by Irene Runnels
Ashley Gibson was “born in the Heart of Texas”, which is Brady, TX, by San Angelo, TX. She is a “Newbie” at Nowata Middle School as a first year teacher.
Even though Ashley was born in Texas, she actually graduated from Ruidoso, New Mexico. What brought her to Oklahoma, you might ask?
Well, Ruidoso was a tourist town with a racetrack where her father was a jockey and a racehorse trainer. It is visited by lots of people all over the state and even out of state which means “a very expensive place to live?”
Growing up on the racetrack meant that Ashley saw lots of jockeys get hurt including her father who “died once, broke every bone except his back, and even had 11 knee surgeries” because of horse accidents.
“Being a jockey is one of the most dangerous jobs in the world,” Ashley said.
Her older sister Tammy already lived in Oklahoma, and after a visit, Ashley decided this was the place for her. She is a “happy Okie” now.
Even though Ashley is the mother of three children ranging in age from 10 years to 6 months, she is still considered the baby of her family. So, naturally when she decided to settle in Oklahoma, all the rest of her family, her mom, and her older sister followed her to Nowata and even her brother who is in the Air Force stationed at Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma City are “happily living the wide-open prairie life.” Ashley is very proud of Tammy who is running A New Leaf program for mentally challenged people and even makes sure they are taken to compete in Special Olympics.
Sports Management with a minor in History was Ashley’s degree choice because she “always wanted to coach basketball.” She is currently teaching computers, physical education, publications and enrichment to the 6-8 grades with “a smile on my face every day.”
A bright future awaits Ashley as in Ten Years she sees herself with a “booming journalism program” and of course lots and lots of coaching.