Live To Inspire: Kelly Walters ’92
November 10, 2015
For the past 23 years, Marion ISD Superintendent Kelly Walters’ experiences in teaching, coaching, and administration have shaped a career that began at Texas Lutheran University. An education major with specializations in English and kinesiology, Walters said that very combination of academics and athletics opened an important door during her first year as a teacher at New Braunfels High School (NBHS) in 1992.
“While I was a sophomore at TLU, the university actually formed the inaugural softball team,” Walters said. “I played on the team for four years and it was amazing. When I began teaching at NBHS, there weren’t a lot of teachers with experience as softball players since the UIL had just started recognizing it at the college level. I started the NBHS softball program and taught and coached there for two years until I went to Alamo Heights High School in San Antonio.”
After teaching and coaching for 14 years, including positions at La Vernia and Lytle school districts, Walters decided to enter administration. She soon received her master’s in education from Texas A&M University Kingsville and became assistant principal at Lytle High School near Austin.
“I always enjoyed the connection I had with kids in the classroom, but I also had aspirations to enter administration,” Walters said. “I wanted to expand opportunities and get more involved with what the districts were doing. I really think my TLU education prepared me for and drew me toward a leadership role.”
Tragically, Walters’ husband passed away in 2008 and she relocated to Marion with her two young children. She served as assistant principal at Marion High School and principal at Marion Middle School before becoming assistant superintendent. In April 2015, she took on the role of superintendent. Walters said the district is experiencing growth and she’s excited about the path they are taking with Central Texas Technology Center (CTTC).
“First and foremost, we’re an educational institution and we’ve really enhanced our curriculum,” Walters said. “Our partnership with the CTTC allows students to pursue areas like IT or vocational training. Recently, a bond passed to construct a new athletic complex. Three years ago, we were able to update our science, band, and agricultural buildings. Now, we’re doing the same for football, track, baseball, softball, etc. We’re making sure our facilities match our wonderful programs.”
The proud alumna says she always encourages Marion students to consider TLU, emphasizing the range of involvement they can have.
“At TLU, you can be an athlete and in band and in a sorority,” Walters said. “You can be so involved and still get a great education. When I first began my career and would go to job interviews, so many people recognized TLU as a solid education. Having a degree from there meant something to employers. I always tell students to go to the college that fits them, and I think TLU is ideal for many of them.”
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