Our Board of Directors and Staff
Teri Walker originally worked in technology management, and left the field to work in nonprofit. After serving for 6 years as the Executive Director of Aberg Center for Literacy, she now owns her own company, CommonTeri Services, which provides technology management services to nonprofits. Teri believes that Literacy Texas can offer a unified voice for advancing adult education in our state. In her spare time, Teri plays banjo, hosts dinner parties, reads nonfiction, and travels – not necessarily in that order.
Board Vice President
For Angela Cox, Literacy Texas means that she can contribute to a worthy cause and make a difference in this world. She believes that if an adult who has never obtained a high school diploma could be given the opportunity to obtain a GED, it increases their chances of employment, which is positive for the whole community. Angela’s work serving on local literacy boards and committees, fundraising for literacy programs, and volunteer work as an ESL tutor is proof that education is close to her heart. Angela currently serves as Manager of Corporate Community Relations with Centerpoint Energy.
Past Board President
Lisa Hembry has been involved in adult education since she began her tenure as the President of LIFT. From 2002 - 2006, Lisa served as Dallas County Treasurer managing daily investments of $500 million as well as a trustee of the Texas County & District Retirement Service. A veteran of nonprofit work, Lisa believes that through the advocacy efforts of Literacy Texas and others millions of Texas will have a better chance to pass the high school equivalency test and become eligible for living wage employment. During her free time, Lisa practices yoga and is learning Spanish through a class at LIFT.
Mike Meyers believes that education is the gateway to success and that helping adults achieve a high school degree leads to a better life. Mike, a CPA, served as CFO of Moni Smart Security which is one of the nation’s largest security alarm companies with over one million customers. Mike has experience leading finance, accounting, HR, IT and operations functions. He currently serves on the Board of Eyewitness Surveillance and served as a Director and Treasurer of Arlington Arts League. Mike holds an MBA from UT Austin and teaches a graduate case study class at TCU. Mike’s passion is all types of music from indie-rock to classical and loves attending concerts.
Reading has been Kathy’s passion as far back as she can remember. In her work as a lawyer, the written word is an essential tool of the trade; in her free time, it is an ever-changing window into the wider world. Kathy is deeply committed to Literacy Texas’ mission to promote literacy among all adults and enthusiastic about the path it opens for helping others to acquire this most basic foundation for success. Kathy works as an employment attorney at Jackson Lewis P.C. and is a member of Rotary International. When she is not reading, Kathy loves to travel, explore other cultures, hike and enjoy nature.
Dale Pillow believes that every adult should have the opportunity to learn, and should never have to pay for this opportunity. A graduate of Our Lady of the Lake University, Dale has been involved in Adult education since being hired as the President and CEO of the Adult Reading Center in September, 2001, where she still works hard to promote literacy in her community. Dale loves to read, and will never be caught without a book available.
Dr. Ida Acuna-Garza
Ida Acuna Garza has been working in Adult Education her whole life. She has developed a bilingual curriculum to reach parents of high school students with information on helping their children graduate from high school and enroll in post-secondary education, and currently serves as the Executive Director of the South Texas Literacy Coalition. Ida has written two children’s books about a cat named Callie, a rescued Calico kitten, who helped her children and Ida herself learn about family, love, and friendship.
Melanie Fisk is the proud CEO of Literacy Advance of Houston. She passionately believes that education is the foundation to a more equitable society and she does everything possible to integrate this into her daily work. Melanie is a self-professed nonprofit geek and in addition to her passion for education, she has worked in the fields of homeless services, child welfare, suicide prevention, and sexual assault advocacy. Melanie’s favorite indulgence is to spend the day reading a book that she can’t possibly put down.
Joshua Hayes began his career at an Episcopal health outreach clinic in Beaumont, TX, and went on to operate basic literacy and GED programs for SEARCH Homeless Project near downtown Houston. Joshua became Director of Adult Education at College of the Mainland in 2008, and also serves on the board of the Mainland Children's Partnership in Galveston County. He has been involved with Literacy Texas since 2001, when he attended his first TAALC Conference, and enjoys cooking, reading quality non-fiction and bad fiction, and fishing with his nephew.
Jamie G. Williams is Director of Human Resources and Regional Grants, North Texas, for the Moody Foundation. She holds a BFA in Art and Art Education, an MEd in Education and MAs in Experimental Psychology and Cultural Anthropology from Southern Methodist University. Prior to her work in philanthropy, she was a classroom teacher, dyslexia specialist, educational consultant, founding coordinator of the SMU Learning Therapy Program and founding president of the Academic Language Therapy Association. She currently serves on the Presidential Boards of SMU’s Simmons School of Education and Human Development and the Meadows School of Arts.
Shane Allumbaugh was appointed Executive Director of Literacy Texas in November 2018. In this position, he is responsible for aligning assets to lead the execution of literacy programs across the state. Shane has served in a variety of executive leadership roles spanning Operations, Technology, and Product Management as well as helping non-profit and state organizations achieve their goals
A Kentucky native, Jake’s previous experience working with Christian Outreach with Appalachian People (COAP) fostered his commitment to and deep appreciation for the non-profit world. Having worked with low-income families in the heart of Appalachia, and with hundreds of local and out-of-state volunteers, Jake has witnessed the true impact of non-profit work firsthand.