John Mark Dempsey


Dr. John Mark Dempsey is an associate professor of radio-television at A&M-Commerce, part of the department of Literature and Languages.  He works part-time as a news announcer-producer for the Texas State Network in Dallas.  Dr. Dempsey was the first student to broadcast on KETR back in 1975 and was also the first person to broadcast Commerce Tigers football on the station (as a student.)

Ways to Connect

Mike Licht, Notions Capital.Com Library of Congress CC BY 2.0

Dr. LaVelle Hendricks, professor of psychology at Texas A&M-Commerce, says the usual observances of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day that he leads at churches in Commerce and Sulphur Springs will not take place this year because of the coronavirus pandemic.  But his students have been challenged to perform acts of public service on the holiday.

Kim Saenz, director of the Hunt Regional Emergency Centers in Commerce and Quinlan, says after the first delivery of coronavirus vaccines were administered, the county is now waiting for a new shipment of vaccines.  A task force is developing a plan for the procedures in providing the next round of vaccines, whenever they may come.  According to the Texas Division of Emergency Management COVID-19 Vaccine Availability website, the vaccines w

Todd Wiseman, Texas Tribune

Dr. Dale Funderburk, long-time Texas A&M-Commerce economics professor, reflects on an article analyzing the manufacturing industry of San Antonio, in particular, but says the slow return of jobs in Texas manufacturing from the coronavirus restrictions will be similar across Texas.

CC-PDM 1.0 Creative Commons, Presidio of Monterey: DHFLC & USAG

Pud Kearns with Housewarmers of Greenville says a tranining seminar at the Best Western Hotel from 9 a.m. to 12 noon Saturday (Janaury 16)will teach participants to survive in an active-shooter situation.  The seminar is presented by "Protect His House," a group that promotes safety for church congregations. Because of the coronavirus situation, it is uncertain if the annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Day parade will take place Monday (January 18).

NASA Orion Spacecraft, CC-BY-NC 2.0, Creative Commons

Dr. Kent Montgomery, head of the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Texas A&M-Commerce, considers the major space projects planned for 2021.  One is the DART project, in which NASA and the Japanese space agency are sending a spacecraft to collide with an asteroid, as a way of developing a method of protecting Earth against a disastrous collision.   Also, NASA will attempt to land an Orion space capsule on the moon, with plans to send astronauts back to the moon by 2024.

Commerce ISD, Facebook

Charlie Alderman, Commerce ISD superintendent, says the Commerce schools will re-open after the holidays on Tuesday (January 12), and will carefully watch the amount of coronavirus infection among students, teachers and staff.  He says opening nearly two weeks after New Year's Day has given the district more time to monitor the situation following the holidays.

Creative Commons CC-BY-2.0 DoNotLick

Derek Price, author of the "Cargazing" column that appears n the Herald-Banner and is nationally syndicated, reflects on reports that Apple is developing a self-driving car in competition with Tesla and others.  News reports say Apple is making progress in creating a new, long-lasting battery for the car.

Cooper Lake State Park, Facebook

Steve Killian, superintendent of Cooper Lake State Park, says the South Sulphur and Doctors Creek units will be closed this weekend for a youth deer-hunting event.  Both units of the park are now offering self-guided hiking tours, with maps provided at the park headquarters.

Texas Tribune

Dr. Dale Funderburk, retired Texas A&M-Commerce professor of economics, reflects on a recent "D" magazine article by SMU economics professors W. Michael Cox and Richard Alm arguing that despite Texas' reputation as a business-friendly, free-market state, the amount of business regulation is actually too great.  The article states that Texas highest the fifth-highest rate of business restructions in the U.S.

A&M-Commerce Athletics

Tim McMurray, Texas A&M-Commerce Athletic Director, discusses the football program's need to find a home game for Saturday, Oct. 2 after the scheduled opponent, Azusa Pacific, decided to drop football.  He says an NAIA opponent might be found to fill the date.

Brad Davis, Facebook

Grammy-Award winning Commerce musician and music producer Brad Davis discusses his recent recording of the "Star-Spangled Banner," in the tradition of Jimi Hendrix' legendary version of the National Anthem.  Brad, who represents Alvarez and Gretsch guitars, performed the "Banner" out of respect and also as a demonstration of his unique guitar techniques.  With new management, Brad expects to have a busier performance

Soul, Disney, Facebook

Alice Reese, Herald-Banner movie critic, says "Soul," an animated feature from Pixar, is entertaining for all ages and carries a life-affirming message.  Jamie Foxx provided the voice for the lead character, a middle-school teacher who longs to be a professional jazz musician.  Alice also has high praise for "Promising Young Woman," a high-quality thriller.

Christmas Story, Facebook

Carol Taylor, chairman of the Hunt County Historical Commission, recently wrote a blog essay looking back at Greenville and Hunt County at Christmas, 1920, 100 years ago, as described in the Greenville Evening Banner.  Children gazing in shop windows at wondrous toys was one of the major activities, as portrayed in "A Christmas Story."

A&M-Commerce Athletics

Tim McMurray, Texas A&M-Commerce athletic director, discusses the challenge of scheduling and playing basketball games as the coronavirus pandemic continues.  Games will be played with only athletic department staff and family present before at least January 16.


Commerce ISD Superintendent Charlie Alderman says the school board has agreed to begin a study of possibly building a new Commerce Middle School.  The board will determine whether the school district's financial position will allow a bond issue, among other factors.  The existing middle school building was built as Commerce High School and opened in 1968.   Also, the superintendent says the Commerce schools will not reopen until Tuesday, January 12, which he hopes will allow enough time following the holidays to avoid another

Sharon Feldt of Sulphur Springs, our books commentator, reviews the work of Commerce author Brian Dowsley, who has added two new novels to his "Gallactice Pathfinder" series, "Vegeance" and "Tears of Ethan."  Sharon also discusses the work of Houston author Dr


Commerce Mayor Wyman Williams says the City Council has approved a notice of intent to issue Certificates of Obligation and other actions to prepare for up to $3.5 million in street improvements and rehabilitation of the city's water and wastewater plant.  The mayor says the projects are possible because the city has retired other debt and is a very good financial position.

CASA Hunt County

Lori Cope, the director of CASA (Court-Appointed Special Advocates) of Hunt County, says the organization that supports children in foster care is concerned that the moratorium on evicting renters from their homes ends December 31, and that it will put more children into situations that may send them into foster care.

Cooper Lake State Park, Facebook

Steve Killian, the superintendent of Cooper Lake State Park, says the park will hold its annual "Winter Wonderland" Christmas lights celebration on Friday and Saturday night (December 18-29) at the Doctors Creek unit of the park.  The park will be filled with campers and they will decorate their cabins and trailers with holiday lights.

Texas A&M Health Science Center

Kim Saenz, the director of the Hunt Regional Emergency Centers in Commerce and Quinlan, says so far the number of flu cases is down this year, possibly because so many people are observing precautions because of the coronavirus, as well as many people receiving the flu shot.

Wild Mountain Thyme, Facebook

Alice Reese, Herald-Banner movie critic, says the Irish romantic comedy "Wild Mountain Thyme" has a lot in common with the classic John Wayne-Maureen O'Hara movie, "The Quiet Man," and in fact, was filmed in County Mayo, Ireland, as was the earlier film.  And Alice also enjoyed the Disney college-football movie, "Safety," based on true events at Clemson University.

One Way Stock, CC BY-ND 2.0, Creative Commons

Frances Dalbey, outreach specialist for Hunt Regional Healthcare, says the time is now to plan for your New Year's Resolutions.  Hunt Regional provides helpful resources for your planning.

Shahrin Ahmad (Shah Gazer) CC BY-NC-SA 2.0, Creative Commons

Dr. Kent Montgomery, head of the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Texas A&M-Commerce, says the convergence of Jupiter and Saturn, peaking on Dec.

Wikimedia Commons

Carol Taylor, chairman of the Hunt County Historical Commission, says Dean Hallmark is one of the young men from Greenville and the surrounding area who should be remembered on the anniversary of Pearl Harbor.  Hallmark did not lose his life at Pearl Harbor, but he was one of the pilots on the Doolittle Raid on Tokyo in 1942.  Like many, he had to ditch his plane, and he was captured and executed by the Japanese.  He was a member of the 1933 Greenville state championship football tea

Texas A&M Agrilife

Hunt County Master Gardener Wayne Bowman says December and January are good months to plant fruit trees in Northeast Texas, including peach, apple and plum trees.  Wayne recommends planting bare-root trees because they're cheaper.  He says trees may begin producing fruit within two or three years.

Commerce Chamber of Commerce, Facebook

Paul Voss, Commerce Chamber of Commerce manager, relates plans for the Chamber's annual Christmas parade at 6 p.m. Saturday (Dec. 5).  The parade will take a new and longer route this year, starting at City Park and going south and crossing Culver Street.  It will then proceed to Sterling Hart Drive; Charity Road;  Monroe Street; Live Oak; Washington; Main Street in downtown Commerce; and back to City Park. Paul says this will allow more space for social distancing.


First United Methodist Church

Amy Stark, with the Merry Marketplace for Missions presented by the First United Methodist Church of Commerce, says the annual event is going online this year because of the threat of the coronavirus.  Bidding on items -- many homemade -- will take place Wednesday through 3 p-m. Saturday (Dec. 3-5).  The event raises money for local mission projects of the church.

Cat Dancing CC BY-ND 2.0 Creative Commons

Pud Kearns with Housewarmers of Greenville says although Greenville will not have a Christmas parade this year, several events featuring Christmas lights will bring a festive feeling to the city.

FB35 CC BY 2.0 Creative Commons

Derek Price, writer of the "Cargazing" column that appears in the Herald-Banner and that is nationally syndicated, reflects on news that the price of used cars has sharply increased during the coronavirus pandemic.

Community Seeds, Facebook

Bert Cooper, director of Community Seeds of Lone Oak, says because of the threat of the coronavirus the annual fund-raising Christmas dinner hosted by the organization at 6 p.m., Thursday (Dec. 3) will be a "backward parade." In other words, cars of supporters will pass through the National Guard Armory parking lot on Jack Finney Bouldevard, viewing holiday lights and other holiday attractions, and receive a prime-rib dinner to-go as they leave.  Supporters of Community Seeds should indicate their plans to attend by Wednesday (Dec.