Commissioners

  • John L. Nau, III

    John L. Nau, III

    City: Houston, Term: 2015–21

    John L. Nau, III is chairman of the Texas Historical Commission. He is also chairman and CEO of Silver Eagle Distributors, L.P., the nation’s largest distributor of Anheuser-Busch products. Silver Eagle employs over 1,500 employees that serve 16 counties in Texas through operations in Houston, San Antonio, Conroe, Cypress, Pasadena, Rosenberg, Carrizo Springs, and Del Rio. Silver Eagle also distributes Grupo Modelo beers, a broad selection of microbrews and craft beers, and several non-alcohol beverages and waters. Nau’s commitment to service is apparent through a broad spectrum of participation in civic, community, and philanthropic organizations in Houston and throughout the country. His current involvement includes National Park Foundation Board of Directors, Civil War Trust Board of Directors, the Texas State Historical Association Board of Directors, Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Foundation Board of Directors, Baylor College of Medicine Board of Trustees, Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History Board of Trustees, University of Houston Board of Visitors, Honorary Trustee of the Greater Houston Convention and Visitors Bureau, Honorary Trustee of Texas Heart Institute, Honorary State Trustee for the San Antonio Parks Foundation, and Advisory Council member to the Center for Big Bend Studies. He also serves as a board member for the Friends of Vicksburg National Military Park, Houston Police Foundation, and Admiral Nimitz Foundation. Additionally, he is chairman of the steering committee for the proposed Lone Star Coastal National Recreation Area. He is a graduate of the University of Virginia, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in history and, from 2011 through 2015, served on the Board of Visitors, a position appointed by the governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia. He is founder and president of The Nau Foundation.

  • Earl Broussard

    Earl Broussard

    City: Austin, Term: 2005-23

    Earl Broussard was appointed to the Texas Historical Commission in 2005. Born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Broussard is the founder of landscape architecture and planning firm TBG Partners and currently serves as chairman of the board of directors. He started the firm in 1987 after working professionally for several well-known design firms in addition to teaching at Louisiana State University and Texas A&M University. Broussard received his Master of Landscape Architecture from Harvard University and his Bachelor of Landscape Architecture from Louisiana State University. He is a Fellow in the American Society of Landscape Architects and previously received gubernatorial appointments for positions on both the Texas Board of Architectural Examiners as well as the Texas Historical Commission. He previously served for 12 years on the West Lake Hills City Council.

  • Jim Bruseth Headshot

    Jim Bruseth

    City: Austin, Term: 2018-19

    Dr. Jim Bruseth of Austin is a professional archaeologist and has been active in the field of archaeology for 45 years.  He is a member and former treasurer of the Society for American Archaeology, member and former national Grievance Coordinator for the Register of Professional Archaeologists, and member of the Society for Historical Archaeology, the Texas Archeological Society, and the Texas State Historical Association.. In addition, he is a board member of the Summerlee Foundation.  Bruseth received a Bachelor of Science in business management from the University of New Orleans and a Master of Arts and Doctor of Philosophy in anthropology from Southern Methodist University. While serving as the Archaeology Division Director at the Texas Historical Commission, he directed the excavation of La Belle, a shipwreck belonging to the French explorer La Salle that wrecked in 1684 along the Texas coast. The excavation gained international attention and was highlighted in publications such as National Geographic, the New York Times, and Smithsonian Magazine.  He has written several books and papers on archaeology. His 2005 book From a Watery Grave (coauthored with his wife Toni Turner) recounts the discovery and excavation of La Belle; the book won two national awards.  His newest book, titled La Belle: The Archaeology of a Seventeenth-Century Ship of New World Colonization (co-edited with Amy Borgens, Brad Jones, and Eric Ray), won the 2017 Keith Muckelroy Memorial Award from the international Nautical Archaeology Society.

  • Monica Burdette

    City: Rockport, Term: 2016-21

    Monica P. Burdette is from Rockport, Texas—the location of Fulton Mansion, one of the Texas Historical Commission’s 22 State Historic Sites. Burdette recently retired to Rockport with her husband Ray after 26 years of managing her family-owned El Canelo Ranch and The Inn at El Canelo located in Kenedy County, just south of the King Ranch. She is a descendent of Francisco Yturria of Brownsville and a fifth-generation landowner of part of his holdings.

    Burdette served several terms on the Board of Directors of The Museum of South Texas History (MoSTH—previously known as the Hidalgo County Historical Museum) in Edinburg, where she served as Board Secretary. She chaired a MoSTH committee which produced a cookbook: “Mesquite Country: Tastes and Traditions from the Tip of Texas,” which won the McIlhenny Award—an annual award for best community cookbook in America. 

    Other activities include Burdette’s conservation efforts and nature tourism promotion. She has allowed important nature-related projects and research on El Canelo Ranch. One project involved research on the Ferruginous Pygmy-Owl and another project with the Texas Nature Conservancy identified a previously unknown plant species. She has served on several committees promoting nature tourism to the Rio Grande Valley. She also personally participated by hosting guests and field trips for nature-related endeavors to the ranch.

    Burdette’s other contributions include serving as chairman of the committee that founded “Wild in Willacy,” a nature festival in Willacy County (Raymondville, Texas).  She is also an active member of P.E.O., an organization which raises funds for educational opportunities for women.  She is a member of the Rockport Center for the Arts and the Art Center of Corpus Christi. 

  • John Crain

    John W. Crain

    City: Dallas, Term: 2007-19

    John W. Crain of Dallas is vice-chair of the commission. He serves as chairman of the board of directors of the Summerlee Foundation and is a director of the Bryan Museum. He is past president of the Texas State Historical Association and is one of three life members of the executive committee. Crain is also a former chair of the Dallas County Historical Commission, an advisory director of the Texas State History Museum Foundation, and a director of the Southern Methodist University Clements Center. He also serves as a emeritus member of the Friends of the Governor's Mansion. Crain received a bachelor's degree from the University of Texas at Austin and a master's degree from Texas State University. He also has a certificate in arts management from Harvard University and a certificate in museum management from the University of California at Berkeley.

  • Head shot of Commissioner Garrett Donnelly

    Garrett Donnelly

    City: Midland, Term: 2018–23

    Garrett Donnelly was appointed to the Texas Historical Commission in 2018. Donnelly is the Vice-President of The Eastland Oil Company, the 5th generation of his family to join the family business. Born and raised in Midland, he attended the University of Colorado and graduated from Texas Tech University with a BBA in both Management of Information Systems and Management. 

    He is currently the Chairman of the Texas Tech University Health Science Center- Permian Basin Advisory Board. Donnelly was elected in 2017 to the Parish Council of St. Ann’s Catholic Church. He is also a member of the Permian Basin Landman’s Association, American Association of Petroleum Landmen, and the Permian Basin Producers Association.

  • Renee Dutia

    City: Dallas, Term: 2018–19

    Renee Dutia is a Graduate Gemologist from the Gemological Institute of America, an alumnus of the Minority Business Executive MBA program at Dartmouth’s Amos Tuck School of Business Management and she attended the University of Bombay in India. Born and raised in India, Renee comes from a family of philanthropy and commerce. After living in Texas for the last four decades, she blends seamlessly her love of preserving culture, history and heritage through providing unique experiences that engage utilizing technology, hands-on opportunities for memory making and a strong connection among people of all corners of the world. 

     As a founder of Regali Inc, her business accomplishments stem from her ability to pair entrepreneurial passion and acumen with creative flexibility and natural ability to assemble strategic partners. REGALi Inc has evolved from a leading and experienced global trading company into a travel retail and food and beverage concessionaire with local, national and international brands. Regali Inc is a joint venture partner of Hudson Group and holds a portfolio of concessions at DFW International Airport and Dallas Love Airport. Renee seizes every opportunity to promote North Texas region and provide warm Texas style Customer Experience to global traveling passenger. 

    Under Renee’s leadership, Regali Inc has also delivered logo merchandise with a concentration on apparel/uniform programs as well as provided marketing, promotional and creative services with vertically integrated manufacturing with strong in-house technology capabilities. Regali Inc holds the designation as the official technology partner for the Superbowl XLV Host Committee and was a contract holder for Super Bowl XLVI and Super Bowl XLVII. Regali Inc held a GSA Schedule 84 contract and successful fulfilled orders for multiple Federal agencies. 

    Renee also has served as Vice Chair on the board of the Dallas/Fort Worth Asian American Citizen Council, is a past appointed Commissioner on the City of Dallas Board of Adjustment and is Founder and Chair of Asian100; a North Texas based nonprofit organization, which launched in summer of 2017. She has served on many community boards including the Dallas Regional Chamber and the Business Council for the Arts.  She is committed to projects with a purpose and economic development that impact quality of life.

  • Lilia M Garcia head shot

    Lilia Garcia

    City: Raymondville, Term: 2018-21

    Lilia Garcia was appointed to the Texas Historical Commission in 2018. Born in Raymondville, her family has been involved in South Texas ranching and land management since the 1850s. Growing up on her family’s ranch in Kennedy County, she is not only a fifth-generation rancher, but also a descendant of South Texas farmers. With her sister, she organized a steer operation on the family ranch in Willacy County. Family roots in Texas agriculture, ranching, and farming, as well as the preservation of Texas history and lands, inspired her to study history, political science, and art. As a university lecturer, she now promotes her love of Texas to future generations.

    Garcia received a master’s degree in history at Southern Methodist University, where she also received a bachelor’s degree in political science/Ibero-American Studies. Seeing art and history intertwined, she furthered her studies in art history, studying in Spain and England and working at Christie’s auction house in New York City. She currently lectures at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, and was previously a lecturer at the University of Texas at Brownsville/Texas Southmost College and a faculty member of St. Joseph’s Academy in Brownsville.

    Currently, Garcia serves on the board of directors of the Camille Playhouse in Brownsville and the advisory board of the Museum of South Texas History in Edinburg. She is a member of the Brownsville Historical Association and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.

  • David Gravelle Headshot

    David Gravelle

    City: Dallas, Term: 2018-21

    David A. Gravelle was appointed to the Texas Historical Commission in 2018. He previously served on the Commission from 2000 to 2013 with six years as Vice Chairman.  He is owner of Gravelle Branding/Marketing, a brand consultancy in Dallas. 

    From 1987 to 2007 David served as managing partner of Richards/Gravelle, an advertising and PR firm. From1975-1986 Gravelle was chief marketing officer for MCorp, a publicly traded bank holding company.
    His branding work includes assignments from The George W Bush Presidential Center in Dallas, the Host Committee of Super Bowl LI in Houston, and Tolleson Wealth Management, a firm that serves families of wealth.

    He is the President elect of The Town and Gown Club at SMU. He is the former president of The Dallas Assembly and The Dallas Museum of Natural History (Perot). He is a former board member of the William P. Clements Center for Southwestern Studies and former director of the Texas State Historical Association.

  • Wallace B. Jefferson

    Wallace B. Jefferson

    City: Austin, Term: 2015–19

    Wallace B. Jefferson is a partner at Alexander Dubose Jefferson & Townsend, LLP in Austin. Prior to joining the law firm, Jefferson served as the Chief Justice to the Supreme Court of Texas from 2004 until 2013 and as an associate justice from 2001 until 2004. Justice Jefferson serves on the University of Texas Development Board, Council of the American Law Institute, University of Texas Law School Foundation, and the Texas Supreme Court Historical Society. Justice Jefferson has three times made Texas judicial history as the first appointed African American justice to the Texas Supreme Court, first elected African American justice to the court along with Justice Dale Wainwright, and then first African American chief justice to the Texas Supreme Court. Justice Jefferson received the "Pillars of the Foundation" award by the Northside Independent School District and is the namesake for the Wallace B. Jefferson Middle School in San Antonio. Jefferson received a Bachelor of Arts in Political Philosophy from James Madison College at Michigan State University and earned his Juris Doctor from the University Of Texas School Of Law. He is the recipient of the James Madison College Distinguished Alumnus award in 2002, the University Of Texas School Of Law’s Outstanding Alumnus Award in 2005, Michigan State University Outstanding Alumnus award in 2007, and Texas Exes' Distinguished Alumnus Award in 2010.

  • Laurie Limbacher

    Laurie Limbacher

    City: Austin, Term: 2018–23

    Laurie Limbacher of Austin is president and principal at Limbacher & Godfrey Architects. She is a member of the American Institute of Architects, Texas Society of Architects, National Trust for Historic Preservation, Society of Architectural Historians, Association for Preservation Technology, and the Austin American Institute of Architects. Limbacher received a Bachelor of Environmental Design from Texas A&M University.

  • Catherine McKnight

    City: Dallas, Term: 2017–23

    Catherine McKnight, a seventh generation Texan, was raised in west Texas where her family has ranched for many generations. Her family has a long history of dedication and commitment to Texas, its history, its preservation and its growth. She lives in Dallas and serves as General Counsel for Access Healthcare. McKnight received her Bachelors of Business Administration in Marketing from the University of Texas at Austin and her Juris Doctorate from Washington University School of Law. She is a member of the Texas State Bar Association and the American Health Lawyers Association. McKnight is a member of the Governing Board of North Dallas Shared Ministries who through its 500 volunteers carries out its charitable mission of delivering assistance to Dallas' low income residents.  She is also a  member of the Delta Delta Delta Alumnae and a former member of the Junior League(s) of Dallas and St. Louis.

  • Tom Perini

    City: Buffalo Gap, Term: 2011–21

    Tom Perini of Buffalo Gap is the owner/operator of Perini Ranch Steakhouse. He is a member and past president of the Texas Restaurant Association, a member of International Association of Culinary Professionals, James Beard Foundation, and the Abilene-Taylor County Public Health Advisory Board. He is a former board member of the American Red Cross, St. John’s Episcopal School in Abilene, and the Ben Richey Boys Ranch of Abilene. Perini grew up proudly surrounded by historians. Locally, Perini serves on the board of the Buffalo Gap Historic Village, the Fort Chadbourne Foundation in Bronte, Texas, and various committees of the Buffalo Gap City Council, including Planning and Zoning. He graduated from Peacock Military Academy in San Antonio and attended the University of North Texas.

  • Gilbert E. Peterson

    Gilbert E. Peterson

    City: Alpine, Term: 2007–19

    Gilbert E. "Pete" Peterson III is an investments officer located at West Texas National Bank in Alpine. He is president of the Davis Mountains Trans-Pecos Heritage Association, president of the Board of the Museum of the Big Bend and vice-president of the Friends of the Center for Big Bend Studies. Peterson is past president of the Board of Leadership Big Bend and of the Rotary Club of Alpine, former member of the Alpine Public Library Board, and former treasurer of the Alpine Chamber of Commerce. He serves on the Board of the Friends of the Governor’s Mansion. He is also a member of the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association. Peterson received bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Southern Methodist University.

  • Daisy Sloan White

    Daisy Sloan White

    City: College Station, Term: 2011–23

    Daisy Sloan White has more than 40 years of experience in fundraising, development, communications, and planning. She has organized and executed many large local and national productions, including multi-day presidential inauguration events, Super Bowl, Major League Baseball World Series, and corporate and nonprofit events, large and small. She was recognized by the U.S. Secret Service with a certificate of appreciation in 2004 for her organizational, management, and communication skills as a result of her work on 41 @ 80, the 80th birthday for President George H.W. Bush. She continues working as a special events consultant.

    Volunteering has long been the hallmark of White’s life. She chaired the largest fundraiser in the nation for the American Cancer Society, the Cattle Baron’s Ball of Houston; the Nutcracker Market of the Houston Ballet, the very first year that it raised more than $1 million; and the Race for the Cure, continuing its reputation of breaking both attendance and fundraising records in its efforts against breast cancer.

    White currently is on the Texas A&M University Press Advancement Board and is a member of the Campaign Committee of The Bush School of Government & Public Service at Texas A&M University. She served as a member of the Governor’s Commission for Women from 2005–2011.

    She received her bachelor's degree from The University of Texas and her master’s degree in speech pathology from Southern Methodist University. She is married to John D. White, a partner in the Southern Funds Group in Houston. They have two daughters.