Aldine ISD Board Member Dr. Viola M. Garcia was joined by friends, colleagues and family members to officially open the middle school named in her honor during a dedication ceremony to officially open Dr. Viola M. Garcia Middle School on Sunday, Nov. 4.
Dr. Garcia, the longest tenured member of the Aldine ISD Board of Trustees, was appointed to the Position 7 seat in 1992. During her 26 years as a trustee, Dr. Garcia has held all four board offices and has served on numerous committees. She has been a visible and active board member attending numerous district and community events to visit with students, parents and community members.
In her role as a professor at the University of Houston Downtown, Dr. Garcia has promoted educational programs and students by training future teachers for local school districts including Aldine.
Dr. Garcia is a member of the Mexican American School Board Members Association and has served as that organization’s president. She has also served as a regional director, secretary-treasurer, president and past-president of the Texas Association of School Boards (TASB). She has also served at the national level as a regional director for the National School Board Association.
Dr. Garcia graciously acknowledged a number of groups and individuals who made this day possible during her remarks at the dedication ceremony.
“There are so many people to thank, but I want to begin by thanking the Aldine board for this great honor,” she said. “For those visiting or who do not know, the changes that have occurred in Aldine over the past two years are phenomenal. This beautiful middle school is but one of eight new buildings opened this academic year. I want to thank the community for the vision to provide Aldine students, administrators, teachers and staff opportunities to work, learn and teach in state-of-the-art buildings such as this.
“To Dr. Wanda Bamberg, retired superintendent, and Dr. Archie Blanson, retired deputy superintendent, their leadership team, and especially to the buildings and properties staff for being true to form to the Aldine expectation that greatness is achieved when it is expected, I offer my congratulations and deep gratitude for your commitment to excellence in planning and implementing these impressive buildings and changes.”
Dr. Garcia also thanked Garcia Middle School Principal Todd Roede and his staff for their dedicated service.
“I want to thank him (Roede) and the dedicated and talented administrators, teachers and staff he has assembled to guide and lead the Garcia students,” Dr. Garcia said. “The pride and dedication of these educators is evident in the work that they do and the performance by these talented students today, demonstrates that students are the center of this most important work in this special place.”
Dr. Garcia shared with the audience that she and her husband Jorge came from small towns in Texas. Her graduating class had 32 students, while Jorge’s had 16, but growing up in small towns helped to shape both of them for a successful future. She added her mother made it clear to her that she could achieve anything in life through hard work and dedication.
“Small town values, hard work and dedication to family are important in our lives,” Dr. Garcia said, the mother of three daughters. “In such a place, one does not envision life’s possibilities and opportunities, so I was truly blessed to have been nurtured by a loving mother who did not set limitations on a daughter growing up in the 50’s and 60’s. This recognition today is greatly hers, so I recognize and honor her today. Thank you all so very much.”
Abel Garza, assistant superintendent of community and governmental relations, delivered the welcome and introduced the Aldine ISD Board of Trustees, Superintendent Dr. LaTonya M. Goffney and members of her executive leadership team. Also in attendance were U.S. Rep. Gene Green, State Senator Sylvia Garcia and State Rep. Ana Hernandez. Former Board members A.W. Jones, Marine Jones and Rick Ogden attended, as did former Superintendent Nadine Kujawa, former Deputy Superintendents Bill Plummer and Dr. Archie Blanson and former Assistant Superintendent of Finance Ann Marie Hazzan.
The Garcia Middle School LOTC presented the colors and Garcia students Angelica Rivera and Michael Amador led the crowd in the Pledge of Allegiance and the Pledge to the Texas Flag.
The Rev. Dr. Edwin A. Davis delivered the invocation, which was followed by a video presentation highlighting Dr. Garcia.
The Garcia Choir, under the direction of Lorileigh Shownes, performed the Garcia Alma Mater, which was followed by a performance by the Garcia Middle School Band, which was under the direction of Tim Bradberry.
Aldine ISD Board President Steve Mead accepted the school on behalf of the Board, while Roede accepted the school on behalf of the school’s administration. Garcia teacher Lorenzo Tolbert accepted the school on behalf of the staff and student Christal Scott accepted the school on behalf of the student body. Garcia parent Valarie Fonteneaux accepted the school on behalf of the community.
Following Dr. Garcia’s remarks, she and her husband Jorge unveiled the portrait of her that will hang in the school.
Dr. Goffney then delivered closing remarks and thanked Dr. Garcia for her dedicated serve to Aldine’s students, staff and community members.
“Thank you so much Dr. Garcia for all you have accomplished throughout the years in Aldine,” Dr. Goffney said. “You have served as an elected board member for 26 years. Thank you for all you have done.”[Not a valid template]
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