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Every picture tells a story, and every SFA student has a story to tell. Thanks to the generosity of our stakeholders, SFA has enjoyed a remarkable 90 years. On the historic occasion of SFA’s 90th anniversary, please consider making a donation that will help the university continue to offer students the opportunity to create their success stories at SFA. Visit to make your gift, or fill out and return the 90th-anniversary donation card located in this issue of Sawdust.


Photo by Aaron Harlan


REAT EXPECTATION ACCOMPANIES the start of each new academic year at SFA. This year, we look forward to the fall semester with added excitement as our alma mater prepares to celebrate a very significant milestone – 90 years of providing exemplary education to our students. Stephen F. Austin State Teachers College opened its doors for the first time on Sept. 18, 1923. Our institution has undergone extraordinary growth and change since then, but providing the highest-quality education to our students has remained at the forefront of our mission. I encourage you to visit campus this school year, as we honor our history, celebrate current successes and look forward to a bright future for SFA. In one of the first planned events, we will pay homage to a tradition that dates all the way back to SFA’s opening day. At the end of that first day of classes 90 years ago, the faculty, staff and students enjoyed cake in celebration of the 50th birthday of SFA’s first president, Dr. Alton W. Birdwell. Likewise, members of the SFA and Nacogdoches communities will gather Sept. 18 and kick off our anniversary year in true Lumberjack style – with birthday cake and purple ice cream. Even as we celebrate our remarkable history and traditions, we are embarking on new initiatives that will help ensure the institution’s continued success. Among these is an important effort in which the university will undergo a comprehensive branding process that will result in a stronger, more unified story for the university. A strong, compelling brand will help build SFA’s reputation and gain the widespread attention and awareness it deserves as we continue to attract the right students and faculty to join our community. I am committed to the success of this process, and I encourage my fellow alumni to support it, as well. I also would like to share with you that for the next four years, I will be representing SFA and the Southland Conference as a member of the NCAA Division 1 Board of Directors. The board is made up of 18 presidents and chancellors from institutions across the United States, and I look forward to helping increase SFA’s visibility on a national level through my service on the board. Lastly, I would be remiss if I did not mention another new affiliation I am now enjoying. Recently, I became a member in good standing of the Proud Grandparents Club. Along with his parents, Todd and Paige Pattillo Brown, my wife Janice and I were overjoyed to welcome Jackson Baker Brown into our SFA family in June. Throughout the coming year, as we look back upon SFA’s nine decades of rich history and forward to the strong future of this remarkable institution, rest assured that future Lumberjacks like Jackson will remain an important consideration in all that we do. Just as we owe SFA’s founders a debt of gratitude for their forethought, innovation and dedication to excellence, it is up to all of us to secure SFA’s bright future for the next generation.

I encourage you to visit campus during the upcoming school year, as we honor our unique history, celebrate current successes and look forward to a bright future for SFA.

Axe ’em, Jacks!

Baker Pattillo ’65 & ’66 President, Stephen F. Austin State University

BOARD OF REGENTS Steve D. McCarty, Alto chair Dr. Scott H. Coleman, Houston vice chair Brigettee C. Henderson, Lufkin secretary David R. Alders, Nacogdoches John R. “Bob” Garrett, Tyler Barry E. Nelson, Dallas Kenton E. Schaefer, Brownsville Ralph C. Todd, Carthage Connie M. Ware, Marshall Matthew L. Logan, Mansfield student regent UNIVERSITY ADMINISTRATION Dr. Baker Pattillo president Dr. Richard Berry provost/vice president for academic affairs Dr. Steve Westbrook vice president for university affairs Danny Gallant vice president for finance and administration Jill Still vice president for university advancement UNIVERSITY MARKETING COMMUNICATIONS Shirley Luna executive director Amy Roquemore assistant director Hardy Meredith university photographer

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Fall 2013 • Volume 40, No. 3 EXECUTIVE EDITOR Jeff Davis ’02 Executive Director of Alumni Affairs EDITOR Amy Roquemore ’93 & ’12 Assistant Director, University Marketing Communications ART DIRECTOR Rhonda Crim STEPHEN F. AUSTIN STATE UNIVERSITY is a comprehensive institution dedicated to excellence in teaching, research, scholarship, creative work and service. Through the personal attention of our faculty and staff, we engage our students in a learner-centered environment and offer opportunities to prepare for the challenges of living in the global community. The SFA ALUMNI ASSOCIATION is a nonprofit organization dedicated to serving the alumni, friends and current students of Stephen F. Austin State University through programs, scholarships and activities that create an attitude of continued loyalty and support. SAWDUST is published four times a year by the Stephen F. Austin State University Alumni Association and Stephen F. Austin State University. Full subscriptions are included in Alumni Association memberships. SFA alumni and friends receive complimentary issues twice a year. CONTACT Sawdust P.O. Box 6096, SFA Station Nacogdoches, TX 75962 (936) 468-3407 • (800) 765-1534 • SAWDUST ONLINE Read past issues, watch video extras, submit Class Notes and preview upcoming features:


READY, AIM, FIRE! The Lumberjack Battalion’s Cannon Crew fires Ol’ Cotton in the end zone of Homer Bryce Stadium.

Cover Artist

Ronnie Price ’12 earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in painting. He has loved creating images since childhood and is working toward a career in the arts. ON THE COVER: The SFA statue takes in a Lumberjack football game. LEFT: The SFA statue participates in the Big Dip.



FEATURES 10 The Boldest Sound


17 Rosie’s Hope



32 Lifetime Achievement 14






4 SFA Turns 90

34 Homecoming

5 Faculty Advising

38 Scholarships

7 Music Recital Hall

39 Alumni Networks

8 Freshman Leadership

40 Class Notes

9 Vista Viewpoint

43 In Memoriam

15 Athletics

48 From the Archives

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View “Twenty-Three Reasons” pamphlet and other historic photos and documents at library.sfasu. edu/etrc.

IN THE OPENING years of the 20th century, local citizens set about convincing the Texas Legislature to open a state college in Nacogdoches. Toward that end, the group created an illustrated pamphlet titled “Twenty-Three Reasons Why Stephen F. Austin State Normal College Ought to be Located in Nacogdoches.” Among these revelations were that the city offered a delightfully mild climate, cheap electricity and a good sewage system, rare natural beauty, a progressive business spirit, ample entertainment facilities, a high moral tone, and three two-story hotels. The 23rd reason given was that Nacogdoches “links old Texas with the new.” The townspeople prided themselves on the high value they placed on education, and their hard work and ingenuity paid off. In 1917, Nacogdoches was selected as the site of the newly chartered school, but progress was delayed by world War I. On Sept. 18, 1923, SFA welcomed its first students to class, and the rest, as they say, is history. A YEAR OF CELEBRATION The university’s 90th anniversary will be celebrated throughout the coming academic year, and planning is under way for a variety of special events and activities, according to Jill Still, vice president for university advancement and chair of the 90th anniversary planning committee. “Excitement for the anniversary has been building for months, and there will be many opportunities for students, alumni, faculty and staff, and friends of SFA to join in the celebrations surrounding this important milestone,” she said. “Our 90th anniversary year is an appropriate time to honor SFA’s proud traditions and extraordinary record of achievement while also looking ahead to new and exciting initiatives that will help ensure the continued success of our institution for many years to come.” COIN TOSS The first-ever SFA coin toss will be held in September at the Stephen F. Austin statue in Sesquicentennial Plaza. The coin toss will last 19 hours and 23 minutes, in deference to the university’s first year of operation, and will run from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 17, and from 8 a.m. to 3:23 p.m. on Sept. 18. SFA faculty and staff members, students, alumni, and friends will have the opportunity to donate coins to the SFA area or areas of their choice, including academics,


athletics and scholarships. University representatives will be on hand to assist participants who wish to donate to a specific academic area or scholarship fund. HISTORY PRESERVATION The East Texas Research Center is encouraging alumni and others to donate SFA documents and memorabilia to help grow the University Archives in honor of the 90th anniversary. Greg Bailey, records manager and university archives librarian, says the ETRC welcomes donated SFA artifacts of all kinds, including photographs, journals, scrapbooks, school records, certificates and awards, correspondence – even old uniforms, letter jackets and the like. “These and other unique items enrich our archives and play an important role in the documentation of the history of SFA,” he said. “They also serve as primary resources for student and faculty researchers, as well as the East Texas community as a whole.”



> How much do you know about the first day of school at Stephen F. Austin State Teachers College 90 years ago? Here are some quick facts provided by the university historian, Dr. Jere Jackson. WHO: The enrollment at the end of that first day was about 270, but the school continued to accept new students throughout the fall. By December, there were about 420 SFA students attending classes. Historian Lois Foster Fitzhugh (later Blount) was the first of 24 faculty members hired to lead fall classes. Tuition was $12 per semester. WHEN: Sept. 18, 1923, also happened to be the 50th birthday of SFA’s first president, Dr. A.W. Birdwell. At the end of the day, the faculty and staff celebrated by surprising Birdwell with a cake. THEN & NOW Historic photo from SFA archives; rephotographed by Christopher Talbot, SFA School of Art Director

The ETRC also is collecting former students’ favorite memories of SFA through the ongoing Alumni Memory Project. The goal of this project is to collect, preserve and make available to the SFA community the history of student life at the university. Memories are added to the University Archives digital collection as they are received. Donations of SFA memorabilia may be made in person at the ETRC, located on the second floor of Steen Library. For more information about contributing to the University Archives or the Alumni Memory Project, call (936) 468-4100 or visit COMMUNITY SERVICE In honor of the 90th anniversary, SFA students have pledged to complete 90,000 hours of community service during the 2013-14 academic year. “The celebration of the 90th anniversary is an excellent time to highlight the impact our students make on our community, state, nation and world every year,” said Dr. Adam Peck, dean of student affairs. “I am excited about what can be accomplished when our students meet their goal of 90,000 hours of community service this year.” –AMY ROQUEMORE

WHERE: Classes opened in the buildings of the Nacogdoches High School campus on Washington Square, including the Old University Building. Nacogdoches citizens built a temporary building known as “The Shack” to allow the college some personal space. It housed Birdwell’s office, the administration, library, registrar’s office and even the sports equipment. Construction of the main college campus on North Street, on a portion of Thomas J. Rusk’s homestead, wasn’t completed until May of 1924 when the college moved into the Austin Building. WHY: In 1907, as Nacogdoches began its search for a new university, local poet and future SFA faculty member Karle Wilson Baker penned: “There is one form of immortality which nobody disputes; the immortality of influence and good works. And there is one form of ambition to which no man is dead; an ambition for his children.”

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HONORING SERVICE Pictured, from left, are Lt. Col. David Miller, chair of the Department of Military Science; 2nd Lt. Charles Maraggia of Carthage, scholarship recipient; Peggy Wright; 2nd Lt. Christopher King of The Woodlands, scholarship recipient; and Dr. Baker Pattillo, SFA president.

SCHOLARSHIP HONORS WORLD WAR II HERO FRIENDS OF RESPECTED civic leader and accomplished businessman Thomas W. Wright have honored his memory by establishing a scholarship to benefit military science students at SFA. “The scholarship honors the late Tom Wright, who was a gentleman of high moral character with a distinguished military career,” said Dr. Baker Pattillo, SFA president. “It is a very fitting tribute to Mr. Wright who, along with his wife, Peggy, has made East Texas, Nacogdoches and Stephen F. Austin State University a better place for all.” Recipients of the scholarship must be in good academic standing and members of the Lumberjack Battalion. Preference is given to students who are planning to pursue a military career and who exhibit high moral character and strong leadership skills. The

scholarships will be awarded to two students annually. The first two recipients of the scholarship, 2nd Lt. Charles Maraggia of Carthage and 2nd Lt. Christopher King of The Woodlands, were recognized during the May 10 commissioning ceremony for graduating members of SFA’s Army Reserve Officers’ Training Corps program. Wright’s widow, Peggy Wright, presented the certificates to the scholarship recipients at the ceremony, during which a total of 12 U.S. Army officers were commissioned. Maraggia was commissioned as a signal corps officer and worked at SFA as a recruiter last summer before heading to Fort Gordon, Ga., in August. King was commissioned as an armor officer and will be leaving for training at Fort Benning, Ga., in September.

Give to SFA

Contributions to these scholarships may be sent to: SFASU Foundation, P.O. Box 6092, SFA Station Nacogdoches, TX 75962. Please specify which fund you would like to support.


THE FAMILY AND friends of Sarah Elizabeth Hopkins have endowed an SFA scholarship in memory of the SFA senior who passed away last spring. The 21-year-old photography major from Crandall, Texas, died as a result of an automobile accident on March 13. The university awarded her a degree posthumously during May commencement exercises. It had been Hopkins’ wish to pursue a career as a professional photographer after graduation. Her family describes her as someone extremely dedicated to her studies and future career while never taking herself too seriously. “She was a collector of friends, humor and beautiful images, and, hence, collected beautiful and humorous images of her friends,” according to her family. “She spread encouragement, charm and sunshine everywhere she went in her budding life that was far too short.” The Sarah Hopkins Photography Fund will provide financial assistance to students studying photography in the SFA School of Art for the purchase of photography equipment and supplies. The scholarship also may provide students with travel funds for experiential learning opportunities or to support the mission and objectives of the photography program. “It was a privilege to work with the family and friends of Sarah Hopkins toward the creation of the Sarah Hopkins Photography Fund,” said Trey Turner, major gift officer with the SFA Office of Development. “Immediately following Sarah’s passing, her mother was committed to transforming this tragedy into something positive and impactful. This endowment is a fitting tribute to Sarah and will help keep her memory and spirit alive for generations to come at SFA.”


“Thanks to the generosity of our donors, we now have a small performance facility of a quality that matches the quality of our faculty, our programs and our students.”

The Gift of Music

Performers, patrons benefiting from renovated recital hall THE MUSIC RECITAL Hall in the Tom and Peggy Wright Music Building has a new look, thanks to the generosity of SFA alumni and friends. The Music Recital Hall serves as a performance venue for faculty members, visiting performers, master classes and SFA music students. Although there had been upgrades in the past to the Wright Music Building, which was constructed in the late 1960s, the Music Recital Hall had never been renovated and was in need of a facelift. Both performers and patrons appreciate the new, updated look, according to Dr. Richard Berry, SFA provost, vice president for academic affairs and professor of voice pedagogy in the School of Music. “Having used the Music Recital Hall as an undergraduate student, a graduate student and a faculty member, from the very early years of its existence to the present day, I can say without hesitation that this renovation is an incredibly important achievement and development for the School of Music,” Berry said. “Thanks to the generosity of our donors, we now have a small performance facility of a quality that

matches the quality of our faculty, our programs and our students.” Between January and March of 2013, all woodwork, including the stage floor, was replaced and/ or updated, house lighting was replaced, sound was upgraded and the back entrance was remodeled. The approximately $160,000 project, awarded to Nacogdoches contractor J.E. Kingham Construction, was funded through private donations, The Higher Education Fund and designated funds. Peggy Wright and her late husband, Tom, have been dedicated supporters of the university’s arts programs and the music program, in particular, for decades. She said she was eager to support the renovation project after learning of the needed upgrades. “The recital hall is an important SFA venue, but it was in need of updating in order to better meet the needs of our music students and patrons,” Wright said, adding that the couple was honored when the university named the School of Music building for them in 1999. “I am very impressed with the remodeling, and I look forward to enjoying many future musical performances in the updated recital hall.”

The renovation project included new walnut and maple paneling for all wall surfaces; reconfiguration of entrance vestibules at the rear of the hall; new side doors, paneling and floor at the performance platform; new carpet for the side aisles and crossover at the front of the hall; new lighting for the hall, platform and aisles; new sound system, and minor refurbishing of seating installed in 2006. “The newly renovated recital hall would not have been possible without the generous support of alumni and friends of the university who have a genuine passion for music,” said Jill Still, SFA’s vice president for university advancement. “It is rewarding to see an SFA capital project driven by private funding from beginning to end, especially when it results in such a source of pride for the university.” –ROBBIE GOODRICH

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FRESHMAN LEADERSHIP ACADEMY MANY PEOPLE BELIEVE great leaders are born, not made. But professionals in SFA’s Division of Student Affairs know differently. Through a program called Freshman Leadership Academy, some first-year students are learning about leadership and putting those lessons into practice in ways that benefit both themselves and the community. The program began last year with two specialized sections of SFA 101, the freshman seminar course designed to help new students thrive at college. These sections focus on time-management skills, individual leadership styles, group dynamics, appreciation for diversity and service to others. Students in each class also plan and implement a project addressing a need students have identified in their community. Purple Santa, a campus wide program that provides holiday toys for needy children, was created by the first FLA group and continues to help area kids who don’t receive toys at Christmas. Dr. Adam Peck, dean of student affairs, taught that class and said many students who Photos courtesy of SFA Student Affairs


implemented the toy drive continue to help with the project each holiday season. Last year’s FLA sections took on a more complex project after researching the growing problem of childhood obesity. To help combat the problem locally, students implemented the first “Zombie Run” to increase awareness of the health crisis and raise funds to help build a children’s Frisbee golf course at Banita Creek Park near downtown. More than 100 runners and about 70 volunteer “zombies” participated in the 5K event. A local business, NIBCO, helped purchase components of the Frisbee course. The business also helped students throw a course “grand opening” event, complete with Frisbees, free T-shirts and giveaways. The SFA leaders-in-training instructed youngsters at Nacogdoches elementary schools in the fundamentals of Frisbee golf. Plans call for the original freshman leadership curriculum to be joined by two additional sections, Leaders for a Better World, which will focus on improving intercul-

tural communication. Jamie Bouldin, assistant director for student engagement programs – leadership and service, will teach one of the sections. “I’ve worked with older students in a variety of leadership programs at SFA, but I’m really excited about the chance to teach FLA this year,” she said. “These students are preparing to become the future leaders of our campus, and the opportunity to play a role in their development is exciting.” Peck continues to oversee the program and will serve on the faculty of all four sections as a resource and project leader. “Our Freshman Leadership Academy has the primary responsibility of training SFA students to become leaders, both in their college community and in their lives beyond college,” he said. “The success and popularity of the academy has proven that people do not have to be born with the innate qualities of a leader. Effective leaders can be cultivated through experiences that help them develop the skills necessary to lead others.” –PAT SPENCE



By Peggy Wright

Peggy Wright, seated second from left (upper row), is pictured with other members of the Amities Social Club at SFA, circa 1944.

S I REFLECT on the first 90 years of SFA’s remarkable history, I feel a sense of pride and wonder at what has been accomplished here at our beloved university in the pines. My own life story runs alongside that of SFA, with the two intersecting in extraordinary ways at times and diverging at others, although never for long. I consider the special relationships I share with alumni and friends of this outstanding institution to be among my life’s greatest blessings. Like the tall pines that beautify our campus, my SFA roots run very deep. My father earned a degree from SFA with the second graduating class. His brother was in the first class. I was too young to remember those accomplishments, but I do recall running across the campus to meet my mother, who also attended SFA, when she was coming away from a class. I enrolled in the SFA Demonstration School in the fifth grade and continued my schooling there until graduation in 1940. The commencement exercise was held in the small SFA auditorium, which was located in the space in the Austin Building now occupied by the president’s office. The obvious next step for me was to enter college at SFA, where I felt quite at home, having attended classes on the campus for seven years. I went on to earn a Bachelor of Science in music and embarked on a lifetime of appreciation, enjoyment and support of the university’s exceptional music programs. I interrupted my college education to marry Tom Wright, also an SFA alumnus and a dashing second lieutenant preparing for deployment to the European theater to fight the German army. When he went overseas, I resumed my college career, graduating in 1944. Tom was overseas for 29 months. He was in the heat of battle for two years, fighting in Oran, North Africa; Sicily; Italy; the Anzio Beachhead; to the invasion of southern France; and, finally, marching through France to Germany and victory on May 8, 1945. The war years at SFA were some of the most challenging in the school’s history. Most of the men were gone, and the enrollment dropped to fewer than 300. The college’s president, Dr. Paul Boynton, is credited with keeping SFA afloat during those dreadful years, largely through the acquisition of the Women’s Army Corps to train on the campus.

Dr. Boynton’s stewardship is something for which so many alumni from that era will be eternally grateful. I was recently asked to name my proudest SFA moment, and I found the request next to impossible to fulfill – there are so many. At the top of the list would have to be when the Board of Regents named the music building after my late husband, Tom, and me in 1999. The honor was as unexpected as it was humbling and further cemented strong bonds with our cherished alma mater. As a young girl attending the SFA Demonstration School, I could never have imagined receiving such an honor. One of my husband’s and my greatest joys has come with being a part of SFA’s mission to provide the highest quality academic programs to our students. My fondest hope for SFA’s next 90 years is for it to continuously raise the bar of excellence in all areas and then meet and exceed that goal time and time again. As an SFA alumna, I am privileged to share a bond with this very fine university and with other alumni who take pride in their share of SFA’s history. All of our stories have intertwined to make SFA great for the better part of a century. I look forward to the coming anniversary celebrations with excitement and to the future with confidence that the institution’s stellar faculty, administration, staff, students and alumni will not be content to rest on their laurels or to rely on past achievements to bolster our school’s future reputation. Without a doubt, they are already hard at work ensuring that the next chapter in SFA’s history will shine brighter than any that has come before. PEGGY WRIGHT former Board of Regents chair, SFA honorary doctorate of humane letters recipient, 1985 Distinguished Alumna

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When Stephen F. Austin State Teachers College opened its doors in 1923, the emphasis was in establishing an instructional program that would produce qualified teachers. In addition to the academic and elective courses offered at the new college, athletics also was immediately incorporated into campus life with students choosing the Lumberjack as the Stephen F. Austin mascot. But something was missing in those early years. It was music. SFA needed a band.

Oldest Town from the

LMB tradition turns school spirit into music

By Robbie Goodrich

IN THE FALL of 1925, The Pine Log published an article that told of the college purchasing new brass and percussion instruments for students who qualified for musical organizations, meaning a band and an orchestra. Some rehearsals had begun, and other students were encouraged to try out. The college band made its debut later that fall, and a search began to find a director. J.T. Cox became the first director of the Lumberjack Band in the summer of 1926. With Cox accompanying the 14 members of the group, the band played at watermelon parties and for chapel exercises. When the fall semester began, the now 19-member band played at football games and area public school events.


The first Lumberjack Band uniform came together in February 1928 and consisted of a white sweater with a purple lyre on the front worn with white trousers and purple caps. That same semester, Cox allowed girls to join the group, and the members were no longer referred to as “the band boys.” The following summer, Cox began a tradition of performing weekly outdoor concerts on campus where ice cream and cold drinks were served. In the decade that followed, the band grew in numbers and continued touring East Texas cities. But the effects of World War II took a toll on the college, with enrollment declining along with band membership. During this time, Cox used what resources he had to form a small jazz band. By

fall 1946, the band had grown to 60 members and began performing more difficult routines on the football field. In 1952, Robert G. Smith, who had served as Cox’s assistant, became the second Lumberjack Band director. Others who would follow included Jimmie M. Hudgins, Kenneth Green, Mel Montgomery, John L. Whitwell and Fred Allen, who took over as director in 1994 and continues to lead the program today. Each director brought his own contributions to the program. During Hudgins’ tenure, band camps, the Twirl-O-Jacks and the Kappa Kappa Psi and Tau Beta Sigma service organizations were added. Montgomery also changed the marching style of the band, eventually switching to a corps


“The experience of being in the Lumberjack Band has meant a lot to people throughout the years, and it is my responsibility to see that our current students get that same Lumberjack Band experience.” –Fred Allen, director of SFA bands

style, and started the “Concert in the Park,” a tradition that continues today. As SFA’s director of bands for the past 19 years, Allen considers himself “the caretaker of something important to the university and its alumni.” “The experience of being in the Lumberjack Band has meant a lot to people throughout the years, and it is my responsibility to see that our current students get that same Lumberjack Band experience,” Allen said. “A former colleague once said, ‘the band is the sound track to the game,’” he said. “Our presence at athletic events allows us to turn spirit into music. Dr. David Campo does an incredible job of this during football season in his role as director of the Lumberjack Marching Band, and Dr. Tamey Anglley (assistant director) does this as well with the basketball band. In addition, our concert bands, jazz bands and smaller student groups bring music to Nacogdoches and the surrounding area on a number of occasions throughout the year.”

The SFA School of Music has doubled its student enrollment since Allen took over the band program in 1994, and today, under the leadership of Campo and Anglley, the LMB consistently marches at least 250 students. Over the years, students have told the band directors how much fun it is to be a part of something that “has such a place of honor” on the campus, Allen said, noting that games feel “interactive,” and band students feel like they can help fire up the team when needed. “As ambassadors, the band students had a unique experience leading the 2013 London New Year’s Day Parade,” Allen said. “That was a once-in-alifetime experience, but our students give the same effort here in Nacogdoches – just one of many ways being in the Lumberjack Marching Band is a special thing.” The historical perspective for this article is based on a thesis written by Christopher M. Atkins in May 1998 for a Master of Arts in music education.

IN ADDITION TO the Lumberjack Marching Band, students perform in the Roarin' Buzzsaws Basketball Band, four concert bands and two jazz ensembles. The Wind Ensemble, the premier concert band in the department, has been invited to make its 10th appearance for the Texas Music Educators Association in February 2014. The band performed at TMEA conventions in 1973, 1976, 1980 and 1986 under the direction of Melvin Montgomery, the Director of Bands Emeritus, and under the baton of John Whitwell in 1990. The SFA band has also performed at conventions of the College Band Director Association, under Montgomery in 1984 and for the

50th anniversary of CBDNA in 1991 under Whitwell. Under the direction of Fred J. Allen, they have performed twice for CBDNA in 2002 and 2006. For years, the Lumberjack Band split into two concert bands after the marching season ended. As both the School of Music and the band program exploded in size from 1994 to the present, a third concert band was added in the early 1990s and a fourth one in 2006. The popular Swingin' Axes Jazz Ensemble also added a second group to its lineup, the Swingin' Aces.

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NEW FOOTBALL TURF Homer Bryce Stadium will have a new look for the start of the 2013 season with the addition of a new playing surface. During the summer, SFA installed the new Hellas’ Matrix Turf to replace the previous surface, which had been used for the past nine seasons. The Matrix turf was selected from the Texas-based Hellas Sports Construction, which has installed more than 80 fields in the state, including turf for the Dallas Cowboys, Baylor, University of Texas at El Paso, Texas Tech and Lamar, as well as the surface in the Alamo Dome. Construction began on June 6 and was completed in mid-July. The new surface includes more color than the previous turf and features purple end zones with white lettering. The north end zone reads “Stephen F. Austin,” and the south end zone says “Lumberjacks” with the SFA logo located at the 50-yard line. The re-surfacing also extends beyond the south end zone, giving the football team more practice area. In addition to the new surface, Hellas also has installed new goalposts. SFA switched from a natural to an artificial surface in 1990. The Matrix Turf is the fourth artificial surface in Homer Bryce Stadium history.


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What you’ll find in . . . university archivist Greg Bailey’s office: 1. Oversized cutouts of the university seal that were traditionally adhered to podiums used at graduation and recently donated to the archives by the registrar’s office. 2. Game balls adorning Bailey’s desk, including signed Lumberjack basketballs and a signed SFA football from the 1990s and a Chicago Cubs batting practice ball hit by Bailey’s all-time favorite player, Andre Dawson. 3. A condensed pictorial history of the world, a gift from Bailey’s aunt, stretching across one entire wall of the office. 4. An “SFA Lumberjacks” scrapbook from the 1948-49 school year that an alumna recently happened upon while antique shopping. Concerned for its welfare, the woman purchased the scrapbook and donated it to the East Texas Research Center where it will become part of the permanent university collection. 5. A felt Lumberjack patch that could have been worn on a sweater or letter jacket that recently was donated to the ETRC by an SFA alumnus.

6. Spiral-bound General Bulletins documenting SFA course offerings throughout the decades. 7. A short stack of reel-to-reel SFA football films. There are more than 900 reels of football film in the university archives, along with about 120 reels of musical performances by SFA bands and choirs. 8. A large, purple binder containing the university’s official records retention schedule that is overseen by Bailey. 9. A small collection of leaflets called “Pictorial Presentations of SFA,” which were produced annually by the university for many years. 10. Files of notes from an ongoing oral history project through which Bailey is documenting the experiences of students who attended the SFA Demonstration School that opened concurrently with SFA in 1923. He has interviewed about 50 Demonstration School students so far. 11. Stacks of cardboard boxes containing records such as past students’ class

schedules passed on from the registrar’s office for archiving. 12. SFA sports memorabilia, including a Lumberjack football helmet and Ladyjack softball and basketball jerseys. 13. The oldest and newest Stone Fort yearbooks, dated 1924 and 2013, respectively. Hailing from the Midwest, Greg Bailey has served for two and a half years as the records manager and university archives librarian for SFA’s East Texas Research Center. He earned a bachelor’s degree in history from Eastern Illinois University and a master’s degree in library sciences from Indiana University Bloomington. An avid sports fan, Bailey said his SFA position is a perfect fit for his other special interests, including history, research and the management and preservation of historic documents and memorabilia.

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Ol’ Cotton

SFA’s historic cannon part of football tradition IF YOU’VE BEEN within earshot of Homer Bryce Stadium on a Saturday afternoon in the fall, you’ve probably heard it – the kaboom of cannon fire punctuating the spirited strains of the SFA Fight Song. The source of the blasts is Ol’ Cotton, a World War II-era 75-mm mountain howitzer that is positioned in the south end zone for each home game and fired every time SFA scores. With each blank charge that explodes, a burst of orange flame is visible an instant before a discharge of light grey smoke unfurls into the end zone and dissipates over the cheering crowd. Garbed in red T-shirts and camouflage pants, the Lumberjack Battalion’s Cannon Crew is responsible for loading and firing Ol’ Cotton with every SFA touchdown, extra point and field goal. But a lot of sweat and elbow grease is needed to get Ol’ Cotton ready for action each summer, and those duties fall to Ret. Lt. Col. John D. “Mad Dog” Mosele ’74. The retired U.S. Army officer and Austin Raider emeritus has a soft spot for the historic piece of artillery, which was acquired by the ROTC program during his time at SFA.


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“I started working on it several years ago because, after many years of being stored outdoors, the elements had taken a toll, and it was getting to the point that it wouldn’t be operational much longer unless it was restored,” said Mosele, who is a member of the Military Vehicle Preservation Association. With the help of some retired military friends, a sledgehammer, a logging chain and “about $200 worth of degreaser,” Mosele was able to separate the cannon’s barrel from the breach block where it had been immobilized by a combination of rust and pine sap. “Up until that point, I really thought we might not be able to salvage it, but we were able to get it apart to clean and repair and paint it that summer,” he said. Since then, Mosele has taken Ol’ Cotton back home to his family farm near Garrison for cleaning and repair before the start of each football season. “It has taken a few years, but she is now in really good shape for her age and should be operational for many years to come.” Ol’ Cotton is named for Ret. Lt. Gen. Orren R. “Cotton” Whiddon of Lufkin ’55, the most senior military officer ever to have graduated from SFA and a longtime supporter of the university’s military science program. At the time of his retirement in 1989, Whiddon was commanding general of the Second U.S. Army. His numerous awards and decorations include the Bronze Star, Meritorious Service, Defense Superior Service and Army Commendation medals. Whiddon was inducted into the SFA Alumni Hall of Fame in 1988. “Very few other universities in the country are fortunate enough to have a working howitzer on their campus,” said Lt. Col. David Miller, chair of the Department of Military Science. “The camaraderie and esprit de corps that surrounds the Ol’ Cotton tradition – not just for our cadets but for all SFA students, as well as alumni – is a unique part of our history that we are privileged to enjoy.” –AMY ROQUEMORE


“It has taken a few years, but she is now in really good shape for her age and should be operational for many years to come.”



SFA ENTERS 2013 looking to get back to the top of the Southland Conference. The ’Jacks have the benefit of returning a senior quarterback, Brady Attaway (3,671 yds/29 TDs). One of the SLC’s all-time leading passers, Attaway returns three of his top five targets, including D.J. Ward (62-762 yds) and Mike Brooks (51-492 yds), who finished second in the nation in passing offense last year. The ’Jacks also return one of the nation’s most exciting running backs in Gus Johnson, the conference’s second-leading rusher in 2012. The addition of redshirt Fred Ford adds another weapon to the backfield. Defensively, there is plenty of returning talent that should more than make up for the loss of two All-Americans. Senior Malcolm Mattox returns to his normal defensive end spot and, along with Darren Robinson, will give SFA two All-SLC athletes at the bookends. Transfers Shayvion Hatten and Donald Bryant should provide SFA two powerful run stoppers in the middle. Junior Collin Garrett is the lone returning starter in a young linebacking corps. SFA’s secondary lost two starters, but returns Caleb Nelson and Trey Vallier. The ’Jacks open the season with two games on the road at Weber State and Texas Tech before returning home to face McMurry Sept. 14. SFA will play Nicholls State in the Oct. 19 Homecoming game, and the Battle of the Piney Woods against Sam Houston is set for Nov. 2 at Reliant Stadium in Houston.


FOR A FOURTH consecutive season, SFA athletics claimed at least one of the three potential Southland Conference all-sports trophies by securing the top spot in the men’s all-sports standings. The ’Jacks edged out Sam Houston State by three points to win their third-ever men’s all-sports trophy and were just six points shy of claiming their second consecutive Commissioner’s Cup and the third in the last four years. The overall SFA athletics program was impressive in 2012-13, as the men’s and women’s teams combined to win seven conference championships including titles in basketball and track and field.


CURRENTLY WITH THE Idaho Falls Chukars in the rookie-level Pioneer League, former SFA shortstop Hunter Dozier is hitting .284 with 17 doubles, 4 home runs, 27 RBI and 25 runs scored through his first 36 games. After making his minor league debut with two singles and a run scored on June 19, Dozier has been a steady presence in the middle of the lineup for the Chukars, while seeing time at third base, shortstop and as the designated hitter. On Aug. 12, Dozier was promoted to the Class A Lexington Legends of the South Atlantic League.


ROBERTO ASPILLAGA WAS hired as the fourth head coach of the SFA Ladyjack tennis program in June. The former associate head coach at Colorado comes to SFA after stints at Purdue and Kentucky. “We are very happy to have Roberto as our new head tennis coach,” said SFA Director of Athletics Robert Hill. “He brings a wealth of experience and has coached and recruited on the highest Division I levels. Most importantly, he wants to be at SFA and is committed to building our women’s tennis program to be the best in the Southland.” In only one season with the Buffs, he helped guide Colorado to a season-best No. 75 ITA National Ranking, a jump of 93 spots from 2012. While at Colorado, Aspillaga helped recruit Dhanielly Quevedo, the ITA Regional Rookie of the Year, and Nuria Ormeno, the fourth-ranked player in Spain. Aspillaga also helped Purdue bring in its highest nationally ranked recruiting class (No. 8) in history. For his efforts, Aspillaga was named 2012 Wilson/ITA Regional Assistant Coach of the Year, capping off a season in which the Boilermakers won their first Big 10 championship in program history.

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Up and Running WHOEVER SAID THAT in sports, getting to the top is easier than staying on top never met SFA head track and field coach Phil Olson ’85. The veteran coach has had the SFA men’s and women’s cross country and track and field teams in the thick of the Southland Conference chase almost since the day he stepped on campus 14 years ago. During Olson’s tenure, the SFA men and women have rattled off 26 Southland Conference team titles across the three disciplines. The 2013 season watched the Ladyjacks maintain their stranglehold on the conference by winning their conference-record 10th consecutive title (five indoor, five outdoor). In addition to their 10 straight track and field titles, the Ladyjacks won the conference’s track and field Triple Crown – cross country and indoor and outdoor track and field – last season for the second time in the past three years. “When the administration decided to move both programs under one office, it


Accolades rack up for SFA cross country and track and field teams

allowed us to do what we needed to be successful,” said Olson. “Athletic Director Robert Hill has continued to allow us to be successful by providing us with the things that we need to maintain our success. I’ve also been allowed to hire good coaches who go out and find high-character individuals who are also good athletes, strong in the classroom and willing to work hard. “Finally, we have been very blessed here at SFA. We are all very thankful for the blessings that God has given us. We’ve faced a lot of ups and downs, but we have been tremendously blessed,” added Olson. Olson’s success does not rest with just the women’s athletics program. The Lumberjacks also swept the 2013 track and field titles this past season. In addition to their accomplishments on a conference level, the ’Jacks also received quite a bit of national attention. SFA was ranked as high as No. 41 prior to the NCAA West Preliminary meet in May. The ’Jacks sent two individuals and a relay team to the NCAA

Outdoor Championships, walking away with three All-America honors. All told, SFA produced four All-American athletes, and an All-America relay squad between men’s and women’s indoor and outdoor track and field, and sent two runners to the NCAA Cross Country Championships. Olson said, for him, one of the best parts about the successful run SFA has enjoyed has been being able to coach at his alma mater. “It is huge for me to be able to add to SFA’s success as a department,” he said. “This university has always meant a lot to me – first as a student, and now as a coach. SFA provided me with the opportunity to be the best that I could be.” No other track and field coach in conference history has been named coach of the year more times than Olson. He enters his 15th season in the Piney Woods with 17 SLC Coach of the Year honors. – JAMES DIXON


ROSIE DIDN’T GET mad when she was three months pregnant and doctors diagnosed her husband, Ted, with leukemia. Six months later, when their son, Joseph, was born, Rosie brought him home from the hospital and began to care for him and his older sister, while at the same time helping her husband deal with the effects of chemotherapy. She changed her baby’s diapers and her husband’s IV bags and did not question her faith in God. When Ted died the day before their son’s first birthday, she did not lose heart. The next day, with relatives gathered near to assist with funeral arrangements, they served Joe’s birthday cake, opened his presents and were thankful for the gift of family. But there was anger three months later, when a doctor told Rosie that Joe had a tumor, that it was an aggressive form of cancer related to the leukemia that had taken her husband. There was fury when the doctor said she should prepare herself because, in all likelihood, her baby would die.   “I stood up and said to him, ‘How dare you say that? You are not God, and you can’t know that for sure. Don’t you dare take my hope.’”

Student athlete overcomes serious childhood illness and injury


FALL 2013 17


umberjack football player Joe Minden knows his mother faced two of the worst nightmares of every wife and mother. “It had to be tough,” the Coppell native said. “It’s amazing how strong and courageous my mom is – just to go through that and still be the loving and happy person she is. It’s pretty cool that she faced adversity and it’s like she just stomped all over it. She kept going and found the brighter things in life. She got through it, and I look up to her for that.” Rosie had help from her teaching colleagues. One wanted to introduce her brother to Rosie, but the brother, Michael Speanburg, had different ideas. “The whole group of teachers at the school was trying to fix me up with Rosie. I knew she had lost her husband, but I didn’t know the details,” he said. “I was young and traveling a lot, so I told my sister, ‘I like being single; I don’t want a girlfriend.’” Everything changed when Michael met Rosie in person. “One of the things that I really loved about Rosie was how strong she is. She is very determined and just has a very big heart; and I was thinking, ‘If she can go through all these hurdles in life, then she can put up with me.’” So the guy who wanted to be single became a husband and father of two. He helped Rosie deal with Joe’s cancer treatment, driving him to Houston for doctor’s appointments. “Michael was right there through the whole thing,” Rosie said. “Somebody else would have turned around and run, but he helped me get through it, along with my mom and dad. My brothers and sisters helped me with my daughter, Elaine. We all stuck together.” Michael has no regrets about ending his bachelor days sooner than planned. “As the relationship got stronger, some of my friends were looking at me like I’d been hit in the head with a 2-by-4,” Michael said. “At the end of the day, I’m the “He couldn’t luckiest one of all; I’m the one who’s blessed because they came into my get up or down, life.” Joe is equally grateful that and the doctors Michael was willing to be a dad. “He’s one of my best pretty much told friends. He is always there to support me, and he’s him he wasn’t going the person I get my competitive spirit to be able to play sports from. We are always playing games, always again. Try telling that to a competing with each other. He taught 13-year-old boy.” me to throw the football. He’s been a huge influence.”



Joe’s brush with cancer, conquered with surgery and chemotherapy, is not the only medical battle he has faced. During a junior high football game, he suffered a knee injury that could have been career-ending. “I was playing receiver in seventh grade and blocking the corner in front of me,” Joe recalled. “I knew the running back was coming behind me, but I didn’t know how close he was. The pile to tackle was going on behind me and my leg got rolled on. I couldn’t feel it, but I knew something was wrong with my knee. They got me to the bench, and I was sitting there trying to figure out how much longer it would be until I could get back in that game.” It would be more than a year before Joe got back in the game. His kneecap was broken, and the tendon that connects the kneecap to the tibia was torn. “The doctor told me that, unless I had surgery, I would not be able to play sports again, at least not the same way I did beforehand,” Joe explained. “He said that my knee might not ever be the same.” After surgery, Joe used an ice machine for two weeks, then for six weeks, a machine bent his leg continuously – 18 hours daily – gradually and painfully increasing the range of motion. “I would just sit there and watch my leg go back and forth, back and forth,” Joe said. “I would constantly tell myself, no matter how badly it hurt, that I wanted to get back to where I was. I didn’t want my story to be that an injury kept me from playing. I didn’t want to quit.” Joe was on crutches for two months and missed 34 days of school. “It was like taking care of a 150-pound infant,” Rosie said. “He couldn’t get up or down, and the doctors pretty much told him he wasn’t going to be able to play sports again. Try telling that to a 13-year-old boy.” Nine months after the accident, Joe was released to run again, but not for contact sports. When he finally was allowed to return to the field, Joe wore a brace to protect his knee. “I wasn’t as fast as I had been, and I wasn’t strong,” he admitted. “The biggest obstacle I had to face was keeping a positive mindset, looking on the bright side and knowing that eventually I was going to get back to where I wanted to be. It took a few years, but eventually I got to the point that I was confident in my ability and what I was able to do on my knee.” Joe led his Coppell High School football team to the state playoffs his senior year, receiving first-team all-district honors and setting the single-season record for passing yards and touchdown passes. The quarterback was named the 2010 ESPN Rise Most Improved Player. Right Joe and his family at their home in Coppell Opposite page Joe is pictured in the end zone of the Coppell High School football field where he performed as a standout quarterback.


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As a Lumberjack, Joe played in five games during the 2012 season, completing 61 of 108 passes for 569 yards and two touchdowns. “We load up in the car all decked out in purple,” Rosie said of the family’s SFA game-day routine. “We are probably the first ones to get out to the field because I don’t even want to miss warm ups. They call me ‘stalker’ because I just watch Joseph, and I’m going to stare him down until he waves at me. Whether he’s on the field or on the sideline, I’m just excited to see him.” The Speanburgs said what attracted them to SFA was honesty during the recruiting process and the emphasis placed on academics. “The coaches were very honest, and that won my wife’s heart over,” Mike explained. “Coach (Chris) Truax said Joe probably wouldn’t play his freshman year; he would probably be redshirted. He was honest, and we knew we couldn’t say that about recruiters from other schools. When we left Nacogdoches, my wife had peace.” According to Rosie, that sense of peace remains. “I have had nothing but a sense of safety with him being at SFA. If I have a question and call up, they are going to put me through to someone to answer my questions. If Joseph is sick, I know he can go to the trainer, and they will take care of him. I miss him, but I don’t worry because I know they are looking out for him.”


With a 3.9 grade-point average, Joe, who recently was named the SFA finance department’s outstanding student, said he approaches classroom assignments with the same attitude he has on the football field. “I do the best I can, even if it’s just a minimal assignment,” he said. “In football you have to do the little things right, whether you’re working out or on the field. Those little things can make a difference between winning and losing – between doing well and not doing well.” Most people who meet Joe don’t know about his medical history. But even the casual observer may discern that there is something different about Joe, something that compels him to set goals and meet them. “I don’t tell people about any of this because I don’t want anyone to expect less from me,” Joe said. “It’s not that I don’t want people to know – I just want them to know me for who I am now. I feel accomplished, but I am not done yet. There’s a lot more I want to do.” The same spirit is evident in the Speanburg household. Where there could be anger, self-pity or a lack of confidence, there is joy, hope and resilience. Personal fortitude and accountability are unspoken expectations.


would constantly tell myself, no matter how badly it hurt, that I wanted to get back to where I was. I didn’t want my story to be that an injury kept me from playing. I didn’t want to quit.” “I think the experience my family and I have gone through is in our hearts; it’s in our core,” Joe said. “When I face a challenge, I don’t sit back and have a pity party for myself and think that I’ve already been through so much. How can you not be happy about life? It is a precious thing.” Joe is not the only standout athlete in his family. His older sister, Elaine, played volleyball at Southwestern University, and his younger sisters, Maddie and Morgan, are athletes at Coppell High School. “Rosie’s strong educational background has a lot to do with this,” Michael said. “They know that if their academics aren’t taken care of, they are not going to go out and play, and they are sure not going to play sports. They have a great balance because of Rosie; she really is the anchor of this team.” Although Rosie’s hope dates back to before the birth of her son, she credits Joe with her spirit and positive attitude. “Joseph has been my hero. If I ever feel like I’m a failure, I look back and think of all the things he’s overcome, and he’s done it with a smile on his face and determination. And I just think, ‘You know what? I’m going to be like that, too.’ So he’s my hero, my role model; he’s my miracle baby. And I thank God for all the blessings that I’ve had. When there’s adversity that we have to get through, something good always comes of it. Sometimes it’s difficult, and I don’t understand why, but I know that when I look back, there will be a reason. This just helps us all to grow and see something that’s part of our plan.”

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1917 - 1939

Stone Fort Museum

The Early Years Chapter 191 of the regular session of the 35th Legislature (1917) created two new Normal Colleges, the Stephen F. Austin and the South Texas, and prescribed the method of locating the new institutions. In pursuance of this act, Nacogdoches was chosen for the location of Stephen F. Austin Normal College. Dr. Alton W. Birdwell was named president of SFA. With the outbreak of World War I and the call to conserve all resources, the third called session of the 35th Legislature repealed the appropriations for the new schools. The repealing act, however, expressly provided that one of the new colleges should be opened in September 1922 and the other in September 1923, and gave the State Normal Board of Regents the authority to determine which of the colleges should be opened first. On May 26, 1921, the board passed a resolution to fund Stephen F. Austin Normal College and reinstated Birdwell as its president. SFA also was to be opened by the September 1922 deadline. This deadline soon changed, as the Board of Regents postponed all building contracts until Aug. 31, 1922.


1924 - SFA MOVED Classes began in

established by Texas Legislature - DR. ALTON W. BIRDWELL NAMED FIRST SFA PRESIDENT


the Austin Building.


1923 - FIRST DAY OF CLASSES Classes opened at

1928 - ALUMNI



NHS on Washington Square Sept. 18; “The Shack” housed administrative offices. - DEMONSTRATION SCHOOL


first on-campus dormitory - FIRST HOMECOMING

When the college opened there were no dormitories, so students lived in approved boarding homes, which cost between $25 and $30 a month.


1940 - 1949

Homecoming 1971

Memorial Stadium In February 1946, the citizens of Nacogdoches voted in favor of the issuance of $60,000 in bonds to build a stadium and field house as the first part of a community recreation center. At the same time, there was a petition to name it Memorial Stadium in honor of the men and women of Nacogdoches County and SFA students who lost their lives in World War II. Grading of the ground and construction of Memorial Stadium began in April 1946. The new steel and concrete football stadium was used for the first time at the 1946 Homecoming.




training school established to enlist women for auxiliary noncombat duty in World War II



The Student Union Building was under the management of Henrietta Baker and contained a recreation room, ballroom, lunch room, student offices, student conference room, book store and post office.

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1950 - 1959 L. E. Griffith Jr. Fine Arts Building Construction began in July 1958 after Temple Associates of Diboll was awarded the construction contract for the $1.5 million auditorium and fine arts building. The Board of Regents accepted the building from the contractor Dec. 12, 1959. The building features a carillon tower with 15 brass bells made in Holland, a large auditorium with a pipe organ, small auditorium, radio studio, practice and rehearsal rooms, art laboratories, and exhibit areas. The building originally housed the departments of Art, Music and Speech.

President Ralph W. Steen

The Units 1951 - SHELTON GYM

President Steen

On Nov. 1, 1958, Dr. Ralph W. Steen became the third president of Stephen F. Austin State College. Steen stayed in the position until his retirement in 1976 when he was given the appointment of president emeritus. During his tenure, SFA grew from a college of fewer than 2,000 students to a university with more than 11,000 students enrolled.



1955 - THE UNITS I, II and III These

1959 - COLLEGE CENTER included the

residence halls were located at the corner of East College and Raguet streets.

college cafeteria with seating for 478 people, book store, luncheonette, post office and recreational facilities

The Men’s Gymnasium, now known as Shelton Gymnasium, is still used today. The gym has a capacity for more than 3,000 people and contains athletic offices, dressing rooms, equipment storage and physical education classrooms.


1960 - 1969 Kennedy Auditorium The auditorium was the first part of a $4 million building project begun in September 1966, that also included the Science Building. The auditorium, with a seating capacity of 500 and an array of audio-visual aids, opened in February 1968. In 1975 the Board of Regents named it Kennedy Auditorium in honor of Joseph W. Kennedy, an SFA alumnus with extraordinary achievements in the field of chemistry.

Steen Hall The “twin towers” of Steen Hall (Hall 17) are named for President Ralph W. Steen’s wife, Gladys E. Steen. The hall originally was built to house 764 women and today is used as a co-ed facility.

Faculty Apartments

1960 - NORTH AND



The Rev. Ulysses L. Sanders was the first African-American student to enroll at SFA.



- EAST COLLEGE CAFETERIA built with a seating capacity of 1,000

moved from state college to university status with its own Board of Regents.


1968 - GARNER HALL named in

honor of the first head of the History and Political Science Department, W. F. Garner

located on the corner of Starr Avenue and Clark Boulevard

Original plans for North and South halls called for one to house men and the other to be used as a women’s dorm. Reservations were submitted overwhelmingly by female students, so both new dorms were designated as women’s residences.

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1970 - 1979

Vietnam War Protests National Moratorium Day, Oct. 15, 1969, drew crowds of students concerned over U.S. involvement in Vietnam. Students gathered under the pine trees on SFA’s campus and listened to a different speaker every hour who talked about the war. Those attending were united in their stance that the war must stop. Again on Nov. 15, students gathered in protest of the war. A bell was rung once for every Texan who died up to that point during the war. Later, students lighted candles beginning a silent march for peace. Moratoriums were observed monthly on campus, each one offering a different program, all demanding U.S. troop withdrawal.


1973 - MEMORIAL STADIUM and the


original Todd Hall were torn down to make way for the construction of Ralph W. Steen Library.


1972 - ART STUDIO The building


contains offices and facilities for the fine arts.


With the approval of President Steen, students were allowed to streak on campus for one night, March 6, 1974, without the fear of repercussions.


1980 - 1999 National Champions Dianne Baker coached softball at SFA for 15 years and led the Ladyjacks to an NCAA Division II championship in 1986. Baker shows the national championship trophy to fans who had waited for hours for the team bus to arrive from the airport.

Lumberjack Football Quarterback Todd Hamel led the Lumberjacks to the Southland Conference Championship in 1989, the first outright conference championship in football in school history. The Lumberjacks lost in the national championship game against Georgia Southern University. Here, Hamel celebrates the completion of a touchdown pass in a playoff game against Grambling State University.






the university its first permanent endowment



During the 1990s, a doctoral program in educational leadership was added, along with new master’s degree programs and the School of Social Work.

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2000 - 2009

Student Recreation Center A new Student Recreation Center opened at SFA on Sept. 22, 2007. The $24-million facility features two multi-purpose courts, a 39-foot freestanding climbing wall, a 12,000-square-foot weight and fitness center, and an outdoor center. It also houses a wellness center, which includes areas for nutrition and fitness assessment and massage therapy. An indoor track winds around the inside perimeter of the building on the upper level, which also includes racquetball courts, additional cardio and fitness areas, and an outdoor patio for relaxation and entertainment. The pool area includes a 270-foot-long lazy river, 12-foot-deep diving pool, 30-person spa, three lap lanes, zero-depth pool entry and a pool play area for water sports.



President Baker Pattillo Dr. Baker Pattillo has been a part of SFA for more than 40 years, first as a student, and later as an administrator and president. He was elected interim president of SFA by the Board of Regents on July 13, 2006. Prior to being named interim president, Pattillo served as vice president of university affairs. He had held that role since 1982. Pattillo was named the eighth president of SFA on Jan. 30, 2007.






SFA’s entrance standards were increased and $200 million in bonds were approved for new construction projects, including residence halls, parking garages, recreational facilities and an extensive addition to the Student Center.


2010 - 2013 New Entrance A new main SFA entrance with limestone signage was completed in 2010. An improved entrance plaza roadway was constructed, along with a large monument sign with the university’s name, decorative pillars on Vista Drive and extensive landscaping. The limestone pillars placed at the entrance to Vista Drive from the new plaza roadway are a historical nod to pillars that framed the original Vista Drive entrance beginning in the early 1920s. The old entrance sign, which was constructed in the mid-1960s, was removed from the site in pieces and reconstructed at the northern end of Homer Bryce Stadium near the field house.

View expanded SFA timeline



- ARCHIE MCDONALD SPEAKER SERIES - BATTLE OF THE PINEY WOODS first game held at Reliant Stadium in Houston


CLASS 1,285 diplomas awarded in May.

Lumberjack Landing was designed to meet the unique living and learning needs of first-year Lumberjacks and features the Ed and Gwen Cole Student Success Center where students access free tutoring and other academic support services.

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SFA ALUMNI COACHES were honored at the 35th annual Coaches Awards Luncheon sponsored by the SFA Alumni Association. Pictured, from left, are Jeff Davis, Alumni Association executive director; John Leonard; Dennis Eby, accepting the award for his son, Jimmy Eby; Farshid Niroumand; Wesley Colley; Jeff Traylor; and Bob Sitton, executive director emeritus of the Alumni Association.


DEREK SNYDER’S LOVE for SFA started at birth. With his father, James Snyder, who was an art professor at SFA for 37 years; his mother, Sandy Snyder, who was involved with SFA women’s basketball; his sister, Sasha Snyder Kubacak, who graduated from the SFA athletic training program; and three aunts who played during the early years of the SFA women’s basketball under Coach Sue Gunter, the choice to attend SFA was easy. Snyder is a 2001 graduate of SFA, where he earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts and was part of the Lumberjack Football team from 1996 to 1999. As a student, he was included on the Dean’s List, was named in Who’s Who Among American Colleges and Universities and a finalist for Mr. SFA. As communications and marketing coordinator for the Alumni Association, Snyder will design graphics for marketing publications and promotions.  “I have always felt at home with this alumni organization,” he said. “I look forward to continuing the excellence set forth by the past and current staff to bind SFA students, alumni, faculty, and staff, and the Nacogdoches community together with Lumberjack pride!” 


3 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 2 TICKETS

Fans can purchase tickets through the SFA Ticket Office by calling (936) 468-JACK or toll free (800) 775-3358 or at Ticket prices range from $15 to $40.


SFA Headquarters: Westin Oaks at the Galleria 5011 Westheimer at Post Oak, Booking: (713) 960-8100 5011 Westheimer at Post Oak Houston, Texas 77056 SFA Fan Rate: $109 per night, Specify “SFA Fan Block”


On Saturday, Nov. 2, SFA will host a tailgate party at the southeast corner of Reliant Stadium adjacent to the Astrodome from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Food will be available for the first 1,000 fans, and cash bars will be open throughout the event. Stadium gates open at 1:30 p.m. and kick-off is slated for 3 p.m. Individual tailgating for SFA fans is located in the Blue Lot.

Reliant Stadium Houston, Texas RECEPTION

SFA will host a reception at the Westin on Friday, Nov. 1, for fans, friends and alumni from 6 to 8 p.m. Everyone is invited.


Private luxury suites will be available for $75 per ticket. Each suite seats between 16 and 22 guests. Parking, food and beverages are not included in the price. For more information, fans can contact Shari Rainey with the Houston Texans Suite Sales Office at (832) 667-2135 or shari.rainey@


The Touchdown Club of Houston will host a Battle of the Piney Woods luncheon featuring SFA head football coach J.C. Harper and Sam Houston head football coach Willie Fritz. Noon to 1 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 30 J.W. Marriott, 5150 Westheimer near the Galleria. Tickets are $45 each and $450 for a table of 10. For tickets, contact Neal Farmer at (713) 849-9860 or email


N Probably the one constant in the past 90 years has been the pride our alumni have in our alma mater.

INETY YEARS – WHAT a long, rich history for SFA. We are all proud of this tremendous achievement. To reflect on what has transpired during the past nine decades is overwhelming. To consider the changes to our campus, especially in the recent past, is astonishing. Probably the one constant in the past 90 years has been the pride our alumni have in our alma mater. No matter when they attended or graduated from SFA, Lumberjacks always have a sense of pride in our university. In 1928, a few years after the founding of SFA, your Alumni Association was formed. Throughout the next 85 years, our mission has been constant – to serve alumni, friends, and current students through programs, scholarships, and activities that create an attitude of continued loyalty and support. We have a deep desire to stay true to our mission and strengthen our Lumberjack bonds. We carry out our work in all sorts of ways, including: alumni chapters; freshman send-offs; memberships; scholarships; network events; class ring sales and Big Dip ring ceremonies; affinity programs; Sawdust; football tailgates; Student Foundation events; Alumni Corner; Homecoming events; and student, faculty, alumni and coaches awards and recognition programs. Although our alumni base is nearly 99,000 strong and diverse in many ways, we do have one common bond – our alma mater. During the past few years, we have tried new things, and we will continue to look for ways to spark your interest in the Alumni Association and foster your support of our mission. You see, we simply cannot continue doing this without connecting with you through our programs, activities and events, and ultimately earning your loyalty and support. You have been good to the association throughout the past 85 years, and we hope you feel the association has been good to you. Only together can we accomplish our mission. It has been a great 90 years at SFA, and I trust there will be many more! I invite you to join us for Homecoming on Oct. 18-20 as we celebrate this important milestone. Axe ’em, Jacks!

SFA ALUMNI ASSOCIATION OFFICERS Curtis Sparks ’85 - president Roger Robinson ’92 - president-elect Chuck Tomberlain ’84 - past president ASSOCIATION BOARD Wendy Buchanan ’85 Don Cox ’71 & ’76 Robin Dawley ’77 Karen Gantt ’95 Mike Harbordt ’63 Doris Havard James Hawkins ’83 David Madrid ’02 Justin McFaul ’04 Susan Roberds ’75 Phillip Scherrer ’99 Erika Tolar ’02 Steve Whitbeck ’75 Chris Woelfel ’95 SFA ALUMNI FOUNDATION GOVERNORS Chuck Tomberlain ’84 - chairman Lewie Byers ’68 Ford Cartwright ’69 Rick Couvillon ’85 Shirley Crawford ’58 & ’70 Stephen Greak ’92 James Hamilton ’77 Bill Roberds ’75 Curtis Sparks ’85 ASSOCIATION STAFF Jeff Davis ’02 executive director of alumni affairs Katy Crawford assistant to the executive director of alumni affairs

Curtis Sparks ’85 President, SFA Alumni Association

Dale Green ’99 director of marketing & membership Samantha Mora ’08 director of alumni events & engagement Alicia Roland Chatman gifts & records specialist Beverly Smith ’96 accountant




Emily Martin scholarship coordinator Derek Snyder ’01 communications & marketing coordinator

FALL 2013 29


1966 &

1929 1935 1948 1955 1967 OTIS FLOYD

Joseph W. Kennedy


O.R. “Cotton” Whiddon

Will Jennings

Longtime Public School Teacher and Principal

Co-Discoverer of Plutonium

Chancellor Emeritus, Pepperdine University

Lieutenant General, U.S. Army (Ret.)

Oscar and Grammy Award Winning Songwriter

1972 1989 1991 2001 2012 Nancy Dickey

Larry Centers

Steve Stagner

NEAL slaten

Kylie Louw

Former President, Texas A&M Health Science Center

Former NFL Fullback; All Pro and Superbowl Champion

Chief Executive Officer, Mattress Firm

Owner, Tipton Ford Lincoln, Inc.

2012 London Olympian, South Africa Women’s Soccer



Jason Wright ’97

East Texas regional director for U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz


N WHAT HE considers the most difficult decision of his professional life, Jason Wright ’97 resigned as a councilman for the City of Tyler recently to work for U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas. Since January, Wright has served as the new senator’s East Texas regional director. “Assisting Sen. Cruz is a great job,” Wright said. “I get to work for someone I truly respect and admire while playing a small supporting role in his very big work to serve East Texans. I’m a very blessed guy.” Wright describes his new role as unpredictable. On a given day, he may be found in any East Texas city or town discussing with constituents issues ranging from immigration to business regulations, from jobs and the economy to veterans’ issues and more. “Sen. Cruz goes about his role with such humility and integrity, and I truly admire him,” Wright said. “It was difficult to put the brakes on my own political and business career, but the senator confirms my decision every day.”

Wright said one of the best parts of his job is being based year-round in Tyler, where he lives with his wife and fellow SFA graduate Carrie Wright ’97. The couple has two daughters, 13-year-old Rylan and 12-year-old Abby. “Since Sen. Cruz spends so much time in D.C., he wants to make sure there are boots on the ground in the state taking care of the Texans he represents,” he said. Wright said he first became interested in a political career while still a student at SFA. “I’ve always thought I would be involved in service at some level. I just believe if God has given one the ability to serve and make a difference, then that’s what one should do.” Wright is a past president of both the Tyler Sunrise Rotary Club and the Greater Tyler Association of Realtors and currently serves on advisory boards for BancorpSouth and the SFA Department of Business Communication and Legal Studies. He also is a founding member and past board member of Grassroots America: We The People, one of the largest grassroots conservative activist groups in East Texas. He said all of these roles have given him the opportunity not only to serve his community, but also to learn how to best motivate others to move together toward common goals. The network of relationships he has established extends to all corners of the state and country. “I have learned to be a better communicator, which includes being a very good listener,” Wright said. “Being able to listen and understand the needs of East Texans is the single most critical part of my new position.” Wright credits his alma mater for preparing him for his current career. His service as president of the Alpha Tau Omega fraternity also allowed him to hone interpersonal communication skills, he said. “I can’t imagine ever having a better college experience anywhere else.” The fifth-generation East Texan hopes to remain in government service for the long haul, and he thinks the Texas governorship is the best job in politics. “I love this state with all my heart,” he said. “I believe Texas is the model for the rest of the country, and to be able to steward the affairs of the Lone Star State would be incredible.” –RACHEL CLARK

“I get to work for someone I truly respect and admire while playing a small supporting role in his very big work to serve East Texans. I’m a very blessed guy.” FALL 2013 31




In recognition of a lifetime of service, SFA nursing alumna Bonnie Denmon ’84 recently received the 2012 ATHENA Leadership Award from the Lufkin/Angelina County Chamber of Commerce. The award recognizes women who epitomize professional and community service excellence, while helping other women reach their professional and leadership goals. ROWING UP, BONNIE Denmon always wanted to be a nurse. She was raised in Pollok, Texas, one of Theo and Quely Johnson’s five children. Her father worked as a forester, and her mother was a homemaker. Together, her parents instilled in their son and four daughters a love of learning that Denmon continues to pay forward. The Denmon children lived in the Central ISD but were bussed to Lufkin due to segregation. Denmon attended Dunbar High School until the rural schools began desegregation in the mid-1960s. She later transferred to Central High School, where she was the only African American in her class. With the high expectations and support of her parents, Denmon excelled in academics. In 1966, she became the first African American to graduate from Central High School.

East Texas Workforce, Stubblefield Learning Center, Lotus Lane Foundation, Goodwill and United Way. She continues to be involved with the Angelina County Chamber of Commerce, having served as chairman of its Education Council. Trey Henderson, president of Angelina Hardwood, served alongside Denmon on the Angelina College Board of Trustees. “During the 10 years we worked together, her dedication to serving students was second to none,” he said. “With a nursing background, she ensured that the college maintained excellence in every field, especially in health careers.” Denmon has received much recognition for her community service, including the Jack O. (Butch) McMullen Silver Spike Award, the Frist Humanitarian Award from the Hospital Corporation of America and the Angelina County Citizen of the Year award. The 2012 ATHENA Leadership Award remains her most treasured accolade. “I love helping people in any way I can,” Denmon said.

l i fachievement etime By Donna Parish

Denmon earned her Licensed Vocational Nurse certification through Lufkin Memorial Hospital’s nursing program. When Angelina College established a program, Denmon enrolled and received her associate degree. After passing the national licensing exam and becoming a registered nurse, she transitioned into SFA’s nursing program and earned a bachelor’s degree. Throughout her nursing career, Denmon served in several administrative positions while balancing her role as a wife and mother. She was director of emergency services at Lufkin’s Woodland Heights Medical Center for more than 10 years and served as director of education at Memorial Hospital in Lufkin until she retired in 2004. “Nursing is my heart,” Denmon said. “Working in the hospital’s emergency department, you are challenged to learn all the time. You have to think on your feet. My love of learning has always supported my nursing career.” Today, Denmon teaches medical terminology at AC. She also volunteers, serving as a patient advocate. “I assist both patients and their families in understanding the often complex world of medical care, discussing medications, helping interpret test results and even accompanying patients to doctor’s appointments.” Denmon served for many years on the Central ISD school board. She is a past member and president of the AC Board of Trustees and also served on the boards of the Deep

Photo by Clay Bostian

“It’s just humbling that people think I’m worthy of this award.” Jerry Huffman, president and CEO of the Lufkin/Angelina County Chamber of Commerce, said, “Bonnie represents the true model of a woman in leadership – always willing to go the extra mile and stop and help someone along the way. She works at everything she does with a spirit of kindness and concern for people.” Another area Denmon takes great pride in is her association with SFA. She has served on SFA’s nursing ethics committee and assisted with nursing students’ clinical rotations, and she was involved in the initial planning of the Richard and Lucille DeWitt School of Nursing facility. She serves as president of the Advisory Council for the East Texas GearUp Project headquartered at SFA. When she’s not teaching or volunteering, Denmon said she enjoys spending time with her family, including her father, who still lives in Pollok; her daughter, Monique Nunn, an SFA staff member and doctoral student who is married to the Lumberjacks’ assistant head football coach, Arlington Nunn; her son, Marque, who resides in Georgia with his wife, Desiree; and her three grandchildren. She adds that after almost three decades working as a nurse, she is enjoying spending more time with her husband of 46 years, James, to whom, along with her parents, she attributes her success. “We were high school sweethearts. He’s been there with me every step.”

FALL 2013 33


SCHEDULE OF EVENTS FALL TAILGATE SCHEDULE Tailgate with the SFA Alumni Association at Alumni Corner or on the road! Enjoy a catered meal with friends before the game. SFA @ TEXAS TECH Saturday, Sept.7, 6 p.m., Lubbock SFA vs. McMurry State Saturday, Sept.14, 6 p.m., Nacogdoches SFA vs. Montana State Saturday, Sept.21, 6 p.m., Nacogdoches SFA vs. Prairie View A&M Saturday, Sept.28, 6 p.m., Nacogdoches SFA vs. Nicholls State Saturday, Oct.19, 3 p.m., Nacogdoches SFA vs. McNeese State Saturday, Nov. 9, 3 p.m., Nacogdoches

FRIDAY, OCT. 18 11 a.m. - 4 p.m. / Piney Woods Country Club

SFA Alumni Golf Tournament $150 per person, $600 per team

6 - 8:30 p.m. / Hotel Fredonia

Alumni Legacy Reception and Dinner Honoring Dr. Francis E. “Ab” Abernethy ’4 and the late Hazel Abernethy ’48 & ’71 6 p.m. Reception 6:45 – 8 p.m. Dinner 8 p.m. Live Auction and

2 - 5 p.m. / Pecan Park

SFA Frisbee Golf Tournament $20 entry fee, $10 for SFA students 4:30 - 5 p.m. / Hotel Fredonia

Alumni Association Annual Membership Meeting Officers and members elected

8:15 – 10:30 p.m.

Homecoming Jack Track Bus Shuttle and Hotel Fredonia 8:30 p.m. / SFA Campus and Intramural Fields

Torchlight Parade & Bon Fire 8:30 p.m. Torchlight Parade

Tent opens three hours prior to kickoff. SFA Alumni Association members, alumni and fans can gain access to Alumni Corner by purchasing a single-game tailgate pass online at or at the tent. • SFA Alumni Association members - $10 • Non-members - $15 • Kids 10 and younger - $5 (with an adult) • Kids 5 and younger - free (with an adult) In addition to iced tea and water, beverages from R&K Distributors will be available, and a sheet cake will be served SPONSORED BY

5 - 7 p.m. Nine Flags Bar and The Patio, Hotel Fredonia

Back in Nac Social Live music, free appetizers, purple beer, drink specials and a photo booth! Class of 1963 Reunion Celebrate your 50-year reunion with tours, receptions, the Golden Jacks Breakfast, commemorative reunion packet, parade, tailgate and the Homecoming game.




SATURDAY, OCT. 19 7 - 10 a.m. / Hotel Fredonia

Homecoming Flap “Jack” Breakfast Hotel Fredonia $11.95 for adults, $9.95 children 12 & under 7:30 – 10 a.m. / Schlief Tennis Complex, corner of Wilson and Starr

5th Annual Homecoming 5K Run Prizes awarded to best overall male and female, top male and female in age groups, and largest group registered.

Opens three hours before kick off / Alumni Corner

Junior Jacks Kids Zone Noon, Alumni Corner Bounce houses, face painting and games. First 100 kids receive a free “Future Alumni” t-shirt.

7:30 – 9 a.m. / Hotel Fredonia

Golden Jacks Breakfast Celebrating the Class of 1963 9 a.m. / Hotel Fredonia

Enjoy the morning with free coffee and pastries and visiting with fellow Lumberjacks! 10 a.m. / Downtown Nacogdoches

Homecoming Parade enjoy music and pageantry

Noon / Ag Pond

Duck Dash Noon at the Ag Pond Watch rubber ducks race to win cool prizes and raise money for scholarships 3 p.m. / Homer Bryce Stadium

Football Game SFA Lumberjacks vs. Nicholls State

Noon / Corner of Hayter and Raguet

Alumni Corner Enjoy a catered meal with friends before the game. Free to Association members. Thursday, Oct. 3, 6 p.m. - Sunday, Oct. 20, 9 p.m.

Homecoming Online Auction Visit to bid on your favorite items. Thursday, Oct. 3, 5:30 to 7 p.m. / Hotel Fredonia

Kick off the online auction and Homecoming with free appetizers, drinks and live music.

TICKETS & INFO: Purchase tickets and register for events at or call 800.765.1534. FALL 2013

31 35


Carving a Legacy

Former Alumni Association executive director turns childhood pastime into a gift for the future OB SITTON ’60, director emeritus of the SFA Alumni Association and former coach, is still amazed that his curiosity about duck carving has grown into a 39-year-old hobby that has raised more than $20,000 for SFA scholarships. “I grew up in the suburbs of Cushing – current population 700 – and I spent a lot of time as a boy whittling sticks,” Sitton said, explaining his unique talent’s humble roots. “Nothing creative – I carved on a stick until it was gone; that was all.” Sitton’s interest in woodcarving was rekindled after reading a story about the art of decoys in a 1974 Texas Parks and Wildlife magazine. The article featured duck carver C.D. Stutzenbaker, former chief wildlife biologist for the J.D. The Carving Process Murphee Wildlife Area near Port Sitton begins with bass wood decoy Arthur.“I was really just looking blanks and uses a band saw and for something to fill my time,” hatchet to take away extra wood. He Sitton said. shapes feathers and other details with “I called Dr. Stutzenbaker a grinding tool and uses a knife to and told him I wanted to learn, shape the ducks’ heads. More features but I didn’t know where to are added with a woodburning tool. begin,” Sitton said. StutzenThe final part of the process, painting baker suggested he contact the decoys, is the most painstaking Bill Provine, a fellow expert task. Although he has never timed carver who worked at the the entire process of making a duck, Sheldon Wildlife Refuge on the he feels his time is well spent. “My outskirts of Houston. “It just so hobby keeps me off the streets and happened that the refuge was out of trouble – most of the time,” about two miles from my motherSitton said. in-law’s house, so I had plenty of opportunity to visit with Bill.” Provine took Sitton under his wing, and for the next few years, taught him the art and craft of carving ducks. “Bill was very helpful during those early years,” Sitton recalls. “It took me forever to finish the first duck, a real masterpiece,” he jokes. “I gave it away to my friend Mike Driver, but his dog chewed it up.” Sitton held on to the second duck he carved, a Canvasback, as a measure of his hopeful progress, and he kept carving in his spare time. Sitton’s daughter, Karen Stacy ’85, suggested Sitton Ducks as a name for her father’s craft. The name stuck. In 1978, a news article featuring Sitton’s carving was published nationwide, gaining exposure for Sitton Ducks


across the U.S. “And I knew then that this hobby of mine was something special,” Sitton said. Having coached for 12 years, Sitton was elated in 1980 when the Houston Fellowship of Christian Athletes bought one of his ducks to give to former Dallas Cowboy quarterback and Heisman Trophy winner Roger Staubach. “They even asked me if I would like to present it to him,” Sitton said. “Of course, I said yes. Roger and I even got our picture in the August 1980 edition of Houston Monthly magazine.” By the mid-’80s, Sitton had mastered his craft and was sharing his decorative decoys at art shows in Texas and at the Texas Folklife Festival. For several years, Sitton has focused on creating ducks depicted on Federal Duck Stamps, pictorial stamps annually produced by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Although Sitton has carved many species of ducks, he does have his favorites. “All ducks are beautifully colored, but the wood duck tops them all,” Sitton said, recalling the 2011 Duck Stamp decoy he made. “I realized my eyesight is not what it used to be when trying to paint four distinct colors on a miniature wood duck beak.” In addition to ducks, Sitton has carved geese, swans, one coot, two mockingbirds, one dove and one quail. Sitton Ducks was featured in Southwest Airlines’ Spirit Magazine and also pictured in a story about missile decoys in an issue of Defense Electronics Magazine. Sitton has made appearances on episodes of The Eyes of Texas, Texas Country Reporter and Proud of East Texas. Sitton is grateful for his success in the craft and pays his blessings forward to SFA. He will donate 50 percent of the proceeds from future Sitton Ducks sales to fund scholarships that he, his wife Shirley, and family and friends have endowed through the SFA Alumni Association. “I have more time than I have money,” Sitton said, “and carving ducks is a way to use a simple talent the Lord gave me to help future students.” Sitton Ducks can be purchased by contacting Sitton at or by calling (936) 569-3256. Search Sitton Ducks on Facebook to read updates and view photos. –RHONDA CRIM

Above Sitton’s work on display recently at the Old University Building in Nacogdoches Top left Sitton carving a duck in 1990 at the Texas Folklife Festival in San Antonio Photo courtesy of University of Texas at San Antonio

Bottom left Sitton Ducks




Wednesday FORT BEND NETWORK SOCIAL EVENT 6-8 p.m., Flying Saucer, 15929 City Walk, Sugar Land



ALUMNI CORNER TAILGATE 3 p.m., corner of Hayter and Raguet streets in front of ECRC. SFA VS. MCMURRY 6 p.m., Homer Bryce Stadium





SOUTHLAKE/KELLER/ LEWISVILLE NETWORK SOCIAL EVENT 6-8 p.m., Campania Pizza, 291 Grand Ave., Southlake


LUBBOCK NETWORK SOCIAL EVENT 6-8 p.m., Caprock Cafe, 3405 34th St., Lubbock




FORT WORTH AREA NETWORK SOCIAL EVENT 6-8 p.m., Brownstone Fort Worth Kitchen + Bar, 840 Currie St., Fort Worth






SFA ALPHA CHI OMEGA ALUMNAE REUNION Hotel Fredonia - Headquarter Hotel. For more information, visit or email

ALUMNI CORNER TAILGATE 3 p.m., corner of Hayter and Raguet streets in front of ECRC.



SFA @ TEXAS TECH 6 p.m., Jones AT&T Stadium, Lubbock


SHREVEPORT, LA AREA NETWORK SOCIAL EVENT 5:30-7:30 p.m., Superior Grill, 6123 Line Ave.,Shreveport, La.





SFA RUGBY ALUMNI WEEKEND For more information, visit

SFA VS. PRAIRIE VIEW A&M 6 p.m., Homer Bryce Stadium



ALUMNI CORNER TAILGATE 3 p.m., corner of Hayter and Raguet streets in front of ECRC. SFA VS. MONTANA STATE 6 p.m., Homer Bryce Stadium



HOMECOMING Alumni Corner Tailgate • Parade Golf and Frisbee Golf Tournaments • Certified 5K Run Legacy Dinner • Bonfire • Back in Nac Social • Class Reunions • Duck Dash • Homecoming Game OMICRON DELTA KAPPA 10TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION Come back to Nac for the 10th Anniversary of ODK For more information, visit








ALUMNI CORNER TAILGATE Noon, corner of Hayter and Raguet streets in front of ECRC.

ALUMNI CORNER TAILGATE Noon, corner of Hayter and Raguet streets in front of ECRC.

SFA VS. NICHOLLS STATE 3 p.m., Homer Bryce Stadium

SFA VS. MCNEESE STATE 3 p.m., Homer Bryce Stadium

SFA INTERIOR DESIGN/ MERCHANDISING HOMECOMING RECEPTION Right after the Homecoming Parade downtown; 10:45 a.m.12:45 p.m., Human Sciences South Building Gallery, For more information, visit sfaalumni. com/events.

BATTLE OF THE PINEY WOODS 6-8 p.m., Nov. 1, Reception at the Westin Oaks at the Galleria Nov. 2, 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Tailgate, Reliant Stadium, Houston. Game at 3 p.m. No cost to attend reception or tailgate. Game tickets at



ALUMNI AWARDS 6 p.m. Cocktail Reception 7 p.m. Dinner Convention Center A, Hotel Fredonia. Purchase tickets online by Nov. 1 at sfaalumni. com or call the SFA Alumni Association at (936) 468-3407.

Times and dates are subject to change. Visit for the most recent information.

FALL 2013 37



has been established in honor of a longtime SFA professor of music. The scholarship will benefit SFA music majors studying vocal performance or pursuing certification in choral music education. Anderson has been a member of the SFA music faculty and administration since 1970. He holds a Bachelor of Arts from Concordia College and Master of Arts and doctoral degrees from the University of Iowa. He was director of choral activities at SFA for 13 years before serving as director of the School of Music from 1986 to 2009. His teaching areas include voice, music bibliography, conducting, literature and appreciation. He is a past president of the Texas Association of Music Schools, a former chair of the University’s Chairs Forum and former co-chair of the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board Field of Study Committee for Music. He received the SFA Foundation Achievement Award for Teaching for the 2004-05 academic year and was founding director of the Texas Institute for Creativity and Innovation in spring 2008. Anderson also served for two years as interim chair of the SFA Department of Psychology.


established to benefit students enrolled in the SFA College of Sciences and Mathematics who are pursuing careers in the STEM disciplines – science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Ed Cole was born in Homer, La., grew up in Longview, and served in the U.S. Air Force in England during World War II. Gwen Cole was born in Hamburg, Ark., was raised in Shreveport, La., and attended business college. Ed started his own oil field equipment rental and blow out preventer business in south Louisiana in 1958. Gwen worked at Home Federal Savings and Loan in Shreveport, La., for 26 years. The couple retired in Nacogdoches in 1978. Since that time, they have been dedicated supporters of many areas of the university, including fine arts, biotechnology, nursing, audiology, alumni and student affairs, and athletic programs. Most recently, the Ed and Gwen Cole Student Success Center was named in their honor in 2011. The Coles are members of First United Methodist Church, Friends of Music and the College of Fine Arts Dean’s Circle of Excellence. In addition, they are avid fans of SFA athletic teams.

THE ESTATE OF RUBY DEAN has provided funding

for a new nursing scholarship benefiting students in SFA’s Richard and Lucille DeWitt School of Nursing. “Ruby Dean was a philanthropist from the Fort Worth area who desired to honor top nursing students from universities across the state,” according to Jeff Davis, executive director of alumni affairs at SFA. The first recipients of the Ruby Dean Nursing Scholarship are nursing students BreAnne Ford of Houston and Michelle Nash of Nacogdoches. The two were identified as having both exceptional leadership qualities and a passion for nursing. Both students will be entering their third-semester nursing courses in fall 2013.  Dr. Glenda Walker, former director of the School of Nursing, said the school is honored to have the Ruby Dean Scholarship. “Nursing scholarships enable many students to continue their nursing program without having to compromise their educational studies for financial reasons,” she said. “All too often, we see nursing students working numerous hours in order to pay their tuition, which is very difficult because of the rigorous and time-consuming curriculum of nursing programs.”


was endowed by Tom F. and Deborah Nichols Pruitt in honor of their two children’s academic accomplishments, and is awarded to deserving SFA students who are majoring in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics. Recipients must be in the top 10 percent of their class and maintain at least a 3.0 gradepoint average. Proud supporters of education and the Alumni Association, the Pruitts have solely funded four endowed SFA scholarships and co-funded three others. Dr. Tera Pruitt Price graduated magna cum laude from Rice University and also earned her doctoral degree from Cambridge University, Trinity College, Cambridge, U.K. Price taught and supervised graduate students at Cambridge prior to becoming the project manager for UCLA. She currently serves as a Teach for America Corps member. Nathaniel George Pruitt is a graduate of Baylor University’s Hankamer School of Business Human Resources program and is currently attending the Master of Human Resources program at the University of South Carolina Darla Moore School of Business.

Your gift to support SFA students secures educational opportunities for generations of future Lumberjacks. Contact us to create your legacy today. SFA Alumni Association, P.O. Box 6096, SFA Station Nacogdoches, TX 75962-6096 Phone: 936.468.3407 | Toll Free: 800.765.1534 | Fax: 936.468.1007 Website: | Email: |







SAVE THE DATE Upcoming Alumni Reunions Chi Omega - Epsilon Zeta Chapter 50th Anniversary Sept. 20-22 For more information, visit chiomega50. SFA Alpha Chi Omega Alumnae Reunion Oct. 4-6 Hotel Fredonia: Headquarter Hotel For more information, visit or email SFA Rugby Alumni Weekend Oct. 11-13 For more information, visit Omicron Delta Kappa 10th Anniversary Celebration Oct. 18-19 Come back to Nac for the 10th Anniversary of ODK on Homecoming weekend. Enjoy a meetand-greet complete with appetizers at the Hotel Fredonia on Friday, Oct. 18. For more information, visit SFA Interior Design/Merchandising Homecoming Reception Saturday, Oct. 19 Directly after the Homecoming Parade downtown; 10:45 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. Human Sciences South Building Gallery The interior design/merchandising faculty will host a reception for alumni of the interior design/ merchandising major. Everyone is invited, so bring family and friends and get re-acquainted. For more information, visit

ATO 45th Founder’s Day April 4-6, 2014 The brothers of the Alpha Tau Omega fraternity will celebrate their 45th Founder’s Day. Events for the weekend include a welcome party on Friday; golf tournament, BBQ lunch, dinner and banquet on Saturday; and a breakfast meeting on Sunday. For more information, visit 20th Annual Robert D. Dickerson Memorial Golf Tournament April 26, 2014 Woodland Hills Golf Course Sponsored by the Sigma Phi Epsilon Texas Pi Chapter. For more information, visit

Got an upcoming reunion?

Whether it’s Greek, academic, organizational or just a big group of old friends, we’re here to help! We assist with: - Planning & Logistics - Registration - Campus tours - Marketing & Promotion






Contact Samantha Mora, director of alumni events and engagement, for more details at (936) 468-3407 or email Visit to get involved with alumni and special interest networks.

FALL 2013 39

CLASS NOTES E. Paul Cauley Jr. ’83 of Dallas was elected to the International Association of Defense Counsel’s Board of Directors. The IADC is an invitation-only professional association for corporate and insurance defense lawyers around the world.

The Epsilon Omicron Chapter of Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity was chartered at SFA on Dec. 17, 1960. Several hundred men were initiated and served actively in the fraternity throughout the 1960s. After graduation, these men went on to succeed in numerous fields, including medicine, dentistry, business, entrepreneurship, the U.S. military, law, law enforcement, education, ranching, aviation and more. In 2000, the 1960s members began holding a Pikes of the ’60s Annual Reunion. At each event, the members honor their Pike brothers who have passed away. In December 2012, the group established an endowment to support annual scholarships for SFA students. Contributions to these scholarships may be sent to: SFASU Foundation, P.O. BOX 6092, SFA Station, Nacogdoches, TX 75962.


Jay Garrison ’77 is founder of J.A. Garrison & Co. CPAs. The firm recently moved its headquarters to North Richland Hills.

Jean Phillips Frankie ’69 & ’80 of Richmond received the 2013 Tommy Eads Excellence Award from the Texas Association of Supervisors of Mathematics. Jeanette Temple Wynn ’69 of Quincy, Fla., is the author of Scared Stiff, a children’s book.


Ralph Fletcher ’70 of Grove retired after 40 years in the animal care business. James Drennan ’73 is purchasing manager of large OEM components for Atlas Copco Drilling Solutions in Garland. Charles Jewett ’74 of Seabrook is a member of the sales team of Weichert Realtors Wayne Murray Properties in Houston. Joanne Bello Lambert ’75 has moved from the Atlanta, Ga., area to Georgetown to retire. The Rev. Carol Turner ’76 of Palestine is pastor of First United Methodist Church in Palestine.


Jane Jackson ’77 & ’80 of Carrollton retired after 23 years as Coppell’s head tennis coach. Darla Tamulitis Kelly ’79 of Deer Park is the swimming and diving coach for Pasadena High School. She was chosen as the 2012 National Federation of State High School Association’s National Girls Swimming and Diving Coach of the Year.

Rebecca Dougharty ’84 & ’87 of Jasper was named Southeast Texas Teacher of the Year. Mark Wooley ’84 of North Richland Hills retired after 29 years in public education. He also is the author of a mystery thriller, The Smack, published on Kindle. Linda Kenjura ’86 of Montgomery is principal of Magnolia Elementary. Penny Long ’86 & ’90 of Nacogdoches teaches at Nacogdoches High School. Jean Ann Ruth Collins ’87 of Princeton was named Teacher of the Year for Princeton High School.  Mark Rathe ’88 of Tulsa, Okla., is president of the Athens Chamber of Commerce.

Dr. Steve G. Surratt ’79 of Cleburne is board-certified by the American Academy of Ophthalmology and was named a Fellow in 1991. Joe Verhalen ’79 of San Augustine is the San Augustine County auditor.


Kathryn Katzenberger ’82 of Houston is a teacher at Thornton Middle School. George King ’82 of McKinney is principal of Plano East Senior High School.

From left, former SFA student Carol Roark of Fort Worth, Rebecca Yarbrough ’75 of Nacogdoches and Sally Askins ’75 of Waco, who roomed together in Gibbs Hall in the 1970s, recently reunited in New Mexico for Yarbrough’s son’s wedding. The three women have remained close friends since their college days at SFA.

Diane Craig ’93 & ’94 of The Colony is the new director of the Granbury High School Stowaways dance and drill team.

Hollie Gammel Smith ’00 & ’02 and Ted Smith ’07 of Nacogdoches announce the Nov. 27 birth of daughter Averie Bristol. Dianna Manuel ’89 of Frisco is principal of Frisco ISD’s Career and Technical Education Center. Arthur Sekula ’89 of Jacksonville has opened an art gallery.


Jon Almeida ’90 & ’93 of Carthage is principal of Mineral Wells High School. Jay Carr ’90 of Sugar Land is a senior graphic designer at Weatherford International. Kara Fannon ’90 of Diboll was named the 2013 Teacher of the Year for Diboll High School. Collin Wade ’90 of Charlotte, N.C., is a senior account manager with American Genomics. He married Christy Eayrs on March 3, 2012, in Costa Rica. Mark Leuschner ’91 & ’12 of Nacogdoches is a principal at Slocum ISD. Jennifer Mattingly ’91 of Flower Mound was named McAuliffe’s Texas PTA Elementary Principal of the Year. Daniel Lopez ’92 of Lufkin is assistant superintendent for Diboll ISD. Will Lucas ’92 of Center is president and chief operating officer of Shelby Savings Bank.

Heather Bailey New ’93 joined Bell Nunnally & Martin LLP in Dallas as a partner and member of its Litigation practice. Wes Jensen ’94 of Nacogdoches is a Texas Farm Bureau Insurance Agent. Kayla Cagan ’95 of Los Angeles, Calif., wrote a monologue included in One on One: Playing with a Purpose – Monologues for Kids Ages 7-15. Tommy Newton ’95 of Shreveport, La., joined Centenary College as director of admissions. Rachel Collins ’96 & ’99 of Zavalla is the new director of The Texas Forestry Museum. Rebecca A. Hicks ’97 of Nacogdoches has her own law firm, Hicks Law Group PLLC. Dr. Larry Hygh Jr. ’97 & ’99 of West Sacramento, Calif., was named the Methodist Conference communications director.

Chris Cromwell ’99 of Spring joined Northwestern Mutual in Houston as the executive director of selection. He is responsible for all talent acquisition and direction of recruiting in Houston, The Woodlands, Austin, San Antonio and College Station.

Breezy Lake-Wolfe ’99 of Arp is the marketing manager for the City of Palestine.


Wendy Barnhill ’00 of Nacogdoches was named NISD Elementary Teacher of the Year. Paul Gould ’01 of Alto is the head football coach for Alto High School. Cristy Famulari Resendez ’01 and Clint Resendez of Humble announce the May 18 birth of daughter, Makenna Reese. Bryan ’01 & ’03 and Jaime Stephens ’04 of Killeen announce the Sept. 17 birth of daughter Kendall Taylor. Lauren Gatson ’02 of Nacogdoches is a federal prosecutor in the Lufkin office of the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Texas. Aaron Ramsey ’02 of Nacogdoches is Lufkin’s new animal control director.

David Madrid ’02 of Nacogdoches traveled to Ecuador with fellow Lumberjacks to serve with a medical mission group led by the First Baptist Church. The group helped more than 700 people who live in villages in the Andes Mountains, supplying the tools and education for water purification and distributing Spanish Bibles.

FALL 2013 41


LIFE MEMBERS The SFA Alumni Association would like to thank the following alumni who recently became life members. We appreciate your support. 7846. Joshua A. Yuja ’13, Nacogdoches 7847. Haley J. Muilenburg ’13, Plano 7848. Aimee O. Phillips ’06, Houston 7849. Yvonne Clark ’04, Henderson 7850. Sandy M. Miles ’03, Pittsburgh, Penn. 7851. Patricia A. Fitch ’76, Nacogdoches 7852. Jackson Baker Brown, Nacogdoches 7853. Harvey Smith ’69, Waco 7854. Hunter T. Russell ’13, Lufkin 7855. Clifford E. Shackelford ’90, Nacogdoches 7856. Julie Shackelford, Nacogdoches 7857. Melinda E. Wenner ’00, Nacogdoches 7858. Francesca N. Tierno ’09, Dallas 7859. James Dylan Combs ’13, Campbell 7860. Amie E. Morton ’09, Nacogdoches 7861. Theresa Gay Thomas ’84, Gary 7762. Jonathan D. Wolfe ’05, Grapevine 7862. Shannon A. Saxby ’13, Houston 7863. Edward J. Plant ’80, Sugar Land 7864. Kay A. Plant ’80, Sugar Land 7865. Dannette Leigh Ransom, Garrison 7866. Lewis D. Madsen ’12, Dallas

Cody Derouen ’09 & ’11 and Brandi Hampton ’10 of Nacogdoches married Sept. 22, 2012, in Bugscuffle. Brett A. Richardson ’02, associate instructor and thirdyear doctoral wind conducting student in the prestigious Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, was recently appointed the principal conductor of the Southern Indiana Wind Ensemble, a community wind ensemble based out of Bloomington, Ind. Richardson served on the SFA School of Music faculty from 2007 to 2011 as assistant director of bands.

Christopher Ward ’07 of San Diego, Calif. was inducted into The Art Directors Guild. J.D. Yarbrough ’07 of Albuquerque, N.M., married Kelly Feirstine Dec. 15, 2012.

Jennifer Elbert ’08 of Houston is a teacher at Eiland Elementary. Tyler Weiland ’08 is an associate at Lewis Public Relations in Dallas.

Kelli Magnuson ’03 and Tyle Fore of Nacogdoches announce the March 5 birth of daughter Lennon Jai.

Ashley P. Withers ’08 of Lubbock is an attorney for Fadduol, Cluff & Hardy, P.C.

Brent Kelley ’05 of Garrison is the boy’s head basketball coach at Whitehouse High School.


Curtis ’06 and Kim Cole ’06 of Katy announce the Oct. 16 birth of son Tucker Levi.



Robert D. Dickerson M










Y ou are cordially invited to play in the 19th Annual

April 26, 2014 Woodland Hills Golf Course Robert D. Dickerson Nacogdoches Visit Memorial Golf for more information.

T ournament to be held at W

oodland Hills

Golf Course in Nacogdoches, T


Elliot Holliday ’10 of Missouri City is the assistant strength and conditioning coach for Attack Athletics in Shanghai, China.

exas on

April 27, 2013. Y our participation in the tournament

ALPHA TAU OMEGA SHEET REFERENCE 45th Founder’s Day April 4-6, 2014 Woodland Hills Golf Course


319 Woodland Hills Drive The brothers and of the ATO fraternity On US. Hwy 59 S. between Nacogdoches Lufkin Nacogdoches, Texas 75961will celebrate their 45th Founder’s Call for directions: 936.564.2762 Day. Events include a welcome party,

FORMAT BBQ lunch, dinner, banquet and a Four golf persontournament, Scramble breakfast meeting on Sunday. For more information, SCHEDULE visit Friday, April 26, 2013

Gathering and JAZZ at the FREDONIA HOTEL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5pm Saturday, April 27, 2013 Registration and practice range . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11am-12:30pm Putting Contest . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .12:30pm Shotgun Start . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1pm Dinner and Award Presentation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5:30pm

IN MEMORIAM Nina J. Allen ’77 of Jasper, July 4. Kenneth R. Austin ’73 of Nacogdoches, July 19. Ioma W. Beasley ’74 of Marshall, May 1. Francis E. Birdwell of Nacogdoches, June 2. Marita J. Blanton-Currie ’76 of Tyler, May 11. Cara Boyd ’71 of Overton, July 8. Margaret A. Chapman ’61 of Houston, March 25. Nicole Ciriacks ’88 of Tulsa, Okla., July 19. John Clausen ’70 of Houston, May 25. Rachel Click of Llano, July 15. David A. Coats ’60 of Tyler, May 8. Ruth L. Cooksey ’70 of Nacogdoches, June 7. Charles M. Coussons ’54 of Houston, June 30. Donna Creer ’83 of Little Rock, Ark., June 12. Leilabeth Crispin ’44 of Houston, July 12. Patty Sue Cross ’41 of San Antonio, July 18. Kolton W. Culberson of Emory, June 26. Joseph A. Curtis ’70 & ’73 of Houston, June 21. Sandra Dargis ’81 of Florida, N.Y., June 13. Elizabeth Enloe ’72 & ’74 of Whitehouse, July 25. Billy Ford ’54 of Nacogdoches, July 8. Michael L. Glover ’68 of Big Sandy, July 3. James Richard Goodman ’74 of Emory, May 23. Mary Evelyn Gresham ’66 of Cushing, Feb. 21. Raymond Gerald Jones of Lufkin, March 3. Thomas David Jones ’84 of Richardson, July 18. Ted B. Reed Jr. ’74 of New Braunfels, April 25. Jacqueline Sears Lindsey of Tyler, May 15. Juanita Lowrance of Hawkins, July 22. Priscilla E. McNeil ’41 & ’56 of Dallas, May 4. Brigitte S. Mangham ’78 of Orange, May 26. Wanda L. Marlowe ’54 of Gladewater, June 1. Sue A. Muckleroy of Nacogdoches, June 17. Reba Neal ’48 of Corsicana, April 17. Alison Partin of Cove, May 20. Al Permenter Jr. ’74 of Pollok, Aug. 3. Matthew Pickens of Houston, June 2. Joe D. Prejean ’63 of Birmingham, Ala., June 5. Gayla McLain Sanders ’56 of Nacogdoches, July 1. Geneva E. Sessions ’77 of Nacogdoches, June 19. Robert Sibley ’60 of Nederland, June 12. Geneva Estelle Sessions ’77 of Nacogdoches, June 19. David L. Slack ’72 of Crockett, July 23. Jerry Wayne Simmons of Nacogdoches, Feb. 13. Moultrie Smith of Kilgore, June 17. Carol Anne Strickland ’70 of Houston, June 24. L.C. Watkins of Hallsville, July 17. Roy Michael Watkins of Denton, March 3.

DR. JACK DENNIS MCCULLOUGH JR. ’62 of Nacogdoches died June 16. He was born Aug. 8, 1931, in San Antonio. As a recipient of National Science Foundation Scholarships, McCullough was able to earn master’s and doctoral degrees in biological sciences from SFA and Texas A&M University, respectively. After serving in the U.S. Army, he taught in the Houston ISD for eight years and was a biology instructor at Texas A&M. McCullough joined the Biology Department at SFA in 1964. He retired in December 2000 as the director of the Environmental Science Graduate Studies Program and was named professor emeritus. Other honors include the Regent’s Professor Award for Research, Distinguished Professor Award and the SFASU Foundation Faculty Achievement Award. McCullough was an active member of the Nacogdoches Rotary Club, the Eagle Scout Board of Review and Westminster Presbyterian Church, where he served as an elder. The McCullough Family Scholarship is endowed through the SFA Alumni Association. JOHN ERNEST LINNEY, ’55 of Spring, died June 8. He was born April 9, 1932, in Refugio and graduated from Longview High School before attending Tyler Junior College on a football scholarship. As quarterback, Linney led his team to the Junior College Championship game in the Rose Bowl. Linney also attended SFA, where he was the Lone Star Conference quarterback. He is a member of the Lumberjack Hall of Fame. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in education and began his coaching and teaching career in Bryan before moving on to Beaumont and Lockhart schools. In 1966, he began a successful corporate career with IBM, receiving numerous corporate honors before returning to his first love of teaching and coaching in Klein ISD. John married Beverly Snider in 1951, and the couple raised four sons. He served his community as a school board and Kiwanis Club member, was church youth counselor, and was active on school district committees. The John and Beverly Linney Scholarship is endowed through the SFA Alumni Association. CHARLES KILPATRICK ’42 of San Antonio died June 26. He was born in Fairview, Okla., on June 16, 1922, and was a respected journalist and community leader for more than four decades. A small-town boy who learned to work hard growing up in East Texas during the Depression, Kilpatrick excelled as an officer in the Marine Corps and later as commander of the Marine Reserves’ 14th Reconnaissance Battalion in San Antonio. After working at small East Texas newspapers, he moved his family to San Antonio in 1950 to take a job at the San Antonio Express. He later became editor and publisher of the San Antonio Express-News, which he guided to preeminence in San Antonio and South Texas before retiring in 1990. Kilpatrick loved San Antonio, and he fought to build a strong, vibrant downtown, moving with his wife, Margie, to live there in 1988. After retiring from the Express-News, the couple spent a few months each year in France before returning to their adopted hometown of San Antonio.

FALL 2013 43


JOIN US Friday, Nov. 15 6 p.m. Cocktail Reception 7 p.m. Dinner Convention Center A, Hotel Fredonia


The SFA Alumni Association bestows its highest honors on those who have made outstanding contributions to their professions and community, committed themselves to advancing the values and goals of SFA, and ensured a better quality of life for future generations.


H.N. “Moe” Litton ’53 & ’56


Tom Boggus ’78 & ’80





Cory Beasley ’95

Cody Corley ’01

Dr. Greg Powell ’80

Ryan Emmons ’03

TICKETS Tickets are $50 per person, $100 per couple or $400 for a table of eight. Ten-top tables available for $500.



Dr. Paul L. Boynton


Purchase tickets online by Nov. 1 at sfaalumni. com or call the SFA Alumni Association at (936) 468-3407. Dress is business attire.


FALL 2013 45

Liberty Mutual is a proud partner of the SFA Alumni Association

For additional information about Liberty Mutual and how we're working together to help future students please contact us at 855-323-2150 or visit

12AFF489 2013/01



Help us build a foundation of success by participating in the SFA Walk of Recognition. Permanently make your mark in the Sesquicentennial Plaza next to the Stephen F. Austin statue by designing a brick inscribed with your personal message. Brick prices are $100, $250, and $500. Contact the Alumni Center today for more information about how you can help build the foundation of tomorrow’s Lumberjacks.

P.O. Box 6096 - SFA Station Nacogdoches, TX 75962-6096 Office (936) 468-3407 Toll Free 800-765-1534 Fax (936) 468-1007


FALL 2013 47



The East Texas Research Center and Sawdust would like to know more about this SFA photo, marked RPC Freshmen, Sept. ’56. If you know more about this photo, please contact: or (800) 765-1534. The ETRC at SFA collects, preserves and provides physical and virtual access to East Texas’ unique cultural history. It also is responsible for managing SFA’s Records Management Program and caring for the university’s archives. If you have SFA-related photographs, journals or memorabilia you would like to donate to the ETRC, please call (936) 468-4100.


FALL 2013 49

Stephen F. Austin State University Alumni Association P.O. Box 6096, SFA Station Nacogdoches, Texas 75962

October 18-19, 2013

Non-Profit Org. US Postage PAID Stephen F. Austin State University

Sawdust Fall 2013  

Sawdust is the magazine of Stephen F. Austin State University and the SFA Alumni Association

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