Posts Tagged ‘Accomplishment’

Thomas Fenske (’76, ’77)

Thomas Fenske is the author of of six novels and one cookbook. He is originally from Texas but currently lives in North Carolina. His TRACES OF TREASURE Series follows Sam Milton and Smidgeon Toll, somewhat reluctant treasure hunters. THE HAG RIDER is civil war historical fiction about a young boy’s experiences after enlisting in the Confederate Cavalry, all the while under the protection of a slave’s witchcraft. HARMON CREEK explores a decade’s-old murder in rural Texas and the sordid conspiracy that follows. HARMON CREEK is his first novel in the crime/true crime genre, inspired by the mysterious death of his wife’s great-uncle. HARMON CREEK will be available from Amazon or any local bookstore in June 2022

Thomas Fenske

Howard Joe (’75)

My 1st and 2nd edition books “Essential Guide to Treat Diabetes and to Lower Cholesterol” now have been verified and confirmed by more than 20 clinical trials of correct books’ methods as cited on Facebook, Amazon, and Linkedin. The clinical trials verify and confirm that soluble fiber and magnesium lower blood glucose and A1C and soluble fiber decreases cholesterol.

Demetrius Pearson (’90)

Dr. Pearson, associate professor in HHP and lifetime alumni association member, recently published a book titled Black Rodeo in the Texas Gulf Coast Region: Charcoal in the Ashes. The work is the culmination of a 20-year study on Black rodeo.

Larry McClaugherty (’72) and Kathy McClaugherty (’70)

On Tuesday, February 22nd at 1 p.m., the McClaughertys, CAMP leadership and its Board of Directors will unveil the new  monument—a huge boulder embossed with “Children’s Association for Maximum Potential” and its colorful logo, in honor of their son Neal who enjoyed ten years there, as a Camper.  CAMP’s summer camp is located in Centerpoint TX, in the Texas Hill Country.

 Neal’s life story is eloquently captured in the book “Neal:  Champion,” written by Larry & Kathy McClaugherty “and 21 of Neal’s closest friends” including Hope de Lemos, a former CAMP Director and daughter of a CAMP Co-Founder, who says she “became absolutely smitten with a young man with an infectious smile and charming disposition….Neal was an extraordinary testimony to intelligence and wit.  He knew how to command a room, and without fail, was one of the biggest flirts known around our little slide of heaven.” Neal’s short bio is below.

Larry said this to me about CAMP:  “Quite simply, the culture at CAMP is love.  Being at CAMP is like a religious experience.  It gets in your blood and changes you; you measure things differently.  It changes how you see kids….and life.”

Just as Neal spread joy while at CAMP, so have his parents.  Besides this incredible welcome monument (which is such a fitting tribute to Neal who welcomed everyone with his huge infectious smile), Larry and Kathy have been involved at CAMP for years:

  • coordinated the CAMP golf tournament for 11 years at Tapatio Springs,
  • engaged pharmacist friend Trang Le in Pearland who helped provide over-the-counter medications and whose daughter attended CAMP several summers as a counselor
  • established summer rotation with Pharmacy students who did rotations with Larry, starting with U of Houston and growing to UT and Texas Tech.  Two former students still work at CAMP:  Genee Nguyen Santiago, Pharm. D.  (who has brought students) and Sara Wisecup Kubes, Pharm.D., Clinical Assistant Professor at UT Health San Antonio (who also brings students)
  • served for a number of years on CAMP Board
  • has annually supported CAMP through all memorials and giving at the yearly Gala
  • recognized by the United Way in San Antonio as the Volunteer Family of the Year (even though they lived in Friendswood TX at the time but traveled six hours to bring Neal to CAMP)
  • honored in 2012 with the CAMP Heroes Award for their unwavering support of CAMP

Marla-Tiye Vieira (M.Ed. ’03)

A longtime Ahwatukee resident has penned her first novella and she’s chosen some heavy topics to explore in it.

Marla-Tiye Vieira, a New Jersey native who has lived here for 17 years, teaches English as a second language and has had students from around the world.

Her novella, “Jasmine Breeze” – which is available at, is about a biracial and bisexual young woman living in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, during the 1990’s.

She is conflicted by her sexuality because of her religious roots and the socio-demographics surrounding her.

“She discovers her mother’s diary, which reveals dark secrets of incest, conflicts within Northern Ireland and hardships regarding Irish immigration are just to name a few compelling instances in the book,” said Vieira.

“The chapters are lyrical songs representing the plots. The readership will experience exotic places:  Spain, Morocco, Australia, Great Britain and San Diego, California,” she said. “Jasmine finally has to make a vital decision because her life depends on it.”

The book was partially inspired by her past academic career.

Vieira taught French for Teach for America in Southern Louisiana and said she “met some female French teachers who were openly bisexual.”

“These women broke stereotypes about being gay due to their immense beauty and femininity,” she recalled. “The race relations were just as horrific during my term with TFA due to the O.J. Simpson trial, as they are today.”

Lest you think Vieira is a desk-bound academic, however, consider this description on Olympia Publishing’s website:

“I am fascinated with culture, food and foreign travel. In Darwin, Australia, I did the ‘cage of death’ with a giant salt-water crocodile by the name of Leo and relished delectable cuisines. Yet, my favorite vacation was when I cage-dived near Cape Town, South Africa, with two female great white sharks with my mother during the Christmas holiday.”

With a bachelor’s degree in broadcast journalism and French from Howard University and a master’s in second language education in curriculum and instruction from the University of Houston, Vieira excited about publishing her novella.

She said the pandemic actually helped her complete this “internal and external lyrical journey of self-discovery, secrets, joy and pain with sultry and exotic Jasmine.”

“The positive aspect of the lock downs during COVID-19 was that it allowed me to finally complete my manuscript,” she said.

Her target audience is 18 and older.

“Centenarians will also enjoy my book

due to its historic nuances,” she said, adding:

“My book aims to embrace anyone who feels ostracized and/or oppressed within their respective communities. I hope to create world peace.

“Although my novella took 25 years to complete, I did not face any major obstacles meeting this particular task.

“I love writing because it is very therapeutic for me to give birth to fictional characters making life-altering choices.  These vital decisions affect the entire characterization and plot in unpredictable ways for me as the author.”

She also loves to travel and discover exotic cuisines and was even featured with the Valley super chef Mark Tarbell on PBS.

She said “Jasmine Breeze” “saliently delineates the current acrimonious race relations occurring worldwide – the hostility between Northern Ireland and England, racism towards the African-Diaspora, religious intolerance and homophobia.

“My book offers ways to overcome these challenges and begin a trajectory of unification.

James Nguyen (J.D. ’18)

James Nguyen Selected to HYLA Leadership Academy Class of 2021-2022


We are pleased to announce that Sorrels Law’s Attorney James Nguyen has been selected to the prestigious Houston Young Lawyers Association (HYLA) Leadership Academy. The mission of HYLA’s Leadership Academy is to prepare young attorneys for leadership roles in HYLA and other organizations through a service-oriented leadership training program.

During the tenure of the Academy, members will have the chance to practice and develop their leadership skills while working together to develop and execute a service project designed to leave a lasting impact on both the Academy members and the community.


Applicants are selected based on several criteria including leadership skills, abilities, and potential; achievements and accomplishments; and community and bar involvement. A dedicated Houstonian, James received his Bachelor of Arts in English Literature from the University of Houston in 2015 and his Doctor of Jurisprudence from the University of Houston Law Center in 2018. James was a Dean’s Scholarship recipient in law school, he served as a Senior Articles Editor on the Houston Business & Tax Law Journal and was a member of the Asian Law Student Association.

Today, James is an active committee member of the Asian American Bar Association of Houston and serves as an Assistant Alumni Advisor to the Kappa Sigma Fraternity. His family lives in Houston and he and his wife are active in the Vietnamese and Chinese community.

Donica’ Beckett (’06)

UH Alumna pens ‘Brave Like Me!’ Courageous Lessons About the COVID-19 Coronavirus and Healthy Coping For Children and Families Anytime, to encourage understanding and boost confidence in children trying to cope with the huge changes brought on by the coronavirus pandemic; and ultimately increase health equity through health literacy with a series of related books.

Deyanira Salazar (’97)

Message from Deyanira:

“Hello, fellow Cougars!
I am happy to announce that in 2007, I founded Math Rocks, and am still happily tutoring students in grades K-College in the wonderful, little town of Uvalde, TX. Math Rocks serves a rural community, and also conducts many STEAM events throughout the year. My degree from UH in mathematics definitely allowed me to purse and reach my dreams of helping our students in Uvalde, TX.
I tutor many students from Uvalde Consolidated ISD, and am a proud Uvalde High School graduate from the Class of ’92”

Akihiko Hoshide (M.S. ’97)

UH Alum Akihiko Hoshide onboard SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft

Four astronauts, including UH alum Akihiko Hoshide, took their first steps of a six-month stay in space as they launched on the SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft.

Akihiko Hoshide is an astronaut with the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Keio University in 1992 and a Master of Science in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Houston, Cullen College of Engineering in 1997.

He joined the National Space Development Agency of Japan in 1992. The agency is now the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency. He helped develop the H-II rocket and was an astronaut support engineer, helping to develop the astronaut training program.

He was selected in February 1999 as one of three Japanese astronauts slated to go to the ISS, starting training in April 1999 and being certified in January 2001.

He served as a mission specialist in 2006 for NASA and was selected as a crew member for the STS-124 mission to deliver the Japanese Experiment Module to the ISS in 2007.

From July to November 2012, he spent 124 days as a flight engineer on the ISS.


Akihiko Hoshide was born in 1968 in Tokyo, Japan. He received a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Keio University in 1992, and a Master of Science in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Houston, Cullen College of Engineering in 1997.

Hoshide joined the National Space Development Agency of Japan (NASDA, currently Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency) in 1992 and worked as a member of NASDA’s Nagoya office for two year. At the Nagoya office, he was involved in the development of the H-II rocket. From 1994 to 1999, he worked as an astronaut support engineer for the NASDA Astronaut Office, supporting the development of the astronaut training program and the evaluation of crew interfaces designs. He also supported astronaut Koichi Wakata during his training and mission on the STS-72 mission.

In February 1999, Hoshide was selected by NASDA as one of three Japanese astronaut candidates for the International Space Station (ISS), together with Dr. Satoshi Furukawa and Naoko Yamazaki.

Hoshide started NASDA’s Basic Training program in April 1999 and was certified as an astronaut in January 2001. He then participated in ISS Advanced Training, while working on development of the hardware and operation of the Japanese Experiment Module “Kibo” and the H-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV).

In May 2004, Hoshide was certified as a Soyuz-TMA Flight Engineer. He was dispatched to NASA’s Johnson Space Center (JSC) in June 2004. He went through NASA’s Astronaut Candidate Training at JSC for about a year and eight months. After completion of training he was qualified for flight assignments aboard the space shuttle as a Mission Specialist in 2006.

In March 2007, Hoshide was selected as a crew member for the STS-124 (1J) mission, the second of three Kibo assembly-related missions, which delivered the Japanese Experiment Module (JEM) “Kibo” to the International Space Station (ISS).

In June 2008, he flew to the ISS on the STS-124 mission. He installed Kibo’s Pressurized Module (PM) on the ISS using the Space Station Remote Manipulator System (SSRMS). He also operated the SSRMS for relocation of the Experiment Logistics Module-Pressurized Section (ELM-PS). During the mission, he performed Kibo-related activities, such as activations of the PM and Kibo’s robotic arm, the JEM Remote Manipulator System (JEMRMS).

In November 2009, he was assigned as a flight engineer for the ISS Expedition 32/33 mission.

From July to November 2012, he stayed on the ISS for 124 days as a flight engineer for the Expedition 32/33 mission. His mission included experiments in Kibo, ISS maintenance, three times of Extravehicular Activity (EVA), and deployment of CubeSats using the JEM Small Satellite Orbital Deployer (J-SSOD). He also supported few unmanned cargo ships which delivered various cargos to the ISS, including H-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV) “KOUNOTORI3” and Dragon cargo spacecraft (SpX-1). He flew on the Soyuz TMA-05M spacecraft (31S) for both launch and return.

In July 2014, he served as Commander of the 18th NASA Extreme Environment Mission Operations (NEEMO18), an undersea expedition at the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration’s “Aquarius” habitat in Florida, USA. 

In March 2018, he was assigned as the Expedition 64/65 Mission crew and Commander of the ISS for Expedition 65 (Second Japanese ISS commander).

He was assigned as the Head of JAXA Astronaut Group from April 2016 (to October 2016).

Thomas Fenske (’76)

Thomas Fenske (’76) graduate from CLASS majoring in English and History and published author of 5 novels is rocking his UH tie as an extra on the set of a new movie, MAKING HIM FAMOUS, currently filming in North Carolina.