BOARD OF DIRECTORS

 

EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE

Dr. Lucio Calzada, Board Chair

Lucio Calzada, Jr., Ed.D., is the Mentoring Director for the Texas Association of Latino Administrators and Superintendents (TALAS).  He retired from the public school system after 30 years of service to our country’s most precious resource, our children. He began his education career as a high school math teacher in Kingsville, Texas. He led his first school as principal of South Park Middle School in Corpus Christi, Texas.  Dr. Calzada later joined the Austin ISD team, first as the principal of Fulmore Middle School, then Garcia Middle School, and he was named the principal of Austin High School in June, 2008. Under his leadership, Austin High School became a State Recognized High School. In January of 2015, Dr. Calzada was invited to join the Hays CISD executive leadership team led by superintendent, Mr. Michael McKie, as the assistant superintendent of secondary schools. Dr. Calzada earned his doctorate in education leadership from Texas A&M Corpus Christi in 2002.  He served his country as a commissioned officer in the United States Army Reserve.  In his spare time, he has served as an adjunct professor for Texas State Univeristy, Concordia University, and St. Edwards University because he loves teaching. Lucio is married to Dr. Donna Calzada, a fellow educator and is very proud of his three grown daughters, Amanda, Catherine and Hannah.

Troy Madres, Board Chair-Elect

Troy Madres is a Vice President with Morgan Stanley, a global investment bank. He serves as a banker to local and statewide municipal issuers around the country and has executed over $20 billion in bond transactions in an advisory or underwriting role in his career. Troy’s focus is on infrastructure, with significant experience with surface transportation, mass transit, airport, utility, economic development, and P3 clients. Troy was born and raised in Philadelphia, and is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania. Prior to joining the CIS Board, Troy was a board member at Creative Action, and previously served as a Vice President in the Bouldin Creek Neighborhood Association, and was on the board of the Philadelphia Mural Arts Advocates. He was also a co-founder of Young Involved Philadelphia, a non-profit that aims to increase civic engagement among recent college graduates. Troy moved to Austin in 2006, and resides in the Bouldin Creek neighborhood with his wife, a Licensed Specialist in School Psychology, and two sons who attend Austin ISD schools.

Heather McKissick, Secretary

Heather McKissick serves as Senior Vice President of Community Impact for University Federal Credit Union (UFCU). She leads credit union strategic relationship development, community engagement, social purpose, advocacy, and marketing. She also focuses on strengthening the UFCU brand and establishing collaborative opportunities for positive community impact. Heather is a member of the Board of Directors of the American Heart and Stroke Association of Central Texas and Communities In Schools, serves on the Young Women’s Alliance community advisory board; and is chair of the advisory council for the Austin Young Chamber of Commerce (and their 2013 “Changemaker of the Year”). She served as chair of the Heart Association’s 2017 “Go Red for Women” campaign; as honorary co-chair with Austin Mayor Steve Adler of the 2016 “Austin Under 40” awards; was the inaugural “Austin Under 40 Mentor of the Year” honoree, a “Women of Distinction” honoree in 2014 by the Girl Scouts of Central Texas, and a recipient of a 2010 Austin Business Journal “Profiles in Power” award.

Cameron Brown, Treasurer

Cameron Brown is an Audit Partner in KPMG’s Austin office focusing on clients in the life sciences and technology industry sectors. Cameron began his career with KPMG in 1999 in the Austin office and spent a two-year rotation from 2003 to 2005 in Amsterdam, Netherlands. Cameron holds a B.S.M. in Accounting and Finance from Tulane University and is a Texas and New York Certified Public Accountant.  In addition to his role on the Communities In Schools of Central Texas Board, Cameron is the Treasurer of the SAFE Board of Directors, serves on the Audit Committee of Trinity Episcopal School, is KPMG Austin leader for the KPMG Families For Literacy program and is a volunteer runner with Back On My Feet. Cameron enjoys traveling with his wife and two kids and is an avid runner.

Reyne Telles, at-large

Reyne Christopher Telles has over twenty years of experience in the fields of communication, media relations and marketing. He currently works as the Executive Director of Communication and Engagement for the Austin Independent School District where he serves as part of the superintendent’s executive team. He has worked as a television news reporter for a CBS affiliate and as a press secretary with the New Mexico State Senate. Reyne also has served as the Manager of Media Relations for the City of Austin and as the Director of Communications for Mayor Lee Leffingwell. He holds an undergraduate degree in communication and political science as well as  a Masters of Public Affairs from the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin.

Barbara Scroggie Knaggs, former Chair

Barbara Knaggs has dedicated her career to public service in the areas of education and non-profit organization. She served as the Chief Operating Officer for the non-profit news organization, The Texas Tribune. Before joining the Tribune, she was Associate Commissioner for State Initiatives at the Texas Education Agency where she oversaw the implementation of statewide education programs, including early childhood education, dropout prevention and college and career readiness initiatives, adult basic education programs, and programs for limited English proficient students. Currently, Ms. Knaggs serves on several school-level and district-level advisory committees with Austin Independent School District. A 1987 graduate of the University of Texas at Austin with a degree in Plan II, Ms. Knaggs obtained a secondary teaching certificate from the University of Texas at Austin in 1992 and a Master of Public Affairs from the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin in 2003.

MEMBERS

Dr. Shasta Buchanan 

Shasta Buchanan currently serves as Vice President of Student Affairs for Austin Community College. In this role she works collaboratively across the college to ensure student success in and beyond the classroom. Previously Dr. Buchanan served as Associate Vice President of College and High School Relations at ACC where she increased dual credit enrollment and expanded partnerships with local school districts and businesses. She has 20 years of higher education experience as a student affairs and enrollment management administrator, spanning across many institutions in Texas, which include Texas A&M University, The University of Texas at Dallas, Texas Tech University, University of North Texas at Dallas, and Portland Community College (Portland, Oregon). Currently Dr. Buchanan serves as a board member for American YouthWorks, National Ambassador for the College in High School Alliance Network, Council Member for Business and Industry with Austin Partners in Education, Council Member of the Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership Council through the National Association of Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE), and a Member of the Advisory Committee for the National Student Clearinghouse. Dr. Buchanan received her Bachelor of Science in Agricultural Economics from Texas A&M University (WHOOP!), Master of Science in Organizational Leadership from Our Lady of the Lake University, and her Doctor of Education in Organizational Leadership – Higher Education Administration from Grand Canyon University. She enjoys spending her time with her husband Scott, Sr. and their two major contributions to this world; their son and daughter.

 

Vanessa Gonzalez

Vanessa Gonzalez is a partner at the law firm of Bickerstaff Heath Delgado Acosta LLP, where she leads the firm’s employment litigation group. Originally from South Texas, Vanessa received her B.A. from Texas A&M University and her J.D. from University of Texas, School of Law. She is board certified in labor and employment law by the Texas Board of Legal Specializing. Vanessa has been a longtime advocate for equity in education and diversity in the legal profession. She has developed and led volunteer opportunities for Hispanic lawyers in economically disadvantaged schools through the Hispanic Bar Association of Austin and for entrepreneurs and business owners through the Greater Austin Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. When not helping employers to comply with state and federal employment laws or volunteering in the education arena, Vanessa enjoys spending time outdoors with her husband and two kids in South Austin.

Michele Guzmán, PhD

Michele Guzmán, PhD is Vice President of Administration, Senior Director of Evaluation for the Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute, a nonpartisan, non-profit organization established in 2013 to provide policy research and development to improve mental health services in Texas. Prior to joining the institute, she worked at the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health for six years. In addition to leading and coordinating the Hogg Foundation’s evaluation efforts, Ms. Guzmán developed and managed grant programs related to mental health provider workforce issues and mental health research. She taught both undergraduate and graduate counseling psychology courses at The University of Texas at Austin for 10 years and served as Assistant Vice President for Diversity Education Initiatives from 2007-2011. Ms. Guzmán received her undergraduate degree in Psychology from Vassar College and completed her doctorate in Counseling Psychology at the The State University of New York at Albany. She completed graduate coursework in Public Health at the University of Texas Health Science Center-Houston. She served for two years (2014-2016) as President-Elect and then President, of the Magellan International School Parents Association, where her two children, ages 8 and 11 attend. Michele enjoys walking, listening to audio books, and wine tasting.

Craig Hester

Craig Hester, CFA has been actively involved in professional investment management since 1972. Prior to becoming Principal with Luther King Capital Management in January 2013, he served as CEO and founder of Hester Capital Management, LLC from 1989-2012. Mr. Hester currently serves on the Board of Trustees of the Employees Retirement System of Texas, and is a Member of the Advisory Committee of the MBA Investment Fund, LLC of the University of Texas Graduate School of Business. He is a Member of the Board of Directors of the St. David’s Foundation, and is Chairman of the Investment Committee. He serves on the Board of Trustees of the Joe R. and Teresa Lozano Long Center for the Performing Arts. He also serves on the Board of Directors of San Jacinto Services. A graduate of the University of Texas at Austin (BBA, 1971; MBA, 1972), he received the Chartered Financial Analyst designation in 1977 and the Chartered Investment Counselor designation in 1992.

Michael Lewis

Michael Lewis is the Senior Vice-President and General Manager of KTBC FOX 7 in Austin TX. Prior to that, he was VP/Sales Manager at KRIV/KTXH Houston and was previously VP/ Sales Manager at WHBQ Memphis. In 2016, Michael was named General Manager of the Year by Broadcasting & Cable Magazine highlighting his leadership in support of Texas Veterans. Michael grew up in Albany, NY where he gained a Bachelor’s degree from the College of Saint Rose. As an active member of the Austin community, Michael is a Legacy Circle member of Lifeworks Austin; an active mentor with Community In Schools of Central Texas; a member of the 100 Black Men of Austin and a former board member of Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Texas.

Kendel Martin 

Kendel Martin joined Luminex Corporation in December 2007 and currently serves as Vice President, Accounting. In this capacity, Mrs. Martin has responsibility for Finance and Accounting, Financial Planning and Analysis, and Tax.  Prior to joining Luminex Corporation, Mrs. Martin held management roles as External Reporting Manager at Freescale Semiconductor, Internal Audit Manager at Cirrus Logic and Audit Senior Manager at Ernst & Young LLP. Mrs. Martin holds a B.A. in Economics from Rhodes College and is a Texas Certified Public Accountant.  In addition to serving on the Communities in Schools of Central Texas board, Mrs. Martin has served as the Vice Chair of the Finance Committee for the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce, and on the Finance Committee of Impact Austin, and on the Business Advisory Board at Westwood High School in Round Rock Independent School District. Mrs. Martin and her husband Paul are missing their daughter, who is attending Ole Miss, and spoiling their two rescue terriers.

Christine Messina  

Cristine Messina has over fifteen years of marketing experience with an emphasis in corporate philanthropy and event management.  She served as a Global Event Marketing Manager for Chase Private Bank before joining Branding Partners, a boutique consulting firm that helped manage Continental Airline’s charitable giving program. And just prior to its opening, Christine joined the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts in Houston as Director of Marketing and Resource Development where she was responsible for marketing, sponsorships, membership and the Center’s outreach and fundraising programs.nChristine holds a BBA in Marketing from the University of Texas at Austin. She has served on the boards of Houston Children’s Charity and the U.S. Fund for UNICEF Southwest Region.  Christine and her husband, Louis, support a number of local organizations including Community First!, SAFE and Dell Children’s Medical Center. Christine is the mother of two daughters, who attend middle and high school, and four adult stepsons.

Katrina Montgomery

Katrina Montgomery has over twenty-five years of accounting experience with a majority of those in leadership.  Katrina earned her BS at Grambling State University and her MBA from University of Phoenix. She spent over 15 + years at The Boon Group where she served as the Controller. She is now the Interim VP of Administration and Finance at Huston-Tillotson University, a private, historically black university and the first institution of higher learning in Austin, where she is responsible for the following divisions – Finance, Central Services and Facilities. She has served on the board of Finding Our Voice, Austin Area Heritage Council and was an Audit and Foundation Committee Chair for the South-Central Chapter of Jack and Jill Inc.  She was recently appointed to serve on the Community Action Network board committee. Katrina and her husband, Michael, attend Saint James Missionary Baptist Church and have one son, one daughter, and a fur baby named Coco.

Patrick Patterson

Patrick Patterson serves as Asst. Vice President of The Longhorn Center for School Partnerships. He has been at The University of Texas at Austin since 2010, when he retired from Austin ISD having served thirty years in public education as a teacher and administrator. He started his career in Chicago, where he taught and coached at the high school level from 1981 until 1983. Then from 1983 until 1990, he taught several grade levels at Blackshear Elementary School in Austin. In 1990, he became asst. principal at Summitt Elementary for two years until his first principal job at Reilly Elementary in 1992.  From 1996 until 2010 Patrick became the only person in AISD history to serve the district as principal at each level, having lead Dobie Middle School, Lanier High School and LBJ High School. Both Lanier and LBJ were named in Newsweek’s top 1200 High Schools in America during his time as principal. In 2009, Patrick was named Principal of the Year in Austin ISD. In 2010, he was named the Texas Association of Journalism Educator’s Administrator of the Year for the State of Texas. In 2014, AISD honored Patrick with the HL Gaines Community Service Award for his continued work on behalf of the children of Austin, Texas. Mr. Patterson earned his bachelors and master’s degrees from Chicago State University in 1981 and 1983, respectively. He earned two post-graduate certifications (elementary education and mid-management administration) from Southwest Texas State University in San Marcos in 1987and 1990. He has two adult daughters, Avaire and Amani, and he is married to his lovely wife, Anita.

Felicia Peña

Felicia Peña is a public affairs professional working in brand engagement and corporate social responsibility. As a Public Affairs Manager for H-E-B in the Central Texas Region, Felicia’s responsibilities include, media relations, sponsorship fulfillment, and charitable efforts on behalf of H-E-B. Felicia graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a Bachelor of Science in Communication Studies and a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology with a certificate degree in Social Entrepreneurship and Nonprofits. After graduation, Felicia worked as a Campaign Associate for United Way for Greater Austin assisting with the State Employee Charitable Campaign. For 5 years, Felicia worked with the Central Texas Food Bank, serving in a few different roles, most recently as Director of Community Engagement. Felicia currently serves as a board member at large with Communities In Schools Central Texas. Other community involvement includes board membership of the YWCA Greater Austin, Shoal Creek Conservancy, Young Hispanic Professional Association of Austin, YNPN Austin, and the Young Women’s Alliance. Felicia was also a participant in the 2013 class of Leadership Austin Emerge and the city of Austin CityWorks Academy.

Celeste Ruiz Chang

Celeste Ruiz Chang was a student in the Communities In Schools program at Crockett High School. After she graduated from the University of Texas at Austin, Celeste worked abroad. She is currently working at St. Austin Catholic School and preparing to welcome her first child this year. Celeste is a founding leader of the CIS of Central Texas Alumni Network. She volunteers as a speaker sharing her experiences with students, and at CIS events.

Shaku Selvakumar

Shaku Selvakumar is a marketing innovation leader with multi-country, multinational and start-up experience having worked for Fortune 500 companies like IBM, Shell, and fast growth companies and fast growth startups. She is also a speaker and prolific writer; her articles have appeared in various publications globally. Currently she is the founder and ceo of Activateen, a collaborative program for teenagers that combines technology understanding with emotional wellness. She also serves as the Community Impact Advisor at CognitiveScale, a fast growth enterprise AI company. Prior to this, she was the Vice President, Marketing for CognitiveScale. Here she led the company’s marketing strategy and execution from its inception and was instrumental in positioning it as one of the leading core artificial intelligence startups garnering awards, influencer endorsement, and driving demand with Fortune 500 customers and partners. Shaku holds Bachelor’s in Arts in Literature and Sociology, a Post Graduate degree in Mass Communications and a Master’s in Business Administration from the University of Bradford. She is  passionate about education reform. She is a certified yoga teacher and an avid hiker. Her poetry is often inspired by the trails of Central Texas.

Kevin Sooch

Kevin Sooch is a Development Manager at Stratus Properties. Kevin joined Stratus in December 2016. Kevin’s role focuses on overseeing real estate developments through the various phases of acquisition, design, permitting, financing, construction, operations, and disposition. Prior to joining Stratus Properties, Kevin worked as an Applications Engineer at National Instruments. Kevin holds a BS in Electrical Engineering from The University of Michigan. Before joining the Board of Communities In Schools, Kevin served as a board member of the KDK-Harman Foundation. Kevin and his wife, Alexandria, live in Central Austin with their son, Hayden. Kevin is an active volunteer for Foster Village, Saint Louise House, and Pop-Up Birthday.

Danielle Treviño

Danielle Treviño is Vice President, Marketing & Communications, for the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce. She manages the marketing/communications team and the organization’s media relations program, social media presence, and marketing strategy. Prior to her role at the Chamber, she served under Commissioner George P. Bush as the first-ever social media strategist at the Texas General Land Office, earning Texas’ oldest state agency the title of “Best State Agency on Twitter” from the Texas Social Media Research Institute two years in a row. Prior to her time at the Land Office, she played a key role in managing digital content for Gov. Greg Abbott’s initial gubernatorial campaign. Danielle is an active member of the Junior League of Austin and works primarily with the Food In Tummies (FIT) program, which is designed to provide weekend nourishment to children in economically disadvantaged situations. She is also a member of the Austin Community Foundation Hispanic Impact Fund grants committee and Somos Austin host committee, the Children’s Advocacy Centers of Texas Women of Courage committee, and a volunteer strategic marketing consultant for the Austin Technology Council. Danielle grew up in the Rio Grande Valley and is a graduate of Barrett, the Honors College at Arizona State University. She holds concurrently earned degrees from the Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication: a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a Master of Mass Communication.

Tal Tversky, Ph.D.  

Tal Tversky is a Director of Analytics at Apple Inc., where he leads a team of data scientists developing analytic solutions to problems that involve fraud, waste and abuse company wide.  Tal received a B.S. in Physics from Yale and a Ph.D. in computer science from the University of Texas at Austin specializing in artificial intelligence and vision.  As a child, he imagined he would be a spy or a scientist. Today he imagines he fights crime with his mind. Tal has four school aged kids attending various AISD schools, and a wife who has been an educator in AISD for more than 10 years.  Tal has always been passionate about education and kids and is delighted to be serving on the board of CIS.

Kirsten Ueber

Kirsten Ueber is currently a Senior Director with the Boston Consulting Group (BCG), where she oversees Operations for the global Energy Practice of the firm. In her 20 year career with BCG, she has consulted to clients in Energy and Industrial Goods and has worked with the Global CEO and Chief of Staff as well as the global Executive Committee of the firm. She has been based out of their Munich, Atlanta, Dallas and Austin offices. Kirsten holds a BA in Plan II Honors from the University of Texas at Austin and an MBA in Finance and Entrepreneurship from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. She grew up in Germany and is bilingual in German and English. She is deeply committed to educational issues, and has served as a mentor to UT students through the Texas Exes, and on the Finance Committee for CIS. She spends her free time with her husband of 20 years, Eric, and their three middle and high-school aged children who attend AISD schools.

Kerry Ugarte

Kerry Ugarte is a Wealth Advisor, advising clients in areas of wealth planning and preservation, such as managing their wealth and passing the wealth on to family or charity in a tax-efficient manner. Kerry began her career as a management consultant with a global consulting firm and then became an estate planning attorney. Prior to joining J.P. Morgan, Kerry was a shareholder at Graves Dougherty Hearon& Moody in Austin, Texas. There she helped clients design and implement estate planning and wealth transfer solutions. She joined J.P. Morgan Private Bank in 2014 as a Wealth Advisor for Central Texas. Kerry is Board Certified in Estate Planning and Probate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. She serves on several non-profit boards in the Central Texas community. Kerry received her undergraduate B.B.A in Honors Business and B.A. in Plan II from the University of Texas. She also received her M.B.A. and J.D. from The University of Texas. While not working or volunteering, Kerry enjoys traveling with her husband and their three school-age children.

Isabel Welland 

 

LEADERSHIP CIRCLE MEMBERS

Edna Ramón-Butts
Austin Independent School District

Suzanna Caballero and John Caballero
Vantage Bank and Austin Independent School District

Jeff Civins
Haynes and Boone, L.L.P.

Sheryl Cole
Cole Law Firm

Mary Lockwood Crouch
Community Leader

Jennifer Esterline
Community Leader

Jesús Garza
Community Leader

Nikki Graham
Bank of America

Charlotte and Sam Hanna
SGH Management Company, LLC

Martha Harris
Community Leader

Dave Holiday
Chief Audit Executive, AMD

Charisse Hughen and David Hughen
Austin HR

Jo Lyn Kallison and Kal Kallison
Rogers & Whitley, LLP and Community Leader

Christopher Kennedy
CEO, Leadership Austin

Jane Kretzschmar and Peter Kretzschmar
The University of Texas at Austin and United Way for Greater Austin

Shelly Lang
Community Leader

Michael R. Levy
Michael R. Levy Charitable Foundation

Honorable Mike Lynch
Community Leader

Chris Mitchell
Community Leader

Susan Morrison
Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired

Dr. Anna Pedroza and Robert Chapin
Community Leaders and Arcadis, Inc.

Dr. Colette Pierce Burnette
Huston-Tillotson University

Kate Rhodes and Dr. Richard Rhodes
AT&T and Austin Community College District

Liz Rodriguez 
Charles Schwab

Kathryn Ross
Community Leader

Danny Roth
Southwest Strategies Group

Marcia Silverberg
Principal, HR Directions

Sue Snyder
Enviro Water Minerals Company, Inc.

Sabrina and Bill Streusand
Community Leaders

Dean Taylor
Washington Federal

Laura Templeton
Community Leader

Jeff Trigger
La Corsha Hospitality Group

Dr. Gregory Vincent
Community Leader

Dr. Gloria Williams
Austin Independent School District

Mark Williams
Community Leader

Susan Wittliff and Reid Wittliff
Price Wealth Management and Wittliff Cutter, PLLC