Governor Greg Abbott has appointed Christopher Baird, Glenda Born, Michele Dobbins, and James Williams, Ed.D. and reappointed April Pollreisz, Lisa Cowart, and Joseph Powell to the Rehabilitation Council of Texas for terms set to expire October 29, 2024. The council works with the Texas Workforce Commission to advocate for people with disabilities in the vocational rehabilitation process.
Christopher “Mark” Baird of San Angelo is a Unit Support Coordinator for the Texas Workforce Commission. He previously served as a vocational rehabilitation counselor for the Texas Workforce Commission and the Texas Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services and as a Community Supervision Officer for Concho Valley Community Supervision and Corrections Department. Baird received a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from Texas Tech University and a Master in Rehabilitation Counseling from Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center.
Glenda Born of Austin is a retired Assistive Technology Specialist for the Texas Workforce Commission. During her 40-year career, she served as a Rehabilitation Teacher and Team Coordinator for the Texas Commission for the Blind and a Work Adjustment Specialist for the Travis Association for the Blind. Additionally, she held a professional counselor’s license. Born received a Bachelor of Science and Master in Education from Stephen F. Austin State University.
Michele Dobbins of Pasadena is a Regional Blind Services Specialist at Texas Workforce Solutions. Previously, she served as a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor. Dobbins received a Bachelor of Science in Political Science from Saint Vincent College and a Master of Science in Clinical Vocational Rehabilitation Counseling from Texas Tech University.
James Williams, Ed.D. of Leander is the Chief Executive Officer for Bloom Consulting. He serves as the Treasurer of the Texas Association of People Supporting Employment First and as a member of the International Association of Rehabilitation Professionals. Previously, he served as a Conference Planning Member of the College Autism Network and as a member of the Texas Rehabilitation Association. Williams received a Bachelor of Science in Special Education from Sam Houston State University, a Master of Arts in Rehabilitation Counseling from Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, and a Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership from Lamar University.
April Pollreisz of Amarillo is Chair of the State Independent Living Council and a former customer service professional in the insurance industry. She is the treasurer of the Panhandle Independent Living Council. Pollreisz received a Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice and a Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies from West Texas A&M University.
Lisa Cowart of Sour Lake is the PATH Project Director for Partners Resource Network. She is an advisory committee member of SpedTex, a general member of the Society for Human Resources Management, and the vice chair of the Rehabilitation Council of Texas. Cowart received a Bachelor of Business Administration in marketing from Lamar University.
Joseph Powell of Dallas is the President and CEO of the Association of Persons Affected by Addiction, Dallas. He is an Allied Health Professional and Peer Chair of the Texas Certification Board. Additionally, he is an advisory member of the National Southwest Addiction Technology Transfer Center. Powell attended Eastfield College and Amber University for social work and substance use.