Office of the Governor Rick Perry

Gov. Perry Appoints Three to Continuing Advisory Committee for Special Education

Monday, June 04, 2012  •  Austin, Texas  •  Appointment

Gov. Rick Perry has appointed three members to the Continuing Advisory Committee for Special Education for terms to expire Feb. 1, 2015. The committee provides policy guidance on special education and related services for children with disabilities in Texas.

Vickie Mitchell of Montgomery is president and education consultant for Mitchell-Panter Consulting. She previously worked for the Texas Education Service Center for 42 years as a special educator, teacher, administrator, college assistant professor and consultant. She is a member of the Council for Exceptional Children Division of International Special Education and Services, National and Texas councils of Administrators of Special Education, and National Division on Career Development and Transition, and an executive committee member of the International Collaborative Initiative to Support Inclusive Education in Uganda. She is also past president of the Texas Division on Career Development and Transition, past executive committee member of the Texas Council for Development Disabilities, and a past member of the Tri-County Mental Health and Mental Retardation Services Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Committee. Mitchell received a bachelor's degree from Northwestern State University, a master's degree in special education from Louisiana Tech University and a Doctorate of Educational Psychology from Texas A&M University-College Station.

Debbie Unruh of Austin is Independent Ombudsman for the Texas Juvenile Justice Department. She is a former captain and jail administrator for the Randall County Sherriff's Office, a former law enforcement instructor at Amarillo College, and former director of the Amarillo Bail Bond Board. She is a past member of the Texas Jail Association and Sherriff's Association of Texas, and a member of the National Ombudsman's Association, Texas Crime Victims Institute Advisory Council, and Region XVI Adult Education Advisory Board. She is also past director of Prepare Inc.'s Prisoner Re-Entry Project, and a past volunteer for Amarillo Family Support Services, Sharing Hope Ministries and Amarillo March of Dimes. She is a licensed Master Peace Officer, Texas Commission on Law Enforcement Officer Standards and Education Instructor, Internal Affairs Investigator, K-9 Handler, and private investigator. Unruh received bachelor's degrees from Wayland Baptist University and Newport Beach University, and received certifications as a peace officer and corrections officer from Amarillo College.

Erin Wilder of Pflugerville is a regional transition specialist and certified rehabilitation counselor for the Texas Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services. She is a past member of Texas Rehabilitation Action Network and a volunteer for the Settlement Club. Wilder received a bachelor's degree from Texas Tech University and a Master of Education in rehabilitation counseling from the University of Texas.

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