Corie Woodman

age: 37 | Third Grade Educator | Red Lick Independent School District

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Currently in her eleventh year of teaching, Corie Woodman has taught all grades from kindergarten through fifth, except first. Once she had her first child, she knew right away that she wanted to love and teach other people’s children the way she wanted her son to be loved and taught.

“My hope in my classroom is to not only help each child grow academically, but more importantly help create kind, productive citizens,” Corie explained. “You can ask any one of the students I have had in the past about Mrs. Woodman’s life lessons. We spend a lot of time discussing how we will impact this ever-changing world.”

Married to Andy, the couple has four children: Drew Woodman (18), Cole Gideon (12), Sarah Jane Woodman (11), and Cade Gideon (8). Being a mother, wife, and friend is by far, Corie’s greatest personal accomplishment. “These are jobs I am most proud of and will always strive to be better than the day before,” Corie said. She and her family enjoy spending their summers at the family lake house or their river cabin, and the rest of the year is mostly spent watching travel baseball and travel soccer since two of their children play. 

Best advice you’ve ever received:

“AT THE END OF THE DAY, PEOPLE WON’T REMEMBER WHAT YOU SAID OR DID; THEY WILL RE- MEMBER HOW YOU MADE THEM FEEL.” – MAYA ANGELOU

Corie serves as a committee member for CASA’s Songwriters on the Edge of Texas event and is a member of Women for A&M- Texarkana. She also served as a “celebrity” during TRAHC’s Party with Picassos event and does her best to contribute and volunteer for any organization she can that is outside of school hours.

Professionally, Corie’s greatest achievement is receiving her Master’s Degree in Education and going on to get her Master Math Teacher Certification. Her long-term goal as her kids get older is to teach future educators on the college level. “I want to help instill a love of teaching and remind young educators how crucial their roles are in children’s lives,” she said, adding that she and Andy also look forward to traveling more once all of their kids are in college. 

Name something about you that very few people know:

“I spent my childhood showing horses as part of the South East Arkansas Horseshow Association, and I even placed tenth in the state! I learned a lot from those days ... how to love and take care of animals, good sportsmanship, and hard work.” 

Armani Valentino

age: 38 | Publisher, Author, Business Marketing Consultant | College Boy Publishing, LLC & ArmaniValentino.com

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Armani Valentino stays busy running his publishing company, College Boy Publishing, and his consulting business. “I independently became a national bestselling author and therefore have a certain level of expertise when it comes to marketing,” he said. But Armani believes that his own successes allow him to do more than just consult. “If [I had not been successful in publishing my books], numerous other people, especially African-Americans in Texarkana and many other areas, would have never been inspired to go for one of their dreams of becoming a published author,” he said. “Sometimes you have to be the first to do something in order for others to be inspired to know they can do it, too. You know, be a trailblazer and an inspiration. I think I have done that since I was a young child—inspired others to follow their dreams.”

Though he’s most often spotted writing self-help books, managing a publishing project, or consulting, Armani is regularly involved in service work. “Most of how and what I give back people never know about,” he said.

Best advice you’ve ever received:

“WORK HARDER ON YOURSELF THAN YOU DO ON YOUR JOB.” — JIM ROHN

“I tutor and volunteer with many of the youth in different capacities.” These different capacities include volunteering for Bridging the Gaps of Arkansas Ministries, the REACH program at Texarkana ISD, Total Life Changes, The Healing Place, and United Families of America. A father to a son, Armani Christian, Armani enjoys recording/ producing music, speaking/coaching, reading, traveling and “just living life.”

Armani is also proud of the work he’s done in the Beverly neighborhood, helping community members revitalize the struggling area. He calls the initiative #BuyBackTheBlock. “It’s been something that has inspired many in the community to take a more active role in cleaning up the neighborhood, rehabbing the homes, starting a business, and getting to know one another in an attempt to create a community,” he said. “I want to give people the opportunity to rent and eventually own homes in a decent neighborhood with the intent to create a community. Home ownership is the foundation to creating a better life and family wealth in America.” 

Name something about you that very few people know:

“I sold my first house to a corporation owned by a famous former NFL Super Bowl and Collegiate National Championship coach!”

Fallon Turner

age: 30 | Barista | Starbucks Coffee

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Perseverance is often defined as “the act or power of continuing to do something in spite of difficulties.” Anyone who knows Fallon Turner would agree that although it hasn’t always been easy, she has molded her story into one of triumph, success, and most of all – perseverance.

Fallon’s greatest professional accomplishment is continuing to work at Starbucks for the past 12 years. “When it comes to choosing a career I love, I am one of the lucky ones,” she says. “I look forward to going to work.”

Fallon’s true “happy place” is on the back of her horse, at home strumming a new song on her guitar, waterskiing at the lake, or lifting weights in the gym.

As part of a therapeutic equestrian program at Circle J Cowboy Church, Fallon enjoys visiting with her “therapy family” while learning horsemanship skills. She feels fortunate to have many great mentors who have ridden horses for many years and “know the ropes.”

A lover of all things fitness, Fallon is a member of Richmond Road’s Anytime Fitness and trains there three times a week. “I am so lucky to have a hands-on trainer, Trey Crow, who always guides me and supports me,” she adds. 

Best advice you’ve ever received:

“ALWAYS TRY YOUR BEST TO BE POSITIVE AND POLITE BECAUSE YOU NEVER KNOW WHO IS WATCHING YOU FROM AFAR.” — SUZY AND MIKE TURNER, FALLON’S MOTHER AND FATHER

Another one of Fallon’s favorite pastimes is participating in adaptive waterskiing programs. “I have never really been afraid to try new things, so I became involved with Texas Adaptive Aquatics (TAA) and RISE Adaptive Sports. I love attending their adaptive ski clinics,” she explains.

When asked what her greatest personal achievement has been, Fallon says, “I have been very blessed with caring, compassionate people in my life who have helped me pursue my passions. My greatest personal achievement would be winning 11 National Physique Committee (NPC) Women’s Wheelchair Bodybuilding competitions. Many people in the business took me under their wings and taught me the ins and outs of the sport.”

Spunky and energetic, 30-year-old Fallon Turner is one you never forget once your path crosses with hers. Her infectious smile is contagious, and she is the epitome of one who could have easily given up, but chose to push through, never giving up on her goals. 

Name something about you that very few people know:

“Even though I am not a girly-girl at all, I took dance lessons for five years when I was in elementary and middle school. Yes, I even wore sparkly costumes and put on makeup.”