2022 Hall of Honor Inductees
North Mesquite High School Alumnus & Mesquite P.D. / Killed in the Line of Duty
Officer Richard Houston was a proud product of the Mesquite Independent School District. A student of Lawrence Elementary, Vanston Middle School and North Mesquite High School, Houston was a Mesquite native through and through. While in high school, he played baseball as a freshman and was a member of the Big Blue Band. His involvement in the community continued upon graduation from Sam Houston State University as he became a Mesquite police officer. Valedictorian of his police academy class, Houston earned numerous accolades during his career, including two lifesaving awards, 48 police commendations and a certificate of merit in April of 2021. Officer Houston served the Mesquite community from January 2001 until December 3, 2021, when he was tragically killed in the line of duty. Officer Houston was posthumously awarded the Police Medal of Honor and the Police Cross for his heroic actions. Richard Houston was a kind and devoted friend, father, and husband.
Dr. James terry
Former Mesquite ISD Superintendent
Dr. James Terry is a titan in Mesquite education. A part of the district for nearly 40 years, Dr. Terry exemplified leading through education. Arriving to the district in 1967, Terry served in several different roles, including registrar at North Mesquite High School, principal at Agnew Middle School, Assistant Superintendent for Instruction, and finally Deputy Superintendent for 15 years. In 2001, he was selected as the district’s next superintendent and served in that capacity until his retirement in 2005. Throughout his tenure, Dr. Terry was recognized as an exemplary leader in both education and the Mesquite community, earning him accolades such as “Administrator of the Year” for the state of Texas and the “Golden Deeds for Education Award.” In 2006, his legacy was cemented as the Dr. James P. Terry Middle School was dedicated in his honor. He is still an active member of the MISD Education Foundation and spends countless hours serving the Mesquite community.
Poteet High School Head Football Coach
Bill Taylor exemplifies the word “coach.” Over 35 years, Taylor accumulated over 200 wins during his career, reaching the playoffs 20 times. Joining the district in 1981, he found his footing quickly as a part of Gary Childress’ impressive North Mesquite football teams in the 1980s. This success led to an opportunity in 1988 to become Poteet High School’s first football coach and campus athletic coordinator. Over the next 13 years, Taylor led the Pirates to seven playoff appearances and three district championships, earning him several district coach of the year awards and two nominations for the prestigious Tom Landry Award. Taylor hung up the headset in 2001 but not before establishing a winning culture at Poteet in both men’s and women’s sports. While his coaching days are over, Coach Taylor has continued to serve as an assistant athletic director and consultant for the Athletics Department to this day, with over 40 years of service to Mesquite ISD.
North Mesquite High School Boys Head Basketball Coach
Ron Powell is a DFW basketball legend. The all-time leader in boys’ basketball wins in Mesquite ISD accomplished so much in and out of the district. Coach Powell was given the reigns of the North Mesquite varsity team in 1973 and, over the next 14 years, created a legacy that not many have come close to matching. He led the Stallions to four district championships, two regional tournaments and one of only two state championship appearances for Mesquite ISD in boys’ basketball. Powell went on to serve as an assistant for the Texas Tech and Stephen F. Austin men’s teams before reuniting with Hall of Honor member Donna Capps at the University of Texas at Arlington as her assistant for the women’s team. Coach Powell continued creating opportunities for young athletes as he started the first Dallas-area summer basketball league for high school boys’ teams and hosted several basketball clinics with Dallas Mavericks legend Rolando Blackman. Widely considered a basketball mastermind, Ron Powell’s impact will live on in Mesquite.
Mesquite High School Baseball, Class of 1997
The Anderson family roots run deep in Mesquite athletics. A fifth-generation Skeeter, Sam Anderson took up after his grandfather, B.J., who also was a four-year letterman in 1949. Sam burst on the scene quickly for the Skeeters varsity team, earning himself rookie-of-the-year honors as a freshman in 1994. The accolades continued as he made first-team All-District in 1995 and 1996 and earned the Skeeter Award in his junior season. Anderson was named MVP of the district his senior year and was selected to the All-Area team in 1997. He would go on to start as a catcher for Navarro College before transferring to the University of Texas in his sophomore year. He quickly became a perennial starter and was named team captain by his teammates. Postcollege, Anderson went on to play in the minor leagues for the Tigers and Pirates before retiring from baseball in 2002.
Misti Goodman southers
North Mesquite High School Girls Basketball, Class of 1988
Misti Goodman Southers is no stranger to the Mesquite Hall of Honor. A member of the 1987-88 Lady Stallions basketball team, inducted in 2020, Goodman Southers was impressive both on and off the court. A fierce competitor and intelligent point guard, her junior year saw her lead the team to a bi-district championship and was selected All-District Honorable Mention. Goodman Southers stepped up in her senior year as she helmed the team in a near-perfect 36-1 season. Her play earned her several accolades, including District 9-5A MVP, TABC All-Region team, East-West All-Star team and the Dallas Times Herald All-Metro first team. Her commitment to excellence continued into the classroom where she received the UIL Scholar Award, TGCA Academic All-State honors and the NMHS 1988 Principal’s Council of Honor. After high school, Goodman Southers would play at the collegiate level for Tyler Junior College before graduating from Texas Tech University. She became an assistant head basketball coach and head cross country coach for Crandall High School and continues to serve young athletes as a physical therapist in the Dallas area.
West Mesquite High School Tennis, Class of 1988
The most successful tennis athlete in Mesquite history can be found at West Mesquite. Once a standout athlete for the Wranglers, Hernando Ledezma now trains and educates the next generations at his alma mater. Ledezma quickly made his stamp on Texas tennis as he qualified for the state tournament as a freshman, a feat he would replicate every year until graduation. His success continued in his sophomore year, repeating his district and regional championships and ultimately finishing third in the state tournament. Eventually, Ledezma would capture the state championship in 1987 as a junior and refused to give up the title, repeating as a senior in 1988. His career continued collegiately at Paris Junior College and the University of Texas at Tyler as he earned distinction as an Intercollegiate Tennis Association All-American. Upon graduation, Ledezma returned to Mesquite ISD, becoming head tennis coach at Poteet High School. He is currently head tennis coach at West Mesquite, a role he has held for over a decade.
CHRISTINE NIEVA FULLER
North Mesquite High School Soccer, Class of 2005
Christine Nieva Fuller’s success comes on a global level. Leading her NMHS team to the playoffs every year, the attacking midfielder was voted to the All-District first team on four occasions and earned first-team All-State honors. In 2005 she captained the Lady Stallions in their state tournament finals appearance and earned a spot as a top 100 recruit in the nation. But perhaps her most significant accomplishment was electing to honor her roots as she chose to represent Mexico as an international player. She competed for the youth and senior national teams, traveling with the senior team to the 2004 Algarve Cup in Portugal. On Dec. 8, 2004, she realized a dream that few have experienced as she made her debut for the senior team against the United States Women’s National Team in a game that featured U.S. women’s great Mia Hamm’s last international appearance. Nieva Fuller would go on to play at Arizona State University and the University of Houston while also starting for La Tri at the 2006 U-20 Women’s World Championship.
cLAUDIA KING JONES
Mesquite High School Girls Basketball, Class of 1933
Claudia King Jones was a pioneer in Mesquite athletics. Her “Mesquitos” teams dominated Dallas County basketball in the early 1930s, playing schools, colleges and commercial programs. Elected captain of the group, King Jones and her squad were the first to christen the newly erected Mesquite Coliseum in 1930, a community project that was vital in restoring morale during the Depression. She led her squad to district championships in 1931 and 1932 before achieving ultimate success in her senior season. Hosting the state tournament in Mesquite in 1933, the Lady Skeeters defeated Roby High School for the state championship by a score of 25-19. King Jones and three other teammates were selected to the 1933 All-State team and ended the year losing only five games to college or commercial teams. She would go on to play professionally for the Moody Club located in Galveston, facing teams from all over the state, including her former Lady Skeeters.
1987 North mesquite high school football
The 1987 North Mesquite football team came as close to perfection as a team could without winning it all. Ranked as high as #1 in the state, the Stallions were a force to be reckoned with in Texas. The previous four seasons saw only four total defeats for the team, helmed by MISD Hall of Honor inductees Gary Childress and Bill Taylor. From 1985 to 1987, the Stallions did not lose a single district game and rode that wave into the state playoffs in 1987 before their special season ended in a 28-28 tie to Cy Fair in the third round of the playoffs. Back then, there was no overtime in Texas High School football, so the winner of a tie game was determined first by number of penetrations - offensive trips inside the 20-yard line - and second by number of first downs. While their championship aspirations ended there, the ’87 team produced noteworthy athletes, with several players going on to play at the college and professional levels.