Tom graduated from Commerce, Texas High School and received both his Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree in Agricultural Education from East Texas State University, now Texas A&M University-Commerce. He taught Agricultural Science at Lindale High School in East Texas before serving as a graduate research assistant and receiving his PhD in Agricultural Education/Educational Administration at Oklahoma State University. After finishing his doctorate, Tom served as Assistant Professor of Agricultural Education at Western Illinois University and then became Director of Vocational, Technical and Career Education for the Grand Prairie,Texas Independent School District.
In 1980, Tom became Assistant Professor of Agricultural Education at Stephen F. Austin State University in Nacogdoches, Texas. He was later promoted to Associate Professor and Chairman of the Department of Agriculture. In late 1984, Tom was employed by the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo as Assistant General Manager for Operations and Logistics/Service Support where he remained for 20 years until a semi early retirement in 2004. After leaving Houston, Tom became a full time rancher in Madison County producing F1 Braford and Brangus females to sell to commercial cattlemen for replacement females. In addition, he also became the Executive Director of Economic Development for Madison County.
In July 2006, Tom became the first Director of Event Facilities for Brazos County. He was employed in this position just as ground breaking began for Phase I of the new Brazos County Exposition Complex which officially opened in October 2007. Phase II (expansion) was officially added in March, 2010. In addition, the Brazos Valley Fair and Exposition was organized and began in September 2012. Tom was named General Manager of the Brazos County Exposition Complex and the Brazos Valley Fair in October 2013.
Fiona has worked for the Brazos Valley Fair since it first opened in 2012. She began by overseeing the marketing and promotion of the first Fair and quickly moved up to become Assistant Manager and now Senior Manager of the Fair. Fiona is responsible for overseeing everything at the Fair, but her biggest jobs are sponsorships, marketing, attractions, exhibits and commercial vendors. She also oversees all rodeos, livestock shows and concerts for the Fair.
Fiona has international roots but has resided in Texas since 1982 when her father came to work at the Texas A&M University Veterinary School. She has had a love of agriculture since a young age showing horses in many disciplines including Hunter/Jumper, thoroughbred racing, barrel racing and cutting while growing up. She also has an extensive background in beef cattle that was developed during her years of raising and showing registered Hereford Cattle for one of the nation's largest Hereford seed stock operations. She has over 18 years of marketing experience and an extensive background in livestock management and operations. Prior to working at the Brazos Valley Fair, Fiona owned her own marketing company. Fiona has visited every major livestock show across the US and Canada and has extensive knowledge of fairs from a breeder and exhibitors standpoint. She graduated from Texas A&M University with a B.S. in Biomedical Science and Animal Science. Fiona and her husband Rodney have two children, Devon and Trevor.
A proud Iowa native, Maggie grew up on the family farm helping raise Crossbred and Charolais cattle as well as growing corn and soybeans. Maggie enjoyed showing cattle and participating in 4-H growing up but did not discover her passion for promoting agriculture and planning agricultural events until college. While in school Maggie spent four summers interning with the Iowa State Fair and a semester in Austin as an intern for the Star of Texas Fair and Rodeo. Maggie received her bachelor’s degree in Communications from Iowa State University. After working for a year in event design and coordination, Maggie returned to her ag roots and joins the Brazos Valley Fair & Expo team as the Assistant Manager.