TEXAS COUNCIL for
DEVELOPMENTAL
DISABILITIES

The Council

Meet our Council members from across Texas.

TCDD is governed by a 27-member board that includes people with disabilities, family members, and representatives from state agencies, university centers for excellence in developmental disabilities, and other organizations. To learn about how to join the Council, see Become a Council Member.

Governor-Appointed Council Members

Mary Durheim, Chair
Spring
Mary Durheim is the owner of Educational Rights Information and Consulting Center. Durheim received a Bachelor of Science in home economics from Oklahoma State University.
Kimberly Torres, Vice Chair
Houston
Kimberly Torres is the executive director for the Down Syndrome Association of Houston. Torres received a Bachelor of Science in applied learning and development from The University of Texas at Austin and a Master of Public Administration from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Ronald “Ronnie” Browning
Spring
Ronald “Ronnie” Browning is vice president of the Board of Texas Advocates. He also serves as president of the “Bridging the Gap” chapter of Texas Advocates. He is a past president of the People First Advocacy group in Wichita Falls.
Deborah “Debbie” Carlisle
San Antonio
Deborah “Debbie” Carlisle is a personal care attendant for Alegre Home Health Care. She also serves as a clinical assistant at Premier Orthopedic Surgery and Sports Health. Carlisle received a Bachelor of Arts in English from Schreiner University and an Associate in Applied Science in surgical technology from Baptist School of Health Professions.
William “Bill” Coorsh
Houston
William “Bill” Coorsh is the director of investor relations for Logista Advisors LLC. He is a former senior executive for various energy trading and marketing companies. Additionally, he is an active supporter of the Center for Pursuit, having previously served as the board president. Coorsh received a Bachelor of Science in industrial management from Purdue University and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Chicago.
Gladys Cortez
McAllen
Gladys Cortez is a licensed professional counselor. Cortez received a Bachelor of Science in rehab services and a Master of Science in rehab counseling from The University of Texas Pan-American.
Kyle Cox
College Station
Kyle Cox is a special projects coordinator for 12th Man Technology. Cox received a Bachelor of Science in political science from Texas A&M University and a Master of Public Administration from the Bush School of Government and Public Service.
Maverick Crawford III
San Antonio
Maverick Crawford III is a pretrial services officer intern for a federal district court. Crawford received a Bachelor of Arts in criminal justice from The University of Texas at San Antonio.
Andrew “Andy” Crim
Fort Worth
Andrew “Andy” Crim is the director of education and professional development for the American College of Osteopathic Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Crim received a Bachelor of Science in political science from The University of Texas at Tyler and a Master of Education in educational leadership from the University of North Texas.
Juan Carlos Lopez
Edinburg
Juan Carlos Lopez is a volunteer with the Valley Association for Independent Living. Lopez is a graduate of McAllen High School.
Scott McAvoy
Cedar Park
Scott McAvoy is the executive vice president for the Marbridge Foundation. McAvoy received a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of Maine and a Master of Business Administration from the University of New Orleans.
Amanda Miles
Alvin
Amanda Miles is a board member for Alvin Meals on Wheels. She also serves as the board vice president of Gulf Coast Self Advocates. Miles is a graduate of Pearland High School.
Angela “Angie” Panzica
Houston
Angela “Angie” Panzica is a program facilitator for Baylor College of Medicine. Panzica received a Bachelor of Arts in psychology and a Master of Social Work from the University of Houston.
Michael Peace
Poteet
Michael Peace is a habilitation worker. He is a volunteer for the Sand Branch Baptist Church Food Bank. Peace is attending Baptist University of the Americas in San Antonio.
Robert Schier III
Elgin
Robert Schier III is a camp director and co-founder of Camp DRIVE. Schier attended The University of Texas at San Antonio and McLennan Community College.
Eric Shahid
Somerville
Eric Shahid is a program aide at Texas A&M Agrilife Extension Service. Shahid received a certificate through the Texas A&M PATHS (Postsecondary Access and Training in Human Services) Certificate Program.
Meridith Silcox
Splendora
Meridith Silcox is the director of access, ability, and inclusion for the YMCA of Greater Houston. Silcox received a Bachelor of Science in psychology from the University of Houston and a Master of Arts in psychology from the University of Houston-Clear Lake.
Lora Taylor
Houston
Lora Taylor of Houston is a piano teacher. She is a member of the Music Teachers National Association, Texas and Houston Music Teachers associations and National Guild of Piano Teachers. Taylor received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Texas.
Jamie Thomas
Abilene
Jamie Thomas of Abilene is a regional coordinator for Partners Resource Network. Thomas received a degree in early childhood education from Cisco Junior College.

Agency Representatives

Disability Rights Texas
Sean JacksonSean Jackson is the executive director at Disability Rights Texas.
Patty Anderson
Alternate
Patty Anderson is the deputy director at Disability Rights Texas.
Texas Center for Disability Studies at The University of Texas at Austin
Dr. Sandra MagañaDr. Sandra Magaña is the executive director of the Texas Center for Disability Studies at The University of Texas at Austin and a professor in autism and neurodevelopmental disabilities at UT’s Steve Hicks School of Social Work.
Dr. Nina Zuna
Alternate
Dr. Nina Zuna is the associate director of the Texas Center for Disability Studies at The University of Texas at Austin. She has over 20 years of experience working with individuals with disabilities and their families in a variety of roles, including professor, researcher, certified special education teacher, and an in-home and in-school behavioral skills trainer. She earned her Ph.D. in special education from the University of Kansas. Her research and community service interests include family, quality of life, individual and family supports across the lifespan, community inclusion, and transition from high school to postsecondary education or the workforce.
Center on Disability and Development at Texas A&M University
Dr. Dan ZhangDr. Dan Zhang is director of the Center on Disability and Development and has been professor of special education at Texas A&M University since 2005. Prior to joining Texas A&M, he had experiences working with DD Councils and UCEDDs (University Centers of Excellence in Developmental Disabilities) for nine years in two other states. Over the years, Zhang has provided training, service, and research in the areas of intellectual and developmental disabilities and topics related to the transition from school-age to adulthood. Through various grant-supported projects, he has provided self-determination and leadership training to individuals with special support needs in Louisiana, South Carolina, and Texas.
Dr. Meagan Orsag
Alternate
Dr. Meagan Orsag is the associate director of the Center on Disability and Development. She has also served as the center’s project coordinator for postsecondary access and training in human services and bridge to career in human services. Orsag earned her doctorate in special education administration at the University of Texas at Austin. While at the university, she mentored pre-service special education teachers as a university facilitator. Orsag was also a graduate research assistant on an IES early mathematics intervention project. She has presented at several national and international conferences. Orsag is a published author in peer-reviewed journals such as The Urban Review, Leadership and Policy in Schools, and the International Journals of Leadership Education.
Texas Education Agency — Individuals with Disabilities Education Act
Dr. Justin PorterDr. Justin Porter holds a Doctor of Education degree from Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas and has had a lengthy career working with at-risk populations, including students with disabilities, in a variety of school districts across Texas. His leadership experience began at the campus level and then moved into supervisory roles in various central administration positions where he worked extensively with programs to serve students in special populations as well as general curriculum and instructional programs. Currently, Porter serves as the state director for special education at the Texas Education Agency.
Texas Health and Human Services Commission — Title XIX Medicaid
Erica BrownErica Brown is the deputy director of program policy, Medicaid, and CHIP services at the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC).
Dana Williamson
Alternate
Dana Williamson is the director of policy development and support within the Medicaid/CHIP division at HHSC. She has worked in health and human services policy since 2008 and in Medicaid policy since 2011. Williamson is a 22-year veteran of state government and has experience in child and adult protective services, HHSC legislative support and strategic planning, and policy governing the delivery of Medicaid long-term services and supports to individuals with disabilities and older adults. Williamson holds a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree from The University of Texas at Austin.
Texas Health and Human Services Commission — Older Americans Act
Holly RileyHolly Riley, HHSC aging services coordination manager, has worked in the field of aging for the state of Texas for over 20 years. Her work focuses on local and state policy and planning development as well as working with communities to build capacity and enhance quality of life. Riley’s office implements innovative programs and campaigns that address the importance of preparing for our futures, including the Aging Texas Well program, the Age Well Live Well campaign, and the internationally recognized Texercise program. In addition to serving on TCDD, Riley also serves on a number of other workgroups, including the Texas Cardiovascular and Stroke Prevention Partnership, the Texas Falls Prevention Coalition, the Behavioral Health and Aging workgroup, and the Texas Respite Advisory Coalition.
Texas Workforce Commission —  Rehabilitation Act
Jennifer HinesJennifer Hines is the state autism and developmental disorders specialist for the Texas Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services Division for Rehabilitation Services. She is a board-certified behavior analyst who has practiced for 22 years in the field of developmental disorders.
Sara Kendall
Alternate
Sara Kendall has been the program specialist for benefits planning and DADS-DARS service integration for the Texas Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services Division for Rehabilitation Services since January 2012. Prior to assuming this role, she was the administrator for the Texas Medicaid Infrastructure Grant. She has more than 20 years of experience assisting people with disabilities to achieve their vocational goals, including being an employment specialist; writing and implementing home and community based waivers; and working as an administrator for private provider agencies. Her brother, who had intellectual and developmental disabilities, provided the inspiration for her to leave the private industry and enter the field of human services.
Texas Department of State Health Services — Title V Maternal & Child Health
Audrey YoungAudrey Young is the child and adolescent health branch manager and Title V children and youth with special health care needs director at the Texas Department of State Health Services.
Ivy Goldstein
Alternate
Ivy Goldstein has been a program specialist with the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) in the Children with Special Health Care Needs Services program since December 2008. She holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Boston University and is a graduate of Partners in Policymaking. Goldstein represents DSHS on the Consumer Direction Workgroup, the Texas System of Care Consortium, Texas Respite Coalition, Children’s Policy Council, and the Community Resource Coordination Groups State Work Group. Prior to her position with DSHS, Goldstein worked at Disability Rights Texas supporting a self-advocate, and she continues to be actively involved in community efforts to improve the lives of individuals with disabilities.