Meet the Board

AAJA Texas board members represent a variety of city, beats and media. We meet every six to eight weeks and strive to serve our members by connecting fellow journalists, organizing programming and acting as liaisons with AAJA’s national headquarters in San Francisco.
Don’t hesitate to let us know how we can best serve you. We’re always open to feedback, new ideas and – yes! – volunteers. Get in touch - we'd love to hear from you!

Current Officers:

Alanna Quillen, Co-president
Jen Samp, Co-president
Ruth Liao, Membership Outreach
Asma Nahvi, Secretary
Hannah Cho, Treasurer
Tom Huang, National Representative
Julie Chang, Web Coordinator

Former officers:

Iris Kuo, Past President
Angie Joe, Past President
Theodore Kim, former Vice President, AAJA national secretary
Scott Nishimura, Scholarship Committee Chair
Suzanne Marta, Past National Board Rep, Past Scholarship Committee Chairwoman 
Aman Batheja, former Secretary
Caroling Lee, former Treasurer
Sandy Knott, Membership Chair

Alanna Quillen, Co-President

About Me: Anchor and reporter for NBC 10/FOX 14 in Monroe, Louisiana

Connect with me: 

Jen Samp, Co-President

About Me: Broadcast journalist in Albuquerque, New Mexico

Connect with me: 

Ruth Liao, Membership Outreach

Education: Bachelors of journalism, University of Texas at Austin, 2006

About Me: Editor, ICIS Heren, a global energy publication

Where I’ve worked: 

  • Statesman Journal, Salem, Oregon, as a social services reporter

Hobbies: Baking, hiking, Zumba (just not at the same time)

History with AAJA: member since 2002. Voices 2005 alum and current

Connect with me: 

  • Email: texasaaja@gmail.com
  • Twitter: @ruthlessliao, @icis_ruth_liao

Asma Nahvi, Secretary 

Education: BJ Journalism, BA Asian Studies, University of Texas at Austin, 1999.

About Me: I am an associate producer at KTRK, the ABC affiliate in Houston.

Where I’ve worked:

  • KTRK-TV, Houston
  • KPRC-TV, Houston

History with AAJA:

  • Member since 2006
  • AAJA TX Secretary since 2012

Hannah Cho, Treasurer

About Me: Business reporter with The Dallas Morning News

Connect with me: 

Tom Huang, National Representative

Education: B.S. and M.S. in computer science and engineering, MIT, 1988

About me:  I am Sunday & Enterprise Editor at The Dallas Morning News and Ethics and Diversity Fellow at The Poynter Institute. In 2008, I taught ethics, diversity and leadership issues at Poynter. I am co-editor of Poynter’s Best Newspaper Writing book for 2008-2009. I've worked at The Dallas Morning News since 1993, first as a feature writer, then as features editor, and now as the Sunday Page One editor.

Where I’ve worked: 

  • The Dallas Morning News
  • The Poynter Institute
  • The Virginian-Pilot
  • The Greensboro News & Record
  • The Roanoke Times
  • The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer

Hobbies: Running, travel, writing, music, Dallas Mavericks, food and wine

History with AAJA: Member since 1990; Texas chapter president 1996-2002; helped organize AAJA national convention in Dallas 2002; worked as an editor on Voices project 1996-2000.

Connect with me: 

  • Twitter: @tomthuang

Julie Chang, Web Coordinator

Education: B.J. Journalism and B.A. Plan II Honors, University of Texas at Austin, 2011

About me:  I am the K-12 education reporter at the Austin American-Statesman. Before joining the Statesman, I worked at The Beaumont Enterprise as an education reporter and interned at various news organizations including The Dallas Morning News, Texas Tribune, and The San Jose Mercury News while in college. I also interned at the U.S. Department of Health Human Services where I wrote reports to promote the passage of the Affordable Care Act 2010.

Where I’ve worked: 

  • Austin American-Statesman
  • The Beaumont Enterprise

Hobbies: Reading and eating

History with AAJA: Member since 2011

Connect with me: 

  • Twitter: @juliechang1

Past board members

Iris Kuo, Past President

Education: B.S. Business Administration, B.A. Arts & Performance, University of Texas at Dallas, 2007

About Me: I’m a reporter covering the oil industry in Houston for Argus Media, an energy intelligence and analysis news company. Before that I was a freelancer and wrote for the Houston Chronicle and as Lead GreenBeat Writer for VentureBeat, a business and technology site, where my work was syndicated to NYTimes.com and Reuters. I caught the journalism bug in high school and started at my college newspaper, working my way up from staff writer to editor-in-chief at The UTD Mercury, and worked a string of internships in Texas and Washington, D.C. I was also an intern-turned-news assistant for The Wall Street Journal in Hong Kong. I love reporting and writing, and relish opportunities to spread that passion to other young journalists.

Where I’ve worked:

  • VentureBeat
  • The Wall Street Journal Asia,
  • Fort Worth Star-Telegram,
  • McClatchy Washington Bureau,
  • KERA 90.1 (North Texas Public Radio)

Hobbies: Traveling, reading, art, finding and sharing great music, hunting down the perfect bowl of pho and food – occasionally with me cooking, but usually not. (It’s better that way.) And, of course, writing.

History with AAJA:

  • Past AAJA Texas student representative.
  • Recipient of the AAJA/S.I. Newhouse Scholarship and AAJA Texas scholarship (2006);
  • Voices reporter, AAJA Convention 2006-Honolulu;
  • Reporter for the United Nations Global Youth Summit student project (NABJ and UNITY project)

Connect with me:

  • Twitter: @thestatuskuo

Angie Joe, Past President

Education: LSU

About Me: Angie Joe is an associate editor/analyst at McGraw-Hill Platts. Since joining nearly two years ago, she has been a price and news reporter for the volatile, petrochemical commodities market. Previously, Angie worked in public affairs. For about six years, she was a media specialist at the University of Houston, where she disseminated stories and news tips for the Bauer College of Business,  economics, history and political science. In addition, she helped update the university's online newsroom and maintained the faculty experts'guide. Prior to UH, Angie was an account executive at global PR firm Weber Shandwick International where she serviced the HP, Compaq Computer Corp and Houston Space Center accounts.

History with AAJA: AAJA's in-depth programming and networking opportunities enticed Angie to join the Texas chapter about 10 years ago. Since then, she's attended four national conferences, helped coordinate three state conferences, organized a media access day to teach community organizations about how to work with news organizations and was co-chair of the 2008 state conference in Houston last spring. In addition, Angie attended Camp AAJA in 2008 to learn how she could help grow the chapter. She's also served on the Media Watch committee.

Theodore Kim,  AAJA National Secretary (AAJA Texas former Vice President)

Education: B.A. English, Communications, Boston College, 1998; M.A. Journalism, American University, 1999

About me: I’m a staff writer who covers the city of Plano, as well as suburban and transportation trends and politics for the Dallas Morning News. I’ve been interested in journalism ever since high school when my friends and I published an underground newspaper. Now, here I am. A parting thought: Journalism is hard work. But it is so very rewarding. I hope you’ll stick with it -- in whatever form. 

Where I’ve worked:

  • The Dallas Morning News
  • The Indianapolis Star and USA Today
  • The (Annapolis) Capital
  • The (Montgomery County, Md.) Gazette

Hobbies: Listening to music of all sorts but country, reading, traveling, skiing, running, watching movies, following sports of all sorts, stargazing, studying up on strange weather phenomena, drinking high-end coffee, taming a steak obsession, rooting on the New England Patriots

History with AAJA: I’m excited about becoming more involved as chapter vice president. I attended my first AAJA convention last year in Boston.

Connect with me:

Scott Nishimura, Scholarship Committee Chairman

Education: Bachelor of Journalism, University of Missouri-Columbia

About Me: These days, I cover careers, Super Bowl XLV business, and banking and finance on the Business News desk at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. I’ve been in journalism since I started writing poetry for my 4th grade mimeograph newspaper  “Las Cucarachas” at San Antonio (Tx.) Academy. I’m a longtime metro, sports, and business reporter/editor who’s covered everything from murders to mergers. Two years ago, amid the boom of the big Barnett natural gas shale, which sits beneath North Texas, I launched a hyperlocal neighborhood gas leasing blog at star-telegram.com. The blog fostered significant levels of citizen journalism, became a key and popular resource that helped homeowners organize and negotiate better terms, and won a SABEW Best in Business award in 2008. The lesson: Smart, local journalism still connects with readers, no matter the platform. I’m an open networker on linkedin; come find me there!Hobbies:  Travel  -- Chicago, Oregon Coast, and the SF Bay Area are U.S. faves – and fantasy baseball.  I finally won my league in 2009 after 11 years of gunning for it. I also volunteer extensively for my daughter’s school, the Alice Carlson Applied Learning Center elementary school in the Fort Worth Independent School District. And my wife and I have a small side residential real estate business in Fort Worth.Strange dates in history: I share the same birthdate with Roger Clemens, and both of us were born one day before Marilyn Monroe died.  My 10th wedding anniversary was three days after 9-11. My wife and I were supposed to be in Chicago for it; instead, we drove to the Bush Library in College Station, Texas.

History with AAJA: I’ve attended every national convention since San Francisco in 1991. I was National Advisory Board member representing Texas, and then Texas Chapter president for four years, ending in 2008.

Connect with me:

Suzanne Marta, Past National Board Rep, Past Scholarship Committee Chairwoman

Education: Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Political Science, University of Oregon

About Me: I'm a freelance writer, editor and media consultant. Where I’ve worked: North Texas Public Broadcasting (KERA), Dallas Morning News, Statesman Journal

Hobbies: Cooking and travel

History with AAJA: National Board Rep, 2004-2009, Scholarship Committee Chairwoman, 2004. Attended: Unity 2004, 2008; AAJA National Convention 2002 (Texas), 2005 (Minneapolis, 2006 (Hawaii), 2007 (Miami).  Voices editor 2007 (Miami)

Connect with me:

Aman Batheja, Past Secretary

Education: Earned bachelor's degrees in journalism and psychology from New York University. Currently a master's student in economics at the University of Texas at Arlington.

About Me: I'm a political reporter/junkie at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.  I'm originally from New York and had only planned on living in Texas for a summer for an internship. That was six years ago. I've previously written for the Kansas City Star, the Wilkes-Barre Times Leader and the New York Resident. 

Where I’ve worked:

  • Kansas City Star
  • New York Resident
  • Wilkes-Barre Times Leader
  • Rolling Stone

Hobbies: Reading, economics (as geeky as that sounds), writing fiction, movies, music

History with AAJA: Past scholarship chair for AAJA Texas, Secretary since 2009

Connect with me:

Caroling Lee, Treasurer

Education: B.A. International Service, American University 1999; M.A. Journalism, University of Texas at Austin, 2006

About Me: I’m a digital producer with a varied background in photography, television, and web design. I have 10+ years of experience in the internet industry and 

Where I’ve worked:

  • Discovery Health Channel
  • Discovery Networks International
  • Applied Theory
  • TradeMark Media

Hobbies: Traveling, poker, snowboarding, eating great food, finance, movies, music, crab festivals and pug hugging

History with AAJA:

  • AAJA Member since 2006
  • AAJA Treasurer since 2008

Connect with me:

Sandy Hsu Knott, Past Membership Chair

Education: Bachelor of Journalism, Unitersity of Texas at Austin, 2000.

About Me: I am currently the Director of Marketing and Public Relations at Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary.  After graduating from UT Austin with a degree in magazine journalism, I wrote for the Golf Digest magazine group before moving into public relations and corporate communications.  I have worked primarily in the automotive services and insurance industries but freelanced for boutique public relations firms and assisted clients in education, non-profit and technology. I have been a member of AAJA since joining as a student in 1996.

Where I’ve worked:

  • Golf Digest
  • Allstate Insurance
  • ATX Group
  • Medicus Insurance Company
  • Strategic Image
  • Brodnicki Public Relations
  • Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary

Hobbies: Running (I've run two half marathons, but I have no intention of ever running a full), reading, crafts, hanging out with friends and family, baking, watching Longhorn football, baseball and hockey.

History with AAJA:

  • Joined AAJA in 1996 as a student member
  • Helped plan the 2002 national convention in Dallas
  • Membership Chair

Connect with me:

  • about.me/sandyknott
  • twitter.com/sandarita
  • linkedin.com/sandyhsuknott
  • pinterest.com/sandarita