President – Amanda Reiter
Current/Past Community Involvement: I served as secretary for Raising Oak Cliff last year. I was also a sunshine meals contributor for RECPTA in prior years.
Spouse/Partner: Bruce McLean
Children/Schools: Elliot, 4, Rosemont Elementary
Neighborhood: King's Highway
Occupation: Senior editor for a newspaper corporation, MediaNews Group
Bio: I grew up in Mesquite and attended Abilene Christian University. Upon my first visit to California, I realized it was time for me to explore beyond Texas. I lived in Ventura, Calif., for 7 years, moved to Beijing for a year, lived in Cincinnati for a few years, and then Bruce's job brought us back to Dallas in 2016. I went to school for photojournalism, so I love taking pictures when we are out and about. My favorite thing about Oak Cliff? That I run into people I know almost anywhere I go in the neighborhood.
What does ROC mean to you? Raising Oak Cliff means bringing a stronger sense of community with a focus on education.
Goals for the Year: Last year I felt it was very important for our community to come together and learn more about our local public schools and what it is like navigating DISD. I hope we can continue to have that conversation and bring insight to those who are just starting the public education path.
Vice President of Operations – Marysol Villanueva
Vice President of Engagement – Andy Ramirez
Current/Past Community Involvement: I have served on the PTA board at Rosemont and Greiner in many positions from Secretary to Vice President over the past 14 years. I am currently serving on Sunset High School’s SBDM Board. I have also been Vice President of my Neighborhood Association (Sunset Hill). I am very active in my community and volunteer for events as often as possible.
Spouse/Partner: I am married to Fermin Macias and we will celebrate our 21st wedding anniversary this coming February. He is a self-employed computer technician and works from home.
Children/Schools: We have 4 children: Sophia (19), she will be a Junior at The University of Texas at Austin this coming Fall. Elijah (18), will be a freshman at The University of Texas at Austin, this coming Fall. Noah (16), will be a junior and attends Sunset High School. Our baby, Elise (9), will be in the 4th grade and will be attending Sidney Lanier Expressive Arts Vanguard.
Neighborhood: We live in Sunset Hill and we have been here in our home for over 21 years.
Occupation: I was a real estate agent for about 3 1/2 years before we started our family and then decided I wanted to be home with my babies. I now work part time helping my cousin run her Airbnb cleaning service and at The Kessler.
Bio: I was born and raised in Oak Cliff. I am a real Oak Cliff native and I love it! I attended DISD schools and graduated from Sunset High School. I enjoy the small town feel of it being in such a big city like Dallas. I get so excited running into someone I know every time I am out and about. Everyone knows I like to be involved with any and everything that has to do with my beloved hometown. I am a people person and one of my favorite things to do is to sit and chat with someone new or someone I have known for years. I don’t have many hobbies but I do love to read. If I am not working, being a mom or volunteering you’ll find me lost in a book.
What does ROC mean to you? I am so excited to be a part of ROC. Being a part of a group that is inclusive to everyone in Oak Cliff is so important to me. I look forward to connecting with other families and making life-long friendships. I hope that ROC will be a source of information for people new to the neighborhood or for someone who has questions about schools, events or just wants to make connections with other families. Something I always tell people who ask me why I give so much of my time to volunteer is that I have a servant's heart and a passion for giving back. I am excited to be a part of and see this organization blossom!
Vice President of Communications – Travis Hudson
Current/Past Community Involvement: RECPTA Communication Coordinator 2015
Spouse/Partner: Amanda York
Children/Schools: Apollo 4 (Yorktown Spanish School) & Enzo 0 (Cliff Temple)
Neighborhood: Kidd Springs
Occupation: Communications at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas
Bio: I grew up in the Texas panhandle and in southwest Kansas. I moved to Dallas because it was the first job offer I received after college and haven't looked back. I bounced around in various neighborhoods, but it was my wife that found Oak Cliff and we've been here for nearly a decade. I love the community in Oak Cliff.
What does ROC mean to you? Raising Oak Cliff is meaningful because it's keeping the parents of Oak Cliff educated, informed and involved in education in our neighborhood.
Vice President of Fundraising – Michael Merrick
Current/Past Community Involvement: Dallas Bar Association (various committees 2003 - present), Leadership Lambda Toastmasters (Vice President-Education 2017 - 2018, President 2018 - 2019, Immediate Past President 2019 - present), Springhill PTA (Parliamentarian 2018 - 2019), West Dallas Chamber of Commerce (Board Member At-Large, 2019 - present)
Spouse/Partner: Therese "Teri" Merrick
Children/Schools: Madeleine (Solar Preparatory School for Girls) & Finley (Solar Preparatory School for Boys)
Neighborhood: Winnetka Heights
Bio: Born in Kansas City, Missouri; raised in Stilwell, Kansas; moved to The Cliff in 2009 because it reminded Teri and myself of our favorite neighborhoods in Milwaukee and KC, respectively; hobbies include watching kids play with toys (on Youtube only), making poop jokes, and waxing nostalgic about the 1990s
Goals for the Year: Make that money rain on ROC! (waxing nostalgic about the 1990s includes using slang from the 1990s)
Programs Committee Chair – Hayley Nanasi
Current/Past Community Involvement: Past Treasurer of ROC, Big Brother's Big Sisters
Spouse/Partner: Daniel Nanasi
Children/Schools: Blakely Nanasi (not in school yet)
Neighborhood: South Winnetka Heights
Bio: I was born, raised, and went to high school and college in Arlington. I moved to Austin for law school at UT and ended up back in Dallas for a new job and my future husband. Daniel and I stumbled upon Oak Cliff 10 years ago and have never looked back. I always wanted to move to a small town when I had kids, live in a tight-knit community, and have slower pace of life. But, we also enjoy city life and having quick access to music, art, food, and fun things to do. Oak Cliff it’s the best of both worlds. Oak Cliff is a small town in the middle of the big city! I love going to the local coffee shop, breakfast spot, and parks and running into so many people we know and enjoy spending time with. I have made so many friends here - many within blocks of me (no excuse not to get together and stay connected!) I love the character and diversity of our neighborhoods, it's like no other place in Dallas and I am happy to call Oak Cliff home.
What does ROC mean to you? I was invited to join Raising Oak Cliff last year as Treasurer. I was hesitant because I had never served on a nonprofit, my daughter wasn't school age, and I didn't know what to expect. I am so thankful I did! ROC's inaugural year was nothing less than absolutely amazing. ROC met and exceeded its goals in providing community events and programs and raising impressive funds for our local schools. I'm continuing to serve on the Board this year in hopes I can be one small part in helping our neighborhood become more connected, stronger, and bettered through our children and community connections. As Programs Committee Chair I look forward to lots of fun events and fundraisers this year! See you soon!
Community Liaison – Kaitlin Snow
Current/Past Community Involvement: RECPTA Volunteer Engagement 2017-2018, Springhill Montessori PTO VP of Fundraising 2016-2018, James Hogg Elementary PTO VP 2018-current, ROC Community Liaison 2018-current
Spouse/Partner: Richard Snow
Children/Schools: Cash Snow, 6, Hogg Elementary and Penny Snow, 4, Springhill Montessori and headed to Hogg Elementary in the fall
Neighborhood: Kidd Springs
Occupation: Design Sales Manager and WELL Specialist, OFS
Bio: My husband and I both work full time in consultative roles in software and furniture sales, respectively. We've lived in Kidd Springs for almost 9 years. We sort of stumbled on Oak Cliff while searching DFW for older homes with character. I grew up in Denver, CO, and we enjoy a similar active lifestyle here in Oak Cliff- spending time outside, walking, running, and biking wherever we can and hanging with our neighbors and friends. We enjoy traveling, but we also spend a lot of time in Oak Cliff because we love it here so much.
What does ROC mean to you? I love being involved with Raising Oak Cliff and engaging with the variety of amazing schools and businesses we have right here in our backyard. After our first year at Hogg Elementary, I saw firsthand the outstanding things going on in our schools, and felt compelled to tell all of my friends and neighbors. I believe we are incredibly lucky to have access to dual language programs, STEAM academies, Project Based Learning schools and so much more right here in Oak Cliff. I also know that many of the people moving to Oak Cliff may not be aware of all that our schools have to offer. I am passionate about creating ways to expose our community to more information."
Goals for the Year: Last year I was able to connect with a few of our schools and community members, and this year I am excited to meet even more of the community and get to know more of our schools!
Treasurer – Ally Newman
Current/Past Community Involvement: Past Treasurer and Secretary of RECPTA
Spouse/Partner: Andrew Newman
Children/Schools: Charlotte (Travis) and Sydney (Dealey)
Neighborhood: Winnetka Heights
Occupation: Formerly a lab technician, but that was a long time ago in another life. Currently a SAHM
Bio: I grew up moving every 3 years because my dad was in the Air Force, but I attended high school and college in Texas, so I feel like a Texan now. We moved to Oak Cliff in 2007 from Austin because my husband got a job downtown and I got into grad school in Fort Worth, so OC felt like a decent location for both of us. We didn't know a thing about Dallas, but were drawn to the old homes and mature trees in Oak Cliff. We had no idea how much we would come to love it. My hobbies are reading as many books as I can get my hands on, constantly listening to podcasts and traveling. My favorite thing about OC is the people! We have made so many lifelong friends here.
What does ROC mean to you? I was very drawn to ROC's mission of supporting all the local neighborhood schools.
Goals for the Year: Keep that budget balanced!
Secretary – Melissa Weis Loeckle
Current/Past Community Involvement: I taught yoga at our local Genesis women's shelter in the past as well as delivered Sunshine meals for RECPTA.
Spouse/Partner: Stephen Loeckle
Children/Schools: Lily (4) was at Seed School and will be starting at Wild Earth or Casa de Paz in the fall. Thomas (2)
Occupation: Current Tinkergarten leader. I am also a pediatric occupational therapist (OT). I have been at home with my kids since my second was born. I had a career in the healthcare industry working for Children's Medical Center Dallas and also Children's Hospital Boston in business and technology before becoming a therapist.
Bio: I was born in Dallas and grew up here mostly but spent a couple of years in Charleston, SC as a child. In my 20s I also lived in Boston for a few tranformative years. Before settling into a career I traveled as much as I could throughout Mexico and Central America to improve my Spanish skills and learn about other cultures. In 2007 I was looking to buy a house with some character in a neighborhood with a strong community and a short commute to work. I saw some homes in East Dallas but ultimately decided Oak Cliff was my spot. My dad grew up here, and I think I felt a connection to the area because of that history. I enjoy spending time with my family & friends. I am also a yogi, outdoor explorer, gardener, crafter, traveler, festivarian, advocate, and lover of podcasts. My favorite thing about OC is the trees and green spaces.
What does ROC mean to you? ROC means building connections in our community and supporting schools and families
Goals for the Year: This is my first year with ROC. I hope to make more connections in the community and find ways to use my skills to support our goals. I am also very interested in parent education specifically around child development and hope to offer classes this year.