Men of Influence

These Local Men Are Making A Difference in and Around Flower Mound

Article by Stephanie Hasbrouck

Photography by Marshall Maguire Photography, Dawn Michelle Photography

Originally published in Cross Timbers Lifestyle

Chad Russell

Principal, Flower Mound High School

Chad Russell is principal of Flower Mound High School. The entire community rallied behind him during his harrowing battle with COVID-19 last year. Chad has worked in education for 27 years and was named Best of Denton County Best Principal this year. He lives in Highland Village with his wife and four children.

What drew you to your profession?

After my third year of college, I had gone through three different majors and couldn’t seem to find what I was passionate about.  One day over the summer, my dad asked me, ‘Of all the things you have done so far in your life or you have knowledge of, what has made you the happiest?’  It was a pretty simple answer …. school.  At that moment, I knew I wanted to be an educator and give my best to helping others find the value in school that I did.

What has been your proudest moment professionally?

Witnessing the thousands of students accomplish something incredible inside and outside the classroom.  I have been blessed to see some incredible people do incredible things.  It has been the most fulfilling ride.

What is one thing you hope to achieve in the future?

I hope to continue to provide opportunities for people to be better versions of themselves today than they were yesterday.  From my current position, I have a wonderful opportunity to do so.

Dr. Matt Richardson

Denton County Director of Public Health

For the past seven years Dr. Matt Richardson has been the Director of Public Health for Denton County. He and his team have received high praise for successfully and efficiently delivering thousands of COVID-19 vaccinations to the community. Dr. Richardson lives in Canyon Falls with his wife Sara and two daughters.

What drew you to your profession?

Public health, for me, has been the perfect combination of a career that allows me to be a generalist—from dabbling in the hard sciences of molecular biology and virology, to leading an organization of 150 employees with a $22 million dollar budget.  The challenges are endless, but the payoff is hearing how our staff members, and the County as a whole, make lives better. 

What has been your proudest moment professionally?

The accolades that our volunteers and staff receive daily at our Texas Motor Speedway COVID-19 vaccine hub frequently bring us to tears.  Children being able to see elderly parents again, the ability to meet safely in groups, attending all of the life events we’ve missed—these are the best parts of our front-line public health staff’s contributions in the last 14 months.  And I wouldn’t have missed it for anything. 

What is one thing you hope to achieve in the future?

When people ask about the future of public health, I have a Pollyanna vision that I cling to.  I hope our discipline, our lifelong work, enriches lives by applying the science of prevention.

Matthew Morris

LISD Director of Equity, Diversity & Inclusion

Matthew Morris recently joined Lewisville ISD as Director of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion with the goal to nurture positive, inclusive environments that foster a sense of belonging, as well as cultural learning within LISD. Matthew lives in Dallas. “Currently, I say I am a family of one, which gives me room to welcome many,” he says.

What drew you to your profession?

The opportunity to impact lives within our community and provide sustainable solutions drew me to Lewisville ISD. The intentionality placed into creating a position dedicated to equity, diversity and inclusion shows the value LISD places on students and our future.

What has been your proudest moment professionally?

I love to see other people win! So any moment in which someone else has fulfilled a dream, pursued a goal, risen to a challenge, stepped into the uncomfortable or lived without apology has made me proud.

What is one thing you hope to achieve in the future?

Right now my future plan surrounds the continued pursuit of peace, both internally and within my larger community. I believe we have an opportunity to provide an alternate narrative to a larger national conversation that has brought about division. I hope to engage and connect all of the various members of our community in an effort to grow and be an exemplar for our beloved nation.

Doug Brown

2020 Flower Mound Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient

Ask many, and they will tell you Doug Brown is a Flower Mound treasure. Doug served more than two decades in the US Army. After retiring from military service, he began working in community service. Doug volunteered with RSVP for 17 years; taught English as a second language at CCA for 12 years; has served as an election judge; and volunteered with elections for 18 years. He has received the Congressional Veterans Commendation, the Governor’s Volunteer Award and most recently the Flower Mound Lifetime Achievement Award. Doug now refurbishes computers for community members as a full-time hobby.

What drew you to your profession?

About 22 or 23 years ago, I began refurbishing desktop computers as my first wife had cancer for 13 and a half years, and I had to stay home with her full-time the last year she was alive. So I needed something to stay busy.  I gave away my first computer about 20 years ago and have given away over 1,300 computers now.  This is an avocation, not a profession.   

What has been your proudest moment professionally?

My proudest moments since I began refurbishing computers have been when a recipient has let me know that he or she had gotten a job because of the computer received from me. 

What is one thing you hope to achieve in the future?

The only thing I hope to achieve in the future is to continue to stay active and continue living a fairly productive life.

Robby Mitchell

Young Life Area Director, Lewisville-Flower Mound

Robby Mitchell is the Young Life Area Director for Lewisville and Flower Mound. He manages all staff members, directs fundraising efforts, recruits and leads volunteer teams so that together they reach area youth. “It’s a joy to show up in the lives of our young friends and show them that they are loved, welcomed and that their life is filled to the brim with purpose,” Robby says. He and his wife Courtney met through the organization. They live in Lewisville with their son, Uriah, and two French bulldogs.

What drew you to your profession?

I went to Young Life camp after my senior year of high school and was hooked after that.  I went to Texas A&M University and became a volunteer Young Life leader for the next four years.  I was all in after that.  

What has been your proudest moment professionally?

I can't pick one because every year a new proudest moment happens.  Every year, I get the chance to see kids in our area grow into the potential that God has laid out before them and celebrate this growth with lifelong friendships. 

What is one thing you hope to achieve in the future?

Grow old with my best friend and wife, Courtney and have so many kids that we're always sleep-deprived but overflowing with joy.  I hope and pray that the Mitchells are known as a family that loves Jesus, people, adventure and always has an open home for those in need.

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