DSACO’s Annual Meeting was held on June 22nd. Members were invited to learn about the organization’s plan for the upcoming fiscal year, review the organization’s activities and finances, and vote on the new slate of officers.
During the meeting, the following members were voted onto the board of directors:
Reed Early graduated with his Bachelor’s in Business Administration in 2006 from the University of Central Oklahoma and began his career in the oil and gas industry. His experience has ranged from large corporations to startup companies with knowledge in leasing, owner relations, mineral rights, and divestitures. Reed completed his MBA with an emphasis in leadership in 2012 from Oklahoma Christian University.
Reed has been involved with various charitable organizations here in OKC including The Red Cross, the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma and also works to raise money for MS through the non-profit group Rolling with the Homies. He volunteers his time regularly with the Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Department, continues to be “Top Dog” or coordinator of the Watch Dog program at his daughter’s elementary school, and has been a mentor to several students through his place of employment. Reed has lived in Yukon for 12 years with his wife, Marissa and their three daughters Cadence, Berkley, and Annabelle.
Tessa Wilken Gross is a graduate of University of Oklahoma’s School of Business, with a degree in Management Information Systems. She met her husband Jon in 2001 and they married in 2002. She started on the nurturing path of a parent in 2006, with the birth of their daughter Marlena. In 2007 she left her position with the Oklahoma State Supreme Court to start a home business and raise her daughter full time.
In 2011, she gave birth to Terence, a person with Down Syndrome; and this is where their lives diverged from the norm. In 2013 she started in a new position working at a local tech company, a rising star in the payroll and human resource market. Since that time, she has fiercely advocated to integrate him with other children his age, through daycares and schools that are sometimes ill equipped, and ignorant of his needs. In that time, she discovered DSACO, a resource that fit with her need to embrace an under-appreciated community; one that works to support and advocate for so many families. In her spare time between working and family life, she tends a vegetable garden, plays Dungeons and Dragons, rocks out on violin and sings in a heavy metal band.
Leonard D.T. Newby is a husband, son, and Assistant Professor of Special Education in the School of Education and Behavioral Sciences at Langston University. Dr. Newby specializes in the theoretical and applied aspects of learning and has dedicated his expertise to elevating student motivation to excel and thrive in- and outside of educational settings. Dr. Newby is not your average teaching professional, he is a catalyst for the culture. He’s a voice for the silenced and a warrior for the oppressed. On any given day you can catch Newby giving “Ted Talks” in Sanford and Moore Hall.
Hudson Talley is a native Oklahoman and co-owner of Ascend Action, a general consulting firm specializing in campaign management, digital marketing, and polling research. His political work has taken him all across the country working with dozens of successful campaigns including Ted Cruz for President, Greg Abbott for Texas Governor, and Kevin Stitt for Oklahoma Governor. While his day job keeps him busy, his more notable work includes hunting any animal in season, spending too much time checking OKC Thunder box scores, and noodling for catfish in murky Oklahoma rivers.
Kathy Trout has a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Oklahoma and a master’s degree in special education from the University of Central Oklahoma. She and her husband, Kevin, have two children Addie, age 13 and Luke, age 10. She began her career in the field of mental health in 1998 at a therapeutic foster care agency. She has served many roles to include counselor, foster parent recruiter and developer, grievance coordinator and quality improvement. She has worked in Oklahoma, Texas, Ohio, Alabama, and Nevada developing policies and procedures as well as monitoring needs and performance. She is a member of the Down Syndrome Association of Oklahoma and served on the parent board at Special Care (a day care for children of all abilities).
Victoria Tourville is from south OKC/Moore. She has been married to Shaun for 17 years and have three sons Rodney, Tank, and Zander. The Tourville’s are parent advocates for their youngest daughter, Rosalie who has Down syndrome. Victoria loves being involved in DSACO for the past five years where Rosalie has been receiving tutoring and speech therapy along with joining in the Mommy Mingle play group, as well as many other activities. Victoria has served on the calendar committee and Festival and 5K committee for the last two years. She is excited for the future of DSACO and to see what the future holds for Rosalee.