosper and not to harm, plans to give a hope and a future, for such a time as this.

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PROSPER Magazine | May 2018