Waltrip Alumni Association

Blog Posts

  • 02 Mar 2020 9:53 AM | Web Master (Administrator)

    Congratulations to Pete & Jeanne Farenthold, Class of 1972, on their son, David Farenthold, receiving the Pulitzer Prize in journalism.  David is a writer for The Washington Post.


  • 29 Nov 2017 2:14 PM | Web Master (Administrator)

    Waltrip's Varsity Football Team News
    Cameron Howe is "Quarterback of The Year".  He won the most votes at yvpe.com.   Cameron was also named All-District Offensive MVP, All District 1st Team QB and Academic All-State.  Congratulations to Cameron for a job well done!.

    Patti Newby

  • 01 Nov 2017 1:01 PM | Web Master (Administrator)

    Doug Cooke, NASA Associate Administrator for the Exploration Systems Mission Directorate.
    Credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls.

    Doug Cooke is Associate Administrator for the Office of Exploration Systems Mission Directorate. The Exploration Systems Mission Directorate is responsible for managing the development of flight hardware systems for future human exploration beyond low Earth orbit, including the moon, near Earth asteroids, Mars and its moons and other destinations. This includes development of critical technologies, new capabilities, and human research to support future human spacecraft and exploration missions. It also includes partnering with industry to develop commercial capabilities for cargo and crew transportation to and from low Earth orbit.

    Mr. Cooke has over 37 years of unique experience in the Space Shuttle, Space Station, and Exploration Programs. He has been assigned significant responsibilities during critical periods of each of these, including top management positions in all three programs.

    Mr. Cooke's first major challenge began in 1975 when he was tasked with defining and implementing an entry aerodynamic flight test program for the Space Shuttle. This program was successfully implemented during the Approach and Landing Tests in 1977, and early orbital flights of the Space Shuttle beginning in 1981 through 1984.

    Mr. Cooke was asked to lead the Analysis Office when the Space Station Program Office was first organized in 1984. He accepted the challenge and led the work that defined the Space Station configuration and many of its design details and technical attributes.

    Following the Space Shuttle Challenger accident, Mr. Cooke was assigned to the Space Shuttle Program Office. He helped lead a Civil Service and contractor team to provide the system engineering and integration function that resulted in the return of the Space Shuttle to flight on September 29, 1988. He reached the position of Deputy Manager of the NSTS Engineering Integration Office.

    Mr. Cooke has played a pivotal role in planning for future space exploration beginning in 1989. He helped to lead a NASA team that produced the "90 Day Study" on lunar and Mars exploration. Mr. Cooke was subsequently assigned to the Synthesis Group led by Lt. General Tom Stafford, Gemini and Apollo Astronaut. The team produced a report for the White House entitled "America at the Threshold: America's Space Exploration Initiative." Mr. Cooke was selected to be the Manager of the Exploration Programs Office under then Exploration Associate Administrator Michael Griffin, where he initiated and led NASA agency-wide studies for the human return to the Moon, and exploration of Mars.

    In March of 1993, the agency undertook the redesign of Space Station Freedom. Mr. Cooke was assigned the responsibility of leading the engineering and technical aspects of the redesign. He was subsequently chosen to serve in the Space Station Program Office as Vehicle Manager, leading and managing the hardware development and systems engineering and integration for the International Space Station. From April to December of 1996, Mr. Cooke served as Deputy Manager of the Space Station Program.

    Prior to his current appointment to NASA Headquarters, Mr. Cooke served as manager for the Advanced Development Office at the Johnson Space Center, Houston. Mr. Cooke provided leadership for the planning of human missions beyond Earth orbit; including the Moon, Mars, libration points, and asteroids. This team developed integrated human and robotic mission objectives, defined investment strategies for exploration technologies, and managed NASA exploration mission architecture analyses. Mr. Cooke was detailed to NASA headquarters during portions of this period to contribute to headquarters level strategies for human exploration.

    Mr. Cooke served as NASA technical advisor to the Columbia Accident Investigation Board from the time of the accident to the publishing of the report.

    Prior to his current assignment Mr. Cooke served as Deputy Associate Administrator for the Exploration Systems Mission Directorate. He has made significant contributions to the structuring of its programs, defining the program content, and providing technical leadership. He initiated and led the development of the Global Exploration Strategy activity that led to defined themes and objectives for lunar exploration. International, science, industry, and entrepreneurial communities were engaged, and they contributed to the development and shaping of these themes and objectives. He led and guided the development of the planned lunar exploration mission approach and architecture. Mr. Cooke has also led the efforts to define long term NASA field center assignments for hardware development and operational responsibilities. He has been the Source Selection Authority for the major exploration contract competitions. In this role he has successfully selected the companies who are currently on contract.

    Mr. Cooke is a graduate of Texas A&M University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Aerospace Engineering.

    Major Awards: SES Presidential Distinguished Rank Award- 2006, SES Presidential Meritorious Rank Award- 1998, NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal- 2003, NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal- 2002, NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal- 1997, NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal- 1993, NASA Exceptional Service Medal- 1988, JSC Certificate of Commendation- 1986, JSC Certificate of Commendation- 1983

  • 24 Oct 2017 1:43 PM | Web Master (Administrator)

    Welcome To The Metroplex! Paperback  – 2017

    by Leonard Critcher (Author),    Mary Tullie Critcher (Author)

    Welcome To The Metroplex! is a complete guide to everything the DFW area has to offer. Whether you are a new arrival and trying to acclimate yourself to the seemingly endless venues and things to see and do or you already consider yourself a Texan through and through, Welcome To The Metroplex! Is THE source for everything DFW.

     The first chapter gives brief histories of the 30 cities that comprise The Metroplex.

    NOTE: Available at Amazon Books!

  • 18 Apr 2015 4:48 PM | Web Master (Administrator)

    Mike Donahue taught French at Waltrip for 28 years before he retired.  This is an article about his grandson's discovery of dinosaur bones.  

    Here is a link to the article that appeared on huffingtonpost.com as well as on the news broadcast with David Muir.

  • 15 Jun 2014 12:59 PM | Web Master (Administrator)
    Cathy Compton Kurtz - Class of '78

    Living Through the Pain: New Memoir of Spiritual & Emotional Pain Empowers Women to Find Solace through Sharing their Stories.

    Cathy A. Kurtz was faced with harrowing grief after losing her mother, father, two brothers and sister-in-law, all by the age of thirty. However, Ms. Kurtz’s bold tenacity and unshakable commitment in her faith allowed her to still find a productive purpose. By sharing her raw and heartfelt story with the world, Ms. Kurtz hopes to inspire other women to open up about their own pain and start the long journey toward healing.

    For Immediate Release

    Rocklin, CA –While everyone endures adversity and pain, few lose their entire family at a young age and even fewer are forced to bring up a child alone at the same time they’re fighting the worst grief imaginable. For California’s Cathy A. Kurtz, this unfathomable situation has been a thirty-five year reality.

    While she suffered in silence for so many years, Ms. Kurtz has now taken the life-changing decision to share her story via a compelling and thought-provoking new memoir. While brutal, frankly-honest and sure to stir the emotions of any reader, ‘Living Through The Pain - The Lonely Me’ is a book that will change the lives of thousands of women.


    Imagine waking up to your worst nightmare.

    In 1976, Cathy Kurtz, at the tender age of sixteen, lost her father, mother, oldest brother, and sister-in-law in a private plane crash. In 1989, she lost her surviving brother to AIDS. As a single mother, Cathy struggled to take care of her son while still being haunted by the tragedies of losing her family.

    Suffering gave Cathy a unique awareness of the pain an individual can live through and still be able to propel their life forward in a productive manner. A Christian upbringing was her only outlet to find peace, and the ability to live

    through the pain. Cathy considers her deep understanding of surviving tragedies, and using her pain to enrich her life, as a calling from God to serve others and assist them in finding the courage to move forward.

    Living Through The Pain - The Lonely Me is about the universal journey of emotional and spiritual pain.

    Having also endured the sexual abuse of a boyfriend, Kurtz’s memoir will be of particular value to young women who have been forced to become a victim of rape, sexual abuse or have personally experienced the loss of a close family member.

    The author hopes her memoir will reach out and touch the hearts of women who are hiding their own pain and suffering.

    “Through meeting thousands of women, I have become acutely aware of how hard it is for us to open up about our suffering and share with people. There seems to be a fear of guilt, embarrassment and shame. While these fears are only natural, I have learned that opening up can help build a solid social and spiritual foundation through which healing can begin,” says Ms. Kurtz.

    Continuing, “It’s vital to have a shoulder to cry on, hands to hold and a support network to vent through. Women have had a long tradition of being able to find strength in each other yet somehow this has been lost over the years.  My book provides women with the key concept of empowering them once again to reach out to other women for support and healing. I know I can’t personally meet with every suffering woman, so my book provides the inspiration they need to reach out to other women.”

     ‘Living Through the Pain - The Lonely Me’, published by Healing Hart Publishing, is due for imminent release. For more information, visit the author’s official website:http://www.cathyakurtz.com.


    “After reading, my first thought was WOW!! Then WOW!! What a journey for someone so young. I could feel your pain.  I actually could.” L. Wilson.

    “Powerful!! When you think the human spirit cannot possibly endure anymore pain, tragedy, and loneliness . . Cathy Kurtz, will encourage both young girls and woman alike: That with God's faithful strength and love we can get through and survive anything while living through the pain. She is a "Hero" in my eyes. C. Barrera

    “Wow!!! I can't not stop reading . . . just finished. You're like someone climbing a big mountain with many tough paths to endure. Now you have reached the top and can look down and help others. You have helped to inspire me. Your story is riveting!” K. Mahoney

    About the Author:

    Cathy Compton Kurtz was born in Houston, TX in 1959. She graduated from Texas A&M University in 1980 with a Bachelor of Administration in Finance. In 1990, she graduated with honors, receiving a Masters Degree in Finance from Golden Gate University in Sacramento, CA. Cathy is a member of the National Association of Female Executives and the National Association of Professional Women.

    Contact:Cathy Kurtz / 916-521-2647 /Email: author@cathyakurtz.com

    Facebook:Cathy A Kurtz

| Welcome | Association | Alumni | Reunions | Communicate | Groups/Photos | Membership Registration | Public Member Directory | Members Only |
| Local Links   | Contact Us | Help Desk  | Member Feedback | Alumni Spirit Store | Legal Notice |

Copyright © 2010-2024  Waltrip Alumni Association, Inc. , a 501 (c) (3)  tax-exempt nonprofit organization – All Rights Reserved 
P.O. Box 924212
Houston, Texas  77292-4212

Terms of Use and Privacy Notice

Web Site powered by: WildApricot.com (referral link)

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software