Governor Abbott Names Chair And Appoints Nine To The Texas Forensic Science Commission

November 28, 2016 | Austin, Texas | Appointment

Governor Greg Abbott has appointed Mark Daniel, Dennis “Pat” Johnson, Sarah Kerrigan, and Jarvis Parsons and reappointed Jeffrey Barnard to the Texas Forensic Science Commission for terms set to expire September 1, 2017. Additionally, he appointed Bruce Budowle, Nancy Downing, and Jasmine Drake and reappointed Sheree Hughes-Stamm for terms set to expire September 1, 2018. The governor named Jeffrey Barnard presiding officer. The Commission provides oversight over Texas crime laboratories and other entities conducting forensic analyses for use in criminal proceedings and provides an accreditation mandate responsible for establishing procedures, policies, and practices to improve the quality of forensic analyses conducted in Texas.

Mark Daniel of Fort Worth is an attorney at the Law Office of Mark G. Daniel. He previously served as assistant district attorney for the Tarrant County District Attorney’s Office. He is a member and former president of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, Tarrant County Bar Association and the Tarrant County Criminal Defense Lawyers Association. Daniel received a Bachelor of Business Administration in finance from The University of Texas at Austin and a Juris Doctor from St. Mary’s University School of Law.

Dennis “Pat” Johnson of Austin retired in 2014 after serving as deputy assistant director of the Texas Department of Public Safety (TDPS) Crime Laboratory Services. Previously, he served as manager of the TDPS Field Laboratories and as the supervisor of the TDPS Lubbock Field Laboratory. He is a member of the Texas Criminal Justice Integrity Unit and the TDPS Credit Union Audit Committee. He is a former member of the American Society of Crime Laboratory Directors and a subcommittee of the National Commission on Forensic Science. Johnson received a Bachelor of Arts in chemistry from Austin College, a Master of Science in chemistry from the University of North Texas and a Master of Business Administration from Texas Tech University. Additionally, he received an honorable discharge from the United States Army.

Sarah Kerrigan, Ph.D. of The Woodlands is Chair of the Department of Forensic Science and Director of the Institute for Forensic Research, Training and Innovation at Sam Houston State University. Previously, she served as Bureau Chief of Toxicology for the New Mexico Department of Health, Scientific Laboratory Division in Albuquerque. She is an appointee to the National Institute of Standards and Technology Forensic Science Standards Board, past Chair of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences –Toxicology Section and former president of the Society of Forensic Toxicologists. Kerrigan received a Bachelor of Science in chemistry and toxicology from the University of Hull in the United Kingdom and a Doctor of Philosophy in chemistry from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, B.C., Canada.

Jarvis Parsons of Bryan is the District Attorney of Brazos County. Previously, he served as chief prosecutor of the 272nd District Court and as a faculty advisor and presenter for the Texas District and County Attorneys Association. He is a board member of Scotty’s House - Child Advocacy Center, TEEX Central Texas Police Academy Advisory Board, Sexual Assault Resource Center and a member of the College Station Noon Lions Club. Parsons received a Bachelor of Arts in speech communications from McNeese State University and a Juris Doctor from the University Of Maine School Of Law.

Jeffrey Barnard, M.D. of Dallas is director of the Southwestern Institute of Forensic Science and chief medical examiner of Dallas County and a professor of pathology at The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. He served as chairman of the Rapport Society at Texas A&M University and is a member of the National Association of Medical Examiners and the Southwest Transplant Alliance. Barnard received a Bachelor of Science in medicine from Texas A&M University and a Doctor of Medicine from Texas A&M College of Medicine.

Bruce Budowle, Ph.D. of North Richland Hills is director of the Center for Human Identification at the University of North Texas Health Science Center. Previously, he served as a senior scientist at the Federal Bureau of Investigation Laboratory in Quantico, VA. Budowle received a Bachelor of Arts in biology from King College and a Doctor of Philosophy in genetics from Virginia Tech.

Nancy Downing, Ph.D. of Bryan is an associate professor at Texas A&M University College of Nursing and a forensic nurse at Baylor, Scott & White Hospital in College Station. She is chair of the International Association of Forensic Nurses Campus Sexual Assault Task Force and a member of its research committee. Additionally, she is a member of the International Society of Nurses in Genetics, Brazos County Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Brazos County Sexual Assault Response Team. Downing received a Bachelor of Science, Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy in nursing from the University of Iowa.

Jasmine Drake, Ph.D. of Conroe is an assistant professor and laboratory coordinator at Texas Southern University Barbara Jordan-Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs in the Department of Administration of Justice. Previously, she served as an assistant professor at Sam Houston State University College of Criminal Justice in the Department of Forensic Science. Additionally, she served as a forensic chemist at the Drug Enforcement Administration South Central Laboratory in Dallas. Additionally, she is a criminalistics section member for the American Academy of Forensic Science. Drake received a Bachelor of Science in chemistry from Southern University, and a Doctor of Philosophy in chemistry from Louisiana State University.

Sheree Hughes-Stamm, Ph.D. of The Woodlands is a professor of forensic genetics and anthropology at Sam Houston State University. She is a member of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences, the International Society for Forensic Genetics, and the Association of Forensic DNA Analysts and Administrators. Hughes-Stamm received a Bachelor of Science in human anatomy from the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia and a Doctor of Philosophy in forensic genetics from Bond University on the Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia.