Fred Shafer, President
A native Texan, Fred Shafer’s career in the field of special education spanned over 40 years before retiring. His career included serving as special education coordinator for Region 3 Education Service Center in Victoria, executive director for special education, counseling and psychological services in Katy Independent School District, director of special education for Region 4 Education Service Center in Houston and executive director for special education in Beaumont Independent School District. Fred also served as a Texas Education Agency appointed conservator and special education monitor.
In addition to serving on the Board of Directors for The Arc of Katy, Fred remains active in Katy ISD by serving as a KEYS student mentor and supporting the Katy ISD Education Foundation. He and his wife Patti are also actively involved in supporting Fred and Patti Shafer Elementary in Katy ISD.
Fred is a member of Kingsland Baptist Church where he serves as a deacon, usher, greeter, community group teacher and teacher in the Special Needs class. Fred lives in Fulshear with his wife Patti who is a retired principal from Katy ISD. They have two children and four grandchildren who all live in Katy.
Donna Bode, Secretary
Donna Bode is a native West Virginian and graduated with a teaching degree in English and physical education in 1969 from Marshall University in Huntington, W. Va. She taught three years before she and her husband moved to Beaumont, Texas, in 1972. They have two sons, a daughter with Down Syndrome and two grandchildren who are all native Texans.
Due to her husband’s job, they moved to Katy in 1985. Since that time, they have been members of Epiphany of the Lord Catholic Community. Donna is a retired Katy ISD schoolteacher.
Donna served on the committee to develop The Arc of Katy Day Program that opened in February 2005. She also served as an instructor for the program. She continues to volunteer with the Day Program. She is secretary of the Board of Directors for The Arc of Katy and was the social director for four years.
Mike Lattal, Treasurer & Past President
Mike Lattal joined The Arc of Katy Board of Directors in May 2010 and is treasurer and past president. He also has supported The Arc as a volunteer assisting in fund-raising and charity events and the Program Committee. He developed his passion for The Arc of Katy participants through his wife, Therese, who is Be Strong Program coordinator and instructor, and past Adult Day Program director. Mike spent over 30 years in the oil and gas business specializing in the natural gas and gas liquids business with BP and Statoil.
Mike served on the board and as president of the Natural Gas Processors Association, an industry organization representing natural gas midstream operations. A native of the Chicago area, he received his Master’s in Business Administration Degree from DePaul University and undergraduate degree from Western Illinois. He is a member of Epiphany of the Lord Catholic Community in Katy and assists the St. Vincent DePaul organization. Mike and Therese have three children and two grandchildren.
Amy Campbell, Board Member
A native of the Texas Panhandle, Amy also grew up in the Houston/Memorial area and attended school in Spring Branch Independent School District. After graduating from Sam Houston State University in December 1981, Amy began her teaching career as a substitute teacher in Spring Branch I.S.D in Spring 1982, and then as a special education teacher at Katy High School in Fall 1982. While at Katy High School, she piloted the Life Skills Program and helped start a swim program for students with special needs that later became known as the Adaptive Aquatics Program. She later moved to James E. Taylor High School in 1995 and started the Life Skills Program and Vocational Adjustment Program there. Amy served as a faculty sponsor of the James E. Taylor High School Best Buddies Club from its start in 2001. It was the second high-school Best Buddies Club in the State of Texas, until December 2016.
In 1989 Amy was present at the first organizational meeting of Katy ISD staff and parents of students with special needs who worked together to form a local chapter of The Arc. Amy has been a member of the organization since its original charter in August 1990. She later served as a member of the Board of Directors and then as vice president of the organization and was re-elected again to the Board of Directors in May 2015.
Amy helped start The Arc of Katy’s pilot Adult Day Camp in 2005 and that same year she was also named James E. Taylor High School’s Teacher of the Year. In 2014 she was recognized for her service to The Arc of Katy by being named as the Ann Davis Founder’s Award honoree at the annual gala. In addition to serving as a member of the Board of Directors, Amy also serves as co-chair of the Program Committee and co-chair of the Communications & Marketing Committee. Amy recently retired from a rewarding teaching career after 34 years with Katy ISD but remains active in the school district, at Amy Campbell Elementary School in Katy ISD, which is named for her.
Ellen Candito, Board Member
Ellen Candito was born, raised and educated in Boston, Mass., but got to Katy as quickly as she could. Ellen was elected to The Arc of Katy Board of Directors in 2012 and has served on the Development Committee as well as on the Gala Committee. She now is working with The Arc of Katy socials that are held monthly at the Monty Ballard Family YMCA at Cinco Ranch.
Ellen is employed as a speech language pathologist with Katy ISD and works with the high school population. She received her undergraduate degree from Bridgewater State University in Massachusetts in communication disorders with a minor in special education and psychology. She did graduate work at University of Houston and University of Denver.
Ellen was a speech pathologist with Houston Independent School District before moving to Denver, where her son and daughter were born. She also worked in the geochemical industry, marketing seismic data. From there, she lived in Dallas and in Billings, Mont., before arriving in Katy in 1994.
Ellen was a confirmation catechist at Epiphany of the Lord Catholic Community for 10 years and taught Catechism for Catholic Education while her children were going through the program. In her spare time, she enjoys outdoor activities including kayaking, biking, traveling and enjoying family and friends.
Dennis Combrink, Board Member
Dennis Combrink joined The Arc of Katy Board of Directors in 2015. He and his wife, Jeanne Ann, moved to Katy from San Marcos in 1994 and got involved with The Arc of Katy and Special Olympics with their daughter Joy. She was one of the first participants in the Day Program and really enjoyed it.
They chair the Social Committee for The Arc of Katy and are coaches of the Katy Comets bowling team for Special Olympics.
Dennis is the City Director of Houston for CRU/Campus Crusade for Christ and the Priority Associates marketplace ministry. He is a graduate of Kansas State University in business administration. He and Jeanne Ann have been on staff with CRU for 46 years.
Dennis and Jeanne Ann have five other children and 15 grandchildren. They are members of Grace Fellowship of Cinco Ranch.
Fran Dahl, Board Member
Fran Dahl joined The Arc of Katy Board of Directors in _____ and has been active as co-chair of The Arc of Katy 2019 Fundraising Gala Celebrating Hometown Heroes and on the organization’s Facilities and Communications and Marketing committees.
Fran and her business property Chris Dahl specialize in DTP Realty in residential real estate and property management. She also is an officer of Katy Foreign & Domestic Auto.
A long-time, active member of the Katy community, Fran is also a member of the Board of Directors for the Katy Area Chamber of Commerce and is active in the Katy Business Association. She also has volunteered with Katy ISD, Zoey’s Angels and Cinco Ranch Charities.
Pat Doucette, Board Member
Pat Doucette joined The Arc of Katy Board of Directors in 2018. He came to Katy when his father Vince Doucette retired from the Army in 1988. Vince Doucette decided to establish the first Edward Jones office in Katy and Harris County. Pat graduated from St. Thomas High School in 1996 and attended St. Louis University where he received a bachelor’s degree in finance. Pat started with Edward Jones in 2001 and joined his father’s Edward Jones office in 2007. Pat has over 17 years of experience working with clients to help build, protect, and transfer wealth.
Pat has been a limited partner with Edward Jones since 2002. His practice has created four new Edward Jones offices in the community. At Edward Jones he is a field trainer, mentor, recruiting member and is ranked in the top 10 percent of the 17,000 advisors at the firm.
Pat has served on the Board of Directors for the West I-10 Chamber of Commerce, was president of the Brookshire-Pattison Lions Club, president of the St. Louis University Houston Alumni Association and secretary of Katy Rotary Club. He is president of the Harborside Homeowners Association and on the Finance Committee for The Blue Bird Circle. Some of Pat’s other community involvements include Katy Elks and Knights of Columbus.
Pat and his wife of 13 years, Dr. Tiffany Doucette, have one daughter, Chloe. The Doucettes enjoy visiting their second home in Galveston on weekends, traveling and spending time with friends.
Cherie Duddridge, Board Member
Cherie Duddridge joined The Arc of Katy board in 2017. She and her family moved to Katy in 2011 from Wheaton, Ill.
Cherie is a native of Pittsburgh, Penn., with 30 years of experience in the oil and gas industry in a wide range of roles from engineering, quality control, construction and property management at a variety of locations ranging from Cleveland, Los Angeles, London, the United Kingdom, and Chicago. She is now the property director of the Houston Westlake campus for BP.
Cherie served on the Board of Director for SIDS of Illinois and the Taylor High School Orchestra Parents Association. Cherie obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in civil engineering from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Penn., as well as attending University of Houston to study environmental engineering.
Cherie lives in Katy with her husband, Ian. They have two sons, Andrew and Kristian. She is active in the USA Swimming and UIL swimming as a certified official. Cherie enjoys walking, yoga and reading.
Don Elder Jr., Board Member
Don Elder, Jr. was raised on a rice farm and ranch in Katy, where his dad and two uncles farmed for over 33 years. Don attended all the Katy schools and graduated from Katy High School in 1963 and then attended Sam Houston State University where he received his Bachelor of Science and Master of Education degrees. Upon graduation, he was a professor at both Sam Houston and Hill College. At Hill College, he had his own local sports radio program and served as the athletic public relations director. Following teaching, Don worked in sales and marketing in the Ready-Mix business for over 30 years. He now owns Elder Consulting where he works with school and governmental entities.
Don served on the Katy Independent School District Board of Trustees for two terms. After that, he was elected to the Harris County Department of Education County Board. He served on this board for 10 years, two terms as president. He was on the Katy City Council for five years. He resigned from the council to run for Mayor and was elected May 12, 2007. He ran unopposed in the May 2009 election and was re-elected for a second term. The Mayor again ran unopposed in May 2011 and his term expired in 2013. The mayor’s position in Katy is term limited.
Don served on the Talent Committee of the Economic Development Board as well as the Governing Board of the Katy Economic Development Council. He has served on the Business Development Board of Sterling Bank and serves on the Development Board for Houston Community College. Some of Don’s other community involvement, to name a few, are past member of the Katy Athletic Booster Club, past president of Katy High School Alumni Association, honorary member of Katy Future Farmers of America, as well as other schools in the District, past member of the Katy FFA Sales Committee, past member of Board of Directors for Katy Area A&M Club, past president of Katy Area A&M Club, past member of Board of Directors for Katy FFA Rodeo Committee, and member of the 12th Man Foundation, Texas A&M University. Don serves on the City of Houston Metro Board as second vice president, representing the 14 multi-cities.
Don is married to Katy native Ida Faye Moore Elder. They have one son Shane, who is married to Maddie, and who have one child, Easton Grae Elder. Don and Ida Faye are active members of the First United Methodist Church. He enjoys hunting, visiting the Hill Country and attending sporting events, particularly University of North Texas football games. Don also enjoys being able to spend as much time as possible with his grandson.
Ida Faye Elder, Board Member
Ida Faye Elder was raised in Katy, where she attended Katy Elementary, Katy Junior High and Katy High School. She graduated in May 1966 from Katy High School. She married Don Elder that same year and moved to Huntsville, Texas. She attended Sam Houston State University for one year. She also had a full-time job at the college as a secretary and then later worked at the Huntsville Prison. She and Don moved to Hillsboro, Texas, where she worked as a secretary and attended classes to receive her Associate of Applied Science degree. They moved back to Katy where Ida Faye worked for the Katy School District as an administrative assistant. She retired in December 2011 after 35 years of service.
Ida Faye has been a member and president of Beta Sigma Phi Sorority. She was involved in Katy Athletics when their son, Shane, was in school. She also was co-chair for Project Graduation at Katy High along with overseeing the Katy High School Baseball Concession. After Shane’s graduation she was an officer with the Katy Aggie Moms. Along with Don, Ida Faye has been involved with the Katy A&M Club, Katy Future Farmers of America and Rodeo and church committees at First United Methodist Church, where they are active members. She currently is on the City of Katy Parks and Recreation Board. During the six years that Don was Mayor of Katy, Ida Faye was involved in many city activities and functions.
Since her retirement, Ida Faye enjoys finding time to hunt with Don, to travel (she loves the Hill Country) and to spend as much time as possible with their grandson, Easton. She and Don still enjoy going to the Mean Green Football games.
Shane, their son, is married to Maddie. They and their son, Easton Grae live in Northlake, Texas.
Ambir Jarvis, Board Member
Ambir Jarvis was elected to the Board of Directors of The Arc of Katy and joined the organization’s Communications and Marketing Committee in August 2019.
Ambir relocated from Bossier City, La., to Katy in 1996. She graduated from Katy High School in 2005 and attended The Art Institute of Houston. She has worked in the web design and internet marketing industry for just over 10 years.
Ambir also enjoys giving back to the community. She has volunteered with Best Buddies, Special Olympics, PetsMart, the Houston Zoo, and Camp for All as a counselor.
When she is not volunteering, Ambir is spending time with her family. Ambir and her husband of five years have a blended family including five children, two cats and one chocolate lab. Avid Houston sports fans, you can find them rooting for the home team at Astros, Texans, and Rockets games.
Ambir became involved in the community of individuals with IDD because of her brother Adam. He was born with Nijmegen Breakage Syndrome, a rare disorder that affected his immune system. He was very active and played baseball, basketball and participated in swimming through Special Olympics. Ambir reports that he was quick to make friends and loved everyone. Adam passed away in 2013 but his strength, bravery and positive attitude have always been an inspiration to Ambir and everyone who knew him in the community.
Carolyn Kares, Board Member
Carolyn Kares was elected to The Arc of Katy Board of Directors in May 2015. She is a native Texan having been born and raised in Port Arthur. She has a nephew with autism who attends The Arc of Katy Day Program and began volunteering with the Program and Gala committees. She also enjoys volunteering with Interfaith Ministries Katy Meals on Wheels, the Katy Fussell Senior Center and Katy Wolf Pack Special Olympics Team. She is a member and past president of the Houston Junior Forum and serves on the boards of the Houston Junior Forum and All Saints Third Age Learning Center senior program. She is a member of Beta Sigma Phi Sorority and has served in various offices including president of the Houston Council and is a recipient of the sorority’s highest honor, the International Award of Distinction.
Carolyn attends Tallowood Baptist Church and has a daughter, son-in-law and two grandsons.
Carolyn serves as The Arc of Katy Program Committee co-chairman and participates on the Social Subcommittee and Fundraising Committee.
Krista Kiblawi, Board Member
Krista Kiblawi was elected to The Arc of Katy Board of Directors in August 2019 and has volunteered to assist as co-chair for the 2020 Gala.
A resident of Katy for about 17 years, Krista works as a Director with Verizon Wireless and served on the Board of Directors of the Houston Technology Center. Krista earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Journalism from University of Missouri.
Margaret Laney, Board Member
Margaret Laney was elected to The Arc of Katy Board of Directors in 2012 and co-chairs the organization’s Communications and Marketing Committee. She served as vice president of The Arc of Katy from 2015 to 2018, including acting as interim president from November 2016 to August 2017.
Margaret also is a member of the Board of Directors of the Katy Area Chamber of Commerce. She served previously on the boards of directors and committees of a variety of other business and trade associations and non-profit organizations in Louisiana, Texas, Colorado and Illinois.
Margaret has more than 35 years of experience in public relations, government and regulatory affairs and corporate communications. Following her recent retirement from BP America, Margaret established Dubois Laney Enterprises, LLC, and is focused on providing strategic public relations and communications consulting services to businesses and non-profit organizations. She also is pursuing certification in non-profit executive leadership through Rice University’s Glasscock School of Continuing Education.
Margaret completed the Leadership Development Program at the Center for Creative Leadership in Colorado Springs, Colo.; is a fellow of Leadership Greater Chicago; completed the Kellogg Management Institute program at Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill.; and earned her Bachelor of Arts degree with majors in journalism and political science from The Metropolitan State University of Denver.
A native of Denver, Colo., Margaret has also lived in El Paso, New Orleans, Houston and the Chicago area. She has lived since 2008 in Katy with her husband, Steve Laney, who is a part-time Adult Day Program instructor for The Arc of Katy. They have four adult children and six granddaughters.
Mary McGovern, Board Member
Mary McGovern joined the Board of Directors of The Arc of Katy in 2019 and is chair of the organization’s Fund Development Committee.
Mary began her career professional career as a senior engineer with Westinghouse Electric Corporation’s Energy Systems Business Unit in Pittsburgh, Penn., and held various positions of increasing responsibility in advocacy, commercial development, marketing communications and strategic planning. After taking time off to raise her two sons, Mary returned to the workplace and is now team manager for Power Aquatics in Katy, a level one USA Swimming affiliated club.
Mary’s volunteer interests have focused on education, community service and youth sports. She was president of the parent-teacher organization at Yorkshire Academy in Houston; vice president of membership for the Taylor High School PTA in Katy; and Taylor’s representative to Leadership Katy in 2016. Mary’s other community volunteer efforts include nine years on the Green Trails Three Homeowners Association Board of Directors including six years as president and eight years on the Green Trails Gators Swim Team Board of Directors.
A native of Philadelphia, Penn., Mary moved to Katy in 1995. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in physics from Albright College in Reading, Penn., plus a Master of Arts degree in international relations and a Master of Science in energy resources engineering from the University of Pittsburgh.
Elizabeth Moreland-Mason, Board Member
Elizabeth Moreland-Mason joined the Arc of Katy Board of Directors in October 2018. She retired from Katy ISD where she served as an instructional officer in the Department of Special Education. She is the owner of SPED Resource, the author of two books for teachers of students with disabilities and a consultant for local area school districts. Liz was awarded the Texas A&M University Dean’s Round Table Transformational Leadership award for her work in education.
Liz received a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology from the University of Houston and a Master’s in Education from the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, N. C. Liz has worked for over 35 years with students with intellectual and developmental disabilities in private school, public school and home-based settings. Liz brings tremendous knowledge and experience to the Board of Directors.
Liz and her husband, Jeff, have two adult children.
Marchelle Peters, Board Member
Marchelle Peters received her Bachelor of Education in special education from Baylor University and her Master’s in Educational Psychology/Special Education from the University of Houston. Marchelle has served as a diagnostician coordinator in Spring ISD, program specialist for assessment and inclusion and educational diagnostician in Tomball Independent School District. She was an educational diagnostician in Cypress Fairbanks Independent School District and was a teacher of students with autism and a PPCD Teacher in Pasadena Independent School District. She is currently the instructional officer for PPCD, life skills and TIP in Katy ISD. Katy ISD was fortunate to have Marchelle join the Special Education staff. She brings a wealth of personal knowledge to The Arc of Katy Board of Directors.
Marchelle has three children: Brandon, Bryce and Brea. She enjoys spending time outside as well as traveling and visiting new places.
Lewis White, Board Member
Lewis White joined The Arc of Katy Board of Directors in October of 2018. He is an attorney with the Law Office of Lewis White PLLC.
Lewis is a graduate of the JD Thurgood Marshall School of Law and has served on the Texas Board of Dental Examiners. He serves on the McMurry University Alumni Board.
Lewis has been recognized as one of Katy’s Top 100 Men and serves as a deacon at Second Baptist Church. He also serves as a student mentor with the Katy ISD KEYS mentoring program.
Lewis and his wife, Chakilla, have two children.