Service Program Directors of Council 8157
The directors listed below are appointed by the Grand Knight and the Officers. Their term runs through the fraternal year starting on July 1st through June 30th, the following year.
Sorted alphabetically by last name.
Sacramental Gifts Director
Keith Archer grew up in Oklahoma City and came to the Dallas area for work in his mid-20s. He’s a project manager for Weldon Parts. Keith spends most Saturdays participating in the Catholic ministry that’s held at the Lew Sterrett Justice Center in downtown Dallas. Keith and Mary have been married for 29 years.
Father McGivney sought to strengthen the familial bond of father to mother and children to parents. Catholics often struggle with the reality that they do not have the opportunity to socialize and/or pray with other faith-filled Catholic families. It can be quite a challenge to continue to ground ourselves and raise our children in the faith when there is such limited exposure. Our family programs are an evolution and response to a society that seeks to weaken the bonds of family. Father McGivney’s vision for family life was not only financial and material aid but also spiritual strength, as holiness is the calling of all baptized Christians.
Our goal is to strengthen our men and their families in the faith. When we entered the Order, we were reminded to constantly inform ourselves in the Catholic faith. This formation goes beyond mere facts or religious practice to an authentic connection with a loving God and his son Jesus Christ. Programs in this category are designed to draw us closer to God and the Church in a tangible and meaningful way — whether through helping the future shepherds of the Mother Church, quiet contemplation in a spiritual reflection program, or honoring Mary, Mother of God. These programs should strive to arm us for the spiritual battle that our men and families face daily.
Disaster Preparedness Director
Wendell had done extensive reading related to increasing his faith life, including research on the Knights, when he was invited to join our council by Tony Gonzalez during a Holy Spirit ACTS retreat. Joining 8157 is just the latest chapter in his long and varied life. Wendell grew up in New Orleans, graduated from St. Augustine High and soon after went into the military, in 1965. He spent three years of active duty in the Marine Corps, three more in reserve duty and returned to military service with the U.S. Coast Guard 1985-2006 before retiring. He and wife Connie celebrated their 35th anniversary in March. They have three grown children and seven grandchildren. They left New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2005. They were initially put up by a nephew who lives in DeSoto and decided to make their permanent home here.
Jim Kowalski has been Assistant Diocesan Deputy for two years and Membership Director for about five at the Dallas Diocese. Jim is a two-time Grand Knight at 8157 and Knight of the Year both here (in 1988) and at his original council, 3593 in Oak Cliff. He became a Knight in 1962 at the urging of his new father-in-law. Jim and wife Lillian met in 1960, at a Catholic singles function, and were married on Thanksgiving Day 1962. They have three sons, one daughter and five grandchildren. Jim, his sister and his mother boarded a train in 1949 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and moved to Dallas, Texas. He graduated from Forest Avenue High School in 1952 and then began his working career. His resume includes 11 years as a KC field agent. Jim serves as a Contributing Writer on Special Olympics in the Awareness Committee.
Mike took both his first and major degrees early in 2005 and advanced to the Fourth Degree on Sept. 27, 2014. His list of council and Holy Spirit activities includes serving as our council’s Pro-Life Director and doubling that up under the parish’s outreach ministry, being both a Eucharistic Minister and lector for Masses (usually the 5:30 Sunday Mass), a youth catechist, involved in RCIA and Holy Spirit’s ACTS retreats. And he’s the organizer for the annual Hike for Life, which is held every October at Armstrong Park in Duncanville. He is member of the Awareness committee where he serves as a Contributing Writer about our Pro-Life activities. Mike has been deeply involved in the Catholic faith since his youngest days in Jersey City, N.J. His parents were Catholic missionaries and would take Mike and his five siblings across into New York City to help at homeless shelters, hold block parties and participate in other outreach activities. “It’s all I’ve ever known,” he said. He and wife Karen moved to Dallas in 1997 in connection with his job as a distribution manager. They celebrated their 23rd anniversary on Sept. 14. They have four children – Meghan (21), Jennifer (19), Kaitlyn (15) and Sean (7).
In his capacity as our director of community activities, Dan Murphy oversees the annual cookout at the V.A. hospital. Not coincidentally, he has organized the parish’s annual Veterans Day dinner and program for seven years. Dan is a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy and was active military 1975-95, so activities with and honoring veterans are special to him. After retiring from the Navy, he coordinated R.O.T.C. programs at area high schools through 2012-13. Dan joined the Knights in 1998 and was our Grand Knight during the fraternal years of 2002-03 and 2003-04. The parish’s Lenten fish fries started during Dan’s term as Grand Knight when Father Tim Heines sought an alternative to the soup suppers that had been held. His wife Pat is a hospice field nurse for Lion Hospice Care. The Murphys live in Dallas and have been married since 1975.
Roberto keeps a busy schedule – operating a neurology clinic in Mansfield with two daughters in college and one in high school – but decided it was a good time to join the Knights after witnessing the Order’s good works for so many years. He’s from Corpus Christi, graduated from the University of Texas Medical School in Houston in 1989, and came to our area when doing his training at UT Southwestern. He and wife Gloria, who’s from Dallas, met at a singles function at St. Rita’s parish and have been married for 21 years. Maria, 20, attends Oklahoma State. Marisa, 18 will start at SMU this fall. Monica, 16, will be a junior at Bishop Dunne, which all the girls have attended. The Nietos have lived in Cedar Hill for 15 years and have been Holy Spirit parishioners for five years.
Baseball Concessions Director
Allen Reitmeier was the Knight who coordinated all the activities involving the operation of the concession stands until recently. Allen, the recipient of the 2010 Knight of the Year award has been a Knight since November 2007 when he was invited to a Knights of Columbus insurance meeting where Bob Foster handed him his first Form 100. Allen became an active Knight right away by helping with the baseball concessions and finally taking it over in the Fall of 2008. Allen was instrumental in attaining the Cedar Hill concessions and has been the main contributor to its success. A lot of hard work goes into planning, running and organizing this highly successful money-maker and is one of the key reasons for the success of our Council. Allen also started the Awareness committee to increase communication in our council. In just over three years this project became an enormous success producing thirteen newsletters and dozens of articles, some published in the Texas Catholic and Columbia Magazine. What started out as a simple tool of communication has blossomed into a media mecca where everyone can read about all of our service program activities, upcoming events, etc., and this has been instrumental in new member recruitment. Allen is a Newsletter and Website Copy Writer, and he manages our Email List database.
Knight Hands Director
Allen started the Knight Hands service program to assist anyone in need in the Holy Spirit Parish area who is in need of minor repairs and small projects around the house. As of February 2015 Allen and his crew have completed one hundred projects since its start on May 25, 2010. Some of the jobs he and his crew have completed are: fixing roof tops, fence repair, painting walls and ceilings, bathrooms, installing lights, mowing lawns, installing and fixing doors and windows, trimming driveways, cabinetry in the Sacristy, built twelve cloth hangers, wheel chair ramp, has built two wonderful games for the Fall Festival and has even paid bills for some of the needy. Allen is also the Baseball Concessions Director, the biggest fund raising operation for our council. Allen somehow makes time to pick up meals on wheels from the Senior Center in Duncanville and delivers them to twenty two regulars, every Monday. He is a member of our Degree Team. Allen has been married to his lovely wife Linda for forty four years and has four grown children, Sarah, Paul, Leanne and Sherry who each have two children of their own.
Jorge serves as Safe Environment Director, Awareness Committee Director, our website editor and administrator. He manages our web calendars and our email marketing campaigns. The Awareness Committee serves as the Public Relations unit of the council. He also serves as Vice President and Public Relations Director for the Dallas Diocese Chapter (DDC). Jorge has owned his own print broker and web design business since 1990, his clients have included high-profile national political campaigns. Soon after joining the Knights Jorge turned his attention to creating this new website for our council. Jorge attended the New York School of Printing in New York City specializing in pre-press and graphic design. Kathie, his wife of 42 years, is a psychotherapist in private practice. They moved from New York to Texas in 1981 and began attending Holy Spirit in 2010. They have three grown children, Jorge Jr., Javier and Rafael and one granddaughter, Allison.
Church Activities Director
James serves as our Church Activities Director. James joined the Knights of Columbus in February 2013. James is a retired phlebotomist. He and wife Judy have been members of Holy Spirit for 31 years and enjoy their 5 children and 13 grandkids. The Smiths live in Duncanville.