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Gov. Perry Appoints Twelve to Governor's Committee on People with Disabilities

AUSTIN—Gov. Rick Perry appointed twelve to the Governor's Committee on People with Disabilities. The committee works to ensure Texans with disabilities may live their lives with integrity, independence and productivity.

Aaron W. Bangor of Austin is a principal member of the technical staff at AT&T Labs, Inc. He is a member of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society, where he serves as program chair for the Communications Technical Group. He also serves on a committee drafting a national standard to make software easier to use and more accessible. Bangor earned board certification in professional ergonomics as a certified human factors professional. Bangor received a bachelor's degree in industrial and systems engineering and economics, and a master's and doctoral degree in human factors engineering from Virginia Tech.

Joe Bontke of Houston is the outreach manager and ombudsman for the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's Houston district office. He is a graduate of Leadership Houston. Bontke is a member of the Society for Human Resource Management and its local affiliate, HR Houston. He has served as a board member for the Mayor's Committee for the Employment of People with Disabilities, and is the co-founder of CookingMinistry.org. Bontke received a bachelor's degree from Saint Alphonsus College and a master's degree in education from Mount Saint Alphonsus Seminary.

Daphne Brookins of Fort Worth is an instructor for Texas Christian University's Upward Bound program. She is a member of the American Association of University Women and serves as a board member of Youth as Resources, Expanding Your Horizons and Amon Carter Jr. Downtown YMCA. Brookins is also a forum leader and spokesperson for the American Cancer Society, and mayor pro tem for the City of Forest Hill. Additionally, she works with the boards of Texas Wesleyan Alumni, Girls Inc., the Metropolitan Black Chamber of Commerce and the Texas Association of Black City Council Members. In 2006, Brookins was awarded the "40 Under 40 Award" by the Fort Worth Business press as an up and coming rising star in the Metroplex area, as well as the Young Alumni Achievement of the Year at Texas Wesleyan University, where she received a bachelor's degree in business management and psychology.

Peggy A. Cosner of Belton is the executive director of Heart of Central Texas Independent Living Center. She currently serves on the board of the Texas Rehabilitation Association and has served as a past president of the board. She also served as past president of the Bell County Judge and Commissioner Committee for Persons with Disabilities and the Temple Exchange Club. Cosner is a member-at-large of the Texas Association of Centers for Independent Living and serves as an instructor of parent effectiveness training. She received a bachelor's degree in social work from Michigan State University.

David A. Fowler of Katy is a retired member of the United States Military. He currently serves as president and national director for the Texas chapter of Paralyzed Veterans of America. Fowler is a member of the 82nd Airborne Association, the Peer Associate Partner Council at Michael E. DeBakey Veterans Administration Medical Center and Disabled American Veterans. He also serves as a spinal cord injuries volunteer and peer partner for Houston Veterans Administration and on the Disabilities Committee for the City of Houston. Fowler received a degree in psychology and sociology from Houston Community College.

Roland Guzman of Helotes is the owner of R&G Lawn Mowing Service, and is being reappointed to the committee. He is a member and previous Grand Knight of the Knights of Columbus Men's Council and the Alamo Area Accessibility Partnership. Guzman formerly worked for the Corpus Christi Independent School District and the Corpus Christi Army Depot. He received an associate degree in vocational education from Corpus Christi State University.

Judy C. Scott of Dallas is director of the American Foundation for the Blind Center on Vision Loss, and is being reappointed to the committee. She is vice chair of the Vision Services Consortium in Dallas, an advisory committee member for Reading and Radio Resource for the Blind, and past member of the Texas Commission for the Blind and Texas Rehabilitation Commission Rehabilitation Advisory Councils. Scott is also past chair of the Texas State Independent Living Council and the Texas Association for Education and Rehabilitation of the Blind and Visually Impaired. She has served on Access Committees for the American Airlines Arena and the International Terminal at DFW Airport. She received a bachelor's and master's degree from East Texas State University, now Texas A&M University-Commerce.

Brian D. Shannon of Lubbock is the associate dean for Academic Affairs and Charles Thornton Professor of Law at the Texas Tech University School of Law. He is reappointed to the committee. Shannon serves as board chair of the Lubbock Regional Mental Health and Mental Retardation Center and is a former chair of the State Bar of Texas' committee on disability issues. He is also an elected member of the American Law Institute. He received a bachelor's degree from Angelo State University in San Angelo and a law degree from the University of Texas School of Law.

Nancy Shugart of Austin is a retired teacher and founder and owner of Prove Them Wrong Enterprises. She is reappointed to the committee. Shugart is a member of the National Education Association and co-chair for the Kids Walk to Cure Diabetes school program sponsored by the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. She previously served on the Board of Directors for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and was a member of the Austin Downtown Lions Club. Shugart received a bachelor's degree from North Texas State University and a master's degree from Sam Houston State University.

Kathy Strong of Garrison is the executive director of the Nacogdoches Treatment Center and is reappointed to the committee. She is a member of the Nacogdoches Mayor's Committee on People with Disabilities and the Sunshine School Board of Directors. Additionally, Strong is a member of the Nacogdoches Handicapped Housing board of directors, the Nacogdoches Chamber of Commerce Transportation Committee, and the Leadership Nacogdoches Steering Committee. She received a bachelor's degree from Stephen F. Austin State University.

Tommie Grace Wells of Fort Worth is a retired medical technologist, and most recently worked for the Plaza Medical Center. She received a bachelor's degree in biology and chemistry from the University of Texas at Arlington and a certificate of completion for post baccalaureate studies in medical technology from Tarleton State University. Wells also received her vocational nursing diploma from All Saints School of Vocational Nursing. She serves on the board of trustees of the Hearing Loss Association of America (formerly Self Help for Hard of Hearing People, Inc.), and as a children's rights coordinator of the A.G. Bell Association for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing.

Shane Whitehurst of Austin is an administrative assistant with the Longhorn Foundation, the principle fundraising division of the University of Texas men's and women's athletics. He received a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Texas at Austin. Whitehurst served as member of Texas Summer Games Committee for the Special Olympics, is on the membership committee of the University of Texas club and is involved with the Make a Wish foundation.

For Immediate Distribution
Governor's Press Office: 512-463-1826
Feb. 7, 2007
Robert Black
Katherine Cessinge

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