Newborn Screening Advisory Committee-Members

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Membership Appointments and Terms of Membership

An application process is required to become a member of the committee. Candidates must complete an application and must include at least two (2) recommendation letters. In spring 2010, the commissioner of the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) appointed the initial nine (9) members of the committee. Initial members serve staggered terms of two to six years. In spring 2013, the passage of House Bill 740 during the 83rd Legislative Session (R), amended Texas Health & Safety Code §33.017 increasing the minimum number of committee members in certain categories, requiring at least two (2) hospital representatives and at least four (4) physicians licensed to practice medicine in Texas. The committee now consists of eleven (11) members. As vacancies occur or terms expire, applications are solicited and appointments made to fill vacant or expired terms. Visit this section for news of future opportunities to be appointed to the committee.

Current Committee Members

William Morris, LVN, Committee Chairperson – Comal County
Membership Position – Family Affected By A Condition
Term expires April 30, 2016

William “Bill” Morris has been a pediatric home health care nurse working with special needs children for the last 14 years. He completed his vocational nursing course at St. Phillips College. The legislation creating the Newborn Screening Advisory Committee is also known as “Greysons” Law. Mr. Morris and his wife, Nicole, lost their son, Greyson in 2008 to Krabbe Disease. Another of his sons has phenlykentonuria (PKU). This son’s condition was detected through the Texas Newborn Screening Program 11 years ago and he is now a healthy, active student. Mr. Morris speaks to local hospitals and organizations to educate others of the importance of newborn screening and early detection of rare disorders, as well as working with other organizations targeted to educating others about Krabbe Disease and other leukodystrophies.

Alice K. Gong, M.D. – Bexar County
Membership Position – Physician
Term expires April 30, 2017

Alice Gong is board certified in pediatrics and neonatal perinatal medicine and is employed at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio as a professor of pediatrics. She served as a principal investigator on the Texas Pulse Oximetry Project, which resulted in development of educational materials relevant to the implementation of critical congenital heart disease screening for newborns in Texas. She has volunteered and served on numerous committees and boards related to pediatric health, including the March of Dimes, Baptist Health Foundation Board, Texas State Child Fatality Review Committee, and Texas Collaborative for Healthy Mothers and Babies. Dr. Gong’s professional memberships include the Texas Medical Association, Texas Pediatric Society, American Medical Association, American Academy of Pediatrics, Bexar County Medical Society, Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine, and International Lactation Consultants Association.

Michael Emory Speer, M.D. – Harris County
Membership Position – Physician/Neonatal
Term expires April 30, 2015 

Michael Emory Speer is board certified in pediatrics and neonatal-perinatal medicine and a professor of pediatrics and ethics in the section of neonatology at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. He is a past medical director of Methodist Hospital Nurseries and currently serves as the medical director of St Luke’s Episcopal Hospital Nursery. Dr. Speer is a current member and chair of the Texas Pediatric Society, Committee on Fetus and Newborn; and a current member of the Texas Pediatric Society, the Texas Perinatal Association and the Texas Medical Association. As a board certified neonatologist since 1976, he has extensive experience in the care of newborns and was recognized by the National Perinatal Association and awarded its Recognition Award for Individual Contribution to Maternal and Child Health. He has served in various leadership roles in relevant organizations including the Texas Pediatric Society Committee on Fetus and Newborn (member and chair); the Houston Academy of Medicine; the Harris County Medical Society and the Texas Medical Association’s Perspective on Newborn Screening in Texas.

Thomas Michael Zellers, M.D. – Dallas County
Membership Position – Physician
Term expires April 30, 2017

Thomas Michael Zellers graduated from University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in 1983. Dr. Zellers completed his pediatric residency at University of Virginia Health System in 1986 and his fellowships in pediatric cardiology at the Mayo Clinic Rochester in 1989 and Baylor College of Medicine in 1997. He is currently vice president of medical staff affairs at Children’s Medical Center in Dallas, Texas where he practices pediatric interventional cardiology. He has initiated a program at Children’s Medical Center focusing on early detection of potential complications in single ventricle patients. Dr. Zellers is currently the president of the Congenital Cardiovascular Interventional Study Consortium and other professional affiliations include the American Heart Association Councils for Basic Science and Cardiovascular Disease in the Young and the Society for Cardiac Angiography and Intervention. His board memberships include Children’s Medical Center, University of Dallas, Camp John Marc, and Southwestern Diabetic Foundation.

Felicia M. Adams, MSN – Smith County
Membership Position – Hospital Representative
Term expires April 30, 2017

Felicia Adams is employed at Trinity Mother Frances Hospitals and Clinics as the divisional director of women and children’s services. She has worked directly with newborn screening since 1993 in various capacities as a staff nurse, director of perinatal services, chief nursing officer, and divisional director of women and children’s services. Ms. Adams’ extensive hospital and nursing experience with the newborn screening process will be valuable to the committee. Additionally, her experience in rural, urban and large metropolitan hospitals brings a particularly unique perspective to the committee. Her experience working in three bordering states and her current location in east Texas will expand the geographical perspective of the committee. Ms. Adams’ professional memberships include the Perinatal Transformation Committee at Trinity Mother Frances Hospital and Clinics, Statewide Louisiana Perinatal Symposium (2010-2012), and system-wide Memorial Hermann Women’s Services leadership team.

Aida Gonzalez, RN, BSN – Hidalgo County
Membership Position – Hospital Representative
Term expires April 30, 2017

Aida Gonzalez is a registered nurse and has been vice president of Women’s Hospital at Renaissance, Edinburg, Texas since 2009. She was the coordinator of the Maternal Fetal Medicine Clinic in Edinburg from 2009-2012 and became the administrator of the Nurse-Family Partnership at the Women’s Hospital at Renaissance in 2012. Ms. Gonzalez is a member of the Community Advisory Board (CAB) for the Nurse Family Partnership, the CAB Strategic Project-Prenatal to Preschool, and the CAB Strategic Project for Cancer Center. She is a member of the Association of Women’s Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses; the American Organization of Nurse Executives; the Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing; the Texas Nurses Association; and a former member of the American Society of Perianesthesia Nurses. Ms. Gonzalez’s has experience in administration and operations at the only free standing maternity hospital in South Texas, which includes a nursery that cares for over 8,000 babies yearly and a level three neonatal intensive care unit. In her role, she has implemented a maternal transport team and is currently implementing a method for obstetricians to present their high risk cases to a panel of physicians for evidence-based plans of care.

Kelly McDonald – McLennan County
Membership Position – Family Affected By A Condition
Term expires April 30, 2015

Kelly McDonald is the mother of a daughter with phenylketonuria (PKU) and has several years of experience in legislative advocacy for newborn screening and treatment of rare genetic disorders at the state and national level. She currently serves on the executive committees of the North Texas PKU Association and is a board member and serves on the executive committee for the National PKU Alliance. Ms. McDonald is an advocate for genetic privacy and research and champions education on newborn screening for parent and health care providers. She brings a wealth of experience and perspective as a parent. Ms. McDonald fills a position representing family members affected by a condition for which newborn screening is or may be required.

Nancy Louise Beck, M.D. – Lubbock County
Membership Position – Health Care Provider
Term expires April 30, 2015

Nancy Louise Beck graduated from Texas Tech University with a B.S. in Nutrition in 1989, and a M.S. in Nutrition in 1991. She practiced as a registered dietitian for 10 years and then enrolled in the School of Medicine at University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) in Galveston, Texas obtaining her M.D. in 2004. Dr. Beck completed her pediatric residency at Dell Children’s Medical Center of Central Texas in Austin, Texas in 2007 and her fellowship in pediatric endocrinology at the University of Arkansas in 2010. She served briefly at the University of New Mexico before joining the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center in Lubbock, Texas in the Department of Pediatrics as an assistant professor. Dr. Beck is a board eligible pediatric endocrinologist and is licensed to practice in the state of Texas. She has served on the Pediatric Endocrinology Society Obesity Committee. Dr. Beck has knowledge of newborn screening, first as a dietitian managing the nutritional needs of newborns with disorders, and as a pediatric endocrinologist. She has lived in both urban and rural areas of the state, and is sensitive to the cultural and accessibility issues that impact health care from one region to another. 

Charleta Guillory, M.D. Harris County
Membership Position – Health Care Provider
Term expires April 30, 2016

Charletta Guillory is an associate professor of pediatrics in the Neonatology Section at Baylor College of Medicine. Dr. Guillory also serves as the associate director of the Level II Nurseries at Texas Children’s Hospital and as director of Texas Children’s Hospital Neonatal-Perinatal Public Health Program. She is board certified in pediatrics and neonatal-perinatal medicine. She holds a B.S. in Biology from the University of Southwestern Louisiana and an M.D. from Louisiana State University Medical School. Dr. Guillory is completing her Master of Science degree in Public Health at the University of Texas, School of Public Health. Dr. Guillory has extensive experience in the care of newborns, including those with genetic and metabolic disorders, and has served in leadership roles with various organizations, including the March of Dimes and the Texas Pediatric Society.

Mark Edward Lawson, M.D. – El Paso County
Membership Position – Health Care Provider
Term expires April 30, 2016 

Mark Edward Lawson is board certified in pediatrics and neonatal-perinatal medicine, currently provides care for newborn and pediatric patients in a rural clinic in Fabens, Texas, and is an associate medical director at El Paso First Health Plans. He is also a clinical assistant professor of pediatrics at the Paul F. Foster School of Medicine and a clinical preceptor for the Pediatric Nurse Practitioner Program at the University of Texas El Paso and San Antonio. Dr. Lawson has extensive experience in public health and holds a Masters in Public Health-Quantitative Methods and Maternal/Child Health from Harvard School of Public Health. In addition, he has served as a committee member of numerous organizations including the Texas Medicaid/CHIP Regional Advisory Committee; the El Paso County Sheriff’s Department Advisory Committee; the American Public Health Association; the Promotora Development Committee for DSHS; the Society for Pediatric Epidemiologic Research; and the National Disease and Therapeutic Index Pediatric and Neonatal Panel Member. 

Scott D. McLean, M.D. – Bexar County
Membership Position – Health Care Provider
Term expires April 30, 2017

Scott McLean is a board certified clinical geneticist and is employed at Children’s Hospital of San Antonio and Baylor College of Medicine. He served 26 years as a medical officer in the U.S. Army and developed the Department of Defense policy for newborn screening. His experience in policy development related to newborn screening and his role as a clinical geneticist specializing in metabolic disorders will be important to the committee as the Newborn Screening Program begins planning for implementation of the secondary panel of metabolic conditions in Texas. Dr. McLean’s professional memberships include the American College of Medical Genetics Expert Committee; Secretary’s Advisory Committee on Genetics, Health, and Society; and metabolic consultant to the Newborn Screening Program.

 

Last updated September 16, 2014