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GOOD NEWS: Names in the News - Odessa American: Good News

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GOOD NEWS: Names in the News

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Posted: Friday, November 1, 2019 8:00 pm


The new ECISD Superintedent Scott Muri and U.S. Representative Mike Conaway, addressed the Rotarians and discussed their hopes and dreams for the future at a recent Odessa Rotary Club lunch meeting.


MIDLAND Midland College employees Laurie Brannigan and Wendy Wood-Collins were among honorees recognized along with other nurses throughout West Texas by Permian Basin great 25 nurses, an organization that exits to recognize extraordinary nurses across West Texas.

Brannigan is an associate professor in MC’s Associate Degree Nursing program and Wood-Collins is the associate dean of Health Sciences Dual Credit and Continuing Education.

The Permian Basin Great 25 Nurses was mirrored after a program created in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. Nurses are recognized for their outstanding achievements and their work within their communities.

A group of nursing leaders in the West Texas area formed the Permian Basin Great 25 Nurses, a non-profit organization. The nominees are judged on their concern for humanity, their contributions to the profession of nursing and their mentorship to others.

Visit midland.edu.


ALPINE Ismail Gunes is the new assistant professor for the Department of Homeland Security and Criminal Justice at Sul Ross State University, Alpine.

Gunes has been teaching for more than 15 years with concentrations in criminal justice, sociology and public administration.

This semester, he is teaching one undergraduate class and three graduate level courses in criminal justice. Gunes and his family had previously lived in Texas, but made the move all the way from Turkey to come to Alpine.

His two children enrolled in Alpine Middle School and Alpine High School this year.


ALPINE Richard “Tuff” Hedeman, former Sul Ross State University bull rider and Professional Bull Riders (PBR) World Champion, served as the grand marshall of the 2019 Sul Ross Homecoming Parade held Oct. 26.

Hedeman won several junior rodeos in his youth. In 1980, he won the high school rodeo bull riding and All Around titles in New Mexico. He won the team roping title and All Around designation again in 1981. After high school, he attended Sul Ross and was a member of the rodeo team, competing in bronc riding, team riding, team roping, steer wrestling and bull riding.

By 1993, he had surpassed $1 million in career earnings and won the 1986, 1989 and 1991 World Titles in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA). A neck injury at the National Finals

Rodeo (NFR) in 1993 sidelined Hedeman for the entire year in 1994. That year, Tuff was portrayed by actor Stephen Baldwin in the Hollywood feature film “8 Seconds” about the life of Lane Frost.

Hedeman served as a stunt double for Baldwin in the film.

Hedeman was instrumental in starting the PBR. In 1995, he won the PBR World Championship despite an encounter with Bodacious that shattered every major facial bone to Hedeman’s head.

He managed to walk out of the arena but required several hours of reconstructive surgery. Hedeman spent less than two months recuperating, and at the NFR the next year, drew Bodacious again, this time in the seventh round. At the request of his son, Tuff turned Bodacious out and received a standing ovation.

Hedeman officially retired in 1999. He was the leader in the PBR World Standings in 1998. Tuff is one of an estimated seven to 10 riders to have ever ridden Bodacious for the qualified eight seconds. The stand-out ride was a 95-point ride at the 1993 Bull Riders Only World Finals in Long Beach, California.

Hedeman is wrapping up his Bachelor’s Degree in Range Management and is scheduled to graduate in December.


ALPINE Sul Ross sophomore middle hitter Annika Canaba was recently named ASC West Offensive Player of the Week After nearly recording three-straight triple-doubles.

The Alpine native started the season's second ASC crossover on Oct.18 with a triple-double performance in a tough five set loss. She totaled 22 kills, 15 assists, and 12 digs.

She followed up that performance the same day with another triple-double in a four set win against Belhaven. Canaba notched a career-high 30 kills to go with 12 assists and 14 digs. Canaba's previous career-high was 23 against Louisiana College and Belhaven on October 12, 2018.

She nearly left the tournament with a triple-double in each match. She came two digs shy the next day against Louisiana College with a 15 kill, 10 assist showing to go with her eight digs.

She was named ASC West Co-Offensive Player of the Week on Sept. 10 of this year.

Canaba recorded at least a double-double in all four matches and posted a pair of triple-doubles at the Austin College Invitational. She averaged 4.13 kills, 3.67 assists, 2.20 digs, 0.60 blocks per set and hit .467 that weekend in Sherman.

Sophomore setter Kylee Davis was recognized as an ASC Top Performer. The Farmersville native notched a double-double in all three of the crossover matches.

Davis totaled 27 assists and 10 digs against East Texas Baptist before a 31 assist, 14 dig showing against Belhaven on the first day of the crossover. On Saturday she tallied 21 assists and 10 digs against Louisiana College.

Her 31 assist performance was a career-high. Her previous high was 30 and also came against Belhaven back on Oct. 12, 2018.

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