Winning is a tradition for Timothy M. Kaman, Class of 1990, former team captain and record-setting player of the 1989 Schreiner Men’s Basketball Team. Kaman came to Schreiner College on a full basketball scholarship in 1985. He excelled on the court, helping to lead his team to the playoffs in 1989 and setting a series of career records for the Schreiner Men’s Basketball Team. He capped off his Schreiner success by being unanimously chosen to the 1989 All-Conference Team for Men’s Basketball.
Since his time at Schreiner, he has continued to rack up accolades, most recently as the all-time winningest coach in the history of the Fredericksburg High School Boys Basketball Team. In 2017, his team recorded its 500th win, a particularly special accomplishment since his son Tyler was on the team. Other notable accolades include being named the 2011 Texas Association of Basketball Coaches Coach of the Year and being selected to coach the 2012 TABC All-Star basketball game.
Kaman remembers his time at Schreiner fondly, recounting cold mornings at Delaney Hall sharing the community bathroom and shower, as well as playing ping-pong in the basement until the early morning hours.
“Schreiner was special because of the atmosphere,” Kaman said. “We were all like family. It was not too big of a school where I would just be a number; everybody knew everybody. The classes were not too big at all, and the professors were wonderful.”
Kaman noted that his experiences at Schreiner College greatly influenced his career. The education program at Schreiner College prepared him to teach at the high school level, which he has been doing for the past 28 years. He credits Schreiner Coach Richard Herbst for much of his success.
Kaman was humbled to learn he was being named to the Schreiner Athletic Hall of Honor. “Receiving this award is a tremendous honor,” Kaman said. “For me, when Schreiner gave me a scholarship, they saw potential in me. I worked hard to earn all that they gave to me. This honor tells me that Schreiner University is proud of the things that I have accomplished.”
Kaman lives in Fredericksburg and is married to his high school sweetheart, Lisa. They have two sons, Tyler and Matthew.
Tammy Lusinger, Class of 1990, made her mark at Schreiner as a key member of the 1985-1989 Women’s Basketball Team. She and her teammates posted four consecutive winning records and made the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics playoffs all four years. She was named All-Conference Basketball Player her senior year.
In addition to her success in basketball, Lusinger also played tennis during her four years at Schreiner and was on the Women’s team that competed in the NAIA National Tennis Championship her senior year.
Since Schreiner, sports have remained at the heart of Lunsinger’s education and career. After graduating magna cum laude from Schreiner in December 1989 with a bachelor of arts, double-major in mathematics and exercise science, she earned a master of science degree in kinesiology in August 1991.
Lusinger then taught and coached for 23 years at five different high schools, working her way up the ranks to eventually serve as assistant athletic director for Mansfield Independent School District in Arlington, Texas.
Her winning ways have defined her career as well. In her 15 years as a head basketball coach, she accumulated an overall record of 330-142, winning a 5A Texas State Championship in 2009 and a 4A Texas State Championship in 2012 at Mansfield Summit High School in Arlington. She was named 5A Coach of the Year in 2009 and 4A Coach of the Year in 2011.
Attending Schreiner was a special experience for Lusinger. “Schreiner played a key role in helping develop who I am today,” she said. “I had the privilege of playing with many talented basketball and tennis players. I will be forever grateful to be mentioned with this very special group.”
Lusinger resides in Arlington, Texas and looks forward to retiring and playing golf, which she now describes as her “true love.”
Also see: Past Athletic Hall of Honor
To say Athens, Texas native Frank Denius (1925-2018) lived an honorable and distinguished life would be an understatement.
One of America’s most highly decorated veterans of World War II, receiving four Silver Stars and two Purple Hearts, Denius returned home and distinguished himself at the University of Texas at Austin. He earned his law degree in 1949 and soon developed a reputation as one of Texas’ top lawyers and civic leaders. He was a notable advocate and benefactor of his alma mater, and was instrumental in the development of the UT Dell Medical School.
But before his illustrious military service, before making Austin his home and establishing himself as a Longhorn legend, before embarking on a long career in law and becoming a major supporter of UT Austin and many other notable causes, Denius was a Schreiner student.
Denius arrived in Kerrville to enroll in Schreiner Institute in 1938. He remembers that the “rules were definite, and the discipline was demanding.” According to Denius Schreiner taught him “discipline, how to study and I learned people.” He remembered fondly the close fellowship among and between fellow cadets. Two of his fondest memories were beating Kilgore Junior College in Football for the championship in 1940 and “carrying the colors in the Battle of Flowers parade in San Antonio on San Jacinto Day.”
Another day etched in Denius’ mind was Pearl Harbor Day. All cadets were immediately summoned to campus. Denius remembered that “our rifles, bayonets, two machine guns, and one thirty-seven millimeter cannon” were gathered and sent to Fort Sam Houston.
Denius said, “Military training and the discipline that went with it became part of my life. Ever since I went to Schreiner, I’ve tried to do my best at whatever I’ve taken on.” His time at Schreiner laid the foundation for what would be an honorable and distinguished life.
Denius was recognized as a UT Distinguished Alumnus in 1991, and in 2017 received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Texas Law Alumni Association. He has numerous honors and accolades from professional organizations and publications to honor his long and distinguished career.
Also see: Past Distinguished Alumni
Meleah “Lea” (Sielbold) Nye, Class of 1992, will receive the Schreiner Former Student’s Association Distinguished Service Award during Recall 2017 in April.
Nye became involved in the alumni organization almost immediate after graduation. She has served as president, vice president and secretary, and helped lead the SFSA through changes to make it a more active and effective body.
“She’s pro-actively generous, a very good organizer, and has skills that helped the SFSA board take us to the next level,” says Paul Camfield, Schreiner’s associate director for Alumni Affairs. “She’s spent many hours working for SFSA, and has shown a phenomenal amount of dedication to it.”
A San Antonio native, Nye says she ended up a Schreiner because her father bought a goat ranch outside of Fredericksburg when she was in middle school. “It was scrub brush and rocky, and I hated it,” she says. But that feeling changed.
The family built a small cabin, and used it as their getaway from the city. “I began to appreciate the beauty of the country,” says Nye. “I saw the beautiful spring wildflowers and the trees turn green in the spring, and I fell in love with it.”
Family excursions from the goat ranch included sightseeing in Kerrville. By the time she graduated from high school, she knew she wanted to go to school in the Hill Country.
“I was an A-minus student in high school,” says Nye. “Not overly active, I never thrived, but I never faltered. I knew I wanted to attend a small college, and had narrowed it down to Schreiner and TLU. The Hill Country won out.”
After applying to Schreiner she, was offered a financial aid package that made the cost comparable to a public college. “So off I went.”
Nye was a math major working on her teaching certification. Her academic career at Schreiner went well until her senior year, when she was assigned to do her student teaching at Smithson Valley. “It was a lot of work and a fairly long drive back and forth,” she says.
Her final math class that year was with the late Dr. Maury Evans. The class conflicted with the student teaching, but Dr. Evans made it work. “He said he knew my character and he trusted me. I could work the assigned problems, teach myself, and go see him when I needed help. He showed me a great kindness.”
The student teaching turned out to be more work than she had anticipated. “I thought I was doing well with his math class, but I really wasn’t.”
“Time came for the mid-term exam, which he left for me in the library,” she recalls. “I arrived in the early evening after teaching all day. I looked at the test and it could have been written in Japanese. I went completely blank. I stared at it for 30 minutes. It was horrible. The test represented a large percentage of my grade.”
Finally, she used the library phone to call Dr. Evans. He was having supper, but calmly assured Nye things would be OK. “He said, “Don’t worry about it. I know you. Go home and we’ll do it another day.”
She and Dr. Evans sat down together shortly thereafter and he went through the test with her, and she passed.
“That could not have happened at any other place but Schreiner,” says Nye. “He was straight-laced and dry—and probably not everyone’s favorite—but he is special in my heart. He saved me.”
The semester after she graduated—and started teaching school—Nye came back to the campus and said, “What do you need from me.”
“I had received a scholarship to attend Schreiner—and later received a Hatton Sumner scholarship. People provided for me. I learned at Schreiner that you give what you get. I immediately wanted to be involved.”
Among other activities, she helped with the Expanding Your Horizons program, encouraging middle school girls to become interested in science and math majors.
Her activity with the SFSA resulted in an unexpected romantic bonus. Kyle Nye, a 1994 Schreiner grad, was asked by his former roommate, Rian Dill, to help with the alumni association, so Kyle and Lea came to know each other through their SFSA work. “We saw each other maybe two times a year,” she says.
She finds it ironic that they had not met while students. “Our time at Schreiner overlapped. We had the same friends, attended the same parties, but never met,” she says. “That’s almost impossible. I thought I knew everybody on campus.”
Kyle was working and living in El Paso, when his company sent him unexpectedly to San Antonio to handle a problem. He needed to get an apartment quickly and didn’t know the city, so--from their SFSA connection-- he thought of Lea. She helped him get settled and he offered to take her to dinner as a “thank you” gesture.
“We consider that our first date,” she says. “We dated, and were engaged in a year. When they married, they gave out copies of Don Hedgepeth’s Schreiner history, Proud Promise, to the wedding party composed mostly of Schreiner friends.
After teaching a couple of years, she worked at San Antonio’s Methodist Hospital, keeping statistics for the bone marrow transplant program. After that, she worked for AT&T, first as an analyst, and then in executive compensation, designing employee salary and benefit packages.
When the Nyes started having children, sons Sam and Wesley, she and Kyle agreed that she would become a stay-at-home mother until the youngest was 10. That milestone has recently passed, and she intends to go back to work part-time.
The decision to step out of the workforce--“thanks to Kyle,” she notes--also benefitted SFSA. The decade dedicated to raising her boys also has been the period Nye has lead the association through some major changes
After studying alumni programs at other universities and colleges, the SFSA board decided to abandon the payment of annual membership dues for a program that makes all former students members of the association at no cost. Also, the university took over the cost for the annual Recall homecoming, allowing the SFSA to concentrate on creating scholarships and other special programs.
“I think the Former Students Association is much stronger now,” says Nye. “We’re more collaborative, and able to focus our attention on what the school needs as opposed to what the association needs. I’m very proud to be a part of the transition.”
She says one of her biggest joys was when she and Kyle were able to endow a scholarship. “Because of that, I know that someone else is receiving the same benefit that I once received.” In 2010, Nye was asked to be part of the Schreiner University Board of Trustees, and currently serves Schreiner in that capacity.
“Schreiner is still my happy place,” says Nye. “We go there whenever we can.”
Also see: Past Distinguished Alumni