Superintendent’s Letter re: Board Appointments


November 12, 2015

Dear TSD Staff, Parents and Community,

This week we learned, quite by surprise, that two of our most distinguished and tenured Governing Board members have been replaced, Walter Camenisch, Board President and Beatrice Burke. For those of you who do not know, our nine member Board is appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the Senate. We currently have one vacant position, the one Jean Andrews vacated about a year ago and we were expecting that one to be filled. We were not expecting to lose Walt and Beatrice.

Though it is not unusual for a new Governor to make new appointments, because of the special nature of our school, we have historically worked more collaboratively with the Governor’s appointment office in both making recommendations and receiving communication about new appointments.

Saying goodbye to Walt and Beatrice is almost unfathomable for me personally and professionally. They have been by my side in times of great accomplishment and in times of deep personal loss. Their combined terms of service represent more that 35 years of wisdom, love and guidance for the staff and students of this school. During their time of service they have advised, supported, challenged, made tough decisions and given freely of their time to this community. They are a critical part of the team that has contributed to Texas School for the Deaf’s continued growth as national leader in the education of deaf and hard of hearing students.

The roots of these two board members also run deep in our Deaf community. Their hearts and minds and resources have been ours for decades. Though I know seasons end, as do terms of service, I plan to be intentional about sustaining their involvement in our school and our community. They are family and their devotion will be difficult to match.

I hope you join me in welcoming and getting to know our newly appointed board members, Ryan Hutchison and David Saunders. Ryan is a former member of our TSD Foundation board and currently works as Vice- President of National Programs at Communication Services for the Deaf. David is president of Workforce QA, a background provider and drug testing company for employers in the trucking industry. We thank them for their willingness to share their time and talents with Texas School for the Deaf.


Claire Bugen