News Archives

Advertising professional to address HPU students and community tomorrow

BROWNWOOD – October 10, 2013 – The community is invited to a special presentation by Emily E. Ellison, an account executive for the Dallas-based Moroch Agency, as she addresses students interested in careers in marketing and advertising. The event is Friday, October 11, at 10 a.m. in room 104 of HPU’s Newman Hall.

Moroch, which specializes in retail and branding services, has offices in most of the top 50 markets in the United States. Clients include McDonald’s, Coca-Cola, Midas, Western Union and many more.

“Just four years out of college, Mrs. Ellison already has primary responsibilities for advertising and promotion in our region for McDonald’s and other firms,” said Dr. Les Plagens, dean of HPU’s School of Business. “I hope students and members of the community who are interested in advertising and marketing will take this opportunity to learn from her successes.”

Ellison will also discuss internship opportunities available through the agency. She is the daughter of Drs. Bill and Diana Ellis, HPU’s president and first lady.

For more information, contact Mary Hill, administrative assistant for the School of Business, at (325) 649-8704 or via e-mail at

Scofield and Bonner crowned HPU Homecoming Queen and Princess

bonner and scofield for webBROWNWOOD – October 4, 2013 – Robin Scofield of Naples, Fla., and Katie Rose Bonner of Lytle were crowned Howard Payne University’s Homecoming Queen and Princess during a ceremony held on campus today.

Robin, the daughter of Michael and Lynna Scofield, is a member of the Student Government Association, the Archery Club, Gamma Beta Phi and Sigma Theta Phi. Her career goal is to work in public relations for a corporation or government official.

Katie, the daughter of James and Rosemary Bonner, is a member of Gamma Beta Phi and Moot Court. She plans to one day work as an attorney practicing international law or as a foreign-service officer for the Department of State.

The pair will be featured in Saturday’s Homecoming Parade at 11 a.m. and during the halftime show of the HPU football game at 2 p.m.


Photo cutline: Katie Rose Bonner (left) and Robin Scofield were named Howard Payne University’s Homecoming Princess and Queen, respectively.

HPU to honor six outstanding alumni during Homecoming 2013

BROWNWOOD – October 2, 2013 – Howard Payne University will recognize six outstanding alumni during the Homecoming 2013 celebrations, October 4-6.

The honorees include Dr. William H. Bates’66, Distinguished Alumnus; Robert N. Green II ’04, Outstanding Young Graduate; Dr. S.L. Harris ’48, Grand Marshal; Rev. Walter B. Haynie’52, Distinguished Alumnus; Clifford McGuire ’06, Outstanding Young Graduate; and Leona Williams ’45, Coming Home Queen.

The individuals will be recognized during the Alumni Awards Banquet, sponsored by the HPU Alumni Association, on Friday, October 4. The banquet begins at 6 p.m. For ticket information, visit or call 1-800-950-8465 or 325-649-8069.

BatesDr. William H. Bates ’66 – Distinguished Alumnus

Dr. William “Bill” Bates was born in Brownwood and graduated from HPU in 1966 with two music degrees. As a young man and throughout college, Dr. Bates served as organist for Brownwood’s First Baptist Church. He earned a master’s degree and a doctorate in organ from Indiana University and went on to have a 46-year career performing recitals and workshops around the world and teaching at institutions including Indiana University, University of West Florida and University of South Carolina. Dr. Bates currently serves as professor of music emeritus (organ and music history) at University of South Carolina, at which he is a retired faculty member and dean. In 2012, he received the Oswald Gleason Ragatz Distinguished Organist Alumni Award from the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University.

According to a letter nominating Dr. Bates for the Distinguished Alumnus award, he continues to impact his local community by serving in his church, tutoring under-privileged children and volunteering at a hospital two days each week. Dr. Bates’ wife, Carol Henry Bates, passed away in 2010. The couple has one son and one grandson.

GreenRobert N. Green II ’04 – Outstanding Young Graduate

Robert N. Green II of Zephyr graduated from HPU’s Douglas MacArthur Academy of Freedom multidisciplinary honors program (now the Guy D. Newman Honors Academy) in 2004 with a degree in political science and a minor in mathematics. Since graduation, Green has taught high school math in three settings – at a public school, at Paradigm Accelerated Charter School and at Ron Jackson State School in Brownwood, where he currently serves. While at Paradigm, he started and ran a successful martial arts program that helped many troubled youth find proper ways to deal with life’s stress.

Green holds a second-degree black belt in Kaju Bujutsu Kwai and teaches the system as head instructor of K.B.K. Martial Arts in Early. He is skilled in more than 13 different forms of weapons and was inducted into the Universal Martial Arts Hall of Fame as the 2012 Distinguished Instructor.

Green is married to Marie Stephanie S. Green, a published writer/journalist, and they live on their family farm in Zephyr.

HarrisDr. S.L. Harris ’48 – Grand Marshal

Dr. Sidney Lewis “S.L.” Harris was born in Miles and graduated from HPU (then Howard Payne College) with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1948. He went on to earn Bachelor of Divinity and Master of Divinity degrees from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, a Master of Arts degree from Sam Houston State Teachers College and a Doctor of Arts degree from Western Colorado University. Dr. Harris served as pastor at Decker Branch Baptist Church and Woodlawn Baptist Church of Austin as well as First Baptist Church of Joshua. He also served as interim pastor of a number of other churches.

Dr. Harris came back to HPU in 1979, serving as vice president for student affairs and professor of sociology. By 1980, he was dean of the School of Social Sciences, director of the Douglas MacArthur Academy of Freedom and chair of the sociology department. He served as associate pastor and director of the counseling ministry at First Baptist Church of Brownwood from 1984 to 1992, and rejoined the HPU faculty in 1985 and from 1991-1992 as part-time instructor of sociology.

In addition to teaching appointments at other universities, Dr. Harris has published several books and articles. Dr. Harris has three daughters with his wife, Fleta Lindley Harris, who passed away in May. He currently lives in San Angelo.

HaynieRev. Walter B. Haynie ’52 – Distinguished Alumnus

Rev. Walter B. Haynie was 11 years old when he left school to help support his family. He joined the Navy as a young adult and served in the Pacific Theater in World War II. After the war, Rev. Haynie met and married Marian Jo Dolby, started a family and began working for the railroad. During this period of his life, he surrendered to the ministry. His pastor recommended that Rev. Haynie attend Howard Payne College. With a sixth-grade education, he came to Brownwood, took the VA entrance exam and made a 98, earning his GED. He was accepted into the university in 1949 and graduated with honors in 1952 with degrees in Bible and sociology and minors in English and Greek.

Rev. Haynie went on to pastor several churches in Texas and one in Oklahoma. After the death of his wife, he later married Clara Shults and together they helped start the Montague County Cowboy Church in Bowie. He retired from the church in April 2010 at the age of 84. Rev. Haynie and his wife have completed mission trips to Afghanistan and Honduras and are currently working to create a jail and after-jail ministry in their area to help people get back on their feet and learn about Jesus. The couple has seven children and many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

McGuire for webClifford McGuire ’06 – Outstanding Young Graduate

Clifford McGuire of Haskell graduated from HPU in 2006 with a degree in exercise and sport science. McGuire went on to coach and teach in several Texas school districts. While serving as varsity assistant basketball coach in Olney, the boys’ teams made three playoff appearances and McGuire was named the Texas Association of Basketball Coaches 2009 Assistant Coach of the Year. McGuire became the head boys’ basketball coach at Winters in 2009. His team made the playoffs in 2011, Winters’ first playoff appearance since 1992. He served as head boys’ basketball coach in Merkel from 2011 to 2013, where he was in charge of the entire boys’ basketball program, including the junior high teams.

McGuire and his wife, Erica, live in Wichita Falls where he coaches the boys’ basketball teams and teaches world geography at Rider High School.

Williams for web

Leona Williams ’45 – Coming Home Queen

Leona (Sansom) Williams of Burnet graduated from Howard Payne College in 1945. Williams had a family legacy at the university. Her father, Leslie Sansom, served as the captain of the HPC football team in 1912 and her mother also attended HPC. Williams graduated from HPC at the same time as her sister, Emagene. While attending Howard Payne, Williams worked in the registrar’s office.

Williams is a retired school teacher who influenced countless lives. She continues to assist others by teaching Sunday School at First Baptist Church of Burnet. She works part time at a local funeral home, leads worship at the nursing home once a month and often visits those in need. Her husband, C.W. Williams, is deceased.


HPU Homecoming art show to feature work of Susan Harmon

Susan Harmon artworkBROWNWOOD – October 2, 2013 – The artwork of Susan Harmon will be on display during the 2013 Homecoming Weekend, October 4-6, at Howard Payne University. Harmon’s Sight/Insight Collection is housed in Dorothy and Wendell Mayes Art Gallery inside of HPU’s Doakie Day Art Center.

Susan is the wife of David E. Harmon, chair and professor of art at HPU. She holds a Master of Fine Arts degree from Georgia Southern University and is currently working on her Ph.D. from Monash University of Melbourne, Australia. Her research is titled “Inside Madness: Painted Stories of People who Suffer from Mental Illness.” The Sight/Insight Collection, which features 15 mixed-media pieces, follows this theme.

The gallery will be open Saturday and Sunday, October 5 and 6, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Regular gallery hours are Monday through Thursday from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. or by appointment. For more information, contact David Harmon at (325) 649-8088 or via e-mail at

A complete list of Homecoming 2013 activities is available online at


Photo cutline: The artwork of Susan Harmon will be on display during HPU’s Homecoming 2013.

HPU to present Homecoming musical “Into the Woods”

BROWNWOOD – October 2, 2013 – Howard Payne University’s Department of Music will present Stephen Sondheim’s musical “Into the Woods” this week as part of the Homecoming 2013 festivities. Show times are Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday afternoon at 2:30 p.m. at the university’s Mims Auditorium.

The show is a new spin on classic fairytales including Cinderella, Snow White and Little Red Riding Hood.

“The show will be great fun for the entire family, particularly the first act which depicts several fairytales that audiences will remember from childhood,” said Dr. Celeste Church, associate professor of music and director of the musical. “We have a strong cast and beautiful music from the stage, supported by a student orchestra.”

Tickets are $8 for adults and $5 for students/children and may be purchased at the door or in advance by calling (325) 649-8500.

Homecoming Musical


Photo cutline: HPU will present “Into the Woods” this week as part of Homecoming 2013. Photo by Rachel Ellington, HPU sophomore.

Community involvement plays big role in this weekend’s HPU Homecoming festivities

BROWNWOOD – October 1, 2013 – Homecoming celebrations will soon be underway at Howard Payne University. The event is scheduled for this weekend, October 4-6.

Homecoming 2013 BannerA banner listing the Homecoming 2013 sponsors was hung Monday at the university’s Mims Auditorium. Sponsors include the Howard Payne University Alumni Association, Early Blooms & Things, Brownwood Area Chamber of Commerce, Big Country Ford, Early Chamber of Commerce, Willie’s T’s, Underwood’s Cafeteria, the Breeze (96.9) and KXYL (102.3).

Additional sponsors include Texas Bank, Mills County State Bank, Food Plaza, Ozarka, Sodexo, Adidas, Dr Pepper, Painter & Johnson Financial, Citizens National Bank, Porter Insurance, Robnett Integra, Lamar Advertising and Mid-Tex Credit Union.

“We’re very grateful for our sponsors and the people in the community who show up each year to make Homecoming a huge success,” said Nancy Heady, director of alumni relations. “We’re looking forward to another great celebration thanks to all of the support we receive from the Brownwood and Early communities.”

For a complete schedule of events and more information about HPU’s Homecoming 2013, visit or call 325-649-8069.


Photo cutline: HPU hung a banner on campus in preparation for the Homecoming 2013 celebrations.

HPU announces Homecoming Parade route

Homecoming Parade 2012 for webBROWNWOOD – September 27, 2013 – Howard Payne University has announced the parade route for Homecoming 2013. The parade, sponsored by Big Country Ford, will travel around the HPU campus Saturday, October 5, beginning at 11 a.m., and the community is welcome and encouraged to attend.

The parade will wind its way from HPU’s Doakie Day Art Center around the Mabee University Center, down Fisk Street to Austin Avenue, where it will turn and re-enter the campus on Center Avenue. The parade will end on HPU’s Wilson Walkway.

A variety of reunions and other events will also be held throughout the weekend. Alumni and visitors can register for Homecoming events and purchase tickets by visiting or by calling 1-800-950-8465 or 325-649-8069.

“This year, six student organizations are preparing floats for the parade including Alpha Psi Omega, the Archery Club, Chi Alpha Omega, Delta Chi Rho, Sigma Theta Phi and the Student Government Association,” said Francie Harvey, director of student activities.

The Homecoming Court, alumni honorees and marching band will also be featured in the parade.

“We’re thrilled to have some new organizations participating in the float-building contest this year and feel confident it will be a wonderful event,” Harvey said. “We hope the community will come and enjoy!”


Photo cutline: Members of HPU’s Student Foundation carry banners during the 2012 Homecoming Parade.

HPU announces 2013 Homecoming Court

homecoming court 2013 for webBROWNWOOD – September 26, 2013 – Howard Payne University has announced the Homecoming Court for 2013. The HPU Homecoming queen and princess will be crowned on Friday, Oct. 4, at 2 p.m. during Homecoming Convocation in the university’s Mims Auditorium.

Homecoming queen nominees are Catherine Mullaney, a senior Guy D. Newman Honors Academy student and English major from Boylston, Mass.; Robin Scofield, a senior Guy D. Newman Honors Academy student and communication major from Naples, Fla..; and Morenci Young, a senior psychology major and health sciences minor from Gordon.

Catherine, the daughter of Daniel and Catherine Mullaney, is president of the Student Government Association and a member of Student Speaker Bureau and Gamma Beta Phi. She plans to one day become an author.

Robin, the daughter of Michael and Lynna Scofield, is a member of the Student Government Association, the Archery Club, Gamma Beta Phi and Sigma Theta Phi. Her career goal is to work in public relations for a corporation or government official.

Morenci, the daughter of Monty and Salena Young, is a member of Delta Chi Rho, the Archery Club and plays intramural sports. She plans to one day become an ultrasound technician.

Homecoming princess nominees are Katie Rose Bonner, a junior Guy D. Newman Honors Academy student and political science/pre-law and history major from Lytle; Neva Bowers, a junior business major from Victoria; and Adrianna Perez, a junior political science/pre-law major and criminal justice minor from Rowlett.

Katie, the daughter of James and Rosemary Bonner, is a member of Gamma Beta Phi and Moot Court. She plans to one day work as an attorney practicing international law or as a foreign-service officer for the Department of State.

Neva, the daughter of Billy and Denise Bowers, is an honorary member of Zeta Chi. Her career aspirations include entrepreneurism or sales.

Adrianna, the daughter of Ernest and Catherine Perez, is a member of Delta Chi Rho, the Student Government Association, Gamma Beta Phi and the Student Activities Council. Her career aspirations include pursuing a law degree in criminal or international law before working with Innocence Project, a national non-profit organization dedicated to exonerating wrongly convicted people through the use of DNA testing.

The Homecoming Court will be featured in the parade on Saturday, Oct. 5, beginning at 11 a.m., and in the half-time show of the football game versus Louisiana College at Gordon Wood Stadium starting at 2 p.m.

The student body selects the court each year by elections coordinated through the Student Government Association.


Photo cutline: HPU’s 2013 Homecoming Court includes (from left): Katie Rose Bonner, Catherine Mullaney, Adrianna Perez, Robin Scofield, Morenci Young and Neva Bowers.

HPU BSM hosts annual Impact Weekend

By Kendyl Moore, HPU senior

BROWNWOOD – September 25, 2013 – Howard Payne University’s Baptist Student Ministry (BSM) recently hosted its annual Impact Weekend, during which 62 students joined together to serve the Brownwood community.

HPU students sorted items, reorganized inventory and painted at Good Samaritan Ministries. At Salvation Army, students organized the supplies from the recent school supply drive. A group of students also went to the Hope Home transitional school and helped landscape for a prayer garden.

impact 2013“Impact has been a part of HPU’s BSM history for quite some time,” said Keith Platte, BSM director. “It is a great way for our students to learn by doing. They can learn more about how to actively serve in the Brownwood community by taking part in Impact Weekend. “

The event, held during Labor Day weekend, also included a worship service led by students including Alex Caro, a senior from Howe, and Courtney Officer, a junior from Stephenville. Sam Goff of Food for the Hungry delivered the sermon.

The focus of the weekend was to “think globally and act locally” with respect to missions.

“Many students say that they might focus on service after they complete their degrees, but I believe what our students do right now, while they are in school, prepares them for doing more after they graduate,” Platte said. “That is one reason we encourage our students to serve throughout their time at Howard Payne. It prepares them to be better servants once they leave the university.”


Photo cutline: HPU students (from left) Colette Wilcoxen, Kaiti Cochrum and Trent Gainey, serve at Brownwood’s Good Samaritan Ministries during Impact Weekend.

HPU’s Homecoming 2013 celebration scheduled Oct. 4-6

Homecomming logoBROWNWOOD – September 20, 2013 – Howard Payne University’s Homecoming celebration will be held Friday through Sunday, Oct. 4-6. This year’s theme is “There Is No Place Like Homecoming,” honoring L. Frank Baum’s classic book “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.”

Alumni and visitors can register for Homecoming events by visiting or by calling 1-800-950-8465 or 325-649-8069. A full calendar of events and tickets are available online.

Approximately 40 events will be held throughout the weekend, including the following:

Performances of “Into the Woods” will be held at the university’s Mims Auditorium. Show times are Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 7:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m., and Sunday from 2:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. For ticket information, contact the School of Music and Fine Arts at 325-649-8500.

The Golden Graduate Luncheon for the Class of 1963 will be held Friday from noon to 1:30 p.m. in Mabee University Center’s Bullion Suites.

HPU’s soccer teams will take on Concordia University Friday afternoon (women at 1 p.m. and men at 3 p.m.) and University of Mary Hardin-Baylor on Saturday (women at 1 p.m. and men at 3 p.m.). The games will be held at HPU’s Citizens National Bank Soccer Field.

Homecoming Convocation will begin at 2 p.m. Friday in Mims Auditorium. The Homecoming Queen and Princess will be crowned.

The Alumni Awards Banquet, sponsored by the Alumni Association, will be held Friday from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the Mabee University Center’s Beadel Dining Area, during which several Homecoming 2013 honorees will be recognized. Dr. Cynthia Clawson Courtney ’70, award-winning Christian artist, and Dave Lee ’74, well-known trumpeter from the Austin area, will perform.

The university will host Cobbler on the Campus, sponsored by Underwood’s Cafeteria, from 8:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Friday night at Muse Plaza and Mall. This dessert social is open to all campus visitors.

From 10 p.m. to 11 p.m. Friday evening, the university will host a pep rally and laser light show sponsored by the Brownwood Area Chamber of Commerce at Muse Plaza and Mall.

Saturday morning, the Hispanic Alumni Breakfast will be held in the Mabee University Center’s Bullion Suites from 8:30 a.m. to 10 a.m.

The Homecoming Parade, sponsored by Big Country Ford, will travel around the HPU campus on Saturday beginning at 11 a.m. The parade will wind its way from HPU’s Doakie Day Art Center around the Mabee University Center, down Fisk Street to Austin Avenue, where it will turn and re-enter the campus on Center Avenue. The parade will end on HPU’s Wilson Walkway.

HPU’s volleyball team will compete against Hardin-Simmons University (11 a.m. to 1 p.m.) and UT Dallas (3 p.m. to 5 p.m.) on Saturday. Both games will be held at the Brownwood Coliseum.

The Picnic on the Plaza, sponsored by the Early Chamber of Commerce, will begin at noon on Saturday at Muse Plaza and Mall on the HPU campus.

The HPU Yellow Jacket football team will play Louisiana College at 2 p.m. Saturday at Gordon Wood Stadium.

On Sunday at 9 a.m., married alumni are welcome to participate in renewing their vows in HPU’s beautiful Grace Chapel.

A variety of reunions and other events will be held throughout the weekend. A complete schedule of events is available online at