Meet The Board
The Board of Directors have decades of combined experience and expertise to help build a successful operation. Please meet the members here.
Founder & Director
Shelly ODonnell is the founder and director of The Teacher Reuse. She is a retired Texas teacher of 26 years. She taught Deaf Education PK-12 and American Sign Language. Shelly received her bachelor's degree in Communication Sciences & Disorders and her master's degree in Education of the Deaf & Hard of Hearing from Texas Woman's University.
In 1996, Shelly saw the need to supplement her hometown’s high school’s foreign language department with another language. One that had not been introduced to much of the State of Texas at that time. American Sign Language. Addressing the school board with the idea and spearheading the program, over one-half of the high school’s students chose ASL to fulfill their foreign language credit as required by the Texas Education Agency.
The same was true at Grayson County College. Shelly addressed the Academic Dean with the choice of American Sign Language as a foreign language at the college level and received no pushback setting up the program. ASL credits transfer to most US colleges and universities. American Sign Language is the fourth most widely used language in the US with around 2 million users. This is why it is so important to provide classes at all academic levels.
In 1997, Shelly started a swim lesson program in her hometown for low-income children. 50% of the families paid on a sliding scale with the other 50% receiving swim lessons at no cost. Volunteers and community members supported the program with funding and in the water!
Shelly taught at Austin Community College in the Education Department a course called "Teaching to the Brain." This course included how the brain learns and how teachers can utilize differentiation among their students.
In 2016, Shelly founded and directed the Texas ASL Educators workshop for American Sign Language teachers. This underserved teacher population has flourished due to this state-wide workshop with over 90 school districts in attendance every year. Upon changing from an ASL teacher to the Education of the Deaf/HH, Shelly handed the reins over to three ASL teachers, all of who are Deaf themselves. Perfect handoff!
In 2022, Shelly saw the need to create a "hub" for teachers and community members to put unneeded supplies in the classrooms. The Teacher Reuse received 501(c)(3) status in March, 2022 and is growing strong.
Liz McGehee hails from Oklahoma and Texas. A graduate of Rice (B.A.) and the University of Iowa (M.A., Communications Studies), she has been a teacher in Brooklyn, a video producer at Teach For America, and has been doing video work professionally since 2007, working with clients such as The Louisiana Department of Education, Committee of 100, 4.0 Schools, Vidcode, Ripple Effect, Relay Graduate School of Education, New Schools for New Orleans, mSchool, Bourne Digital, Smartcoos, Glitterati Inc. and Goodwill Industries. She has also had her work published in Res, Essence and on CNN.com.
A self-proclaimed “big nerd,” Elizabeth enjoys cooking, travel, science, design, and the outdoors. She lives in Austin with her husband and their dog.
Jeanette Gross is a Secondary MathematicsTeacher.
She retired from teaching in 2018. She taught all mathematics subjects from 7th-12th grade. Her love of Algebra is not so unusual for a mathematics teacher, but she relishes the challenge of a Geometry proof! Call her crazy, but she likes the challenge. It’s that love of a good challenge that she found herself spending her last 15 years of her 32 year career,
teaching middle school, 7th and 8th grade, in Allen, TX at Allen ISD. Many find those ages
difficult to teach, and at that age they tend to lose interest in math. Jeanette loved to find new ways to keep them interested and engaged!
Jeanette never shied away from the newest technology or teaching tools, such as smart boards or online games.
Jeanette moved to Austin after she retired in 2018 and although she wasn’t actively looking for a new challenge, she joined The Teacher Reuse!
“I was blessed to work in a district that could afford to ‘keep up’ with current innovations and trends, but I still spent a hefty chunk of my own money on my own classroom and instruction materials that I wanted for my kids. That is why I know The Teacher Reuse is such a wonderful use of my time and experience!"
Isla is a Texas Certified Pharmacy Technician. She is a consultant monitoring drug therapies, providing clients with drug information, and making recommendations for safety measures. She provides pharmacy consulting services with empathy to patients regarding the effective usage of medications.
Before becoming a consultant, Ilsa worked as a Pharmacy Technician Compounding. She performed duties under the direct supervision of a pharmacist and assisted in the processing, preparation, and dispensing of patient medication orders.
Isla lives in Austin, Texas and is proud to serve with The Teacher Reuse providing direction for the nonprofit teacher organization.
Elise Nignan lives in Manor, Texas and has a degree in management and business strategy.
She loves to dance and to travel the world. She has been to several African countries, France, Switzerland, Belgium, Italy and Algeria.
Elise believes The Teacher Reuse is an outstanding project and is proud to serve educators.
Brandi's most important role is a stay-at-home mom and is involved with her children's education. She is the PTA president at her son's school and is very involved with both her children's education and has first-hand knowledge of the needs of teachers in their classrooms.
She enjoys being involved in education and this nonprofit is just one more part of how she serves the community.