Connie came to CASA of Galveston County in October 2015 after serving as Program Director for Essex County CASA of Massachusetts for the last 7.5 years. Connie has been married for more than 30 years to her husband Dennis. Connie and Dennis served as foster parents for more than 10 years here in Texas beginning in 1992 and adopted 3 children now all young adults Erin (25), Jason (24) and Hannah (22) through Child Protective Services of Grayson County, Texas. Connie became involved with CASA after witnessing firsthand the impact that a CASA volunteer had on the life and outcome of her youngest daughter’s CPS case. After closing their home to foster children Connie became a CASA Volunteer for Collin County CASA knowing that she would provide a “voice” for the children she would serve. Connie went on to serve as a Board Member for Collin County CASA and as staff.
Connie’s passion for the prevention and awareness of abused and neglected children was recognized in April 2015 when she was named the Children’s Champion of the Merrimack Valley by the regional Exchange Club and YWCA. This honor recognized her commitment to these vulnerable children both personally and professionally. Connie believes that CASA volunteers are extraordinary in their service to abused and neglected children and is committed to seeing that all the children in Galveston County that need a CASA will have one appointed.
Recruitment and Training
Recruitment and Training Coodinator
Kathryn began her journey with CASA at Texas Christian University when she joined Kappa Alpha Theta, which has supported CASA as its national philanthropy for 25 years. Through her years at TCU Kathryn served as Philanthropy Director, raising funds for CASA, and as Programming Intern at CASA of Tarrant County. After graduating from TCU with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology, with minors in English and Child Development, she then received a Master of Arts in Counseling from Houston Baptist University.
Born and raised in Texas, Kathryn is a devoted Horned Frog, wife, dog mom, and friend. She is passionate about helping others and about working with CASA, recruiting and training volunteers to serve the children of Galveston County.
Advocacy Team Leader/CFE Lead
I’m Deanna Matherne, a native of Louisiana, and the mother of 4 beautiful children. My journey with CASA began when I decided to become a CASA Advocate for CASA of Terrebonne in Houma, LA. I was immediately in love, and became very passionate about CASA’s mission. I was offered the CASA Advocate Supervisor position, and a year later I became the Program Coordinator. I resigned from CASA to care for my late husband in 2009.
My passion for CASA has always remained with me. After my departure, I still talked about CASA to anyone who’d listen, many assuming I must work there because of my enthusiasm. To have the opportunity to do what I love again, is such a blessing, and I am incredibly grateful. I look forward to working with the wonderful people who also want to make a difference in a child’s life. As they say, “It takes a village.”
Advocacy Team Leader
Alice became involved in CASA of Memphis and Shelby County when she was a senior at Rhodes College in Memphis, Tennessee. She served as a volunteer advocate for one year before going on to law school at the University of Arkansas. During law school, Alice interned in the Western District of Arkansas federal court, worked for a nonprofit legal organization representing people with disabilities in Washington, D.C, and clerked for an attorney handling pro bono domestic and international adoptions. Alice received the Robert F. Fussell Pro Bono Award, an award given to the graduating student who performed the most community service hours during law school. After graduating from law school and moving to Galveston, Alice joined CASA of Galveston County as a volunteer advocate. Alice understands and appreciates the importance of organizations like CASA as she was adopted as a newborn. She hopes to embody the mission of CASA and plans on creating real change in the lives of children and families in Galveston County.
Alice was raised in Bentonville, Arkansas but her husband, Adam, a Houston native, got her to Texas as quickly as possible. During their free time, they enjoy playing tennis, watching football, and chasing their dog, Rocket.
Barbara Bischoff, a native of the State of Michigan, began her social service career working at a shelter for at-risk youth 0-17. Seeing the need for fostering of this population she completed training and began fostering at-risk youth involved with the juvenile justice system. When the opportunity arose to work with families involved in the CPS system, providing in-home services and community resources through NorServ, LLC with the focus on retaining the family unit, she began her career working with the entire family unit.
A move to Texas brought about a switch to the education system. For the past twelve years, Barbara has worked with the special needs population in both Clear Creek and Dickinson ISD’s.
Barbara enjoys being a Grandmother to Jacoby 5, and Zander 3. She is a mother of two sons, David and Grayson as well as her daughters-in law Jamie and Kerry.
Growing up on the shores of Lake Huron has left her with a love of the beach. She enjoys reading and antique hunting. She is a supporter of the LGBTQ community.
Barbara resides in Texas City with her special needs rescue dog, Julius Cesar.
Marissa Ashton is a resident of Galveston, Texas where she was born and raised. She attended the University of Houston where she was a student athlete that graduated with her Bachelors of the Science in Sociology. She has been in the social sciences field for five years and has serviced her community as a mental health advocate for Gulf Coast Center’s Urban ACT Team. She was a CPS Investigator for the state of Georgia for 3 years and advocated for families and children. Ashton strives to be an inspiration for children and families. Ashton hopes to leave her mark on her community by advocating for families and the proper care of children. Ashton plans to be the best supervisor she can be to her fellow co-workers and associates in the CASA of Galveston family.
Lauren was born and raised in Galveston, Texas. She attended the University of Houston-Clear Lake and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Literature with a 4-8 grade English, Language Arts, and Reading certification. Her passion for working with children began when she was in 7th grade and tutored younger students through NJHS, but became a dream come true when she began her teaching career right after she received her degree. After teaching 7th grade English for a few years locally, she decided to make a change where she could be a voice for children through CASA. She currently resides in Texas City with her son and 2 dogs. Her dream is to make a difference for children in her county by advocating for them and assisting those in need.
Her beliefs are encompassed by the famous words of Gandhi. “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”
Devin grew up overseas due to her father being in the military, but Texas has always been her home. Devin graduated from the University of Texas at San Antonio with a Bachelor’s of Science in Community Health. She worked for Seton Home, a shelter for teen mothers and their children who were in the foster care. After hearing the numerous stories of the children in care, she then knew she wanted to do more to help. Devin worked for Child Protective Services as a Family Based Services Specialist in both Bexar County and Harris County. Devin and her husband Justin, enjoy spending quality time with their three children. Devin enjoys crafting and her faith is very important to her. Devin hopes to make a difference in the lives of the children and their families. Devin will do her best to use her knowledge and skills to lead the advocates in their journeys with CASA.
Ricci Rodriguez is new to Galveston County and has spent the last several years living in Austin, Texas. She has degrees in Psychology and Biology from Blinn College, and studied Human Development and Family Studies at the University of Houston.
Before moving to Austin, Ricci was born and raised in Houston, Texas. While working for a law firm in Houston, she began to volunteer as a court appointed special advocate with Child Advocates, Inc. and the experience stayed with her. Ricci has most recently worked in both public and private school systems in Austin. During that time, she had the opportunity to advocate at the Texas State Capitol for children and the importance of their access to quality early childhood education. No stranger to the impact of advocacy on children, she is so excited to be part of the CASA organization!
Now she, her husband, and their dog Shelby have relocated to the gulf coast with the goal of enriching this community. They spend their free time cooking, travelling, and going on “adventures” (just mention the word and Shelby spins in circles while waiting by the door!). They are all excited to explore their new city and go on new adventures.