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George F. Jones Jr. [ page 1 8] Faculty Focus [ page 32] Creative Writing [ page 34] n o r t h texa n . un t . edu


W2050 HAT IF...


By modifying the composition of plant cell walls, we can develop lignocellulosic feedstocks for conversion to effective, carbon-neutral liquid biofuels. Available at less than $3 per gallon, these new biofuels would provide new crops for farmers, release less carbon dioxide and reduce our country’s dependence on oil.

— Richard Dixon

Distinguished Research Professor and National Academy of Sciences member

UNT gives faculty and students the green light to push the boundaries of innovative research, scholarship and creativity.


President The sky is the limit for UNT graduates UNT helps students soar

The No r t h Texan U n i v e r si ty R e l at i o n s ,

D esi g n e r s

Co m m u n i c at i o n s a n d


M a r k e t i n g L e a d e r sh i p

k i t yo u n g

(’ 0 6)

V i ce P r esi d e n t D e b o r a h L e l i a e rt

( ’ 9 6 M . E d.)

P h oto g r a p h e r s Jana Birchum

A ss o ci at e V i ce P r esi d e n t

M i c h a e l Cl e m e n ts

M a rty N e w m a n

B r a d H o lt

( ’ 02 M . J .)

(’ 0 9)

G a r y Pay n e A ss i sta n t V i ce P r esi d e n t K e l l e y R e ese

(’ 99)

J o n at h a n R e y n o l ds


Writers D i r ec to r s

J a i m e b l a n to n

K e n n M o f f i tt

c a r o ly n b o b o

Dena Moore

E r n est i n e B o u s q u e t

R o l a n d o N . R i va s

J essi c a D e L eó n N a n c y Ko l st i

M ag a z i n e S ta f f

A d r i e n n e N e tt l es

M a n ag i n g E d i t o r J u l i e E l l i ot t Pay n e

Bu d dy P r i ce ( ’ 97)

E l l e n R osse tt i

(’ 0 0 , ’ 0 8 M . J . )

c l au d i a tay lo r E d i to r s

M a r g a r i ta v e n eg a s

R a n d e n a Hu l st r a n d Jill King

( ’ 88, ’ 07 M . J . )

L esl i e W i m m e r

(’ 96)

(’ 07 )

( ’ 9 3 M . S ., ’ 00 M . A .)

O n l i n e Co m m u n i c at i o n s Ch r i st i n a d ow e r s

M i ch e l l e H a l e

E r i c Va n d e r g r i f f

A rt D i r ec to r

P r o j ec t m a n ag e m e n t

Se a n Z e i g l e r

( ’ 00)

(’ 07, ’ 1 0 M . J . )

E r i c a B lo u n t L au r a R o b i n s o n

P h oto E d i t o r Angilee Wilkerson

S t u d e n t Co n t r i b u to r s L e i g h da n i e l s

I n t eg r at e d B r a n d i n g


J oy H o u se r

c r ysta l h o l l i s Mollie jamison

f u n d r a i si n g co m m u n i c at i o n s

j e n n i f e r k r a u se

m e r e d i t h d i ck e n s o n

ju n m a O l m a r V e n eg a s

The North Texan (ISSN 0468-6659) is published four times a year (in March, June, September and December) by the University of North Texas, 1155 Union Circle #311070, Denton, Texas 76203-5017, for distribution to alumni and friends of the university. Periodicals postage paid at Denton, Texas, and at additional mailing offices. The diverse views on matters of public interest that are presented in The North Texan do not necessarily reflect the official policies of the university. Publications staff can be reached at or 940-565-2108. It is the policy of the University of North Texas not to discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, disability (where reasonable accommodations can be made), disabled veteran status or veteran of the Vietnam era status in its educational programs, activities, admission or employment policies. In addition to complying with federal and state equal opportunity laws and regulations, the university through its diversity policy declares harassment based on individual differences (including sexual orientation) inconsistent with its mission and educational goals. Direct questions or concerns to the equal opportunity office, 940565-2759, or the dean of students, 940-565-2648. TTY access is available at 940-369-8652. Postmaster: Please send requests for changes of address, accompanied if possible by old address labels, to the University of North Texas, University Relations, Communications and Marketing, 1155 Union Circle #311070, Denton, Texas 762035017. The UNT System and the University of North Texas are the owners of all of their trademarks, service marks, trade names, slogans, graphic images and photography and they may not be used without permission.


V. Lane Rawlins President

URCM 6/13 (13-004)



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Summer 2013

Leslie Wimmer

O n l i n e E d i to r

UNT has always been focused on the success of our students, and there is no better reward or milestone than seeing them graduate. At the May commencement, I joined the UNT community in celebrating the more than 4,000 students who earned their degrees, becoming part of an annual graduat- President V. Lane Rawlins speaks at commencement this May. ing class at UNT that More than 4,000 students earned degrees. UNT graduates more than 8,500 students each year. is 8,500-strong. Graduation is a time for both our students and our university to relish the fruits of our labor. The students’ hard work has paid off in the form of a college degree and a future ripe with possibility. And our overarching commitment to our students annually produces thousands of new UNT graduates who will excel as leaders, doers and thinkers. You can read more about the greatness of our alumni, students and faculty in the President’s Annual Report 2012 at This is public higher education at its best because it shows how UNT is a place of transformation. Each one of us is making a difference in our students’ education, whether we’re educators, mentors or proud alumni. Many of us also are making a difference in more direct ways through our comprehensive fundraising campaign, called The light is green. The time is now. The Campaign for UNT, which we unveiled this spring. You can read more about the campaign on page 26 and about its leadership on page 38. The Campaign for UNT is about much more than raising money. Like everything we do at UNT, it is ultimately about showing our students that the sky is the limit and helping them soar to the greatest heights.



2 0 1 3



George F. Jones Jr.

UNT is the foundation of success for the CEO and founder of one of Texas’ largest banks. By Jaime Blanton

32 Why I Teach

 Faculty share why they chose to teach and the impacts they make on students.

34 Creative Writing

UNT’s rigorous program builds on a legacy for turning out talented authors. By Jessica DeLeón


The sky is the limit for UNT graduates

Jonathan Reynolds


D E A R N O R T H T E X A N • 5

Alibi ... Yankee in Texas ... Chilton days UNT TODAY • 8

Historical signs ... Lecture series ... Mean Green ... Alaska partnership ... Ask an Expert U N T M U S E • 2 1

Making a Difference for Students

Museum muralist … Making his (trade)mark ... Lady and the professor ... Unique type THE CAMPAIGN FOR UNT • 38

u nt u n v e i l s its co m p r e h e nsi v e f u nd r a ising

Q&A with President ... Gifts move UNT forward

c a m pa ign t o 1 , 0 0 0 a lu mni a nd s u p p o rt e r s at EAGLES’ NEST • 42

t h e e m e r a l d e a g l e h o n o r s f u nd r a is e r .

Armadillo Ale ... Connecting With Friends ... Annie Webb Blanton ... Friends We’ll Miss

By Ernestine Bousquet and Claudia Taylor

L A S T W O R D • 5 2

Music alum reflects on a century of memories. Cover: Seula Lee, senior music performance major Photography by Jonathan Reynolds

Summer 2013




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ONLINE FEATURES aRTIsT VIdeO Watch how uNT professor turns ordinary paper into extraordinary art, “Thurmanite.” eMeRITUs COlleGe VIdeO learn how uNT is engaging seniors through enriching classes and experiences and how you can join.


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W h o pa rT I C I paT e S o N T h e paG e , T h e u N I v e r S I T Y C r e aT e D a v I D e o. S e e I T F o r Yo u r S e l F o N u N T’ S FaC e B o o K paG e aT FAC E BO O K . CO M / NORT H T E X A S .

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Summer 2013

visit the north texan online to: • Keep up with what’s happening between issues of The North Texan • Tell us what you think about our stories • Learn more about your fellow alumni • Write memorials about friends we’ll miss • Enjoy an array of additional stories, photos, videos and recordings


North Texan let us know what you think about news and topics covered in The North Texan. letters may be edited for length and publication style.

excellent alibi

Sue Ann Beals’ great letter brought back many memories from the “Keep it clean with Imogene” era. Humorous, in retrospect. For one example, at the end of my last semester, one month before my 22nd birthday, my boyfriend offered to drive me home for the holidays. But his job as band director in Cisco required his participation in a Christmas program that night, so we couldn’t drive on to West Texas until the next day. When I returned to my all-girl dorm, the Dean of Women’s office gave me a stern summons to an inquiry into my behavior. It seems, unknown to me, they required a letter on file from

Jan Downing StClair (’52) Stillwater, Okla.

Thank you to grads I would like to recognize all the many graduates who made successes of whatever life they sought, regardless of being known to your magazine. Many thousands have gone on to successful careers

in education, government, business or self-employment and never have been nor will ever be recognized. My wife, a 1967 graduate, taught 32 years in Azle’s elementary schools, I gave 30 years of service to placing folks in 10,000 jobs at Texas Employment, my ex-roommate is a long-time commercial builder, and I know many in my hometown just like us. You may never find out their deeds, but thousands benefit from your education. My wife is known all over my hometown as a good teacher, and her ex-students speak to us continually. There is no telling how many ex-cons I placed in a three-year period who came to Fort Worth to live after being released from the Huntsville prison system, whom I kept from returning to prison by helping them get a job. You see, the graduates go everywhere and do various things after graduation, many never heard from again.

Summer 2013

John F. Clouse Jr. (’64), Azle

always pleasant

Read more letters and share your comments at

my folks giving permission if a girl didn’t go straight home. Oops! Expulsion might have been the result except for my excellent alibi. I had accepted the gracious invitation from friends (Dr. Lester Matthews and his wife, Betty) to stay with them. Lester was the son of then President Matthews. By the way, that boyfriend, Kenneth, whom I met in summer school, was a three-time graduate of North Texas. We married the following July and have now celebrated our 60th wedding anniversary.

America is a better place because they persevered. Thank you, grads of UNT, for all your hard work.


Retired now, I sold clothing and footwear to Cavender’s Boot City for many years. They are, in my opinion, the most professional and courteous people in the western industry. Always pleasant and fun to be associated with, Clay, Joe, Mike and father James always had a warm smile and reception to visits to their office in Tyler. The people who work for them are just like the family members in that they are all friendly, courteous and receptive to looking at new product. I am truly happy for all their success. Don Halasz Plano

50-mile walk

On Feb. 9, 2013, I was listening to NPR news and heard the story of the 50-mile



No r t h Texa n



North Texan

A Yankee in Texas In 1964, this Minnesota Yankee was invited by Dr. Cora Stafford to join the then Department of Art. Thus began a 30-year unforgettable journey. The day I drove into Denton, the temperature was 105 degrees of scalding heat. I asked a fellow where I might buy the coldest beer in town. I was instructed to get back on the highway and I would see Dallas about 30 miles down the road. I fell absolutely in love with Texas and Texans. Yankees have to do that when they are assigned a summer non-air-conditioned classroom. One student brought ice cold watermelons to the 7:30 gathering, which he cut up and we ate during our breaks. The fans in the lecture auditorium wobbled. I was fearful a set of blades would fly off and decapitate everyone. I sat near the door. At left, Berger is pictured as a sponsor of the Student Art Education Association in the 1968 Yucca. Read a longer version of her letter at At first, the students and I were equally bewildered by each other. I was, for example, very concerned about the young man in one of my classes who had a “pine” in his leg. Now when I hear Texan spoken in Minnesota it catches my attention so fast that I make any excuse for a conversation. I made some of the best friends among the students and faculty that I have had in my lifetime. It brings tears to my eyes to recall how gracious, how helpful, how simply “good” everyone (well, almost) was to me. At 82, I continue to paint and exhibit. So many memories, but still enough space left to express my gratitude. Professor Emeritus Lorraine E. Berger Minneapolis, Minn. walk that Robert Kennedy made as part of the fitness program being promoted by President John Kennedy. This reminded me of the 50-mile walk that I made at UNT. In February 1963, two other classmates (Edwin Kuehn and George Jones) and I started walking on a 50mile loop outside Denton. Charles Ludeman made several trips to check on us. He also kept Dian Hoppe of Crumley Hall informed of our status and told her that I would like to take her to a basketball game that evening. That changed our relationship, and our 49th anniversary will be this year. Unfortunately, my two



No r t h Texa n


good friends had to drop out of the hike but I did finish and ended up with my picture in the Campus Chat. After graduating, we moved and I lost track of our North Texas friends until a year or so ago when I found them on the Internet. As we were filling in the stories of our lives, we all recalled that dark and chilly night when we departed on the President’s walk. Gary David Schill (’65) Mercer Island, Wash.


Summer 2013

Chilton days

After learning my third niece will be attending UNT in the fall, I reminisced about attending from 1964 through 1967. I have many fond memories of North Texas. I lived in Chilton Hall my entire three years. At that time sororities were housed in seven of the nine ramps that made up Chilton Hall. I

lived in one of the non-Greek ramps (Ramp 7). Each was only accessible through the front door, which opened onto a stoop onto the courtyard. Men, even fathers, were not allowed into a ramp except at the beginning of a semester when they could help a girl move in. The ramps had the look of a New York Brownstone. The doors were locked at 10:50 p.m. on weekdays and 1 a.m. on Friday and Saturday nights. You could only stay out until 1 a.m. with special permission. The courtyard was the scene for fraternities’ pinning ceremonies. It was sort of magical and movielike!

I attended a tour of the campus in 2002 with a niece who would be attending that fall. We toured Chilton, which is now an office building. The courtyard had been entirely filled in and incorporated into the building with no resemblance to the original dormitory. I asked the tour guide if this had originally been a dorm and she answered it had been many years before. When my niece volunteered that I had lived there while attending UNT, the guide seemed absolutely stunned that I was still ambulatory! We all had a great laugh. Connie Fielding Britz (’67) Okemos, Mich.

The last 50 years I am a 1962 speech and drama graduate who added an M.Ed. from East Texas State University in 1966. I taught, coached and was a principal at Mount Vernon, Yantis, Avery and Overton for 20 years. I also spent 14 years in my own business and almost 20 working for others. I am the last graduate to never go “on line” or do anything with a computer. Good luck has allowed me to play golf in 10 states and two countries, travel extensively, stay connected to the theatre and be blessed with healthy kids, 12 grandchildren and a beautiful wife.

My best friend of a lifetime — ­ Felix — I met at North Texas, but he was the only friend I stayed in contact with over the years. I wonder what became of the others who shared my love for golf, theatre, dance, horseback riding. I search the letters for some of the names but never see them: Bogen, Young, Lee, Lopez, Peninger, Poyser, George, Sappenfield, etc. Where did the last 50 years go? North Texas was so special! Joe Taylor (’62) Overton

Digital library

interested in a comment in the spring issue announcing the new digital library. I went to the Internet address and searched for my master’s thesis (“Mark Twain’s Views on Formal Education”) but could not find it. Is the digitization process not yet complete? Tom Cameron (’66 M.A.) Bremerton, Wash. Editor’s note: Thanks for checking. The libraries’ digital projects staff began work on the collection in 2010 and estimate they are about halfway through the 8,000 to 10,000 volumes to be digitized.

As an alum with a master’s in English, I was keenly

Tell us about ... a favorite photo If you would like to comment

Linda Tillman Gustwick (’61) of

on a story, share your memories or

Natchitoches, La., sent us this photo

photos, submit news or obituaries,

from the 1959-60 school year,

or otherwise get in touch with us,

showing her Alpha Phi sorority

we would love to hear from you.

sisters Lurline Krider and Ruth Ann Hyndman posing with “The Student,”


a statue that graced the courtyard at


Chilton Hall from the 1940s through

(follow the “Contact Us” link)

the 1960s. “I am sure other alumni

Phone: 940-565-2108

from this era would remember the

Fax: 940-369-8763

statue and have stories to tell about

Mail: The North Texan;

it,” she says. You’ll find part of the

University of North Texas;

statue on display in Chilton Hall today. Do you have favorite campus photos

Division of University Relations,

from your North Texas years? Mail or email them to us and we’ll share them

Communications and Marketing;

with readers in print or online.

1155 Union Circle #311070; Denton, Texas 76203-5017

Summer 2013




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p / 10

Global Connection

p / 11

Mean Green

p / 12

Ask an Expert

p / 16

UNT Alumni Association

p / 17

Jonathan Reynolds


in this section Brilliantly Green

the corridor of years Signs commemorating early campus buildings are reminders of UNT’s rich history and spirit.

Read more about the historical signs and find a map of their locations at



No r t h Texa n



Summer 2013

WHEN THE FIRST BUILDING ON CAMPUS, THE Normal Building, was completed in 1891 at Hickory and Avenue B, a barbed-wire fence was needed to keep out livestock. UNT has come a long way since its days as a 10-acre campus on the prairie west of town. New historical signs commemorate that first building and 10 others, telling stories of the generations and experiences that have made UNT what it is today — a major public research university that remains focused on its students and providing the best educational experience. UNT is now the nation’s 25th largest public university and home to many nationally and internationally recognized programs. A replica of one of the signs was unveiled April 12 at University Day (above).

Condoleezza Rice spoke at the UNT Coliseum and participated in a Q&A with students as part of UNT’s Distinguished Lecture Series.

Gary Payne

UNT was named among the top 100 “Most Affordable Large Public Colleges” by Affordable Colleges Online.

Condoleezza Rice lecture

Former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice spoke on democracy, immigration reform, education and terrorism this spring as part of UNT’s Distinguished Lecture Series. Now an awardwinning Stanford University faculty member, she discussed her love for education and teaching during her keynote address. As part of the series, she also sat down for a Q&A with students. Rice, Secretary of State under former President George W. Bush, is regarded as one of today’s foremost leading experts on foreign policy and terrorism. She made history as the second

woman and the first African American woman to hold the post. She also was the first woman to serve as national security advisor to a U.S. president. She held various other foreign policy posts under Bush and his father, former President George H.W. Bush. Digital retailing center

UNT’s new Global Digital Retailing Research Center in the College of Merchandising, Hospitality and Tourism is a hub for UNT faculty and industry experts addressing complex issues in e-commerce. It is the first interdisciplinary center in the U.S. focused completely on digital retailing.

Professionals worldwide in retail, hospitality management, technology and other industries will use the center to access faculty expertise and industry research. The center also will provide opportunities for research collaborations between industry experts and faculty researchers, who will test websites, social media, smartphone shopping applications, tablets and other digital retailing technologies. The center is home to UNT’s Consumer Experiences in Digital Environments research cluster. founder Richard Last, lecturer in merchandising and digital retailing, is the center’s director.

Summer 2013

Jonathan Reynolds

director of the year Carol Hagen successfully combines her roles as senior lecturer of teacher education and administration in the College of Education and director of UNT’s Child Development Laboratory to make a difference in the lives of students, children and families. For her dedication, Hagen earned the National Coalition for Campus Children’s Centers’ 2013 Director of the Year Award. Since 1987, she has overseen the laboratory, a high-quality preschool program that also serves as a research center and training site for students pursuing careers in early childhood education, child development and play therapy.




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Today Pass it on: Great things are happening at UNT. Learn about them here and share our successes with your family and friends. • Time travel. Reliving Texas history 1 million different ways just got easier thanks to UNT’s Portal to Texas History at This spring, the UNT libraries celebrated a milestone of 1 million digitized Texas newspaper pages online, covering everything from the battle for independence against Mexico to the 1900 Galveston hurricane and more. • Growing future ecologists. UNT will get greener this fall when the university begins offering a new bachelor’s degree in ecology for environmental science — the first university in the Dallas-Fort Worth area to do so. Starting with water research in the 1930s, UNT has built a strong legacy in programs and research for students focused on ecology, conservation and environmental science. • Road test. Racing and ingenuity are what students in UNT’s Society for Automotive Engineers and Mean Green Racing are all about. This spring, members — engineering, business and other majors — with a need for speed and efficiency built a Formula SAE series race car from scratch at UNT’s Discovery Park. This summer, the team will put the car to its first test at the Society for Automotive Engineers International Formula SAE race against 80 other university chapters in Lincoln, Neb. Read more about the team’s building process at

Jonathan Reynolds

NSF fellows

UNT’s supportive learning environment produces some of the nation’s top student researchers. Katherine Lester (’13) and Daniel Munro (’13) are among those who have



No r t h Texa n


Michael Clements


earned prestigious National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowships while attending UNT. As an undergraduate geography major, Lester studied homelessness and the distribution of services in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, identifying underserved areas with the help of Joseph Oppong, professor of geography. She will continue her research at UNT while earning a master’s in geography and a Ph.D. in environmental science.


Summer 2013

Munro, a graduate of UNT’s Honors College, used computational methods to understand human microbiomes, or communities of bacteria, in relation to HIV infection, gum disease, diabetes and other medical conditions in the Bioinformatics Research Laboratory of Qunfeng Dong, assistant professor of biological sciences. Munro plans to continue his research while pursuing a Ph.D. in quantitative and computational biology at Princeton University.

Outstanding dissertation

Examining how Latino adolescent immigrants gain literacy skills outside of school made for an award-winning dissertation for Mary Amanda Stewart (’12 Ph.D.). Stewart, who earned her doctorate in literacy and language, received the 2013 Outstanding Doctoral Dissertation Award from Phi Delta Kappa International. She is a postdoctoral research associate for the Morningside Children’s Partnership.

F u lb r i g h t a w a r d s Three UNT professors earned Fulbright awards for 2013-14. Marc Cut­right, associate professor of higher education and director of UNT’s Higher Education Development Initiative, was named a Fulbright Scholar to Uganda, where he will work with the Inter-University Council for East Africa to produce more Ph.D. graduates. Tomas Mantecon, associate professor of finance, was named a Fulbright Scholar to Johannes Kep­ler University in Austria, where he will teach and conduct research investigating corporate governance by American and Austrian financial firms. Lisa Owen, associate professor of art history, earned a Fulbright-Nehru Research Award to conduct research in India for a second book examining medieval temples carved into natural rock.

Alaska partnership



the Chilean Institute of Ecol­ogy and Biodiversity. UNT also collaborates with its Chilean partners to offer the study abroad course “Tracing Darwin’s Path.” “The partnership provides an umbrella for new academic and research collaborations between UNT and Alaska and eventually for Alaska students to participate in our study abroad course,” Jiménez says. “It has been very successful. Students love the course.”

Jaime Jiménez

Students taking the course “Introduction to Sub-Antarctic Biocultural Conservation” at UNT now can explore wildlife and culture in the sub-Arctic region of Alaska as well as the sub-Antarctic region of Chile thanks to a new partnership between UNT and the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Since last year, the course — offered through UNT’s Sub-Antarctic Biocultural Research and Conservation program — has included a component on the sub-Arctic region of Alaska. Three professors from UAF participated in teaching and course discussions through video conference, says Jaime Jiménez, professor of biological sciences and co-director of UNT’s program. This spring, the universities signed a formal agreement for UAF professors to teach the Alaska component through video conference. The class will compare the landscapes, cultures, wildlife and under-

standing of conservation in the sub-Arctic of Alaska and in Chile’s Cape Horn Biosphere, one of the world’s last pristine wildernesses, Jiménez says. “The new agreement extends UNT’s program to the far north, allowing for research collaborations in the sub-Polar regions,” he says. Since 2008, students taking the course have been exposed to wildlife and culture in the Cape Horn region as part of UNT’s partnership with the Universidad de Magallanes and

At left, Ricardo Rozzi, professor of philosophy and co-director of UNT’s Sub-Antarctic Biocultural Research and Conservation program, with Jamie Hollingsworth, manager of the University of Alaska Fairbanks’ Bonanza Creek Long-Term Ecological Research site.

Summer 2013




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Today Student athletes excel, Hall of Famers named Volleyball standout Competing comes easy for UNT volleyball middle blocker and junior Courtney Windham. She beat out 57 other middle blockers participating in the 2013 U.S. Women’s National Team Open Tryouts at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo., to become one of 48 players chosen for the USA Women’s National Volleyball Senior A2 team. An All-Sun Belt Conference player, she is training in Dallas and will compete at the USA Volleyball Girls’ Junior National Rick Yeatts

Championships in July. Her performance could secure her a spot on the U.S. Women’s National Volleyball team.

Tennis coach Sujay Lama, golf coach Brad Stracke and track coach Carl Sheffield were each named Sun Belt Coach of the Year for their sports. Beginning in July, the Mean Green will compete in Conference USA.

Sun Belt champions

The Mean Green women’s tennis team closed out the 2012-13 season with its third Sun Belt Conference Championship win in four years. And the women’s track and field team and the men’s golf team, which was ranked No. 37 in the country, each won their second consecutive Sun Belt Conference Championships. Senior Rodolfo Cazaubon advanced to the NCAA Championship in Atlanta as the lowest-scoring golfer on a team that didn’t advance. He was UNT’s first individual player to vie for the national golf title in the modern era.

Chapman, accepting for her late husband, lineman Walter Chapman (’77); lineman Brandon Kennedy; Jamario Thomas (’08), who led the nation in rushing as a freshman; and fullback and Mean Green ambassador C. Dan Smith (’62).

Hall of Fame honorees

Find the latest Mean Green news and buy season tickets at



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Summer 2013

Rick Yeatts

Two of the best defensive linemen in Mean Green history, a running back great, an all-around standout football player and a track and field star were inducted into UNT’s Athletic Hall of Fame this spring. Pictured from left are long jump specialist Ron Linscomb (’66); Pat

Jonathan Reynolds

As a leader in sustainability, UNT has reduced its carbon footprint by more than a half billion pounds through projects such as installing wind turbines at Apogee Stadium.

Advanced weather radar

A new advanced radar system at Discovery Park — UNT’s 300-acre research campus — is allowing UNT to help provide severe weather data and warnings for the North Texas region. The Collaborative Adaptive Sensing of the Atmosphere radar, part of a multi-sensor weather monitoring network in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, helps local emergency managers, National Weather Service forecasters and weather-sensitive industries by reducing injuries and costs associated with severe weather. The radar collects data faster and provides five to 10 times more detailed data than current systems.

UNT faculty will use the radar’s data to research how the emerging technology can contribute to developments in emergency management, public administration, engineering and business. UNT emergency staff also will have access to the data for campus emergency preparedness. The system was brought to the region as part of a project among several universities and governmental organizations, including the Engineering Research Center for Collaborative Adaptive Sensing of the Atmosphere, the National Weather Service Office of Science and Technology, and the North Central Texas Council of Governments.

From left, Andrew Harris, vice president for finance and administration, and Randy Fite, director of facilities maintenance, at the Collaborative Adaptive Sensing of the Atmosphere radar installation at UNT’s Discovery Park, this spring.

Student marketing award

With the help of faculty and alumni, marketing major Thomas Pemberton is making real-life impacts in business. He was named DFW American Marketing Association Collegiate Marketer of the Year for implementing an innovative digital marketing strategy for Culinaire International. Pemberton is a project manager with SPYCH, a Dallas marketing research and consulting firm, and owns the online business Trending Global. He credits marketing faculty Michael Gade and Francisco Guzmán and former UNT student and SPYCH CEO Ben Smithee for helping him succeed.

Summer 2013

Angilee Wilkerson

N EH G r a nt For 25 years, Steven Friedson, Distinguished Research Professor of music and anthropology, has studied music and ritual in Africa and its effect on people, as well as medical and religious practices. The research has earned him a National Endowment for the Humanities grant to support his work and travel in the Volta region of Ghana, where he is completing the last book in a trilogy documenting his findings. Friedson’s research is routinely cited in publications, from introductions to anthropology for undergraduates to medieval studies on ritual. His book is expected to be published in 2015.




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Michael Clements


Goldwater Scholars

Before graduating this spring from UNT’s Texas Academy of Mathematics and Science, Helen Xiong and Kevin Chen were named 2013 Barry M. Goldwater Scholars, a prestigious honor for students planning careers in mathematics, science and engineering. UNT leads all Texas universi-

ties, with 52 scholars, to date. Xiong researched polymer brittleness and nanocomposites under Witold Brostow, Regents Professor of materials science and engineering and director of UNT’s Laboratory for Advanced Polymers and Optimized Materials. She plans to study chemical engineering or physics at Stanford University this fall. Chen worked with Xiaotu Ma, research scientist of molecular and cell biology at the University of Texas at Dallas,

and Adi Gazdar, professor of pathology at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, to develop a new statistical tool for cancer data analysis. He will study molecular biophysics and biochemistry at Yale University in the fall. Howard Hughes grant

Irán Román, a senior majoring in biology, music theory and German, wants to discover which genes play key roles in diseases such as cancer, HIV and diabetes. He earned a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Exceptional Research

Opportunities Program grant to research genetics and cellular biology at Stanford University this summer. He was among 20 students chosen to attend Stanford to train as the next generation of leaders in biological research under Tim Stearns, associate professor of biology and genetics. Román and Stearns’ research will use yeast as a model organism and molecular techniques to study human genes. Román will present his research at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute headquarters.

UNT’s Emeritus College UNT’s Emeritus College proves that learning can take place at any age. Supporting UNT’s bold goal of serving its community through meaningful outreach and partnerships, the college provides lifelong learning through non-credit classes, travel-learn trips and social activities for adults age 50 and older. The annual membership fee is $140 for unlimited classes September through May. Housed in UNT’s Center for Achievement and Lifelong Learning, the college has quadrupled its membership to 400 and increased its course offerings to more than 100 classes since it began five years ago. This fall, the college will expand its reach by offering classes at UNT, Texas Woman’s University and Robson Ranch, a Denton retirement community. Ken Dickson (’66, ’68 M.S.), Professor Emeritus of biological sciences and founder and director of UNT’s Elm Fork Education Center, oversees the growing college, which offers classes taught by active and retired faculty from UNT and Texas Woman’s University, as well as area professionals. “Emeritus College is a Denton treasure for our members because it allows them to attend thought-provoking classes and meet interesting people,” Dickson says. “Both active and retired faculty who participate in Emeritus College love teaching to an audience of smart, engaged people. We provide an experience that’s a win-win opportunity for both class members and teachers.” Learn more about UNT’s Emeritus College at and watch videos at



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Jonathan Reynolds



1 UNT’s first Graduate Exhibition March 2-3 showcased the work of graduate students who competed for $10,000 in prizes based on their ability to explain their research. Above, composer Mark Oliveiro’s re-creation of an ancient Roman musical document.

2 From left, Jake Heggie and internationally renowned tenor Richard Croft discuss the rehearsal of Heggie’s Ahab Symphony, which premiered April 24 at UNT.

Michael Clements

Jonathan Reynolds


3 UNT’s College of Business hosted its third annual Golf Classic at The Vaquero Club in Westlake to raise money to benefit its inspiring students and educational programs. From left, President V. Lane Rawlins, John Wolfner, Doug Brooks, Taylor Brooks, Preston Phillips and Dean Finley Graves.

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uNT dallas president

Ronald Brown, former provost and senior vice

president for academic affairs at Wayne State University, has been named president of UNT Dallas. His appointment is effective July 1. Brown brings a wealth of experience to the UNT System. He previously served as dean of the College of Health Professions and Social Work and interim dean of the School of Dentistry at Temple University. He succeeds UNT Dallas Founding President

John Ellis Price, who announced last summer that he would step down at the conclusion of his current contract. Presidential search

This spring, UNT President V. Lane Rawlins announced his plans to retire this year once a new president is appointed to replace him. A Presidential Search Advisory Committee is identifying strong, experienced candidates to lead the UNT


System’s flagship campus. The 17-member committee appointed by Chancellor Lee Jackson includes students, alumni, faculty, staff, administrators, a UNT System representative, and business and community leaders. Rawlins, who joined UNT in 2010, will remain involved upon retirement as President Emeritus.

ask an expert

how can you prepare for a public disaster or emergency?


he most common mistake — and worst response — in a disaster is to panic, says Capt. Jim Coffey (’93) with UNT’s Police Department. Coffey has more than 25 years of experience teaching groups how to remain calm and save lives in the event of public disasters or emergencies, which are becoming increasingly more common across the U.S. He says panic causes unclear thinking and the inability for people to see escape options when faced with danger. They often react inappropriately and make “non-lifesaving reactions” in high-stakes situations. “When you panic, you are less likely to be able to think clearly and effectively,” Coffey says. “You are more likely to pick up on natural warning signs and cues when you are aware and paying attention to your surroundings.” Coffey offers the following tips to increase your chances of survival in the event of a public disaster by thinking clearly and choosing lifesaving responses.



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Take action • Have a plan. Be conscious of escape routes and areas that provide shelter and concealment. • Do not overload your arms with packages or sacks when walking to your car. Use a cart when possible. • Consider changing your route or walking in a different direction to avoid potentially dangerous situations. — Adrienne Nettles

Michael Clements

Be aware • Keep your head up when walking in public. Do not text or do anything that would cause you to be unaware of your immediate surroundings. • Stay alert and aware. • Note things out of the ordinary.

Trust your instincts • Do not suppress or ignore feelings of fear. They can be used to your advantage. Gavin DeBecker’s book, The Gift of Fear, is an excellent resource on self-protection and reducing risk in everyday life. • Be willing to change your plans if something appears wrong or you get a bad feeling. • Trust your instincts if someone around you acts suspiciously. Notify authorities.

Shuford hall of honor

cardiomyopathy research

UNT undergraduate researchers Alysha Joseph and Diana Wang, who graduated this spring from UNT’s Texas Academy of Mathematics and Science, conducted research with Douglas Root, associate professor of biological sciences, to discover a new drug to treat hereditary cardiomyopathy disease, the leading cause of sudden death in young athletes. They found that positively charged polyamine compounds stabilized the weakened region of heart muscle protein that causes the disease, the first step in developing new drugs. In April, they presented their work at a Council on Undergraduate Research event in Washington, D.C.

Gary Payne

aLZheiMer’S reSearch Grapes could be the key to slowing Alzheimer’s disease. Richard Dixon, Distinguished Research Professor of biological sciences and a National Academy of Sciences member, is conducting research to uncover how grape seed extract helps slow the progression of the disease. He and researchers from Mount Sinai’s Ichan School of Medicine and Purdue University are continuing the first-of-its-kind study to show how the extract prevents development or delays progression of Alzheimer’s in mice. His lab at UNT is developing synthesized versions of the grape seed-derived compounds and the procedure to create and test them. His work is funded by a National Institutes of Health grant through Mount Sinai.

Dallas icon Vivian Castleberry, a staunch advocate for women’s rights and peace, has received the Frank W. and Sue Mayborn School of Journalism’s most prestigious honor, the C.E. Shuford Hall of Honor Award. Castleberry, the first female editor of the Dallas Times Herald, is a founder of the Women’s Center in Dallas and The Family Place, the first women’s shelter in the city. In 1987, she created the nonprofit Peacemakers Inc. UNT’s peace studies program collaborated with Peacemakers Inc. in 2010 to establish the Castleberry Peace Institute at UNT, the only peace science research institute in the southern U.S.

Members of the UNT Alumni Association helped prepare food packages for Stop Hunger Now as part of this year’s Big Event.

uNT alumni association UNT’s Big Event impacts communities throughout the North Texas region in big ways with the help of UNT alumni, students, student organizations, and faculty and staff volunteers. For the past three years, the Big Event, a nationwide community service program, has been held at UNT with volunteers committing thousands of hours to nonprofit organizations to make a difference in the community. More than 2,500 volunteers and 60 organizations reached out to help local communities in the North Texas region this spring. And for the first time, members of the UNT Alumni Association were official partners. More than 20 alumni signed on to participate in packaging meals on campus for Stop Hunger Now, an international hunger relief organization, and the association hopes to see that number grow in the future, says Robert McKinney (’03), director of events for UNT’s Alumni Association. “We were honored to participate in an event that brings together the entire UNT community through service opportunities,” he says. Ernest Martinez (’11), above, and his wife, Monica (’06), helped package meals. He says it was a great opportunity to show students that being involved with UNT doesn’t end after graduation. “We hope all students will commit themselves to doing something positive in our world and community now and as alumni,” Martinez says. To join the association or learn more, visit, email or call 940-565-2834.

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George F. Jones Jr. by Jaime Blanton


hen George F. Jones Jr. (’67) transferred to the university in 1965, he was a young man looking for a fresh academic start. He discovered a career path that has made him one of the most influential men in the Texas banking industry. Jones, 68, says his early college years lacked focus, discipline and purpose. “From the point I was admitted, UNT took the time to care about me. The faculty made an effort to get to know me,” he says. “They understood my needs and found a way to foster talents I didn’t know I had.” Jones says the personal attention he received from faculty and their highquality instruction transformed him from a wayward young man into a hardworking college student who spent the hours he wasn’t in class working as a teller at a bank just blocks from campus. Today, he serves as president and CEO of Texas Capital Bank and its parent company, Texas Capital Bancshares Inc. By assets, Texas Capital is considered the second-largest bank headquartered in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. Jones and others founded the bank in 1998 with $80 million in private capital. At the time, it was the largest privately held bank in the U.S., raising $125 million before going public in 2003. “I owe so much of my success to my time at UNT,” Jones says. “The experience was such a stabilizing force in my life, giving me direction and helping me

As CEO and founding executive of one of the largest Texas-based banks, George F. Jones Jr. (’67) says UNT gave him the foundation to jumpstart his 40-year career and taught him that focus, hard work and collaboration are key to success.



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develop my interest in banking.” Born and raised in Dallas, Jones commuted to campus, attended classes during the day and worked at least 30 hours each week. “I was pretty focused,” he says. “I didn’t have time not to be.” Now, with more than 40 years of banking experience, Jones is one of the most recognizable figures in Dallas finance. His professional credits include executive leadership in many of Dallas’ key financial institutions, including Resource Bank Dallas and Comerica Bank-Texas, where he supervised a commercial loan portfolio of nearly $1 billion. Jones also was president and CEO of NorthPark National Bank and president of NorthPark National Corp. But Jones is more than a dedicated banking professional. He also is focused on giving back. He actively serves as a member of the Salesmanship Club of Dallas and was a past chair of the club’s Foundation Board of Trustees. The organization is committed to working with troubled and at-risk children and their families to help them transform the children’s futures. “Community service is an essential part of being a good citizen,” he says. “It’s the right thing to do, and it’s rewarding for so many reasons.” And Jones says he will be forever grateful for the education and the mentorship he received at UNT. He still remembers his economics professor challenging him to broaden his worldview and approach economics through the lens of real-life applications. “It’s hard to put into words the influence the university had on me as a young man,” he says. “UNT was such a helpful and nurturing environment, but the professors also really challenged us to think critically about the world and our role in it.”

Andrew Klein

George F. Jones Jr. (’67) Dallas

Degree in: Banking and finance

Advice for graduates: It’s important to be purposedriven about who you want to be

personally and professionally.

Definition of leadership:

achieve success personally and

Spend time thinking about how

A lot of people mistakenly think

as a group.

you want to define success,

that leadership is about getting

visualize your goal and

to the top, but it’s not that at

On serving the community:

follow it through.

all. It’s building an organization

I give back in part because UNT

where everyone feels like they

gave me a second chance to

Best career lesson learned:

contribute in a meaningful way.

be successful, and so now it’s

Have the self-confidence to trust

Good leaders hire and surround

important for me to help other

your instincts. You have to learn

themselves with smart people

young people.

when to trust yourself and when

who share their vision, look for

to just go for it.

ways to move their organization


forward and are empowered to

online for more Q&A.

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H U — L P


We are proud to be the hometown university for the North Texas region and a partner in addressing the needs and solving the problems of the communities we serve. Together, we’re building a stronger region and a better tomorrow.


Providing autism diagnostic testing, counseling and comprehensive intervention services, including behavioral, speech, occupational and physical therapy services.


Offering comprehensive assessment and treatment services, including state-of-the-art hearing aid technology, for individuals with hearing, speech and language problems.


Offering sport psychology consultation to individual athletes and sport teams to help them develop the skills and mindset needed to reach optimal levels of performance.


Offering musical development and preparation to children 5 years of age and younger.


© 2013 UNT


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Dance and Theatre

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upcoming events

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Television and Film

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visual arts

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Michael Clements


MUSEUM MURALIST Wildlife and natural history leap from the walls of museums through art alumna’s realistic digital painting.

Read more about Carr’s career as a museum artist and her creative process at

KAREN CARR’S ’84 JOB REQUIRES NIFTY research. She has painted murals and illustrations for more than 100 museums worldwide — including 700 human origin images for the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C., five plant life murals for the Australian Museum and eight murals and 41 dinosaur images for Dallas’ new Perot Museum of Nature and Science (above). “I’ve seen polar bears in the wild, stood on a volcano, dug up dinosaurs, boated past hippos, walked across the planet’s oldest rocks, hiked in rainforests, and touched historic artifacts from Addis Ababa to Washington, D.C., just to learn more before painting,” she says.

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Muse Books Immigrants’ views Associate professor of sociology Ami R. Moore, who came to the United States from Togo in 1992, was inspired by her own and other African immigrants’ experiences to write The American Dream Through the Eyes of Black African Immigrants in Texas (University Press of America). In the book, she examines whether black African immigrants in Texas are achieving not only economic success but also moralistic success, such as being

valued and respected. Moore, who received a Fulbright U.S. Scholar research grant to study AIDS-related issues in her native country, says, “I wanted to understand the lived experiences of black African immigrants and their views with regard to the American dream.”

Tribute to Campbell This Corner of Canaan: Essays on Texas in Honor of Randolph B. Campbell (UNT Press) is an anthology of 17 essays on Texas history written by colleagues and former students of Campbell, UNT’s Lone Star Professor of Texas History and one of the leading

authorities on the subject. Rick McCaslin, history department chair, edited the book along with Donald E. Chipman, Professor Emeritus of history, and Andrew J. Torget, assistant professor of history. He says they wanted to honor Campbell, who has been a mentor and friend to them. “It was not hard to find colleagues and former students who were eager to contribute to the project,” McCaslin says.

Poetry collection Regents Professor of English Bruce Bond suffered two long-term nervous system infections that led him to think about the

relationship between the mind and the body — and inspired his newest poetry collection, Choir of the Wells (Etruscan Press). Bond wrote most of the poems during a five-year span, using a UNT Institute for the Advancement of the Arts Fellowship and a Research and Creativity Enhancement award. “The scope of the work attempts to hit many registers in terms of meditative depth, lyric speed and surreal vitality,” he says, “while grounding itself in dimensions of personal and cultural history.” Learn more about Bond’s impact on UNT’s creative writing program on page 34.

Making his (trade)mark James Thurman can turn an atlas into a dinner plate. He can transform a stack of office paper into a bangle bracelet. He can make a necklace out of a novel. How does he do it? With Thurmanite. Thurman, assistant professor in the College of Visual Arts and Design, makes plates, bowls, glasses, pendants, bracelets and other artistic works out of a Michael Clements

material that he describes as similar to “plasticized wood.” Made of paper and epoxy resin, the hard, plastic-like material resembles the grain of wood with its layers of colors. And this year, that material was officially trademarked as Thurmanite. The trademark serves the useful purpose of identifying the material around the world. Thurman has taught people how to make Thurmanite across the U.S., as well as in Japan and Turkey, where his wife lives and he frequently has exhibitions and workshops during his summer and winter breaks. Musicians have asked him to make keepsakes from their music practice books, and authors have asked him to create Thurmanite from their written works. His favorite materials are maps, which hold layers of meaning in their pages. “Think of your life like layers of experience, and think of a map as one experience,” he says. “Layer all those maps, and they become a composite of your life experience.” Read more about Thurman and watch a video about how he creates Thurmanite at



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Lady and the Professor Andrew B. Harris, professor of theatre history, play analysis and playwriting, found some other revelations when his play The Lady Revealed — about the “Dark Lady” behind Shakespeare’s sonnets — was presented in the Department of Dance and Theatre this April. The play focuses on British scholar A.L. Rowse’s claim that Emilia Bassano was Shakespeare’s muse. Harris, right, discovered Bassano’s relatives while researching the play in England through a Research and Creativity Enhancement award from UNT’s Office of Research and Economic Development. Those relatives led him to Bassano relatives in Paris, Texas, including Pat Bassano, left, and others in Dallas who saw the play. Harris has conducted talks to mount a professional workshop next March with Jac Alder of Theater 3, one of Dallas’ most prominent theatres. Harris says he hopes the play will be produced by other theatres in both the U.S. and in England. “There is the potential to have a much wider audience.” Learn more about the play at

Dance and Theatre The Heights of success

Steve Cullen

Senior theatre major Matt Ransdell waited five years to play Usnavi, the DominicanAmerican rapper and “good kid” in the award-winning musical In the Heights. After auditioning for Heights for its Broadway run and not getting the part, he remained drawn to the story. He followed the progress of the musical, which won four Tony Awards and was nominated for the 2009 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. And his determination finally

landed him the role this spring in the production presented by the Artes de la Rosa Cultural Center in Fort Worth. Four other UNT students also were involved with the production. Senior performance major Michael Alonzo played a secondary character, The Piragua Guy, and members of the ensemble included senior theatre major Aigner Mathis, senior kinesiology major Jordan Ghanbari and junior theatre major Rashard Turley. Ransdell says the musical — which depicts life in the Washington Heights neighborhood of New York City — is a positive depiction of Latinos trying to make a better life for themselves, their loved ones and community. “Usnavi’s spirit is infectious and you, or I, just can’t help but root for him,” he says. “Playing him changed my life.”

Upcoming Events The College of Music’s offering of summer workshops will include free concerts for the public. The concerts include the UNT Jazz Winds Workshop Faculty concerts at 7 p.m. July 8-11 at Kenton Hall in the Music Building; the Jazz Combo Workshop Faculty Concert at 3 p.m. July 14 at the Recital Hall in the Music Building; and the Mariachi Workshop Concert at noon July 27 at Winspear Hall in the Murchison Performing Arts Center. Check music.unt. edu/calendar for more information. The Orchid Thief author Susan Orlean, Texas Monthly writer Skip Hollandsworth and Pulitzer Prize-winning military historian Rick Atkinson will speak at the Mayborn Literary Nonfiction Conference July 19-21 at the Hilton DFW Lakes Executive Conference Center in Grapevine. This year’s theme focuses on writing historical narratives. For more information, go to journalism.unt. edu/maybornconference. UNT employees will show off the work they create in their off hours in On My Own Time: UNT Employee Art Exhibition from July 29 to Aug. 14 at UNT on the Square. Prizes will be given for “Best of Show” and “People’s Choice,” as well as in 11 categories for different media. Those winners will be displayed at the regional exhibition, sponsored by the Business Council for the Arts, at NorthPark Center in Dallas. Learn more at The UNT Art Gallery will feature the works of nine contemporary artists who explore nature and botanical forms in sculpture, ceramics and other installations in the exhibit Beyond Natural running from Sept. 17 to Nov. 2. Lisa Hatchadoorian, an independent curator based in New York, organized the exhibit. The opening reception is from 5 to 7 p.m. Sept. 19. Learn more at

Visit for more upcoming events.

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Muse A vision for music

Unique type

Band to watch

Kevin Pedersen

Andrew Savage (’08) and Austin Brown met at UNT at a meeting of the Knights of the Round Turntable, a club in which members listened to new records. Now they’re members of Parquet Courts, a Brooklynbased band whose CD, Light Up



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Winning documentary

Jeff Ryan (’95) has played drums since he was 6, but he got serious when he saw drummers perform accross the UNT campus and was inspired by their different sounds. Now Ryan’s work can be heard on the ambient album we were here, in which he performs under the name Myopic, as well as Jackleg Devotional to the Heart, the newest CD by the Denton-based Baptist Generals. He also played for Sarah Jaffe and St. Vincent and the bands Pleasant Grove, the New Year and the War on Drugs. He released his first CD, plays in pieces, as Myopic in 2009. Myopic’s sound is instrumental, ambient “soundtrackish” music. “I just love painting my own pictures and letting listeners do the same,” he says. “I have always been inspired by sounds rather than lyrics and collaging them together. It’s kind of what Myopic is all about.” Watch Ryan perform in a Dallas Morning News video at

Bobby Lewis


Gold, earned them the title of “band to watch” by Rolling Stone magazine and features in Spin and Interview magazines and the New York Post. Savage says he’s surprised by the larger venues and new fans that the attention has drawn for the band, but he considers it a success that they’re working on their second CD. “My only goal is to remain creative,” he says. “And to keep focused and continue to have an output people are interested in.” Watch a Rolling Stone magazine video of Parquet Courts at

Television and Film

Jerome Brock

Michael Cina’s work can be seen on an ad for a TV show or in an art gallery. Cina has created graphics for Coke, Pepsi, Disney and Nike and typefaces for various companies and productions, including the USA Network TV show Covert Affairs. He’s also received attention for his abstract paintings, which were featured recently in the PBS NewsHour arts blog. Cina, who attended UNT from 1990 to 1995, says his visual communication and art classes gave him a good foundation for the structure of graphic design and how to use it as a springboard for other art. He also appreciates that he was given the freedom to explore while being taught to have a strong work ethic and extreme attention to detail. “Those lessons are what I feel set me apart from other designers today,” says Cina, who is based in Minneapolis, Minn. “There is a delicate balance that feeds my creative needs,” he says. “I love the firm structure of designing typefaces and drawing logos, but it is 180 degrees from the free restraints of painting. Graphic design is somewhere in between. The things I do inspire each other in an odd way. It is how I am wired.” Visit to see more of Cina’s work.

Sara Masetti’s (’13 M.F.A.) film, Undocumented Dreams — made for her master’s degree in documentary film production and studies — has earned the Rising Star Award at the Canada International Film Fest in Vancouver and an Award of Merit at the Best Shorts Competition online. The film also was shown at several film festivals across the country, including the New Filmmakers Series in New York City and the United Nations Association Film Festival. The documentary focuses on a Texas student affected by the DREAM Act, a federal bill that would provide conditional permanent U.S. residency to students who arrived in the U.S. as minors. Masetti, who is from Italy, says she could identify with other immigrants. “One of the challenges was trying to craft an argument that could be appealing to both sides of the debate,” she says. “I was trying to show the human story.” Watch a trailer of the film at

Film festival first

Hanny Lee

Bobby Lewis (’12 M.F.A.), adjunct instructor of radio, television and film, wanted to make a movie that proves everyone has a story. He found that subject in Earl Thompson, a janitor who works in UNT’s University Union.

The result is The Union Man, a nearly 10-minute movie that follows Thompson during his night shift. The movie was shown at several film festivals across the nation, including Dallas and Minneapolis. “Earl’s willingness, his lack of ego and his transparency made this film possible,” Lewis says. “I think this project helps people realize we are not defined by what we do for a living.” Thompson enjoyed the attention he received at the Dallas International Film Festival. “I felt like a movie star that day,” he says. “It feels good when people know who you are when you walk in the room.” Watch the trailer and the red carpet interview with Lewis and Thompson at northtexan.unt. edu/online.

visual arts Artistic vision

Alisa Levy

Union proud

Jonathan Reynolds

The response to the Arab Film Festival — the first in Texas — was so positive that UNT’s Contemporary Arab and Muslim Cultural Studies Institute plans to sponsor it again. The festival, which took place in April in Dallas, included movies from Lebanon, Syria, Palestine and other Arab nations, as well as a panel discussion about stereotypes in the Arab world. “We received support from all over Texas, and attendance for this year’s festival went beyond everyone’s expectations,” says the festival’s founder and director, Tania Khalaf (’07

M.F.A.), assistant professor of international film in the Department of Radio, Television and Film. “The community has shown me that there is a tremendous need for an Arab film festival and I can’t wait to make it bigger and better next year.”

Jordan Roth (’98) opened Ro2 Art in Dallas in 2009 with his mother, Susan Roth Romans, as a contemporary art gallery to support artists in all types of visual media. The gallery received the 2012 Obelisk Award from the North Texas Business Council for the Arts, which honors partnerships between arts and businesses. Roth says he is committed to exhibit the area’s most talked-about artists. “Being an alumnus, I’m proud when we have the chance to show someone from UNT,” he says.

outstanding professors

Three faculty members will get a semester off from teaching so they can paint, write and compose music, which will enhance their student’s learning environment when they return to the classroom — thanks to a UNT Institute for the Advancement of the Arts fellowship they each received for the 2013-14 academic year. Robert Jessup, professor of studio arts, wants to develop and explore his painting, which has evolved from realistic figures to more abstract forms. He plans to show his works at UNT on the Square, and at shows in Dallas and Houston. Bonnie Friedman, assistant professor of English, will continue work on her book of creative nonfiction essays, Kingdoms of the Bronx, which focuses on how escape their circumstances. Claudia Howard Queen, assistant professor of music for dance, will travel to sacred Celtic sites in Ireland to compose a 20-minute music score for a new dance work based on Celtic mysticism. The music/dance work will premiere in New York. “I see the UNT IAA fellowship as a great honor,” Queen says, “and also as a responsibility to strive to create something of significance toward this goal.”

Gary Payne

a group of second-generation-immigrant Bronx residents imagine how they will

From left, UNT’s 2013-14 Institute for the Advancement of the Arts Fellows Robert Jessup, Bonnie Friedman and Claudia Howard Queen.

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MAKING A DIFFERENCE FOR STUDENTS Transforming UNT through its comprehensive fundraising campaign by E B  C T

Jonathan Reynolds


or violinist Seula Lee, music defines how she perceives the world. How she conveys her emotions. How she envisions her future. The music performance senior chose UNT’s world-renowned College of Music to perfect her craft under the guidance of acclaimed violinists. Lee, a co-concertmaster of the UNT Symphony Orchestra and a violinist for the UNT Center for Chamber Music Studies Piano Trio, spends up to 10 hours a day practicing. That dedication has translated into numerous achievements, including winning the 2013 Coeur d’Alene National Young Artists Competition, the 2012-13 Sheila & Werner Harms Young Artist Competition and UNT’s annual Concerto Competition in 2013. With such notable awards and the knowledge she’s gained at UNT, the virtuoso is on her way to fulfilling her dream of playing the violin as a lifelong career. But this wouldn’t be possible without the donors who support scholarships that fund her education and competition travel. Other donors bestow their gifts to support faculty who push her to musical greatness and the university where her transformation is possible.

“Without scholarships, I wouldn’t have been able to attend UNT’s music program, and I wouldn’t be able to pursue music full time,” says Lee, who earned a scholarship that honors UNT’s renowned former conductor Anshel Brusilow and another established by longtime benefactor Paul Voertman. “The scholarships helped change my life.” Donors, including both UNT alumni and outside supporters, have coalesced around UNT’s push to greater excellence in a powerful way. At a gala event April 15, UNT unveiled the public phase of its comprehensive fundraising campaign. The campaign, called The light is green. The time is now. The Campaign for UNT, has raised 85 percent of its $200 million goal. The campaign also includes a banner year of giving in 2011 during which UNT received a $22 million pledged gift — the largest in its history — and a $20 million naming sponsorship for UNT’s Apogee Stadium. More than just a fundraising effort, The Campaign for UNT is raising the profile for UNT as a growing public research university while expanding the university’s reputation and sphere of influence. The campaign is focused on three main goals: raising money to support the university and its people; engaging more alumni and supporters in the life and progress of the university; and developing a stronger culture of philanthropy at UNT. “The campaign name says it all,” says President V. Lane Rawlins, who will continue to help with fundraising as President Emeritus after his retirement later this year. “UNT has momentum that builds on our long history as the engine of the North Texas region and our commitment to being the green light to greatness for our students. We’re maturing as an institution in everything from research to influence. And there’s widespread excitement about what we’re doing and where we’re going. “All this, coupled with the strength and growth of the region and the state, has put

UNT in a prime position to seize new opportunities. This campaign is helping fuel our efforts.” UNT announced the campaign to an audience of more than 1,000 alumni and supporters at the Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center in Dallas as part of the university’s star-studded Emerald Eagle Honors: Recognizing a Lifetime of Contributions to the American Landscape. The event was a fundraiser for UNT’s signature, award-winning Emerald Eagle Scholars program, which supports primarily first-generation college students from families with limited means. Hosted by two prominent UNT alumni — Melissa Rycroft Strickland (’05), who won Dancing With the Stars: AllStars, and actor Peter Weller (’70), who is best known for starring in RoboCop and is starring in this summer’s Star Trek Into Darkness — the event honored alumni and future graduates, celebrating the transformative power of a UNT education. Alumni honored at the event included Dallas City Manager Mary K. Suhm (’74 M.S., ’84 M.B.A.), NFL Hall of Famer “Mean” Joe Greene and the late Roy Orbison, a rock ‘n’ roll icon who attended UNT in 1954-55 before his quick rise to fame. The event provided the perfect backdrop to publicly announce a campaign that is changing the face of UNT, says Michael Monticino, vice president for advancement. “This campaign is about supporting our students and reinforcing excellence at UNT,” Monticino says. “Every dollar we raise, every donor we attract, every additional alum we bring back into the fold goes toward creating the best educational experience for our students.” Notable alumni Melissa Rycroft Strickland (’05) and Peter Weller (’70) hosted UNT’s Emerald Eagle Honors fundraiser — the backdrop for the announcement of The Campaign for UNT — at the Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center in Dallas this April.

Jonathan Reynolds

Jonathan Reynolds

Supporting student success While every area of UNT benefits through the campaign, Monticino says, it is directing critical support to scholarships, student life programs, faculty positions, research and facilities through private support, as well as foundation and corporate support. Fostering student success is fundamental to UNT’s mission. And thanks to more than $27 million raised for new scholarships, The Campaign for UNT is making it possible for Lee and other high-quality students like recent public administration graduate Chelsea Gonzalez (’13 M.P.A.) to find their path to greatness. Gonzalez chose UNT because of the strength of its graduate city management program, which U.S. News & World Report ranks first in Texas and eighth nationally. She also earned the Hatton W. Sumners Foundation Scholarship, which provides $27,000 for tuition and expenses over the course of the program to five UNT M.P.A. students each year. The Sumners Foundation has partnered with UNT for more than 35 years, ensuring that the university has an impact in city government throughout the North Texas region.



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“That scholarship played a big role in why I chose UNT,” says Gonzalez, who landed a full-time job with the town of Addison under city manager Ron Whitehead (’80 M.P.A.) after she graduated in May. “Now that I see how much UNT’s M.P.A. program has helped me, I see how critical it is to help the next generation succeed.” UNT’s M.P.A. network is far-reaching. More city managers in Texas hold a degree from UNT than from any other university, according to an analysis of the Texas City Management Association’s directory. Gonzalez also earned the College of Public Affairs and Community Service’s Debra Brooks Feazelle Internship Award, an endowment that honors one of Texas’ first female city managers, the late Debra Brooks Feazelle (’89). The award, which provides a subsidy to small cities or organizations to hire UNT’s M.P.A. interns, gave Gonzalez the opportunity to intern in Kennedale with its city manager, Bob Hart (’78 M.P.A.). Career preparation and personal development is something to which campaign co-chair Frank Bracken (’63) can relate. Bracken, retired president of Haggar Clothing Co., says what sets |

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UNT apart from other institutions — and a big reason he chose UNT himself and excelled in business — is that it offers a full college experience filled with opportunity, all at an affordable cost. Frank and his wife, Janet, give time and money to UNT. They support six student scholarships in the College of Business and recently committed $100,000 for study abroad and student exchange experiences. Frank Bracken also serves as the president of the Sigma Nu fraternity’s Dallas Alumni chapter, volunteering time to mentor his UNT brothers. “If all you do when you’re in college is go to class and go to work, then you miss half your college experience,” Bracken says. “That’s why scholarship support is so important. It helps take the financial burden off students so they can focus on growing as individuals.” Promoting faculty excellence The campaign is reinforcing faculty excellence by supporting research and scholarship and helping UNT attract additional distinguished researchers and scholars, an important focus for a public research university committed to

Left: Robert Bland, professor and chair of public administration, with mentee Chelsea Gonzalez (’13 M.P.A.), recent public administration graduate. Right: Yong X. Tao, PACCAR Professor of Engineering and director of the PACCAR Technology Institute at UNT.

achieving recognition among the country’s top research universities. The campaign has led to the creation of a number of endowed chairs and professorships attracting renowned faculty. Yong X. Tao, an internationally known expert in sustainable energy research and technologies, joined UNT as the PACCAR Professor of Engineering and the director of the PACCAR Technology Institute. Both positions are supported by a $1.5 million gift from PACCAR, the parent company of Denton-based Peterbilt Motors Co. “Having support for research is critical for faculty members like me as we seek solutions to grand challenges such as dealing with a limited supply of energy sources to sustain the growing population,” says Tao, who also serves as chair of the Department of Mechanical and Energy Engineering and directs UNT’s Zero Energy Laboratory. The department and the lab have established UNT as a leader in research developing renewable energy and sustainable technologies. “A big part of what we do as researchers is share our knowledge with the next generation so they can carry on the innovative ideas and apply problemsolving skills,” Tao says.

UNT System Board of Regents, who along with his wife gave $1 million to establish the Mike Moses Endowed Chair in Educational Leadership. The Buchholzes generously gave an additional $1 million for the Donald A. Buchholz Doctoral Program in Educational Administration Scholarship. And Buchholz’s Dallas-based firm, Southwest Securities Inc., gave $1 million to support scholarships for the College of Education’s Southwest Securities Superintendent Certification program.

UNT’s communication design program has inspired donors, too. In 2012, UNT received a $2.5 million bequest from an anonymous donor to establish the Jack Sprague Communication Design Program, in honor of one of the College of Visual Arts and Design’s most distinguished faculty members. The endowment created with the gift will generate more than $100,000 a year in scholarships and support for faculty and student projects, program resources, guest lectures and publications. Sprague retired in 2009 after 20 years of teaching at UNT, including 14 as head of the program. “UNT’s reputation as a leader in art education comes from its ability to nurture creativity,” says communication design student Steven Schroeder, who earned the Taylor Austin Hicks Memorial Scholarship for the exploration of conceptual thinking in his work and the Mack Mathes Scholarship, another award for UNT’s best art students. A portion of the gifts raised during the campaign have earned matching funds from the state’s initiative to help its eight emerging research universities move to the top tier. They include a gift from Don Buchholz (’52), a former member of the Summer 2013

“A big part of what we do as researchers is share our knowledge with the next generation so they can carry on the innovative ideas and apply problem-solving skills.” — Yong X. Tao, sustainable energy expert at UNT




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Gary Payne

Gary Payne

Developing a culture of philanthropy With transformation being a key theme, The Campaign for UNT is helping usher in a new era of giving, led by longtime donors who’ve paved the way. Many of them are part of UNT’s Founder’s Circle, which consists of donors who have given more than $250,000 during their lifetime and are members of the McConnell Society, the Matthews Society or the Kendall Society. Each society is named for a former president who had a deep and lasting impact on UNT. C. Dan Smith (’62), a former chair of the UNT System Board of Regents, has

been supporting Mean Green athletics for 30 years. He was instrumental in raising funds for UNT’s one-of-a-kind Apogee Stadium, giving $1 million and rallying other supporters. Smith is committed to helping UNT build state-of-the-art facilities, where studentathletes can excel and fans can enjoy cheering them on. Smith, a former football player who was recently inducted into UNT’s Athletic Hall of Fame, says athletics is the key to engaging alumni and current UNT students, a critical element of The Campaign for UNT. “A lot of people think athletics takes time and resources away from the academic side,” Smith says. “But the reality is if you get the athletic side moving and you get people involved and excited, a lot of them also will get excited about academics.” Smith is not alone. Last year, a committee led by former UNT track and field standout Ernie Kuehne Jr. (’66), who made a $1 million gift to athletics, helped raise more than $3 million in 30 days to fund a new basketball practice facility, new scoreboards in the Coliseum and endowed scholarships. The effort capped off a

“The reality is if you get the athletic side moving and you get people involved and excited, a lot of them also will get excited about academics.” — C. Dan Smith (’62), former regent, former UNT student-athlete 30


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decade of momentum for Mean Green athletics, with more than 10 new facilities opening since 2004. Smith, his wife, Le’Nore, and Kuehne are part of the McConnell Society, recognizing generous donors who have contributed $1 million or more. But Smith points out that every gift helps the university succeed. “We do need the large gifts, but people who initially donate $100 or $500 will be the same people who in the future will donate larger amounts,” Smith says. “Every gift is important regardless of the amount.” Engaging alumni and supporters Key drivers in The Campaign for UNT are the new alumni and friends who are connecting with UNT with first-time gifts to the university or by enrolling in the UNT Alumni Association. The UNT Annual Fund comprises thousands of donors who support UNT with small gifts that make a large impact. Brian Heldebrandt (’97), one of the first UNT students to study logistics and supply chain management in the College of Business, is now a regional manager for supply chain operations at Verizon.

Left: Le’Nore and C. Dan Smith (’62), former UNT football player and former chair of the UNT System Board of Regents. Right: Brian Heldebrandt (’97), regional manager for supply chain operations at Verizon.

How to Give to UNT There are many ways to support your favorite cause at UNT. These options allow you to make the impact you want, when you want and in the way you choose. Here are a few of the top ways to donate to UNT.

Heldebrandt says he would not be where he is today if his mentor — Jeff Sager, marketing and logistics department chair — hadn’t encouraged him to take an internship. That opportunity, coupled with strong mentoring, launched his career. And now he’s giving back to UNT through a monthly gift to the UNT Annual Fund and represents a younger generation of alumni who are maintaining strong ties to UNT. For its part, the university is hosting more alumni networking events and is concentrating on more personalized engagement. UNT has doubled membership in the UNT Alumni Association during the campaign. In organizing the campaign, several influential alumni and major donors agreed to serve on a steering committee to oversee the efforts of more than 100 volunteers who are raising gifts on behalf of UNT’s 12 colleges and schools as well as athletics and other programs.

Watch videos about the alumni honored at the Emerald Eagle Honors fundraiser and about the program at

The steering committee is led by four campaign co-chairs who include Janet and Frank Bracken (’63); Gayle Strange (’67), former chair of the UNT System Board of Regents and president of Axiom Commercial Co.; and G. Brint Ryan (’88, ’88 M.S.), vice chair of the UNT System Board of Regents and founder, chair and CEO of Ryan LLC. (Read more about the campaign leadership on page 38.) The Campaign for UNT will open doors for students of all backgrounds and help them achieve their goals, says Strange, who, along with her husband, Virgil (’68), is a member of the Founder’s Circle. “Today, private giving is more important than ever to a public institution like UNT,” she says. “Without the help of our alumni and friends, we can’t help our students reach new heights and achieve what we know UNT is capable of achieving. “UNT has made a difference in so many lives — that’s the legacy we are upholding through this campaign.”

Outright gifts can be made online, by mail or in person and are the fastest, easiest way to make an immediate impact on UNT.

Annual gifts to scholarships, student life, research and academic programming are critical to the growth and continued success of UNT.

Memorial or honorary gifts recognize special people through a gift to UNT.

Planned giving options allow you to create a carefully considered strategy for giving by making a long-lasting gift to UNT.

Matching gifts allow your organization or company to multiply your impact.

Get involved by contributing your time and talents to helping students succeed and supporting UNT’s goals.

Learn more about how you can give and be involved at


Gary Payne


Brandi Darensbourg, assistant professor of disability and addictions rehabilitation, earned UNT’s Student Government Association Honor Professor distinction at last year’s Salute to Faculty Excellence Awards event.

Why I teach? Faculty — recognized for their outstanding efforts as educators — share personal insights on what inspires them as teachers, scholars and mentors.



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UNT’s faculty members, many who are recognized as experts in their fields, are the foundation of the university’s excellence. Their commitment to high-quality, meaningful education comes from their personal passion for teaching and care for their students. “I am often reminded of the things I cannot or should not do. Many came before me who were not afforded the opportunity to work or receive a fair education,” says Brandi Darensbourg, assistant professor of disability and addictions rehabilitation, who is legally blind. “Teaching allows me the opportunity to educate students on the vast accomplishments of people of color and those with disabilities. Being at the front of the classroom, I give the students the opportunity to see a person with a disability performing and not limited by an inaccessible world. “I truly enjoy being a part of their educational journey.”

I enjoy the logical structure and consistency of mathematics and its usefulness in modeling and solving real problems. I think that the logic needed to master mathematics can be useful regardless of career. It is a pleasure to work with young people who are just starting their adult life. How can I not get excited about future plans and goals? I also feel younger and invigorated from just being around and working with young people.

— Neal Brand, professor of mathematics and winner of the President’s Council Teaching Award

Teaching requires creativity, empathy, mastery of a topic and consideration of others. When a student understands a new concept, she smiles, her eyes light up and she is engaged in learning. It is rewarding to see that growth. It is my role to expand minds to consider real-world problems and to realize value in the way economists think. I also am fortunate to share with students the importance of personal responsibility and respect.

— Janice Hauge, associate professor of economics and winner of the President’s Council Teaching Award

Why do I teach? Because it is one of my favorite things to do and I have always wanted to make a difference. In graduate school, I realized that I loved to teach. Every day, I look forward to getting in front of a class. Although I do research, teaching is a daily reward. I teach also because I want to make a difference in people’s lives. This sounds a bit cliché, but I really do believe it.

— John Ishiyama, professor of political science and winner of the Distinguished Research Professor Award

I had a choice of performing or teaching. I chose teaching — the right choice — and am surrounded by colleagues who are gifted, devoted to teaching, performing and to their students. Every day, I learn new things. I hear the progress my students are making, and share their achievements. After almost 50 years, I go to work each day with gratitude and anticipation. What a great journey it has been and continues to be.

— Keith Johnson, Regents Professor of performance and winner of UNT’s Distinguished Teaching Professor Award

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Shari Killday

Danny hoey Jr.



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uNT’s rich literary program offers a supportive community for aspiring wordsmiths as they develop into professional writers. by Jessica DeLeón

hen Danny Hoey Jr. (’10 Ph.D.) turned in a short story for a creative writing class assignment, he thought it was an idea going nowhere. But Barbara Rodman, assistant professor of English, could see that Hoey had a landscape in the characters and setting that should be developed more fully. He took her advice. “It gave me the confidence to explore it,” Hoey says. “That’s how the novel came about.” The Butterfly Lady, which tells a story of how residents in an African American neighborhood in Cleveland, Ohio, seek love in spite of barriers such as race, class, gender and sexuality, was published earlier this year by the independent Flaming Giblet Press — fulfilling a lifetime goal for Hoey. The project is just one of many examples of accomplishment by students in UNT’s creative writing program. And Hoey, now an assistant professor of English at Indian River State College in Fort Pierce, Fla., is one of many alumni who are thriving in the literary scene and now mentoring other writers. UNT’s program, part of the English department, has earned additional prestige by attracting such faculty members as poet B.H. “Pete” Fairchild, who won the National Book Critics Circle Award in 2004, and novelist Miroslav Penkov, who recently received the BBC International Short Story Award. In 2012, the UNT program began awarding the $10,000 UNT Rilke Prize, named after the Bohemian-Austrian poet Rainier Maria Rilke, to mid-level poets. But, more importantly, creative writing alumni are winning literary awards and seeing their work published. Many say their writing has grown because of the English department’s strong faculty, and the cordial environment that allows students to critique each other’s work respectfully. “We want to draw students who are thrilled and challenged by the environment,” says English professor Corey Marks, director of the program.

main attraction UNT has a rich literary history that helped to lay the foundation for notable novelists such as Larry McMurtry (’58) and Anne Rice, and Texas Poet Laureates Cleatus Rattan (’65, ’69 M.Ed.), Alan Lee Birkelbach (’78) and Jan Seale (’69 M.A.). Summer 2013




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Britta Coleman

Gary Payne

Chad Davidson

— so they can better understand their characters’ motivations. Chad Davidson (’97 M.A.), now an associate professor of English at the University of West Georgia, describes Bond as “super devoted,” saying Bond would have lunch with him or call him on a Friday night to talk about changes to Davidson’s poems. Poet Ash Bowen (’12 Ph.D.) loved Bond’s poetry and received valuable advice from him — such as getting each line exactly right, even if he had to rewrite it a hundred times, before he wrote the next line. Both Bond and Marks expected their students to work hard and produce work. “You don’t sit around waiting for inspiration to strike,” says Bowen, now an English instructor at the University of Alabama. “You have to write every day. The rigor of the program ultimately makes everyone a better writer.”

The creative writing program has grown in the last two decades thanks to the hiring of senior-level faculty and writers, writing and poetry series and awards, and the students themselves. During his tenure as director from 1995 to 2001, Bruce Bond, Regents Professor of English, helped launch the master’s degree and the Ph.D. concentration in creative writing — UNT is one of only three Texas universities to offer such a doctoral program. He also helped develop UNT’s Visiting Writers Series, which brings acclaimed novelists and poets to campus. Marks, who took over the program in 2005, increased the variety and number of writers on the faculty. These faculty serving as mentors are the main reason students are drawn to UNT. Hoey read the works of Rodman and John Tait, assistant professor of English, and felt they could help him grow as a writer. He also worked with Walton Muyumba, associate professor of English. “Because of them, the novel’s actually finished,” Hoey says. “They challenged me just to think differently as a writer, to deepen my characters and make them more complex.” Rodman says she asks students questions that therapists might ask — “What do you think the story is trying to do?” and “What does the character want?”



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work and workshops Just as important as the faculty members’ advice to students is the feedback from fellow classmates. Along with literature courses, students are required to take workshop classes in which they critique each other’s work. Britta Coleman (’08 M.A., ’12 Ph.D.), lecturer in English, didn’t tell any of her classmates she already had published a novel, Potter Springs (Center Street/ |

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Hachette), in 2005, because she wanted to be judged by her current work. “There’s a level of respect that is key,” she says. “You’re sharing your baby.” But there can be challenging moments. A classmate once asked Hoey why one character in a story was so angry. “I had to say something,” Hoey says about the exchange. “‘No, you’re not reading it right,’ I answered. It was a very tense moment in the workshop. “We were friends, but we also were critical of each other because we wanted to become better writers.” In order to earn their degree, students must complete a thesis or dissertation that consists of a novel or a series of poems or essays and a critical preface explaining their work in the larger literary context. For students who want to get published, the process can be just as rigorous as getting their degree. But UNT prepares them well for success in both academia and publishing. Students read and edit submissions for the American Literary Review — a biannual literary magazine established at UNT in 1990 — which gives them a sense of where their writing fits in the literary world. They also can attend panels about the business of writing hosted by the program. A few students have taken the initiative and created the Kracken Reading Series, which brings in poets for readings. “Many students are hungry to do all of

lITerarY SuCCeSS STorIeS

Steven Broome

those things,” Marks says. “That’s the thrill of the job. You get to work with talented people who are always trying to challenge themselves.”

now in print

Gary Payne

And students who have completed the program are being rewarded for their hard work. Bowen’s dissertation, a collection of poems about loss, beat out 300 other entries for the Orphic Book Prize and will be published by Dream Horse Press in August. He also co-manages the online poetry magazine Linebreak. Davidson has written three poetry collections. The most recent, From the Firehills (Southern Illinois Press), was inspired by his travels to Italy, where he studied thanks to a $23,000 Rotary Ambassadorial Scholarship he earned at UNT. But he says getting published is not the end goal. “You’ve got to love just to write without praise or acknowledgement. It reaffirms what you’re doing,” he says. Hoey, who spent five years working on The Butterfly Lady, agrees. “I discovered that writing the truth is ugly and painful but necessary for it to be good art,” he says. “Once you commit yourself to telling the truth, you have to follow through.”

UNT has a rich literary history of turning out notable writers across many genres including fiction, creative nonfiction and poetry. David Lindsey (’70) has written numerous mysteries, including the Stuart Haydon series. And Larry McMurtry (ʼ58) is considered one of America’s greatest writers, winning the Pulitzer Prize for fiction for Lonesome Dove and an Academy Award for co-writing the screenplay for Brokeback Mountain. Several Texas Poet Laureates also have UNT ties — Alan Lee Birkelbach (’78) and Jan Seale (ʼ69 M.A.) (both pictured below), Cleatus Rattan (’65, ’69 M.Ed.), former English professor Arthur Sampley and Lexie Dean Robertson, who attended in the 1910s. Billy Bob Hill (’78 M.A., ʼ92 Ph.D.) has edited numerous anthologies of Texas poetry and short stories and operated Browder Springs Publishing in Dallas. More recent poet graduate successes include Chelsea Woodard (’12 Ph.D.), who was featured in the 2011 Best New Poets anthology, as well as The Threepenny Review, Southwest Review and Shenandoah — considered some of the best literary magazines in the nation. John Poch (’00 Ph.D.) has been published in Ploughshares, The Paris Review and The New Republic and founded 32 Poems Magazine, serving as editor for 10 years. He and Chad Davidson (’97 M.A.) wrote poems about one of their favorite sports, resulting in the mock anthology Hockey Haiku (St. Martin’s Press) in 2006. Novels written by alumni and released by major publishers in the last few years include Leila Jaynes Meacham’s (’63) Roses in 2011 and Tumbleweeds (Grand Central Publishing) in 2012 and Darin Bradley’s (’02, ’04 M.A., ’07 Ph.D.) Noise (Spectra) in 2010.

Learn more about UNT’s creative writing program and other standout alumni authors at

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Michael Clements

From left, Frank Bracken (’63), Janet Bracken, President V. Lane Rawlins, Gayle Strange (’67) and Michael Monticino, UNT vice president for advancement. At right, G. Brint Ryan (’88, ’88 M.S.).

The Campaign for UNT Moving the university forward to best support students and academic programs


Learn more about The Campaign for UNT at


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The light is green. The time is now. The Campaign for UNT. More than 100 alumni and friends have dedicated time, energy and resources to advancing UNT’s mission to serve its students with top-quality faculty and programs. (Learn more about the campaign on page 26.) Four fundraising campaign co-chairs lead this volunteer effort: Janet and Frank Bracken (’63), Gayle Strange (’67) and G. Brint Ryan (’88, ’88 M.S.). “Who better to tell our story than our strongest champions?” asks Michael Monticino, UNT vice president for advancement. “Their longstanding passion for UNT sets the example for new generations of alumni and friends. “Where they lead, others will follow.”

Frank Bracken’s (’63) campaign leadership began in 2007 because the campaign supported his belief in UNT’s strategic goals. Bracken retired from Haggar Clothing Co. in 2005 after a 42-year career with the company, joining as a management trainee and retiring as president. “If you believe in kids and you believe in the opportunities that an education provides, then you have to believe in UNT. And you should invest in what you believe in,” he says. Community volunteer and UNT student Janet Bracken is not an alumna yet, but she calls herself an “alum of the heart.” “I didn’t fall in love with Frank Bracken at UNT, but I fell in love with UNT because of him,” she says. “I am proud to be associated with a place that cares so much and means so much to so many people.” She serves on the Dallas board of Big Brothers Big Sisters. Working on a bachelor’s in applied arts and sciences, she often meets classmates who chose UNT because of the strength of its programs and its reputation in the North Texas region. Vice chair of the UNT System Board of Regents, G. Brint Ryan (’88, ’88 M.S.) is chair and CEO of Ryan LLC, a global tax services firm. He has given more than $1 million to support the College of Business’ accounting program and supports other areas such as scholarships, the Emerald Eagle Scholars program and UNT’s Apogee Stadium. Ryan says he is living proof of the transformative power of education. He counts himself among those who started with little and succeeded with help from UNT. “When it comes to providing our region with a professional workforce, no other institution of higher education can match UNT’s impact,” Ryan says. “Each academic year, UNT graduates more than 8,500 new professionals who are driving the economic prosperity of our region.” Gayle Strange (’67) has stayed connected to UNT since she arrived as a freshman in 1963. She and her husband, Virgil (’68), own Axiom Construction Co., a commercial construction firm in Denton. Appointed to the UNT System Board of Regents in 1997, she served as chair from 2007 to 2009. Strange says the goal of the campaign is to create superior learning experiences for students. “We’re here to help every student reach their very best potential,” she says. “The inherent value that’s here, our attitudes on student success and our marvelous faculty, are proving that we want to be the very best we can be.”

Q&A WITH PRESIDENT V. Lane RAWLINS President V. Lane Rawlins says UNT’s comprehensive campaign is changing the face of UNT and supporting a stronger culture of engagement and philanthropy. To keep the momentum, he will stay engaged with the campaign as President Emeritus upon retirement later this year.

does the campaign’s name — The light Q: isWhat green. The time is now. The Campaign for UNT — speak to?


UNT is in the right place at the right time, with opportunities that few institutions have available. We’re in one of the fastestgrowing, most economically vibrant regions in the U.S. As the largest university in the North Texas region, we have a proven track record of meeting the region’s workforce and educational needs. There are so many high school graduates from all walks of life who need and deserve a superior college education from a university defined by excellence. This is what our campaign is about. There is no better time to seize the opportunity and rise to national prominence.

does the campaign support UNT’s Q: How progress and its focus on student success? A:

It all comes down to students. Every gift to UNT — no matter what area it supports — helps us to provide our students with a high-quality education rich with knowledge, opportunity and experience. We’re here to uplift our students and give them the best chance for lifelong success. Private support helps us do that.

made your gift to the campaign, a Q: You scholarship in your wife’s name for students in fashion design. Why are scholarships so important?


I’m a first-generation college student and I know how life-changing it can be to have private support. I’m here today because of the many people who believed in me and in the transformative power of higher education. Now, as president of the nation’s 25th largest public university, I have a much better understanding of what it takes to drive that kind of transformation. It takes private support, and giving to scholarships is one of the most direct ways that you can help students succeed.

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Gift impact The Campaign for UNT strengthens support for students, faculty and programs. Every gift signals that an investment made in UNT is an investment in the future. The Campaign for UNT supports student scholarships and programs; funds innovation; builds athletic champions on and off the field; advances leadership in the arts; and accelerates education in the sciences, technology, engineering and mathematics. These donors agree that the light is green and the time is now to invest in UNT. Learn more about The Campaign for UNT at


Jonathan Reynolds

As busloads of middle school students streamed into UNT’s Murchison Performing Arts Center for a spring band festival, donors Horace, left, and Euline (’74 Ph.D.) Brock, right, observed the scene, happy to be surrounded by what they love: the Murchison, with its grand lobby — bearing their names — and young musicians. UNT’s College of Music holds a special place in their hearts. In 1954, as new faculty members, the Brocks met at UNT and attended concerts on dates. “It’s always been so central to us,” Euline says. “We give out of gratitude, but also because people around the world know about UNT because of the College of Music.”




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Summer 2013

Gary Payne

Ernie Kuehne Jr. (’66) and the members of UNT’s Basketball Committee secured more than $3 million in 30 days for Mean Green Athletics, funding a new basketball training facility and a state-of-the-art scoreboard in the UNT Coliseum while providing additional support for scholarships. As part of that campaign, Kuehne, at right with senior student-athlete Brandan Walton, presented the athletic department with a cornerstone $1 million gift. “I care deeply for this university because it shaped me as a person and prepared me for life,” Kuehne says. “I am not alone. Our effort proved that a lot of people believe in UNT and credit the education they received here for their success in life.”


Gary Payne

Neither Bette, left, nor Bob Sherman, right, attended UNT, but their ties to the university run deep. Bob’s father spent more than 30 years as a UNT professor and administrator. Bette developed her bond when staff members helped her review and archive the historic military documents of her father, the late Maj. Gen. Olinto Mark Barsanti. The Shermans gave $350,000 to establish the Sherman/Barsanti Inspiration Awards, a competition designed to showcase student creativity. Part of UNT’s Innovation Greenhouse, any original project, invention, composition or artwork is eligible. “Students need to be encouraged to think outside the box,” Bob says. “Great ideas emerge when we give them freedom to explore and create.”


Michael Clements

Retired Highland Park ISD Superintendent Cathy Bryce (’91 Ph.D.) volunteers for The Campaign for UNT because she believes “those of us whose lives were transformed by this university have an obligation to ensure that those same opportunities are available for future generations.” Bryce, right, and her husband, Jack Atkins (’66, ’69 M.S.), left, earned three UNT degrees and two professional certifications between them. They established a College of Education scholarship in memory of their mothers, who believed education opens doors. “Jack’s mother carried him as a baby in her arms to enroll him in UNT’s lab school,” Bryce says. “I remember my mother, who became a widow when I was 2 and my sister was 4, showing me her savings book and saying, ‘This is your college fund.’”

Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Chris Pearce (’90) earned bachelor’s degrees in both computer science and English composition and went to work as a software developer. Now, Pearce, a distinguished engineer for Cisco Systems Inc., serves on UNT’s College of Engineering Advisory Board. The university innovates to prepare students for careers in science and technology, he says. Pearce, who holds 39 software patents, calls UNT the springboard for his career. Through his involvement with the computer science department and The Campaign for UNT, he is encouraging his network of STEM professionals to support UNT. “With my degrees, I was immediately marketable,” Pearce says. “UNT gets students ready to enter the workforce.”

Summer 2013




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p / 43

| Upcoming Alumni Gatherings

p / 45

| Down the Corridor

p / 46

| In the News

p / 48

| Friends We’ll Miss

p / 49

Gary Payne


in this section | Connecting With Friends

armadillo ale Greenbelt Farmhouse Ale and Quakertown Stout are vintage Denton, and so are the UNT alumni entrepreneurs who brew them.

Read more about their work at



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Summer 2013

TURNING A COLLEGE HOBBY INTO A CAREER isn’t always easy, especially if the hobby is brewing beer. But Bobby Mullins (’07), left, and Yianni Arestis (’08, ’11 M.B.A.) got a boost when their plan for Armadillo Ale Works earned $10,000 in the 2010 New Venture Creation Contest of UNT’s Murphy Enterprise Center. Now recipes are invented at Mullins’ house, then brewed and distributed around the state by Deep Ellum Brewing Co. Raising capital for a Denton brewery is next. “That whole thing where your parents tell you that you can be anything when you grow up?” Mullins says. “That is very true if you give it your all.”




Friends Friends

1972 Keep up with the latest developments in the UNT family and tell your peers what you’ve been up to since leaving the nest. Send your news to The North Texan (see contact information on page 7). Members of the UNT Alumni Association are designated with a . Read more, share comments and connect with friends at


Eddie John Dees Sr. and Jatis Perryman Dees (’53), Porter :: celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary in December. They met in college while earning their music degrees and, during the 1960s, performed in the Eddie Dees Combo. They spent most of their careers educating students. All three of their children attended UNT.

Marcus E. Drewa, Jacksonville

Beach, Fla. ::

has received many honors for his lifetime service to the health care field. As

president of Methodist Medical Center in Jacksonville, Fla., for 33 years, he helped transform the hospital, which became known as “The Miracle on Eighth Street,” into a leader in health care in North Florida. He began his health care career as a storeroom clerk in a Tyler hospital in 1951. A distinguished chair in health care administration at the University of North Florida College of Health is named in his honor.

1967 Mary Lou Veal (’77 M.Ed.), Murfreesboro, Tenn. ::

retired after 44 years of teaching. Most recently she was a tenured professor at Middle Tennessee State University where she was director of the graduate program in physical education teacher education. Before moving into higher education, she taught for 16 years in Denton public schools.

Richard Crummel, Fort Worth

:: retired from public education

after 41 years, last serving as superintendent of the Burleson ISD. He was a high school band director for 15 years with the district before becoming an administrator. His bands won many honors, including being selected to perform for President Gerald Ford in 1976. At North Texas, the place he wanted to be since attending his first One O’Clock concert in 1963, he performed with the jazz bands and the marching band.

Michaelene ‘Micki’ Pillow, Tulsa, Okla. :: celebrated the

35th anniversary of her dance school, Miss Micki’s School of Dance, in May. She moved to Tulsa after earning the first physical education degree with a dance emphasis.

1976 Sparky Koerner (M.M.Ed.),

Texas City :: is in his 29th year directing the College of the Main-

land Jazz Ensemble. The ensemble was selected to perform at the Jazz Education Network Conference in January in Atlanta, Ga., with guest artist and former One O’Clock Lab Band member Tom ‘Bones’ Malone (’69), a member of the CBS Orchestra on Late Night With David Letterman and an original member of The Blues Brothers Band.

Dan L. Ward (’77 M.A.), Oakton, Va. :: is

the senior editor of the new American Management Association book Positioned, a collection of articles about strategic workforce planning written by top leaders in the field.

1980 Ken Burchett (Ph.D.), Branson,

Mo. :: released his new book, The

Battle of Carthage, Missouri, which tells the story of the first full-scale land battle of the Civil War. He teaches at the University of Central Arkansas.

Alumni Awards 2014 Nominate candidates for Alumni Awards 2014. Deadline is Aug. 1. For the criteria and nomination process, go to alumniawards or for more information, email Robert McKinney (’03) at or Karen Selby at karen.

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Nest Ralph Stannard (M.M.Ed.),

Bridge to good health

Dallas :: has been the artistic

In many ways, research is as important to health care as treatment is. Sick people generate important data that can help the medical community fight disease and find cures — and that’s where Xuequn

‘Della’ Pan (’12 Ph.D.) comes in. Pan, who earned her Ph.D. in information science in UNT’s nationally recognized health informatics program, is making health care information more transparent and accessible.

director for the Plano Civic Chorus, an auditioned group of 120 singers, for 12 years. He also is director of music for First Presbyterian Church in Richardson and director of the Temple Choir of Temple Emanu-El in Dallas.

1981 Lisa Burkhardt-Worley,

Flower Mound :: co-edited Pearls

Fran Sandridge

of Promise, a book featuring 120 devotions for women from authors across the country, including Lisa, a former national television sports reporter and anchor who appeared on HBO’s Inside the NFL and ESPN. She was an RTVF graduate student from 1979 to 1981 and is the founder of Pearls of Promise Ministries. She is a postdoctoral fellow in clinical informatics at the Lister Hill National Center for Biomedical Communications, a research division


Cheryl Richards,

of the National Library of Medicine, which is part of the National Institutes of Health.

Dallas :: is the

She specializes in clinical research information systems, working from electronic health records from the NIH Clinical Center, the world’s largest research hospital. It’s Pan’s job to develop approaches for extracting reliable and usable phenotypic information — physical or biochemical characteristics. She also designs next-generation electronic health records. “I help clinicians and researchers understand and use health information,” Pan says. “I’m part of a field facilitating information-rich health care.” Information science and computer science skills, both of which she honed at UNT, are helping Pan succeed. In the College of Information’s health librarianship graduate program — ranked sixth nationally by U.S.

first senior vice president and chief diversity and inclusion officer for the Dallas Convention & Visitors Bureau. She previously served as vice president of strategic alliances and has worked for the bureau for 24 years.


News & World Report — Pan explored information and communication theories and learned about the behavior of people seeking information. “I want to be a bridge between health resources and people,” Pan says. “I want to make sure they are getting the best health information so they can understand their health problems and make good medical decisions.” — Ernestine Bousquet



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Summer 2013

Sharon McGowan, Dallas :: is executive director for Friends of Wednesday’s Child, an organization designed to bring hope and healing to North Texas children in foster care. She previously served

in leadership roles for the Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas, Susan G. Komen for the Cure and the American Heart Association.

Mike Myers (’85 M.M.Ed.),

Denton :: released a solo album, The Big Picture, a collection of creative instrumental music. He plays all the instruments and records, mixes and produces his original music from his home studio. His jazz/rock compositions rely heavily on analog synthesizer sounds made popular in the 1970s.

1986 Jeff Briggs,

Dallas :: was

promoted to managing director of the Real Estate Group at the Dallas office of American Appraisal. He also is serving as vice president of the North Texas chapter of the Appraisal Institute.

1988 Rosemary Meza-DesPlas,

Dallas :: exhibited her work in

Santa Fe, N.M., this year in “Art on the Edge” at the New Mexico Museum of Art and “Pretty Blunderbuss” at Wade Wilson Art.

1989 Kelley Coppinger, Bowling

Green, Ky. :: is a professional in

residence for Western Kentucky University’s advertising and public relations department. She was born in Iran and went to high school in Belgium and chose to

attend UNT in part because of its large international population. She later married her college sweetheart, Chuck Coppinger.

than 80 locations in five states and was recognized as a Best Place to Work by Dallas Business Journal.


Ph.D.), Hurricane, W.V. :: is

Michael J. Guyette, Eagin,

Minn. :: was named president and CEO of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota. Guyette previously was president of national accounts for Aetna in Hartford, Conn., and held senior leadership positions at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida.

Kevin Land, Scottsdale, Ariz. :: senior medical director at Blood Systems, was named one of Modern Healthcare’s Top 25 Clinical Informaticists. The annual award recognizes the accomplishments of medical professionals who use data to improve the clinical and financial performance of their organizations. He earned his M.D. at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas.

Si Millican (’95 M.M.Ed.), San

Antonio :: was promoted to asso-

ciate professor of music education with tenure at the University of Texas at San Antonio.

1991 Chris Abraham, Frisco :: was named the CEO of Service King Collision Repair last fall. After playing Mean Green football and earning his business degree, he began working for Service King in 1995. The company now has more

Robert Ellison (M.A., ’95

a visiting assistant professor of English at Marshall University in Huntington, W.V. He co-edited The Oxford Handbook of the British Sermon, 1689-1901.

Mike Davis, Lawton, Okla.

:: who earned his Ph.D. from

Princeton, has published widely. Writing under the pen name Studio Dongo, he recently released the first books in a science fiction series, Danglers, concerning the colonization of the ocean and the variety of services possible in international waters. The second book, The City That Traveled the World, was released in May.



Phil Godwin, Murphy :: is vice Cathryn Bowie (M.S.), president of sales and marketing Salem, Ore. ::

was named the 2012 Unsung Legal Hero of the Year by the Daily Journal of Commerce. She is the head law librarian at the state of Oregon’s Law Library and is featured in the November 2012 issue of DJC Magazine.

Mark Hunt, Los Angeles,

Calif. :: teaches at Lincoln Middle School in Santa Monica, Calif., where his Wind Symphony was selected as the middle school honor band for California. The group performed at the California All-State Music Education Convention in February.

at Visual Storage Intelligence, which was nominated as one of four finalists in the storage management tools category of the 11th annual “Storage Products of the Year” awards, presented by Storage magazine and

1997 Greg Allbright (’00 M.P.A.),

Frisco :: and his wife, Emily,

welcomed their son, James Louis Allbright, in November. Proud grandparents Pat Drolet Hull (’71) and Drew Allbright (’70) also attended UNT.

1992 Mitch Ballard, Nashville, Tenn.

:: was named editor-in-chief for, the worldwide brand of Nashville. He also owns DevDigital LLC, a software development company in Nashville, Austin and Baroda, India.

Becky Dunlap Dennis, Plano

:: wrote the book Brain Wreck,

which was a bestseller on Amazon in the e-book medical category within a month of its release. She wrote the story to spread awareness of encephalitis, based on her own experience with the life-threatening illness.

Upcoming Alumni Gatherings UNT alumni can reunite, reminisce, support students and cheer on the Mean Green this fall. Here are just a few of the events to come:

Mean Green Move-In: The UNT community helps new students move into the residence halls for the fall semester Saturday, Aug. 24. For more information, email Football Season Opener: The Mean Green face the Vandals of Idaho at UNT’s Apogee Stadium for the first game of the season Aug. 31. Other opponents coming to town include Ball State and new Conference USA in-state rivals Rice, the University of Texas at El Paso and the University of Texas at San Antonio. Check for tickets and details. Save the Date for Homecoming: Keep your calendars open for Homecoming festivities the weekend of Nov. 8-9. It’s a great time to visit with friends, share memories and enjoy campus. Look for details in the fall issue of The North Texan, visit or email for more information. For more information or to join the UNT Alumni Association, call 940-565-2834 or visit

Summer 2013




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Nest 1998

Audrey Garza Morton,

Austin :: was hired as Relevant Radio 970 AM development associate in Austin full time for Starboard Media Foundation. She also is a music host at KUTX-FM and was a reporter at NPR affiliate KUT.

Michael Patrick Peterson,

Tioga :: has

worked in public education for 11 years and was promoted to director of technology at Whitesboro ISD. He served in the Navy in the Persian Gulf before attending college. He and his wife, Christina, have two daughters, Alyssa and Jessica.



Kika Neville and Shawn Wallace (’11), Austin ::

Tracy Fenwick

Rachel Burlage (’06 M.A.) and Marc Knight (’05), Denton ::

welcomed their first child, a son, Django Ryne Wallace, in December 2011.

(M.S.), Dallas

are the parents of fourth-generation North Texan Amelia Burlage Knight, born in December. Rachel and Marc work at UNT’s Discovery Park. Amelia’s grand­mother is

Kimberly Packard, Colleyville

:: released her debut novel,

Phoenix (GoodMedia Press), the story of three individuals tied by crimes committed 10 years and thousands of miles apart and their journeys for redemption and forgiveness. She earned her degree in journalism.

Bradley A. Scott (M.S.),

Corpus Christi :: and his wife,

Tiana, welcomed their son, Ethan, to the world in March 2012.

:: was named

senior tax manager at Hartman Leito & Bolt LLP. Based out of the accounting firm’s Dallas office, she is managing portfolios in industries including real estate, technology, manufacturing and distribution.


Georgianne Burlage (’76). Her late great-grandparents were

Willie Mae Donnelly Burlage (’43, ’49 M.A.) and George Burlage (’60, ’69 M.A.).


Stephen Shoop (Ph.D.),

Brownsville :: joined the music

Katy Kennedy (’06 M.Ed.),

faculty at the University of Texas at Brownsville, where he teaches applied tuba and euphonium and instrumental conducting. He also coordinates student teachers and the graduate music program.

manager for the northeast Dallas area for Soluble Systems LLC, a company that provides medical products used in the treatment of

Dallas :: is the new territory

Down the Corridor

Mario Zavala

Legacy of Annie Webb Blanton This spring, the Texas Historical Commission recognized North Texas educator and leader Annie Webb Blanton for her significant role in Texas history with an official Texas historical marker at a Denton ISD school named for her, the Dr. Annie Webb Blanton Elementary School in Argyle. Among those in attendance were the school’s 730 students, as well as teachers and administrators, many who are UNT alumni. “When we opened the doors of Annie Webb Blanton in 2008, it was just a building,” says Karen Satterwhite (’91 M.Ed.), principal of the school. “But then the children entered and the legacy for Dr. Blanton could be seen. This historical marker symbolizes the work of a great lady —a true servant of children.” The marker — the first state marker honoring a woman in Denton County — was co-sponsored by Denton County Historical Commission and Denton ISD. Blanton began her career in higher education in 1901 at North Texas, where she spent 17 years as an associate professor of English and promoted gender unity, published grammar exercise books used across the country, and assisted in numerous school activities. She was elected as the first woman president of the Texas State Teachers Association in 1916. And in 1918, she was elected to serve as state superintendent of public instruction, the first woman in Texas elected to statewide office.



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Summer 2013

James Riley, Woodbury, N.J. :: and his wife, Megan, and son, Colin, welcomed a healthy little girl, Hannah Michelle Riley, to their family in December.

2003 Damon Gochneaur, Lewisville

:: celebrated the birth of his third child, Kingston, in August. He also was promoted to director of marketing for Globe Runner SEO, a Lewisville-based digital marketing agency.

weeks premature, weighing 4 pounds, 11 ounces, and measuring 17 inches long. With her mom an alum and her dad a current student, she “couldn’t wait to join her Mean Green family” and is looking forward to our first season in Conference USA.

Karen Kanakis (D.M.A.),

Decorah, Iowa :: is an associate professor of music at Luther College in Decorah. She has performed in many operas in the United States and Italy. Her signature roles include the Verdi heroines Violetta in La Traviata, Abigaille in Nabucco and Alice Ford in Falstaff.

Douglas Baker

chronic wounds. She formerly was an exercise physiologist at Baylor Heart and Vascular Hospital.

Preparing to strike Joshua Dalton (’12), an electrical engineering graduate, is preparing to represent the United States as a competitor in the 22nd Summer Deaflympics in Sofia, Bulgaria, which takes place July 26-Aug. 4.

Brian Henry, Fort Worth :: is the new owner of Seven Stones Healing Massage & Spa in Fort Worth.

Jennifer Snoek-Brown

(M.S.), Portland, Ore. :: was hired as a faculty librarian at Mt. Hood Community College, where she also coordinates the library instruction program.


Julie Kibler (M.S.),

Arlington :: wrote the new book

deaf or hard of hearing, to compete in 10 different sports. Dalton will

Calling Me Home (St. Martin’s Press), about a forbidden relationship in 1930s Kentucky and an unlikely modern-day friendship. Julie’s daughter, Emilie Pickop, is a student in the UNT Honors College, majoring in education.

compete as part of the USA Summer Deaflympics Bowling Team.


welcomed their first child, Lillie Rhea, in November. Lillie was six

Dalton’s father, Larry, first took him bowling when he was a young child. Larry, who also is deaf, was a talented bowler. “When my father found out I was deaf, he started teaching me what he knew,” Dalton says. “I’ve been bowling since before elementary school. My dad made it to the Professional Bowlers Association when he was 19, and seeing his success inspired me.” Dalton was a member of UNT’s bowling club while he was a student. He credits the coach and fellow members with helping him develop his skills and prepare for a competition like the Deaflympics. “Being on the UNT team really helped me build competitive experi-

Melissa Ferro Cole, Austin, and Mackenzie Rollins (’07),

Jordan Smith Harmon and Justin Harmon, Denton ::

The USA Deaf Sports Federation is sending 120 athletes, who are

ence,” he says. Dalton, who has bowled a perfect score of 300 six times, is working

New York City :: have launched

on a master’s degree in telecommunications engineering at the

RollinsCole, a boutique wedding photography business combining fine art and documentary photography. They were both photo editors for the North Texas Daily. Mackenzie traveled abroad as a documentary storyteller and writer, and Melissa created her own wedding and children’s photography companies before they formed the new company.

Rochester Institute of Technology in Rochester, N.Y. The athletes participating in the 2013 Summer Deaflympics come from more than 80 countries, and Dalton looks forward to meeting his competition and experiencing world cultures. “It feels like a world championship game,” he says. “I’ll be going up against the world’s best, and I’m looking forward to that.” Learn more about this summer’s Deaflympics at — Leslie Wimmer

Summer 2013




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Nest News

...... I N T H E //

2007 Samuel Snoek-Brown (Ph.D.),

Portland, Ore. :: received an Oregon Literary Fellowship, one of only two for fiction this year. The statewide fellowship was awarded on the strength of Sam’s historical novel, set in southwest Louisiana during the Civil War.


Numerous UNT faculty shared their expertise with the media after the April 17 West fertilizer explosion. Guido

Verbeck, associate professor of chemistry, commented about chemicals that could have caused such a large explosion; Amie Lund, assistant professor of biological sciences, spoke about air quality; and Wendy Middle-

miss, associate professor of educational psychology, was quoted about the need for counseling. From the


Department of Public Administration, Gary Webb, associate professor, and David McEntire, professor,

Joshua Underwood, Muncie,

spoke about the emergency response, and Bob Bland,

Ind. :: who earned his bachelor’s

professor and chair, discussed zoning issues in a C

degree from UNT in music education, graduated in December with a master’s in instrumental conducting from Ball State University.

hristian Science Monitor article exploring why homes and a school were built nearby.

Two guests on KERA’s April 9 Think, “Are Heroes Made, Born Or Both?” were Michael J. Mooney (’09 M.J.), whose profile of slain Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle ran in


the April D Magazine, and Shaun Treat, assistant professor of communication studies, who researches

Benjamin C. Maynard (M.S.),

mythic archetypes such as superheroes.

➺ James Kennedy, 

Greensboro, N.C. :: joined the

Noble Academy in Greensboro as director of media and educational technology.

Regents Professor of biological

sciences, and UNT biology students discussed their discovery of zebra mussels in the Trinity River in Denton County, the first found in a Texas river, with KXAS-TV and KLIF-AM radio in Dallas-Fort Worth April 2. The invasive food chain, was found during a student research trip.

Portal to Texas History

McCaslin, professor and chair of history, is quoted in “9 Things You May Not Know About Texas.” Commenting on the six flags that have flown over Texas, he says when the French established their outpost near Matagorda Bay, that “galvanized the Spaniards, [who said], ‘There might not be anything there, but damned if we’re going to let the French have it.’”

No r t h Texa n


in creative writing, says she is living the dream in Denton. “I’m lucky enough to work at my alma mater, to raise money for current and future students,” she says. “I live in a small house and enjoy trips to the Square for an afternoon of coffee and writing.”

Madison Dale Ford, Dallas :: earned her degree in hospitality management after completing an internship with Omni Hotels and became a full-time assistant to the office manager of the Omni Dallas Hotel.


Village :: was

nod to Texas Indepen-


Michal Broussard, Denton

:: who earned her English degree


For’s March dence Day, Richard B.



Jeffrey Heaton,

species, which clogs water intake pipes and disrupts the

she joined the faculty of Austin College in Sherman as college organist and instructor. She also is the organist and pianist for Covenant Presbyterian Church in Sherman and maintains a small teaching studio of piano students.


Summer 2013

Lisa Thomas (D.M.A.), Anna

:: completed her first professional label CD, released by Toccata Classics in London, featuring first recordings and first complete recordings of solo piano music by Arthur Farwell. After numerous performances and lecture recitals,

named art director for Balcom Agency in Fort Worth. He also is assisting with motion graphics and video editing for the agency. He worked as a part-time graphic designer while attending school and had internships with and Credit Solutions in Dallas. Jeff ’s unofficial Balcom title is “Clickasso” — Picasso with expertise in digital art.

W E ’ L L


UNT’s alumni, faculty, staff and students are the university’s greatest legacy. When members of the Eagle family pass, they are remembered and their spirit lives on. Send information about deaths to The North Texan (see contact information on page 7). Read more, write memorials and connect with friends at

Texas from 1935 to 1937. He was a telephone man with Southwestern Bell for 41 years and was a founding member and one of the builders of Lewisville Bible Church. In his younger days, he was one of Texas’ top bull riders.

Florine Ermine Sadler Murphy (’37), Fort Worth :: She worked through the Depression and finished her bachelor’s degree at North Texas. She taught in Electra and Wichita Falls, then taught second grade in Fort Worth from 1945 until 1965 before teaching in the Spring Branch ISD for eight years. She retired in 1973 and returned to Fort Worth. She was 100.

1940s Frances Hart Raycroft, Alexandria, Va. :: She studied

Elaine Boyd Truitt (’42), Denton :: As a freshman at North Texas, she met and married Price Truitt (’41, ’42 M.S.), who would start his long career as a UNT chemistry professor in 1945. They had been married for 69 years when he died in 2008. They operated a

chicken farm west of Denton and in the 1960s owned and operated a store near Yellowstone Park during the summers. She helped to found the Denton Quilt Guild and volunteered as a Pink Lady at Flow Hospital for many years. Memorials may be made to the Price and Elaine B. Truitt Endowment Fund at UNT.

Robert J. ‘Bob’ Rogers

1930s Everett Roy Denison, Lewisville :: He attended North

Study Club and Retired Teachers Association.

music at North Texas from 1939 to 1941 and was a member of the Phoreffs. In her 60s, she joined the Peace Corps and spent 18 months in Niger.

Mary Elizabeth Grubbs (’42), Crandall :: At North Texas, she was a Green Jacket and named Who’s Who Among Students in American Universities. She retired after more than 30 years of service as secretary to the captain at the Seagoville Federal Correctional Institution. She was an active volunteer with many organizations in her community. Survivors include her niece, Shirley Grubbs

Latham (’68, ’71 M.M.).

Pianist and Professor Emeritus of music Robert J. “Bob” Rogers never missed a note when it came to

Denton Record-Chronicle


being a volunteer, philanthropist, educator and mentor. The longtime UNT supporter and beloved fixture in the Denton community died May 14. He was 91. Rogers first arrived at North Texas in 1939 on a double bass scholarship and studied piano, only to be drafted into the U.S. Army three years later. After graduating from the Juilliard School of Music and Columbia Teachers College, he returned to campus in 1948 to teach piano pedagogy and remained until 1984, serving as assistant dean in the College of Music from 1969 to 1975. He served as chair of a committee charged with remodeling the Music Building and as a charter member, province governor and chapter advisor for the music fraternity Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia. In 1990, the fraternity named the Robert J. Rogers Lifetime Service Award in his honor. Rogers’ legacy of service and volunteerism at UNT continued long after he left his teaching post. He was the pianist at countless fundraisers and campus events, and he and his wife, Daisy, were known for tirelessly volunteering at the UNT Music Library and supporting students through schol-

Lou Nell Craver Ragsdale McDowell (’42), Paris :: She taught in the Dallas ISD and retired after 40 years of teaching. She earned a master’s degree in education and was a longtime member of the Paris Women’s

arships. In 2012, when he was honored with UNT’s Outstanding Alumni Service Award, he shared that UNT also brought out the best in him. “It was my privilege to teach, for 36 years, many talented students who are performing and teaching throughout Texas and the USA,” he said. Memorials may be made to the Robert J. Rogers Piano Scholarship in the College of Music. Donate at

Summer 2013




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Lilla Belle Dodson Taylor (’45), Canton :: She taught

George Lewis Jordan (’49), Highrolls, N.M. :: Originally

Jack H. Dodson (’55), Littleton, Colo. :: He earned

home economics in Canton for many years. At North Texas, she was president of Kappa Kappa Kappa, the Ellen H. Richards Club and the Girls’ Forum.

from Maine, he came to Texas after serving in the military during World War II. He taught in Texas schools for 33 years, including Permian High School for 18 years. He retired to New Mexico and was choral director for New Mexico State University at Alamogordo for 20 years.

his degree in industrial arts and worked in Denver, Colo., before retiring to Van.

Helen Finnell MargulisAltman (’46), New York, N.Y. :: She earned an M.F.A. at Indiana University and became a professional pianist and cellist, performing and teaching on both instruments. She wrote program notes for Columbia Concerts in New York and befriended many musicians and artists with her first husband, Max Margulis, cofounder of Blue Note Records. At North Texas, she was president of Delta Chi Delta and played in the Symphony Orchestra.

1950s Gordon Tidmore (’50), Vernon :: He earned a business degree at North Texas, where he was a Geezle. He served in the Army during World War II. After graduation, he was an automobile dealer for 55 years. He was married to Lucy Evelyn Lemon (’49) for 64 years.

Virginia Linguist Winker (’55), Round Rock :: She earned her bachelor’s in journalism and later earned a master’s in journalism and a law degree. She was a member of the Federal Bar and the State Bar of Texas and worked as an attorney for the Department of Housing and Urban Development until 1986, when she entered private practice in Arlington.

Korean war broke out joined the U.S. Air Force Reserves. He met Betty Ann Howard while they were both students at North Texas, and they eloped in 1955. After graduation, he worked for 25 years in the banking business. He also owned many small businesses and was an accomplished golfer. At North Texas, he was president of Sigma Nu fraternity.

Thomas ‘Tom’ E. Moore (’57, ’58 M.Ed.), Plano :: He served

Navy on the destroyer U.S.S. Lloyd Thomas, and when the

in the Army during the Korean War and ran track at North Texas. In high school, he set the state record in the 440-yard dash. He retired after 30 years as a coach, principal and assistant to the superintendent in Plano schools. Many of the assistant principals who worked under

Doyle Odus Winters (’56), Dallas :: He served in the U.S.

C. Steven Cole, pro-

Perspectives and others. He

Craftsman Guild and Southwestern

1988, he created the Vandoren V12

previously taught at the University

Watercolor Society. She also taught

clarinet reed, which remains

fessor of

of Tulsa and the University of

at the University of Texas at Austin

popular around the world. He was

finance since

Arkansas. Memorials may be made

and Texas Woman’s University,

the first editor of The Clarinet, the

1988, died

to the College of Business general

among other colleges. She and her

journal of the International Clarinet

scholarship fund.

husband restored the 1846 Wieser

Society, and later served as the

House in Castroville, converting the

society’s president. His book,

barn into an art studio, and Francis

Clarinet Acoustics, was published

made pen and ink drawings of the

in 1998. Gibson was principal

many historic buildings there.

clarinetist for the Fort Worth

March 16. He had earned numerous honors, including the Outstanding

Real Estate and Law in 2010, the

Lorna Owens Francis died

Outstanding Educator Award from

April 9 in

the Southwestern Finance

Castroville. She

Faculty Award for Service from the Department of Finance, Insurance,

Symphony and Fort Worth Opera

Association in 2008 and the Sigma

was an instructor in what is now the

O. Lee Gibson (’60),

Phi Epsilon Outstanding Faculty

College of Visual Arts and Design


Orchestra. An avid amateur radio

Award and Honor Professor Award

from 1969 to 1976. Francis traveled

Emeritus of

operator, he taught at the U.S.

in 1996. He was a member of the

in India and Europe and lived in

music, died

Navy Radio School in Idaho during

American Finance Association and

Sumatra from 1956 to 1959, where

Jan. 26 in Estes Park, Colo. He was

World War II and at RCA in New York

a former president of the South-

her work was displayed in a U.S.

coordinator of woodwind instruc-

City. Donations may be made to the

western Finance Association and

Department of State exhibit. She

tion from 1945 to 1980. Gibson was

O. Lee Gibson Clarinet Scholarship

had been a reviewer for the Journal

was a member of the Denton

a renowned clarinetist and

in the College of Music.

of Business and Economic

Handweavers Guild, Dallas

authority on clarinet design. In



No r t h Texa n



Summer 2013

and played with the Dallas Symphony and Rochester Civic

him went on to schools of their own, and some became superintendents. He was married to Sue Ann Beals (’58) for 56 years.

1960s Thomas Wayne Park Jr. (’68), Weatherford :: He earned a degree in history and government and taught for 15 years at Western Hills High School in Fort Worth. He was later the director of the Weatherford College Bookstore. He was a leader in the Weatherford community, serving as a longtime member of the Parker County Heritage Society, as president of the Weatherford Parks and Recreation board, and as a member of many other boards.

Anthony ‘Tony’ Roso (’68), Grand Junction, Colo. :: He earned his degree in business and went on to earn an M.B.A. from the University of Wyoming. He was a business manager, computer specialist, economist, musician, cowboy poet, photo artist, soldier and philanthropist. His brother, Nicholas Roso (’71), says he was a “true renaissance gentleman.”

1970s Clarence Leon Cook Jr. (’75), Matthews, N.C. :: He earned his bachelor’s degree in history and was employed for nearly 40 years by AEP Industries, where he served as the national inventory control manager.

1980s Judy Ann Stewart (’84), Denton :: She worked at UNT as a personnel specialist and assistant director of equal opportunity from 1969 to 1988. She was a life member of the UNT President’s Council donor recognition society. Survivors include her husband of 55 years, Joe G. Stewart (’71 Ed.D.), retired UNT vice president of student affairs. Memorials may be made to the Dr. Joe and Judy Stewart Scholarship Fund at UNT.

2000s Arun Ramachandran (’04), Bangalore, India :: He was born in Nairobi, Kenya, and

Jake Kobler,

Shreveport Times, Houston

for the music department. His work


Chronicle and United Press

also was included in a 2011

Emeritus of

International and worked for the

exhibition at UNT on the Square.

English, died

U.S. Department of Defense and

After serving as head of art

Jan. 4. He was a

Shell Oil. He was a U.S. Air Force

departments at Ball State

faculty member in the Department

veteran. Memorials may be made to

University and Edinboro University

of English from 1964 to 1997 and

the UNT English department.

of Pennsylvania, Laing became

served as department co-chair. He

dean of the School of Art at East Carolina University in 1979. In 1992,

works by Ernest Hemingway,

Richard Harlow Laing died

William Faulkner and F. Scott

Dec. 23 in

Carolina Art Education Association.

Greenville, N.C.

He retired from East Carolina in

taught composition, rhetoric and American literature, specializing in

Fitzgerald. His publications

he was named Distinguished Art Educator of the Year by the North

included articles in Modern Fiction

Laing was recruited by Cora

1999 and was named Professor

Studies, Arizona Quarterly and

Stafford to join the art department

Emeritus. During the Korean War,

Studies in Short Fiction. He was

at North Texas in 1960 and later

he joined the U.S. Navy Reserve

active in the College English

served as chair of art education and

and served for eight years.

Association and the South Central

developed courses in printmaking.

Survivors include his wife of 42

Modern Language Association. He

Sculptures he created were

also worked as a reporter for the

installed in many locations around

years, Penelope Gamble Laing (’66).

grew up in the U.K. He earned his degree in computer science at UNT, where he worked on both the freshman and parent orientation staffs.

2010s Jordan R. Baker, Sachse :: He was a senior studying entrepreneurship and had been a member of the in-line hockey club at UNT for three years.

Brianna Ridge, Galveston :: She was a biology major with a minor in chemistry and was planning to graduate this summer.

Michelle Younis Murphy, Denton :: She was a freshman majoring in international studies and minoring in Arabic.

Memorials Send memorials to honor UNT alumni and friends, made payable to the UNT Foundation, to the University of North Texas, Division of Advancement, 1155 Union Circle #311250, Denton, Texas 76203-5017. Indicate on your check the name of the memorial fund or area that you wish to support. You can make secure gifts online at For more information, email or call 940-565-2900.

Denton and one was used in a logo

Summer 2013




No r t h Texa n


T h e lasT


A CENTURY OF MEMORIES by Maudell Gentry Baker (’34)



No r t h Texa n



Michael Clements

I WAS ONE OF THE ONLY women in my music classes and received the first Bachelor of Music degree at North Texas. But of all the achievements in my life, the one I’m most proud of is teaching 3-year-olds. I’ve taught students of all ages, but little children need to move around, and while you’re teaching them music they can learn their ABCs and numbers. Years ago, when people asked me to teach their 3-year-olds, I couldn’t find music books for that age. So, I wrote my own book, The Littlest Beginner, which includes games so they can play while they learn. Clavier magazine wrote about it in 1993. I was 80 at the time and teaching 35 students, whose ages ranged from 3 to 80. When I was 96, after College of Music professors heard about my book, they invited me to lead a master class on teaching young children for the college’s music education students. My mother started teaching me music when I was 5 and music has been my whole life since. I think music is important to have in your life, especially for children, who are eager to learn and enjoy it so much. Both my sister, Marinell, and I took piano and then violin lessons. Back then, school only had 11 grades. I graduated at 16 as valedictorian of Henrietta High School, and when my sister went to North Texas in 1930, I followed her.

I majored in piano and played in the orchestra. In my music theory classes, my teachers found out I already knew everything because I’d had such good theory teachers growing up. Professors had me grading my classmates’ papers. All of the band boys I played with were in classes together and they treated me like a queen because I was grading their papers. It was 1934 when I earned my degree. This was during the very heart of the Depression. I started teaching, but I also played music for a dancing school in Dallas for extra money. Then, my sister called me and said a friend of ours who lived in Nocona had died. She wanted to know if I could come take her place and teach her piano students. That’s how I ended up back in Henrietta, riding the bus back and forth to Nocona. Most Saturdays, I had the same bus driver, H.A. Baker. He and his whole family could play instruments by ear. He played the accordion, piano, guitar — you name it — and in the 1940s he was in a band with his brothers, the Harmony Boys.

Summer 2013

We married on St. Patrick’s Day in 1948. Today, I still teach, but I don’t have as many students as I used to or participate in as many musical activities. I still play for the Grand Avenue Baptist Church in Gainesville, but I recently had to stop playing for the Gainesville State School. I played piano for their morning services every Sunday for 47 years. I had so much fun at North Texas and I think it’s important to always keep learning. I’ve always taught myself new things and enjoyed teaching others. I won’t be able to teach forever, but I’ll hang on as long as I can. Maudell Gentry Baker (’34) earned a Bachelor of Music degree with a concentration in music education, making her the first graduate to do so. She received UNT’s College of Music Alumni Appreciation award in 2004. Baker will celebrate her 100th birthday in August.

Celebrating 100 Years of Mean Green Football The North Texas football team played its first official game in 1913 on a cleared field. One hundred years later, the Mean Green play in Apogee Stadium, a one-of-a-kind sustainable facility. In this centennial season, UNT celebrates the past and present. Join us as we move to conference USA and pay tribute to a proud legacy of outstanding athletes by honoring the fan-selected North Texas All-century Football Team.

Quarterback Steve Ramsey

Running backs

Patrick cobbs, Abner Haynes and Ray Renfro

Wide receivers

Johnny Quinn and Ron Shanklin

Tight end Brian Waters

Offensive linemen

Scott Bowles, Andy Brewster, Bill carrico, Glen Holloway and Willie Parker

Defensive linemen

Walter chapman, Joe Greene, cedrick Hardman and Brandon Kennedy


Byron Gross, Brad Kassell, cody Spencer and Burks Washington

Defensive backs

Bill Brashier, Jonas Buckles, Leonard Dunlap and J.T. Smith

Punter John Baker

Placekicker Iseed Khoury

Return specialist Abner Haynes


Odus Mitchell Be a part of Mean Green history by buying season tickets online or by phone today.

800-UNT-2366 | 940-565-2527

The North Texan

Jonathan Reynolds

UNIVeRsITY OF NORTh TeXas division of University Relations, Communications and Marketing 1155 Union Circle #311070 denton, Texas 76203-5017

pa RT I N G s h O T This spring, the campus marked its successes at university Day — an annual event celebrating uNT’s transition from a college to a university in 1961 — in full Mean Green pride. as part of the festivities in the library Mall — including a barbecue, flag parade and music — uNT dedicated its new campus historical signs (page 8), the Talons unveiled the refurbished Mean Green Machine and Denton’s Mayor pro Tem pete Kamp (’75) read the university proclamation. Watch a slideshow of the event at

The North Texan - UNT Alumni Magazine - Summer 2013  
The North Texan - UNT Alumni Magazine - Summer 2013  

The North Texan - UNT Alumni Magazine - Summer 2013