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TASA has named the 2022 recipients of its Johnny L. Veselka Scholarship, which has been awarded annually since 2014 to outstanding doctoral students pursuing careers in educational leadership, with particular emphasis on the superintendency.

The recipients were selected from among a pool of applicants by the TASA Johnny L. Veselka Scholarship Committee, a group of Texas school superintendents and other public school district administrators.

Each of the following recipients will receive a $2,500 scholarship and be recognized during the 2022 TASA Midwinter Conference, to be held in Austin January 30-February 2.

LaTonia Amerson, a school assistant superintendent in Aldine ISD, is working toward her doctorate in educational leadership at Sam Houston State University.

“School leaders must be relentless in the pursuit of what is best for all students, be willing to work in the trenches with the team, build relationships with everyone, lead and treat others respectfully, and be driven by improved student outcomes, not by a title,” she wrote in her application.

Sharon McKinney, superintendent of Port Aransas ISD, is working toward her doctorate in education leadership from West Texas A&M University.

“The day-to-day work of a superintendent is not always the most fun, but watching a teacher shine as he or she masterfully teaches a lesson or watching a principal who is able to reach and redirect a struggling student or watching a custodian kneel down to tie a child’s shoe reminds me that my leadership is important and that it matters in ensuring that our staff has the support needed to do their jobs well and to care for our students,” she wrote.

The scholarship recognizes the leadership of Dr. Johnny L. Veselka, who dedicated nearly 44 years of service to the association, including 32 years as TASA’s executive director.

The program is facilitated by TASA with the support of PBK, the program’s 2021-22 sponsor.