Apache Belle Gold establishes chapters in North Texas, Houston

Jul 17, 2013 by

The Tyler Junior College Alumni Association is almost 2,000 members strong and continues to develop new opportunities to re-connect former students to their favorite college, TJC.

Leaders of Apache Belle Gold, the College’s most successful alumni group, are reaching out across Texas to establish new chapters. Building on the momentum of last year’s 65th anniversary for the Apache Belles, alumni leaders are striving to grow Belle Gold beyond its current membership of almost 400.

Greater Houston Chapter Steering Committee members include (from left) Lana Cantrell, Shannan Reid, Ruth Flynn, Meredith Burg, Anna Johnson and Rachael Berry.

Greater Houston Chapter Steering Committee members include (from left) Lana Cantrell, Shannan Reid, Ruth Flynn, Meredith Burg, Anna Johnson and Rachael Berry.

“We are taking our show on the road,” Apache Belle Gold President Suzy Simpson said. “We’re working with alumni throughout Texas to develop chapters that re-engage former Belles, promote and support the current Belle program, and serve our alumni in their communities.”

Ruth Flynn, TJC interim director of alumni affairs and former director of the Apache Belle program, believes Apache Belle Gold will continue to grow due to the dedication of its volunteer leaders.
“The success is due to the alumni who carry on the Apache Belle legacy beyond their years at TJC,” Flynn said.

North Texas Chapter
The first Apache Belle Gold chapter, the North Texas Chapter, had a successful launch on Jan. 17, when the group hosted a reception at La Hacienda Ranch restaurant in Carrollton.

“We had 75 ladies join us for the festivities,” Flynn said. “It was a wonderful evening! The North Texas group is ready to go and wants to blaze a trail as the first chapter for Belle Gold. Everyone enjoyed the fellowship but also got down to business and discussed their chapter’s structure and opportunities to stay connected and serve the Apache Belle program.”

The North Texas Chapter has already hosted various opportunities to its members, including a Feb. 21 “Sushi and Sake” Japan Send-Off Party at Blue Fish in Irving, to honor the Apache Belles goodwill trip to Japan during spring break of 2013. On May 23, the chapter hosted “BYOBB: Buy your own bottle and bring a Belle” at Palio’s Pizza Café in Richardson.

Chapter members were also invited to Fair Park in Dallas on June 27, for dinner followed by a performance of the musical, “Flashdance.” The North Texas Chapter steering committee is comprised of Audrea Carroll Weimer (chair), Bethany Sturges Crisp, Amanda Vollmer Dickson, Laura Sandavol Farmer, Suzy Mohamadi Simpson (Apache Belle Gold president) and Leslie Murrah-Wood.

Former Belles attend the launch of the North Texas Chapter of Apache Belle Gold held at La Hacienda Ranch in Carrollton.

Former Belles attend the launch of the North Texas Chapter of Apache Belle Gold held at La Hacienda Ranch in Carrollton.

Greater Houston Chapter
Another Texas chapter was launched in April! The Greater Houston Chapter of Apache Belle Gold gathered at Café Solea in Houston on April 28, 2013, and 35 ladies came to meet former Belles in their area and learn about the group. Leading the charge in Houston are Rachael Mock Berry (chair) and fellow steering committee members Meredith Beck Burg, Lana Rushing Cantrell, Anna Johnson and Shannan Marcontell Reid.

Both of these chapters hope to encourage other former Belles to step forward and lead the development of chapters in their Texas communities.

“Apache Belle Gold truly promotes the continuing sisterhood of the Apache Belles,” Simpson said. “Your Belle experience stays with you throughout your life, and Belle Gold gives you an opportunity to reconnect to that experience and give back to the group and program that gave so much to you, TJC’s Apache Belles.”

For more information on Apache Belle Gold and Texas chapters, please go to www.facebook.com/ApacheBelleGold or contact Ruth Flynn, interim director of alumni affairs, 903-510-3197 or rfly@tjc.edu.


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Alumni, News, On Campus, Spring 2013

About the author

Mitch Andrews is the Executive Director for Advancement and Alumni Engagement.