Texas State University MPA Program Conducts 50th Anniversary Awards Celebration on September 23, 2023

By: Dr. Howard R. Balanoff, Professor, MPA Program, Texas State University

On Saturday September 23, 2023, the Texas State University MPA Program conducted an in-person anniversary Luncheon in honor of the Program’s 50 Years of existence. The Luncheon was held at the Texas State University LBJ Student Center in San Marcos, Texas.

The Luncheon program began at about 11:30 am with a meet and greet reception which was followed by a plated lunch for about 125 MPA alumni, students, faculty, and guests. Attendees at the Luncheon were welcomed by Texas State University President, Dr. Kelly Damphousse. The featured speaker at the Luncheon was Mr. Franklin Parker, Assistant Secretary of the United States Navy. Secretary Parker’s presentation focused on “The Value of Public Service and Public Servants”.

After Mr. Parkers, presentation, distinguished MPA alumni and distinguished MPA faculty plaques were presented by Secretary Parker, Texas State President Kelly Damphousse, Dr. Andrea Golato, Dean of the Graduate School, Dr. Howard Balanoff, Director of the William P. Hobby Center for Public Service and Dr. Patricia Shields, Regents Professor.

The Individuals shown below received Distinguished MPA Alumni Awards.
Martha Castex-Tatum, Charles Matthews, John Sharp, Brenda Eivens, Zohaib Qadri, Brion Oaks, Nim Kidd, Debby Tucker, Stephanie Reyes, Ismael Amaya, Larry Douglas, Ana Lisa Garza, Mickey Autrey, Dr. Lamar Collins, Brian Withrow, Eddie Molina, Larry Gilley, Jason Alexander, Brendan Scott, Barney Knight, Mike Eastland, David MacCabe, Larry Gonzales, Barry Bales. In addition, to the distinguished alumni awards Dr. George Weinberger, Dr. Charles Garofalo, Williard (Bill) Stouffer, all of whom have retired from Texas State University were honored with recognition plaques for their teaching service in the MPA Program.

Awards were presented to Texas State students graduating from the MPA Program from the early 1970’s up through the 2020’s. Some of the MPA alumni graduates honored as distinguished alumni were Charles Matthews, former Chancellor of the Texas State University System and John Sharp, current Chancellor of the Texas A&M University System.

Former Texas House of Representatives Legislator Larry Gonzales was honored as was Stephanie Reyes, current City Manager of San Marcos, Texas and Brenda Eivens, current City Manager of Cedar Park, Texas.

Twenty four (24) distinguished alumni and Three (3) faculty members were called to the stage where they received their awards and reflected on their time in the MPA Program and on their careers in public service. The 50th Anniversary celebration ended about 1:30 pm. The Program was closed by Dr. Mary Brennan, Dean of the College of Liberal Arts.

If you have any questions or need any additional information about the Texas State University MPA Program and/or the 50th Anniversary Celebration of the MPA Program, please contact Dr. Nandhini Rangarajan, Director of the Texas State University MPA Program at nr11@txstate.edu