The Executive Leadership Team is HCDE’s senior leadership group that works closely with the Superintendent to drive system initiatives and daily operations while meeting the department’s overall goals and objectives. At the discretion of the Superintendent, members of HCDE’s Leadership Team (who typically report to ELT members), may be added to ELT periodically to gain insight into the strategic operations of the department and develop a broader understanding of initiatives.
Dr. Jesus J. Amezcua
Assistant Superintendent of Business Services
Dr. Jesus J. Amezcua is the assistant superintendent for Business Services at HCDE. Amezcua holds a bachelor's degree in business and accounting from Tarkio College, a master's degree in business administration, accountancy and logistics from Texas A&M International and a doctorate in education administration from Texas A&M University. Before joining HCDE in 2009, He worked as chief financial officer at Laredo Independent School District. Amezcua's achievements include earning multiple certificates of achievement for financial reporting and excellent budget document awards.
Chief of Staff
Danielle Bartz is the chief of staff for HCDE. She holds a bachelor's degree in government and Spanish and a master's degree in public affairs from the University of Texas. Prior to joining HCDE, Bartz served as the director of the City of Houston Boards and Commissions. She is a former Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar, a TEDx speaker and she volunteers with the Texas Bluebonnet Girls State program, a government and citizenship camp for teenage girls.
Chief Communications Officer
Danielle Clark is the chief communications officer at HCDE. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in broadcast journalism from the University of California and a master’s degree in education from the University of Tennessee. Before joining HCDE in August of 2018, she worked as the executive director of communications for the Pourdre School District in Fort Collins, Co. Clark is an accredited public relations (APR) professional with 19 years in urban, suburban and rural educational settings. She has held leadership roles in three National School Public Relations Association state chapters and was named one of four top front-runners in the country in 2017.
Assistant Superintendent for Academic Support Services
Jonathan Parker is the assistant superintendent for Academic Support Services at HCDE. He holds a bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics from Prairie View A&M University and a master's in educational administration from the University of North Texas. Before joining HCDE in 2015, he was principal of Dallas Independent School District's Benjamin Franklin Middle School. His achievements include “Principal of the Year,” an award given by the Northwest Council of Parent Teacher Associations.
Executive Director of Human Resources
Natasha Truitt is the executive director of Human Resources at HCDE. Truitt holds a bachelor's degree in business from Xavier University and a master's degree in business administration from Texas Southern University. Before joining HCDE in 1995, she worked at Charity Hospital in New Orleans. Truitt's achievements and accomplishments include SHRM-CP (Society for Human Resource Management - certified professional), PHR (professional in human resources), and pHCLE (Professional Human Capital Leader in Education) certifications.
Executive Director of Facilities
Rich Vela is the executive director of Facilities at HCDE. Vela earned a bachelor’s degree in business from Sam Houston State University and a master’s degree in management from Texas A&M Commerce. Prior to joining HCDE, Vela served as assistant superintendent of ancillary services in Tomball ISD. He is an active member of the Texas Association of Latin Administrators and Superintendents, the Texas Association of School Officials and is an advisory committee member for Crime Stoppers.
Director of Adult Education
Stephanie Ross is the director of Adult Education at HCDE. Ross earned a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Texas Southern University and a Master of Business Administration from University of Phoenix. She also holds a graduate certificate in project management from DeVry University. Prior to joining HCDE, Ross was campus director for Vista College in Beaumont. Her professional expertise includes business strategies; academic and workforce program development; and student recruitment and enrollment. She is a member of the Texas Alliance of Black School Educators, the National Society of Hispanic MBAs and the National Black MBA Association.