Board Members

Dr. Don Rice, President
District 2
Term Expires 2017

Don RiceDr. Don A Rice has worked as a Chiropractor since 1983. Dr. Rice and his wife Cheryl own and operate Agape Chiropractic in Palestine.  Dr. Rice graduated from Groveton High School and attended Stephen F. Austin University.  He then attended Texas Chiropractor College in Pasadena, TX where he graduated with Faculty Accommodation in 1982.  Before becoming a doctor, he taught and coached in Cayuga and Hemphill.  Dr. Rice is an active member of the Palestine Lion's Club and currently holds the office of Secretary/Treasurer.  His past positions have been Tournament Chairman, Scholarship Chairman, Program Chairman, and President.  Dr. Rice and his wife, a graduate of Westwood, have three children who have all graduated from Westwood ISD.

Mr. Mike Bentley - Member
District 1
Term Expires 2018

Mike BentleyMr. Mike Bentley was sworn in as a WISD board member on May 10, 2013.

Mr. Mike Kelly - Member
District 3
Term Expires 2019

Mike KellyMr. Mike Kelly is a long-time Palestine resident, having graduated from PHS in 1971.  He attended Henderson County College, studying Ranch Management.  Mr. Kelly retired in 2015 from Westwood ISD where he served as Maintenance Director, giving 15 years of service to our district.  He has been married to his wife Bonnie for 43 years, and son, Chris is a WHS graduate in the class of 1996, and daughter, Amy Camp, teaches at Westwood Primary.  Mike Kelly is a member of the Palestine City Parks and Recreation Advisory Board, the Palestine City Charter Review Commission and the Anderson County Master Gardeners Association.  He is a Certified Texas Master Gardener and has assisted the Primary with their garden for years.

Mr. John Tilley - Member
District 4
Term Expires 2018

John TilleyJohn Tilley is a 1979 graduate of Westwood High School and has served on the board since 2012. John owns Blake Well Logging, Inc. in Palestine. He also is a member at Westwood Baptist Church where he serves actively in the church.

Mr. Tilley and his wife, Julie, have two children; Blake and Beth both are graduates of Westwood High School, Classes of 2005 and 2009.

Mr. Ronnie Stanhope - Member

District 5
Term Expires 2017

Ronnie StanhopeMr. Ronnie Stanhope is a 1983 graduate of Tascosa High School in Amarillo, Texas, where he was active in sports.  He attended Texas Tech University in Lubbock after graduation.  Ronnie has been employed by the Texas Department of Criminal Justice since 1994. Ronnie and his wife Edna have three children, Aaron graduated from Westwood High School in 2011, Courtney graduated from Westwood High School in 2014, and Kaylie currently attends Westwood Elementary.  Mr. Ronnie Stanhope was sworn in as a WISD board member on May 12, 2014. 

Mr. Craig Nivens - Member
District 6
Term Expires 2017

Craig NivensMr. Craig Nivens is in his first year of serving the district as Board Member, but he is no stranger to education and leadership. Craig's dad, T.C. Nivens, was a teacher and administrator for Westwood ISD for many years and also served on the board of trustees from 1983-1986. Craig is a 1978 Westwood graduate and was very active in sports and FFA; he is currently working on his Bachelors's degree from Tarleton University in Stephenville, Texas.   Mr. Nivens is employed as the Operations Manager with Baker Hughes. Craig and his wife, Sheila, have two children; Samantha graduated from Westwood High School in 2010 and Ryan, who currently attends Westwood High School.

Shurekia Downie - Member
District 7
Term Expires 2019

Shurekia DownieSworn in on May 10, 2016, one of our newest board members, Shurekia Downie, has lived in Palestine for over 13 years.  Ms. Downie has been a active member of the WISD Parent Support Group and is involved in Westwood area youth sports, including the Tri-County Youth Football Association, President of the W.Y.F.L. board and member for 6 years, and is on the Westwood Little Dribblers board.  She is a Proud Panther parent of Jemelia, 2014 graduate of WHS, Roderick and Shamaya at WHS, Devonte at WJH, and Brandon and Bryson at WW Elementary.  Ms. Downie is a full-time mom and part-time sales representative with La Quinta Inns and Suites.