Monday, September 10, 2012  

Board of Directors


More About The Board of Direcotors

Meet the President and Board
Members for 2015 – 2016

Julie Turner Merberg

Julie Turner Merberg was born in Fort Worth and grew up in Abilene and Amarillo. An Amarillo High School Sandie, she graduated from Texas Christian University before moving to Washington, D.C.

Julie began her service on Capitol Hill with Congressman Charlie Stenholm and worked for the 17th district of Texas before joining the staff of Congressman Ciro Rodriguez. From 2005 through 2012, she worked for Congressman Silvestre Reyes, who represented El Paso. Currently, Julie works in the office of Congressman Filemon Vela, Jr., from Brownsville.

Julie lives in Maryland with her husband Glenn and children Alison, Natalie, and Elliott. She misses Six Flags, Palo Duro Canyon, and Diet Big Red.

The Honorable Roger Williams
st Vice-President

Roger Williams represents the 25th District of Texas in the United States Congress, a district that stretches from Tarrant County in the North to Hays County in the South and includes much of Austin and the Texas Hill Country.

Prior to his election in November 2012, Congressman Williams served his country in a number of ways and brings a unique background to Congress. He was raised in the Fort Worth area where he graduated from high school and later played baseball at Texas Christian University. After graduating from college, he was drafted by the Atlanta Braves where he played in their farm system before an injury ended his sports career and forced him to begin his business career. He began working in the family car business and has owned and operated the business for 40 years.

Along the way, he also became involved civically and politically. He served as Regional Finance Chairman for Governor Bush in 1994 and 1998 before he went on to later serve as the North Texas Chairman for the Bush/Cheney 2000 campaign. Additionally, as well as the North Texas Finance Chairman and National Grassroots Fundraising Chairman for Bush/Cheney '04, Inc. Williams was appointed by President George W. Bush in 2001 as the Chairman of the Republican National Finance Committee's Eagles Program. He has also served as State Finance Chair for John Cornyn for U.S. Senate, Inc., in 2002 and as the National Director of the "Patriots" program for Senator Cornyn.

In 2005, Governor Rick Perry appointed Congressman Williams to serve as Texas Secretary of State. As Chief Election Officer for Texas, he worked to ensure the uniform application and interpretation of election laws throughout the state. The Congressman worked tirelessly to promote economic development, investment and job creation in Texas. He also served as the state's Chief Liaison for Texas Border and Mexican Affairs as well as Chair of the state's 2005 Base Realignment and Closure Response Strike Force. Congressman Williams was elected to his first term in Congress on November 6th, 2012 and was selected to serve on the House Committee on the Budget, along with the House Committee on Transportation & Infrastructure.

Ryan Thompson
nd Vice-President


A graduate of Texas A&M University, class of 2001, Ryan Thompson has served as a professional staff member in the U.S. House of Representatives for eleven years.  He currently serves as Chief of Staff to Representative Joe Barton, a Senior Republican on the House Energy and Commerce Committee. Ryan’s responsibilities include coordinating the Congressman’s activities and priorities between the Committee, Personal and Campaign offices, and managing the Washington, DC staff.

Additionally, Ryan has been active in congressional and local campaigns across Texas.  He has served as Political Director of Congressman Barton’s re-election campaign and in 2002 served as a senior staff member of open seat candidate Brad Barton’s congressional campaign.

Ryan also organizes the Congressional Baseball Game for Charity, an annual event in which he raises over $250,000 for three local charities in the Washington, DC area – The Washington Literacy Council, The Boys and Girls Clubs of Washington, DC, and the Washington Nationals Dream Foundation. In 2013, Ryan was presented the Champion for Literacy Award for his work on behalf of The Literacy Council.

From June 1993 to June 1997, Ryan served our country as an infantryman in the United States Marine Corps, and was promoted to Non-Commissioned Officer, performing the duties of an acting Platoon Sergeant. 

While at Texas A&M, Ryan spent his free time working on Aggie Bonfire – the largest student-run organization on campus. He also volunteered with the Brazos County Boys and Girls Club, the National Youth Sports Program, and the Brazos County Academy for the Rehabilitation & Motivation of Youth.

Bob Mansker

Bob has been a member of the Texas State Society since 1979. He currently serves as a member of the Board for the term 2011-2013. He has served as: Historian (1987-88; 1989-90; 2005-07; 2010-2011); Treasurer (2007-2009); and Secretary (2009-2010). Additionally, he served two consecutive unexpired terms on the Board in 2003 and 2004. He graduated from The University of Texas (Austin) with a BBA in 1965. Bob was the youngest staff member on the Hill when he came to Washington to serve on the staff of Congressman John Dowdy (D-TX) 1963-64. During that period, he briefly lived in Athens, where he assisted in running the district office for the Congressman. After earning his MBA from Texas A&M University, he taught business courses at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, prior to working on his doctorate, which he received from Texas A&M in 1975, majoring in Business, Government, and Higher Education.

He served in the Texas House of Representatives as the Administrative Assistant to Representative Smith E. Gilley (Greenville), who hired Bob after they opposed each other in the Democratic Primary of 1974. Bob served as Democratic County Chairman of Hunt County, was elected to the State Democratic Executive Committee in 1976, and was re-elected in 1978, serving the 2nd Senatorial District of Texas. He managed the successful campaign for former Congressman Jim Mattox (now deceased) and helped conduct the successful campaign of former Congressman Martin Frost. He returned to Washington in 1979 as the Press Secretary in the Congressman's office. In 1993, Frost named him Staff Director (Majority) for the Subcommittee on Accounts within the full House Administration Committee. Additionally, he served as Staff Director for the House Commission on Fair Employment Standards, a bipartisan group to handle employees' complaints. Bob became the Minority Staff Director for the Joint Committee on Printing, and, in late 1997, he was appointed as Deputy Public Printer of the United States, serving at the U.S. Government Printing Office until 2003. In 2004, he was awarded the "Outstanding Achievement Award" for his work at the GPO by the new Republican Public Printer Bruce James.

Since his departure from federal service, Bob has served as the Secretary to the Fairfax County, VA Board of Equalization, where he continues to serve. Additionally, he serves as the Chief Election Officer for his local precinct in each election. In his spare time, Bob directs bridge game activities, teaches and lectures for several cruise ships on voyages throughout the world, recently returning from England after an across-the-Atlantic cruise.

Jack Peterson

Since January 1995, Jack has served as Federal Liaison for Harris County and works to protect the interests of the citizens of Harris County and the constituents of the Harris County Flood Control District.

Born in Beaumont, Jack grew up in Houston, where he graduated from Spring Branch High School and then from the University of Texas at Austin. There, he began his career in the legislative process and politics working ath the Texas Capitol. He lived in Texas until 1989, when he moved to Washington, D.C. and later that year to Arlington County, Virginia.

Jack was Director Political Affairs at the National Association of Manufacturers when he first moved to the nation’s capital, and he was Director, Political Education at the Texas Hospital Association in Austin before that. Earlier, he held several positions with the Texas Legislature.

Jack is the proud father of Michael and Charlie Peterson who attend Yorktown High School in Arlington and Longwood University respectively.

Jamie Baker

The Honorable Louie Gohmert
(Immediate Past President) Director with term expiring April 2017

Serving his fifth term in the United States House of Representatives, Congressman Louie Gohmert was first sworn in January 4, 2005. He proudly represents the First District of Texas which encompasses over 12 counties stretching nearly 120 miles down the state's eastern border.

During these trying economic times, Rep. Gohmert is developing innovative solutions to jumpstart our economy and offering practical alternatives to the government's bailout frenzy. His “Federal Income Tax Holiday” gained widespread national support from the grassroots level to national leaders, allowing taxpayers to decide how best to spend their hard-earned money. Louie has repeatedly called for an end to the socialization of our economy and decried the notion that Washington Bureaucrats know better than American taxpayers.

Louie serves on numerous House committees and subcommittees. He was recently named Vice Chair of the Judiciary subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism and Homeland Security due to his extensive knowledge stemming from years in the court room.

Prior to being elected to serve in Congress, Louie was elected to three terms as District Judge in Smith County, Texas. During his tenure on the bench, he gained national and international attention for some of his innovative rulings. He was later appointed by Texas Governor Rick Perry to complete a term as Chief Justice of the 12th Court of Appeals.

Louie received his undergraduate degree from Texas A&M University and later graduated from Baylor School of Law. He is also a veteran having served his country as Captain in the U.S. Army.

Today, he and his wife Kathy are the proud parents of three daughters. Their family attends Green Acres Baptist Church in Tyler, where Louie has served as a deacon and still teaches Sunday school.

Kristina Harris Butts
Director with term expiring April 2017

Gene Irisari
Director with term expiring April 2017


Caryn Schenewerk
Director with term expiring April 2017

Patricia Villarreal Tamez
Director with term expiring April 2017

Tim Teehan
Director with term expiring April 2017

Tim is currently a partner at Columbia Books & Information Services, the leading specialty information publishing firm for the government relations and association community for nearly 50 years. Columbia Books is home to such notable publications as The Original US Congress Handbook, The Washington Representatives Directory,, and Association Trends, as well as partnering with the American League of Lobbyists on the Lobbying Certificate Program.

An Aggie from San Antonio, Tim also lived in Bryan/College Station and Dallas (where his Aggie ring still resides beneath White Rock Lake) before moving to Washington, D.C. to help fundraise for Members of Congress and charities close to his heart. After 2006, Tim joined Campaigns & Elections as part of the team which rehabilitated the magazine to its former glory.

When not working, Tim can be found two-stepping, mountain biking, whitewater kayaking, or teaching kayaking classes (although not all at the same time).

Barry Brown
(Past President) Director with term expiring April 2016


Barry is a fifth-generation Texan from Greenville and received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Texas Tech University. Following graduation, he moved to Washington, D.C. to work for House Agriculture Committee Chairman Larry Combest (R-Lubbock) as a Legislative Assistant and later served as Legislative Director to Rep. Kevin Brady (R-The Woodlands) and Chief of Staff to Rep. Kay Granger (R- Fort Worth). Then, for the past decade, he served as Chief of Staff to Rep. Michael C. Burgess, M.D. (R-Lewisville).

After a twenty-year career on Capitol Hill, Barry joined the Alpine Group as Vice President. He is past-President of the National Board of Directors for the Texas Tech Alumni Association and later served on the National Board of Directors for the Red Raider Club. Brown is a former Vestry officer at St. Patrick’s Episcopal Church of Washington, D.C.

The TSS has been a family tradition. His grandparents and mother were active members of TSS in the 1930s, '40s, and '50s, making Barry a third-generation member of the TSS. He is also married to former TSS Board Member, Jennifer Brown, and they have a son, Leighton, and a daughter, Gipson (making them fourth-generation TSS members). They reside on Capitol Hill.

The Honorable Al Green
Director with term expiring April 2016

Jennifer Daniels
Director with term expiring April 2016

Dave Davis
Director with term expiring April 2016

Theresa Doyle
Director with term expiring April 2016

Katie Kaufman
Director with term expiring April 2016


LaKeitha Anderson

Membership Chair

Ed Perez
Entertainment Chair

A seventh generation Texan, Ed grew up in Corpus Christi. He currently serves as Senior Advisor to Congressman Kevin Brady (TX-08). He received his Bachelors and Masters degrees from the University of Texas at Austin. Ed was appointed by Governor Rick Perry in 2001 and confirmed by the Texas State Senate to serve as the executive director of the Texas Office of State-Federal Relations (OSFR). He led Texas' Washington DC office for ten years (2001-2011). After his tenure with the State of Texas. Ed was a government relations consultant in the private sector until joining Congressman Kevin Brady's staff in 2013. Prior to serving as Texas OSFR's executive director, Ed worked in the economic and community development fields at the State, county and city levels of government (1983-2001). Ed lives in Alexandria, Virginia with his wife and two children.

Ed joined the Texas State Society in the late 1980s, became a board member in 2003, and served as President of the Texas State Society for the 2007-2008 term. Ed served as chairman of the Texas State Society's 2009 Black Tie & Boots (BT&B) Presidential Inaugural Ball held at the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center on January 19, 2009. He also served as chief operating officer of the 2013 Black Tie & Boots Inaugural Ball held on January 19, 2013. He continues on the TSS Board as Entertainment Chair and as Black Tie & Boots 2017 chair.

Amy Henderson Hawkins

Sponsorship Chair

Bill Christian
Executive Director

A graduate of Monahans (Texas) High School, Bill Christian most recently served in the administration of President George W. Bush as the Chief of Staff of the U.S. Selective Service System, where he received the Distinguished Service Award. In addition to managing the Texas State Society, he is the Director of Government Affairs for Citizens Against Government Waste, a non-profit watchdog group, and he is a founding partner of Rappahannock Timber Frame Company, a construction-marketing firm based in Sperryville, Virginia. A 1986 graduate of The University of Texas at Austin, he served (until December 2006) as the Assistant Vice Chancellor for Federal Relations in the UT System's Washington, D.C. office for five years.

In 2003, Bill Christian returned to his home in Midland, Texas, to run for a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, in a special election to fill the vacancy created by the early retirement of then-Chairman of the House Agriculture Committee, Congressman Larry Combest (R-Lubbock).

In addition to working in the administrations of Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, the native West Texan served on the staffs of U.S. Senators John Tower and Phil Gramm, and U.S. Representative Tom Loeffler, while his last assignment on Capitol Hill was Chief of Staff for Congressman John Culberson. A graduate of the Naval War College, Bill recently retired from the United States Marine Corps Reserve. In his spare time, Christian is an active member of the Capitol Hill United Methodist Church, and he is an alumnus of the Texas Lyceum, an association committed to identifying and developing the next generation of top leadership in the State of Texas. Bill also serves on the Board of Advisors for both the Gamma Upsilon Chapter (UT Austin) and the Alpha Pi Chapter (George Washington University) of Tau Kappa Epsilon (TKE) Fraternity, while also representing TKE in the Capital Fraternal Caucus in Washington, D.C.

Bill's hobbies include marathon running, coaching a softball team (The RBIs of Texas), and serving as a Commissioner in the U.S. Senate Softball League. A Past President of the Texas State Society, Bill served on the TSS Board of Directors until his appointment as Executive Secretary.