Archives for March 2020

Gillispie Named Tarleton Basketball Coach

And Billy Gillespie has been named head basketball coach at Tarleton State, taking over a program making the transition from NCAA Division Two to D-1. The move Monday came two years after Gillispie had a successful kidney transplant, and eight years after his last Division I job. The former Texas A&M, Kentucky and Texas Tech coach had been at a Texas junior college the past five years.

Tollett Named Tarleton Chief Of Staff, Vice President For University Relations

In news not related to coronavirus… Amanda Kit Tollett has been named Chief of Staff to Tarleton State University President James L. Hurley and Vice President for University Relations, effective immediately. She succeeds Dr. Kim McCuistion, who now serves as dean of Tarleton’s Fort Worth campus along Chisholm Trail Parkway and Vice President for External Operations. She will report to Tarleton on April 6. A Tarleton alumna, Tollett was Chief of Staff for state Rep. J.D. Sheffield (District 59) and has more than 10 years of experience with legislative affairs.

Tarleton Alum Earns Prestigious Civil Engineering Award

In other news, Allison Stamper, a 2016 Tarleton State University
environmental engineering alumna, has been named the 2020 Edmund Friedman Young Engineer of the Year by the Fort Worth Branch of the American Society of Civil Engineers. The award recognizes young members of ASCE who exhibit outstanding contributions to the public welfare via civil engineering.

Stamper has been working in civil/environmental engineering for four years. She’s with Peloton Land Solutions in the Fort Worth firm’s Hydraulics and Hydrology Group. She is a member of the Junior League of Fort Worth and volunteers with its Young Women’s Leadership Academy. She also volunteers at the Fort Worth ISD’s Breakthrough Fort Worth, which builds the confidence and academic skills necessary to succeed in academically rigorous high schools.

Congressman Roger Williams Statement On Coronavirus Stimulus Package

Congressman Roger Williams (R-TX-25) released a statement Friday after the United States House of Representatives approved the CARES Act, or the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act). In the statement, Williams said that

“The American people have always stepped up to the plate in times of need. Our job in Congress is to provide the reinforcements necessary to move forward – and I am proud that by passing the CARES Act, we have delivered. My top priorities have been providing direct assistance to our Texan families desperately in need of relief and those unexpectedly out of work due to this unprecedented pandemic. I’ve also been working to provide critical resources for health care providers on the front lines working around the clock to protect our families and heal our communities, and ensuring our Main Street businesses can begin the road to recovery while maintaining maximal employment. Though much of our daily life has been interrupted for the time being, we will keep working together and looking for opportunities where we can strengthen our economy. I have full faith that the American spirit will carry us through this crisis.”

Local Food Pantries Remain Open

Local food pantries say they are seeing demand like they’ve never seen before, with mandated orders to stay home and people fearful to get out in the first place due to the coronavirus. The Empire Tribune has listed all of the food pantries in the Stephenville area, beginning with Basic Needs Ministry at 312 North Graham Street. It’s open 9:30 to noon on Thursdays.

The DUblin Love Basket is open on the third Friday of each month from 8-to-11am at 207 East Elm Street in Dublin.

Grace Place is at 365 West Tarleton Street and is open from noon to 3pm on Tuesday’s, Wednesadays and Thursdays.

HOPE Incoprorated is open from 9 to noon Monday through Friday at 1617 East Washignton Street in Stepehnville.

The Pantry and More is at 2345 US Highway 67 and is open weekdays starting at 8am.

Stephenville Community FOod Pantry is at 334 West Green Street and is open on the third Thursday of every month from 5-7pm.

And Morgan Mill United Methodist Church is at 21508 North Highway 281. It’s open from 3:30 to 5:30 every Wednesday.

Local Leaders Tighten Restrictions Further

Erath County Commissioners and Stephenville City Council both met separately Wednesday and passed new disaster declaration orders that go in to affect through April 1st. Both City and County officials will meet again in the coming days to determine whether to extend and/or amend the current orders.

City and county residentrs are still allowed to leave their homes to get essential food and household items and medical care, as well as engage in outdoor activities and travel to and from work or to care for a family member. However, no public or private social gatherings are allowed. Most businesses are still allowed to remain open, but must enact extreme care and precautions. The ordinance does limit the sale of toilet paper to one package or 12 rolls per purchase. Child care facilities may continue to operate under certain conditions and guidelines. The city order does close personal service businesses like salons, tattoo parlors, and massage businesses due to the one on one nature of contact. The city will not terminate utility services for the duration of the declaration.

The declaration alsop includes the city of Dublin.

As far as Comanche county, leaders there say there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 with residents there. However, there have been three confirmed cases that tested positive at Comanche County Medical Center. Comanche County laders, at this point, are strongly urging people to stay home and practice good hygiene and social distancing.

Erath County To Meet Again For Coronavirus Topics

Erath County, Dublin and Stephenville leaders are all working together in an effort to cope with the coronavirus problem as best as possible. The Erath County Commissioner’s Court has already met once ro declare a local emergency after the first case of COVID-19 turned up in the county.

Across the state, cases more than doubled since Friday to approaching 400, and eight deaths. A statement from County Judge Alfonso Campos says the county’s job at this point is to reduce the impact as much as possible on how this will affect our local hospital situation.

In the Stephenville area, there are as few as five ICU beds and a very small number of ventilators would be available. The commissioners court will be meeting again today with local hospital officials and others. A 2pm meeting is scheduled to discuss extending or expanding the declaration already issued by Judge Campos on the 19th.

COVID-19 Appears In Erath County

Erath County now has a confirmed COVID-19 case locally. A statement from County Judge Alfonso Campos says the patient is an adult male living here in the county who was tested last week and notified of the positive result this past weekend. A reminder that if you believe you are sick, you should call your doctor or emergency room first. Do not just show up unannounced. Stay home except to get medical care. Wear a facemask only if you are sick. Cover your coughs and sneezes with the bend of your elbow. Wash your hands often and clean high-touch surfaces in your home often.

Tarleton’s Del Carmen Named To International Evaluation Panel

Tarleton State University professor Dr. Alex Del Carmen has been
appointed a member of the International Evaluation Panel at the Police Academy of the Czech Republic in Prague. Del Carmen, associate dean and professor in the School of Criminology, Criminal Justice and Strategic Studies, is the lone American on the nine-person panel assigned to evaluate research organizations and to research development and innovation of academy purpose-tied programs. His duties as part of the panel include an on-site visit of the Czech Police Academy, tentatively scheduled for June.

Del Carmen is regarded as an authority on racial profiling and police practices. He has trained
thousands of police officers, including all of the Texas chiefs of police since 2001. He also has
worked as a federal monitor in two of the largest police reform cases in the United States.
In 2018, he was named to the Fulbright Specialist program of the U.S. Department of State’s
Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and World Learning. He is certified as a grant
evaluator/reviewer for the Department of Justice and as an instructor for the Texas Commission
on Law Enforcement.
Tarleton, founding member of The Texas A&M University System, provides a student-focused,
value-driven education marked by academic innovation and a dedication to transform today’s
scholars into tomorrow’s leaders. It offers degree programs to more than 13,000 students at
Stephenville, Fort Worth, Waco, Midlothian, RELLIS Academic Alliance in Bryan, and online,
emphasizing real-world learning experiences that address societal needs while maintaining its
core values of tradition, integrity, civility, excellence, leadership and service.

National Guard To Monitor Coronavirus Testing Sites

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on Sunday said the National Guard could begin monitoring drive-in testing sites on Monday, and the Republican declined at a news conference to follow the lead of other states with a statewide “shelter in place” order. But Abbott warned Texans that it could be coming if they don’t heed his previous orders on Friday that limited social gatherings to under 10 people, closed schools, bars and gyms and banned dine-in eating at restaurants. Meanwhile, the top elected official in Dallas County on Sunday issued the strictest order in Texas so far. Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins issued an order telling residents to shelter in their homes except for “essential activities.” The order also prohibits gatherings beyond a single household and commands non-essential businesses to cease operation outside of people working from home.