Alumni parents and faculty
TMI Episcopal is blessed with many alumni who have returned to their alma mater as parents or faculty members…and some are both!
Current legacy families include Marnie and JJ Astacio ‘88, whose son Andrew is a TMI seventh grader. Last year, Marnie and JJ were event co-chairs of Stars Over TMI, the school’s premier fundraiser ー a commitment that just felt right.
“After many years living between Chicago and New York City,” said JJ, “we decided that we needed a school for our son that provided not only an excellent academic curriculum but also a place where he would get an education on being a servant leader in society. My experience at TMI in the 1980s was one of brotherhood and sisterhood. I wanted my son not just to compete with his classmates for the better grade or award but to work together with his classmates to get the better grade and the award together.”READ MORE
Today’s TMI “has not disappointed,” said JJ, a member of the last class to graduate from the Alamo Heights campus. With the 1989 move to the present Alkek Campus in northwest San Antonio, “I expected some of the old (school) to have been left behind in Alamo Heights. But this school has shown me that not only are all our traditions still going strong, but they are being carried forward by a great faculty and student body on an incredible campus. I see TMI now as finally in the right place proudly with its traditions and eyes on the future.“
Beth Houck Hawkins ’97 and her daughter Audie ’24 both appreciate TMI’s challenging academics and community spirit.
Beth Houck Hawkins ‘97 and her husband Aaron ー TMI’s Director of Enrollment Management ー are parents of Audie, a TMI freshman. “We decided to send her to TMI because we knew it was still a wonderful place,” said Beth, who has served as a member of the TMI Board of Trustees, currently serves as secretary of the school’s Community Engagement Council (CEC) and volunteers in Jones Library.
The couple’s faith in her alma mater comes from first-hand knowledge: “I’ve stayed active as an alumnus, and my husband works in the admissions department, so we continue to see the amazing stories coming out of TMI.”To Beth, it seems the school “is more academically rigorous these days, but it still boasts the wonderful community that establishes lifelong friendships. My best friends today are my friends I met at TMI, and now my daughter has an incredible group of friends just like I did.”
Taking a break in Johnston Amphitheater, Stephen Santos ‘13, left, and Matt Ridewood ‘01 both teach at TMI, where they’reamong several other alumni faculty.
Some of our alumni have come back to TMI to experience life from the other side of the desk. Stephen Santos ’13 is the newest alum to join the faculty, returning this fall to teach English. “TMI is home for me,” he said. “The teachers here gave so much to me, and I hope to be able to give back even half of what they did for me. I was challenged here in a variety of ways and believe in the TMI community as a place where people can grow while being supported.”
Allan Rupe ‘80 works on pottery in TMI’s Ceramics building. ー Photo by Hannah Cooper McCauley
Fine Arts teacher Allan Rupe ’80 observed his 30-year TMI work anniversary and his 40th class reunion last year; For him, TMI is a family affair ー the former battalion commander is the brother of Michael Rupe ’76 and Shari Rupe Menchaca ‘84 and father of alumnus Keith ’18 and current students Isaac ’24 and Simon ’21. With all these alumni, the milestones just keep coming!
Matt Ridewood ’01, fifth from right, celebrated his 20-year work anniversary last year, which put him in a reflective mood to answer questions from TMI Today:
When did you come back to TMI to teach?
After my short yet successful tenure on the TMI maintenance crew in the summer of ’07, I returned to TMI to teach in 2010.
Were you named Most Likely to Come Back to TMI to Teach in your yearbook?
[Laughs uncontrollably] No, of course not. I probably finished dead last for that one. However, let’s note that I was named Class Clown AND Prettiest Eyes.
What do you currently teach/coach/sponsor?
After spending the last few years in administration, I’m excited to return to the classroom full time. This year I’m teaching AP Government, AP Macroeconomics, AP Statistics, and, back by popular demand, a couple of film electives. I also get to coach Middle School basketball again.
Why did you come back to your alma mater?
A big part of it was definitely wanting to give back to my community. But more so, after finding my calling as a teacher I feel the stars just sort of aligned.
If you’ve taught elsewhere, how does TMI compare?
TMI is unique just like any other school, only more so.
What has changed about TMI since you were a student?
It’s been 20 years since I was a student, so the answer is that a lot of things have changed. However, the bottom line hasn’t: TMI has the best corps of teachers in town. They’re so creative and so dedicated that it’s really remarkable to see. No matter whatever craziness is going on outside their classrooms, our faculty focuses on supporting AND challenging our students. It is genuinely inspiring, and I am grateful to work with these people every day.
Walker Innovation Center opens
Virtual ribbon-cutting coming up!
The Walker Innovation Center ー TMI’s first new building since All Saints Chapel in 2008 ー opened for classes Oct. 15. This dedicated space where students can work, innovate and create, become a reality thanks to the generosity of TMI alumni, parents and friends.
Please save the date for a virtual ribbon cutting ceremony and unveiling of the Walker Innovation Center on Nov. 12. At 8:30 a.m., you will receive an email with a link to the video celebration of the ribbon cutting ceremony. The prerecorded video will also be available at www.tmi-sa.org/wic for viewing any time after it is released.
We look forward to welcoming you for an in-person tour later in the year.
College life in the COVID era
Young alumni adjust to safety protocols
TMI Today asked some recent TMI graduates what college life is like this fall, with new ways to learn and socialize.
Diego Ampudia ’20, a Columbia University freshman, is doing remote (online) learning only, far from his school’s New York campus. “2020 has been the biggest standstill I have ever been in in my life.,” he said. “Standstill in the sense that my life isn’t moving forward or backward. Someone pressed pause.”
Three more young alumni are on campus but under significant restrictions. Daniel Espey ’19 and Manaal Salman ’19, both sophomores at Baylor University, and Mary Warder ’20, a first-year student at the U.S. Military Academy (West Point) shared their observations of what it’s like to go to college in challenging times.
Do you have remote or in-person classes?
Manaal: I started out the semester thinking I would have primarily online classes, but Baylor really pushed for in-person instruction for those of us who came back to Waco. I actually really enjoy the balance between in-person and online because it pushes me to actually get out and walk to class, or find outside study spaces to avoid being in my room all day. My online classes are all asynchronous (self-scheduled), but I am a lab assistant for a hybrid class, so I get to see each type of learning that Baylor offers.READ MORE
Daniel: The mix of online, hybrid and in-person classes presents an interesting and difficult school environment. With social distancing rules, the campus is much quieter than it was last year.
Mary: English and History are completely in-person, and for math class and computing class, we follow a “hybrid” schedule. I’m in class one day, not in the next. It’s definitely been a schedule to get used to.
What kind of safety protocols are you observing in the dorm or dining hall?
Manaal: In the dorms, masks are required and only 2-4 people are allowed in the common areas. Any hall events are outside and less than 10 people total, or virtual events. I don’t really go in the dining halls, but Baylor has adopted take-out only meals and limited seating inside with tents outside for overflow seating.
Daniel: I’m living in a house this year, so I haven’t touched the dining halls or dorms.
Mary: In the mess hall, we are required to wear masks until we start eating and take all the food that we touch. Within the dorms, we are allowed to have masks off with our roommates, but when walking throughout the halls, we must have our masks on. There are sanitizing stations scattered everywhere, and before every in-person class, we have to sanitize all the desks in the room.
How has it affected college social life?
Manaal: Strict guidelines for groups smaller than 10 has made socializing through student organizations and classes difficult to feel truly involved. There’s always so much schoolwork to be done, so I have to actively make time to socialize and relax with friends. I feel super-lucky to have had last year because I already established my social life, so I wouldn’t say it’s been a dramatic or negative difference – we’re just more careful than before, especially when meeting new people. Because of my lab assistant position, I hear that quite a few of my freshmen students struggled to make friends early on due to campus rules. Having a hybrid lab allowed them to at least interact in-person with their classmates, and now I see them hang out outside of class which makes me appreciate in person learning a lot more.
Daniel: Personally, I feel lucky because I was able to meet plenty of people many different ways last year. Some freshman I know have said it has been difficult to make friends with everything that is going on. College social life has changed dramatically for the first-year experience.
Mary: We aren’t really encouraged to interact a ton with people outside of our companies (a group of around 115 cadets in each year who live on the same floor), so it’s a bit tricky to meet other people. Also, because some classes are online, it’s not common to be able to spend a lot of time with my classmates in person. While this is a challenge, it’s also pushed me to appreciate the time I do get to spend with my friends and the classmates I have the opportunity to see in person
How is college in 2020 different from what you expected as a high-school student?
Manaal: Because Baylor is hoping to finish in-person instruction by Thanksgiving, the pacing of classes, extracurriculars and life seems to be going much faster. In the day-to-day, it seems like it’s much more school-oriented because of how much work is to be done in such a short amount of time. As a high-schooler, I expected to be busy but have a balance of school and fun activities in college, and last year I got that. This year I’ve spent most of my time on school because of how fast we are moving through the material. Time seems to be at a standstill, yet moving very quickly.
Daniel: The academics are about the same but everything else is very different. With social-distancing rules, the campus is much quieter than it was last year.
Mary: I definitely have less freedom than I expected due to the nature of remote classes, weird schedules and mask wearing. I spend much more time on academics than I expected. Before coming to West Point, I thought I would spend a huge majority of my academic year conducting military training. However, after summer basic training, the emphasis really shifted to academics. I spend most of my time studying, doing homework and attending additional instruction meetings with my teachers. I expected college to be a lot more intimidating than it is, honestly!
Peter Lewis ‘74
What brought you to TMI?
My parents, both being college professors, obviously placed a high value on education. So when we moved from the college town of Prairie View to San Antonio in 1968, they wanted to make sure that their three kids got one of the best educations available. They chose TMI for me, St Luke’s (Episcopal School) and TMI for my brother (Ronald Lewis ’76) and St. Luke’s and Saint Mary’s Hall for my sister (Alicia Lewis SMH ’88). It, of course, helped that we lived so close to TMI (then in Alamo Heights) and St Luke’s at the time.
What have you done since you graduated from TMI?
I went to Princeton University and graduated in 1978 with a major in Politics. I then went to Columbia Law School in New York and graduated from there in 1981. I came to Dallas after law school and have worked in a handful of law firms over the last 39 years. I actually started out doing corporate/securities work at a tax boutique law firm but by the mid-1980s, I had moved to one of the largest Dallas law firms where where my practice expanded to include business restructuring/business litigation and commercial lending work.READ MORE
By the late 1980s, I was elected partner at that firm. After leaving that firm in the mid-1990s, I continued my practice as a partner at law firms with offices here in Dallas. And for the last eight-and-a-half years. I have practiced as a partner at the Dallas-based law firm of Scheef & Stone.
Please tell us about your family.
The best way to say it is that I got married late but I married great. My wife, Willow Sanchez, and I met in a courtroom years ago, but she was living in New York City at the time, serving as general counsel for a New York-based company. I was able to convince her to not only marry me but give up New York and move to Texas, which was not easy, because she is an eighth-generation Manhattanite. She is currently a lawyer for the City of Dallas and sits on several nonprofit boards. We have a wonderful 15-year-old daughter, Lana, who is the source of daily pride and joy for her family and friends. She attended the Hockaday School from pre-kindergarten through eighth grade. In 2019, she auditioned for and was admitted into the Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts, where she is now a sophomore in the visual arts conservatory.
What are your interests outside of work and family?
Golf, reading, restaurants, staying connected to long-time friends and civic matters all take up a fair amount of time outside of work and family.
Do you have time to do any community service?
Taking a cue from my mom and dad, community service has been something I have gladly invested a substantial amount of time and energy into since moving to Dallas. I have served on quite a few boards during my time here that have focused on everything from education, mental health and homelessness to the arts, community development and Dallas history.
What were some of your favorite activities when you were at TMI?
From seventh through 12th grade, I was involved in sports (football, basketball, baseball and track), the band, volunteering in the library, Student Council and the yearbook. I enjoyed them all, because not only did I learn something of value from each activity, but I got to spend time with and have fun with, different groups of students.
What are your strongest memories of your TMI years?
The time spent in the activities I mentioned, traveling to and from games in the sports I played for TMI, marching in the Fiesta parades with the band, working in the library under Mrs. Willett’s watchful eye, class time with the teachers and my classmates, visiting after lunch with the “crew” and having the chance to play on the football and basketball teams with my brother, Ron ’76. He still complains, though, that I did not pass the ball to him enough while we were on the basketball team and hated being the wide-receiver decoy when we played football together my senior year.
Who are the TMI teachers who most impressed you?
Professors Thomas, Brown, Hayes, Richmond and Zalmanzig come to mind as well as Coaches Watson, McMillan, Davis, Johnson, Robinson and Billingsley. And of course, Mrs. Willett sparked my interest in a tradition that I continued through law school, in that I always worked in the school library.
Do you have a most memorable TMI moment?
I have several, with most being pleasant and only a handful being not so pleasant. One of the most entertaining memories I have, though, was the grand reopening of the swimming pool in 1972. Some of the boarders (I am not going to mention any names, but at least one had to be pretty good with calf roping, I figure) went down to the Reptile Garden at the Witte Museum the night before the opening ceremony. Evidently, they successfully caught one or two of the alligators, brought them back to TMI and put them in the pool. When the headmaster, (the Rev. Canon) Spencer Edwards opened the door and led everybody inside, there they were in the bottom of the pool, having an early-morning swim. I believe they made it back unharmed to the Reptile Garden, fortunately, and I think this grandest of grand openings was memorialized in the TMI yearbook.
What was the most important lesson you learned at TMI?
TMI helped me learn not only the importance of personal relationships, but how relationships can help create opportunities to bridge divides.
What advice would you give to current TMI students?
Commit yourself to excellence (that is, do the best you can do in everything you try do), participate in as many extracurricular activities as possible as long as participation does not hinder your academic performance, and have fun (safely of course)!
In each issue of TMI Today, we’ll highlight the life and career of an alumnus/a. To suggest a subject, please send the name, brief bio and contact information to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Save the Date!
Alumni Day, April 30
Please plan to come to campus for an in-person Alumni Day celebration on Friday, April 30.
We’ll start with special seating at Final Pass in Review, go on to honor some outstanding alumni and other friends of TMI at the Hall of Fame ceremony in All Saints Chapel, enjoy an Alumni Reception and other activities.
Mark your calendar and watch for details, coming early next year!
TMI Hall of Fame
Announcing the 2020-2021 inductees
Since 2015, TMI has honored outstanding alumni and other friends of the school who exemplify one or more of the TMI Core Values with induction to the Hall of Fame. The ceremony welcoming this year’s inductees is planned for Friday, April 30, as part of Alumni Day (please see above). We hope you will be able to attend and will send you further details later.
Several alumni and other members of the TMI community have been nominated to the TMI Hall of Fame in the past few years and have yet to be inducted, including some who were held for their reunion years. To honor these nominations and the individuals they uphold as examples of servant leadership, they are proposed for induction during the 2020-2021 school year.
Courtney Caldwell ’97 was valedictorian of her TMI class, has served as a member of the TMI Board of Trustees and was honored as a Rising Star at the 2013 Stars Over TMI gala. She earned her bachelor’s degree in marketing from Southern Methodist University and her MBA from the University of Texas at Dallas.
She is the cofounder and COO of beauty-tech startup, ShearShare, the first mobile app that lets stylists quickly find affordable salon and barbershop space to lease near them. Named an Inc. magazine 2019 Female Founders 100 and the 2017 L’Oreal Women in Digital NEXT Generation Award winner, Courtney’s mission is to empower industry professionals and help keep our small businesses open.READ MORE
Tres Kleberg ‘60 was the longtime chairman of the San Antonio Livestock Exposition and Rodeo, has served as a civilian aide to the secretary of the Army, was the recipient of the San Antonio Chamber of Commerce Freeman Award and has been named to the San Antonio Business Hall of Fame. He is a Navy veteran and served as reviewing official at the TMI Veterans Day Pass in Review in 2019.
Jeremy Bernard ’81 is the co-author with Lea Berman of “Treating People Well: The Extraordinary Power of Civility at Work and in Life,” former Special Assistant to the President and White House social secretary, former president and CEO of nonprofit Mayor’s Fund for Los Angeles.
Vernon “Butch” Schimmel ’60, state champion swimmer
1995-97 championship swim teams; Sean Kelly, coach
FACULTY/STAFF/FRIENDS OF TMI
Master Sgt. J.W. Bohner (posthumous), a popular longtime TMI dorm parent with his wife Evelyn “Pete” Bohner, was a 22-year veteran of the Air Force who served in World War II and Korea and was a survivor of the Bataan Death March and father of two TMI alumni, Jay Bohner ’69 and the late Jack Bohner ’72.
The Rt. Rev. James Folts, asbishop of the Episcopal Diocese of West Texas from 1996 to 2006, is the former executive chairman of the TMI Board of Governors. He also was co-chair with the late Tom C. Frost Jr. ’45 of the 2006-2008 capital campaign that built All Saints Chapel and was honored at Stars Over TMI 2010.
Sylvia Gonzalez taught Spanish at TMI from 1997 until her retirement in 2017. Previously, she taught in the Laredo Independent School District, where she had been a studio teacher for instructional television and produced a series of bilingual health and social-studies programs. At TMI, she taught Spanish at all levels from Middle School through Advanced Placement, represented TMI on admissions trips to the Rio Grande Valley and served as faculty sponsor to the National Junior Honor Society. The 2008 yearbook was dedicated in her honor.
To nominate alumni, former faculty or staff or other friends of TMI for the 2021-2022 Hall of Fame induction, please use this form or send your suggestions to email@example.com.
Alumni career panel
TMI lawyers share expertise with students
Associate Head of School Anne Schaefer-Salinas, top row center, hosts a Zoom meeting for TMI alumni attorneys to discuss legal careers with students. Panelists were David Kaliski ‘94, clockwise from top left, Gabi Canales ‘92, Ryan Moe ‘94, Lara Turner ‘93 and Matt McDonough ‘07.
Thanks to alumni volunteers, current juniors and seniors had an opportunity to learn about careers in law from alumni volunteers, who spoke on their experience and answered students’ questions in an Oct. 28 Zoom meeting. Attorneys Gabi Canales ’92, David Kaliski ’94, Matt McDonough ’07, Ryan Moe ’94 and Lara Turner ’93 told students about their path to the law and their specialties, answered questions and offered advice on legal education and getting started in their profession.
Moderated by Anne Schaefer-Salinas, Associate Head of School, and presented by the Office of College Counseling, this was the first of several virtual career panels planned for this school year. Based on student interest, upcoming topics will include technology, animal husbandry (ranchers, veterinarians, livestock breeders, zoo employees) and the medical field (doctors, surgeons, nurses).
TMI senior offers free business design package
Senior student Ryan Kyle, above, who’s doing an independent study in graphic design with Fine Arts teacher Mark Harrison, is looking for real-life experience for his projects…and that could benefit a TMI alumnus/a who has a business in need of a branding refresh!
Ryan can design a brand-new CIS (Corporate Identity System), at no cost to the business.
“Items might include logo design, business cards, letterhead, social media presence, flyers and a catalog,” said Mr. Harrison. “As part of his independent study, Ryan would be learning how to talk with customers, learn what they need and to create and present options for the customer and their business. It might also provide some marketing aspects for the student as well. The skills and experience learned by the student in this type of situation are priceless.”
To be considered for this opportunity, please describe your business and why it needs a new CIS and send it to Mr. Harrison at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Zach Addkison is a pitcher on Marshall University’s baseball team. He’s attending in-person classes and practices and says, “TMI did a really good job of helping me become better at managing my time, and because of this I have been able to excel at baseball and in the classroom” at the Division I university in Huntington, W.V.READ MORE
U.S. Air Force Lt. Falon Little, former TMI Corps of Cadets Battalion Commander, spoke in chapel Oct. 30 on how the Corps shaped her into the person she is today. After her talk, she reunited with Stephen Santos ’13, now a TMI English teacher, before touring the new Walker Innovation Center with faculty Rob Friedrich and Travis Waddington. Falon is on her way to Shreveport, La., to learn to fly the B-52 bomber.
Emily Parke is now a licensed clinical psychologist practicing in Chicago. She received her PsyD from Adler University in October, and an article based on her dissertation research was published this year in a professional journal.
Congratulations to Allison Toonen-Talamo, an engineer at Klein & Hoffmann, who received an American Express Aspire Award on Oct. 29! This is one of the 2020 National Preservation Awards presented by the Preservation Leadership Forum of the National Trust for Historic Preservation to honor inspirational projects, individuals and organizations for excellence in the field of preservation, recognizing emerging leaders who demonstrate innovative thinking and achievement in advancing historic preservation in their local communities. Allison is the former chair of the Skyline Council of Landmarks Illinois and current board member of Landmarks Illinois. Her award citation states that she was honored as “A first-generation Mexican-American professional (who) has used her personal history to advocate, energize and improve communities impacted by incompatible development,” also noting that Allison “played a pivotal role in preserving the National Landmark Ford Tri-Motor Hangar in Lansing, Ill., which is now a point of pride for the Lansing community.”
Asa Cozad writes, “After a nine-year career as a petroleum engineer for various oil and gas companies throughout the U.S., I took on a new role in September 2018 as manager of a family property in North Hidalgo County. I’m the sixth generation to work on this property, where my main focus is a livestock operation with emphasis on regenerative agricultural practices. I still do some consulting as a petroleum engineer. I’m married to Sofia Cozad (Vela) with two daughters. We live in McAllen TX. I was recently appointed as a member of the governing board for an area school, Juan Diego Catholic High School.”
Mike Hudson attended The Citadel upon graduation in 2000 on a four-year Army scholarship and has been on active duty since. “I was just promoted to lieutenant colonel on Oct. 1, 2020, and am currently Director of Intelligence at the Joint Interagency Task Force, Joint Special Operations Command in the Washington DC area.” He and his wife Annie have been married for 16 years “and have three amazing kids; William, 13; Charlie, 12; and Caroline, 6.”
Jessica Karam Oley and her cousin/business partner Brandon Karam recently launched a new line of hand sanitizers, available online here. “We are thrilled to be helping provide sanitizers in a time where hand sanitizers and cleaning products are in short supply,” Jess said. Their flagship products ー eco-friendly, non-irritating Pristine Sprays, an alternative to wet wipes ー competed successfully on “Shark Tank” last year and were featured Oct. 10 on “Good Morning America.”
TMI remembers those members of our alumni community who have recently passed away. If you know of an alumnus/a who has passed, please email email@example.com with the name, class year and a link to the obituary or call us at (210) 564-6155.
Frederick “Ricky” Groos ’58
Christopher Haff ’86Dianna Jo Horne ’79
John Robinson “Jack” Locke ’42
James Willerson ’57Miles Durfey ’47
Keep in touch!
To stay current with all things TMI, follow TMI Alumni Facebook, join TMI Alumni Connections and share your news by using this form. Or reach out to Alumni Relations at firstname.lastname@example.org or (210) 564-6155.