To the Our Wells Branch Friends and Neighbors—
During the 2020 pandemic the WBNA board elected to suspend publication of the WBNA Neighborhood News newsletter. There were several contributing factors for this decision; the safety of the delivery volunteers, reduced content and event coverage, advertising cut backs, and production costs vs. limited fund raising.
Rest assured that the WBNA board members heard the concerns throughout the neighborhood that the WBNA Neighborhood News newsletter was sorely missed as was our website! We’re pleased to be back on your doorsteps and just a click away!
We appreciate the continued support and interest from the entire Wells Branch community, we have missed serving you.
The WBNA held its annual board meeting on March 5, 2022 at 6:30pm. Elections were held, and the following board members were elected unanimously. Please meet our current WBNA Board.
Place 1 – Heather Birkholz – Member at Large
Greetings neighbors! My name is Heather Birkholz and I’m honored to be considered as a member of the WBNA Board. I have lived in Wells Branch for 10 years with my husband, two children, and 3 dogs. We have been so blessed to have access to such wonderful amenities like the dog park, playgrounds, library, and Mills Pond and we love attending the many events held by WBNA. I truly believe Wells Branch is a little slice of heaven and I have always wanted to give back to the community that has given so much to me and my family. I would be honored to serve as a member of the board and to donate my time, love, and attention to helping with events that bring the community together.
Place 2 – Darci Marter – Member at Large
Hi Neighbors! I’m Darci Marter. I moved to Wells Branch about 3 years and I fell in love with this community instantly. The neighborhood reminds me a lot of my childhood in Georgia. I spend a lot of time at Katherine Fleischer park with my 3 year old boy and 5 year old daughter. WBNA events have made special memories for my family. Our favorite events are the 4th of July fest, pumpkin painting, and the holiday crafts. Before moving here, I taught art for 11 years in Omaha, Nebraska. I have a degree in Art Education. When I’m not being mom, I’m a visual artist and jewelry designer. I design copper jewelry through an art process called Electroforming. I have always had passion for creating and a love for teaching. As a member, I look forward to planning crafts and activities for the events. And most importantly, I look forward to getting to know everyone.
Place 3 – Donna Malone – Vice President
Hello, I am Donna Malone and I became a WBNA board member about a year after I moved to Wells Branch 10 years ago. I first met the board at my favorite WB event, the 4th Fest Silent Auction! The board was so warm and inviting, informing Paul and I about everything our neighborhood, neighbors and local business had to offer. We still believe that we live in the best neighborhood around and what makes it so special is everyone that lives here.
When we moved here our oldest son was 9 months old, since we have grown as a family and now have 2 boys and 1 girl ages: 10, 8, and 4. Our family enjoys all aspects of WB such as; the Library, Pioneer Pals, Scouts, Tennis, Soccer, Disc Golf, Swim Teams, our amazing trails and all the events that happen here. The cool thing is that our neighborhood is designed to grow with us and to be perfect for all neighbors. As my kids grow there are more fun activities for them as well!
One more fact about me is that my husband Paul and I started our company here in WB with our neighbors about 8 years ago! After having my 2nd son, the taste of coffee was no longer good, my pregnancy had heightened my senses. So, Paul and I went on a quest in search of the perfect cup of coffee. One day he came home and said, “we’re going to roast our own coffee!” and so we did. It was amazing, so of course we shared with our neighbors and started selling our coffee beans and delivering the beans to our neighbors doorsteps. With amazing drive, great coffee and our backgrounds being in Graphic Design, Fine Arts, Business and Marketing we had all the tools to start what you all know as Malone Specialty Coffee!
I am very happy to live in Wells Branch and be a part of the WBNA, my favorite part is meeting all of my neighbors!
Place 4 – Juli Thatcher – Treasurer
Hello Wells Branch! My name is Juli Thatcher. I am honored to be serving on the Neighborhood Association Board! For the past 8 years, I have been a parent, community member, and small business owner in Wells Branch. I own a fitness franchise for moms called FIT4MOM Pflugerville. We provide outdoor fitness and wellness classes for every stage of motherhood and strive to build a tight knit mama village. We hold classes in Pflugerville and Wells Branch. Work out with us, Mama!
My husband, Todd, and I have lived in many places together, across several states. Neither of us grew up in Austin, but Wells Branch has become Home. I left a career I loved when my husband’s company moved us to Austin, contrary to my own career plan. I was scared, we didn’t know a soul here, and we had a 6-week-old baby. Wells Branch took us in and gave us a true family in a new place. This neighborhood means so much to my family. My children attend public school in this neighborhood, we work, live, and play in this neighborhood, and I run the trails on a regular basis when I need some tranquility. We’ve attended almost every event by now. We’ve enjoyed getting to know so many of you and I’m excited to get to know those of you that I haven’t met yet! I’m looking forward to building community through future events and can’t wait to see what we can do together!
Place 5 – Terra Moses – Member at Large
Hello, my name is Terra Moses, and I am excited to contribute to the Wells Branch Neighborhood Association. My husband and I moved to the Wells Branch community shortly before we got married in December of 2018. We instantly fell in love with the mature trees, spacious parks, and trails! We were also drawn to the neighborhood due to the convenience of being close to work and family.
Prior to moving to Austin, I attended college at Texas A&M University-Commerce. I received my undergraduate degree in Elementary Education and continued on to receive my Masters of Social Work (MSW). During college, I was provided amazing opportunities to run cross-country, track, and conduct research within the university’s Honors College. I held several positions on our Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) where I was able to partner with other student athletes in service projects and fundraisers for Make-A-Wish. Upon graduation, I worked for a little more than a year at Austin State Hospital as a social worker, and I later transitioned to teach fourth grade writing in Austin ISD. I loved watching fourth graders transform into talented and passionate writers! I look forward to eventually returning to the classroom.
After our daughter was born in June of 2021, I decided to take time off work to care for her and watch her grow. Being a stay-at-home mom has been a big transition, but I am so grateful for the time I have with my daughter! I am always looking for ways to stay connected and involved. Investing time with the WBNA will be a great start!
Place 6 – Pamela Woodward – Member at Large
My name is Pamela Woodward. I moved from Central Austin to the Wells Branch community in 2008. I raised my youngest daughter in the neighborhood beginning with kindergarten at Wells Branch Elementary. She is now a senior at McNeil HS. I’ve had the pleasure of volunteering at many of the neighborhood MUD and WBNA functions, including Fourth Fest, the Luminary Festival, the Easter Egg Hunt, Neighborhood Night Out, and the quarterly bulk waste disposal. I especially enjoy soliciting items for the Fourth Fest silent auction, working at the arts and crafts tables at the Luminary Festival, and judging the Christmas light contest. For a number of years, I worked as a surgery scheduler in medical office and hospital settings. I halted my career to care for my daughter during recovery from surgery for Chiari malformation and scoliosis. In the last year, I worked at various Travis County elections as an election clerk. In my free time, you’re likely to find me enjoying my main interests, gardening and cooking.
I’ve seen how special this community is, not only first-hand, but through the eyes of my daughters and three grandchildren, for whom Wells Branch has been a home-away-from-home. My entire family has enjoyed the Wells Branch festivals, parks, pools, and trail system, and we have all experienced the unique feeling of community that is so strong in the Wells Branch neighborhood.
Prior to the pandemic, I was elected to the board of the Wells Branch Neighborhood Association. I am looking forward to working for the benefit of the Wells Branch community. Working together, the neighborhood will emerge from the pandemic and continue to be a wonderful place to work and live.
Place 7 – Margaret Sufke – President
Howdy! I’m Margaret Sufke, a Wells Branch resident since 2013. I have been active in the community for several years; A current WBNA board member, serving for the past six years. I also served one term as secretary on the WB Friends of the Library board. In addition, I established and chair the Wells Branch Photo Club, now in it’s 7th year. I’ve played an active role in community program development and support of the WB Eco Fair, Cultural Diversity Fair and the WB Community Calendar photo contest. I maintain active participation in many on-going WBNA, FOL and MUD community events including guest speaker for several community programs such as the FOL Adult Financial Series, Disney’s First Star and the Solar Project Planning program.
Building Community Together. The WBNA motto says it all. Working together for the benefit of the entire community fosters fellowship and strengthens the sense of community within Wells Branch. Each community member’s individual contribution is what makes Wells Branch great. I would like to offer a personal commitment to help build that spirit of community.
In my professional life, I’m a Senior Program Manager, Instructional Designer, Technical Instructor and Quality Process Engineer with strong technology-based and photographic skills. And of course, a true sense of fun and imagination. Please feel free to contact me at email@example.com or 512-341-0428.
Chuck left us in May of 2020, way too soon. His strong sense of community and friendship helped to shape and define the true spirit of Wells Branch. Please take a minute to remember him as you enjoy all the benefits of our wonderful community in the coming months. We all agree, he will be missed but his contributions will not be forgotten.
It’s worth noting that Chuck’s presence touched nearly everyone in Wells Branch in some way. Over the years, he held many positions within the community, WB MUD Board President, WB Armada President, WBNA Vice President, Homestead Board President, WB MUD ACC Board Chair, role model and District Representative for the various scouting programs, active participant in the WB FOL (Friends of the Library), as well as his tireless efforts for our community and his constant presence and on-going participation in the various neighborhood events. Chuck was a wealth of knowledge, a strong ally and a true friend. He is missed.
Lara Bennett – Retired Easter Egg Hunt Coordinator Extraordinaire!
Hello Wells Branch! I’m Lara Bennett. I’ve been involved with the WBNA since 2000 when I ran my first Easter Egg Hunt for the neighborhood. The WBNA Easter Egg Hunt has always been a family affair with my son as the Easter Bunny for several years and now my husband. I have so enjoyed the events that involve the kids. I love seeing the joy on their faces during the Christmas Hayride and the Pumpkin Painting. Working for a wonderful community like Wells Branch as part of the neighborhood association has been a happy time for me. I look forward to many more Easter Egg Hunts and Hayrides!
Jon Klekman – Past Board Member 2021
Hello neighborhood, I’m Jon Klekman, and am super honored to continue my work bringing together this beautiful, talented and diverse community. In organizing driveway Jazz performances during the pandemic, I had a great opportunity to meet so many of you and your families. We’ve had conversations about what you love about the neighborhood and what’s important to you and how you’d like to participate in its progress. I can’t wait to help bring us together to share our talents and visions. Here are a few projects I hope to work on (some of which already exist and are on pandemic pause) with the support of the team and neighborhood: Civics classes (virtual and in person when safe), Communication of local government resources/updates via social media, Litter Pick Up Events, Senior Events geared towards camaraderie, updates to Welcome One-Pagers for new Wells Branch residents with links and resources, WB Small Business guild (including business spotlights/networking), Performances (poetry, music and art), Wellness Committee, Neighborhood sourced Public Safety Improvements and support and promotion of our WB Photography Club.
A little about me: I was born in New York and moved to Austin in 2008 at the height of the recession with only my bass and a suitcase. I have lived in South Austin, East Austin and finally Wells Branch since then. I met my wife during one of my visits to Austin and we have been together ever since + 1 toddler now. My day job is working for the Teacher Retirement System of Texas (TRS), and I also lead and manage my Jazz group which plays public and private shows, many shows geared towards local non-profits.