Betsy Blaney

Producer, KTTZ-FM

Betsy Blaney is a radio producer at Texas Tech Public Media, following a 25-year career in print journalism. Most recently, she was the West Texas solo correspondent for The Associated Press, based in Lubbock for more than 16 years and covering 65 counties in the region.

She interviewed, researched and wrote on myriad topics, including agriculture and water/drought issues, and newsworthy happenings at Texas Tech University. She was also responsible for coverage of the university's football and basketball programs.

Before being transferred to Lubbock, Betsy worked briefly in the AP's office in Dallas. Prior to that, she was a police and courts reporter for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. She started her journalism career in 1991 at The Lewisville News, just north of Dallas, following a 20-year career as a teaching and playing tennis professional. She was a line judge in 1973 in the Houston Astrodome where Billie Jean King defeated Bobby Riggs in "The Battle of the Sexes."

Drive a short distance east of Interstate 27 on Broadway Street and you’ll come across a relic of earlier times in Lubbock. The old Cliffhouse Restaurant no longer has a roof, windows or doors. But to one Lubbock woman, it’s a small slice of art heaven. Cimmee Hagy is working to turn it into an art gallery and a nearby former RV park into a community garden and kitchen.

“It was incredible looking when it went up and when it was open, and we want it to be incredible looking and inviting looking again,” she says.

Texas Tech is the largest university in the western two-thirds of the state, and its footprint looks to be growing. There are 17 campuses across the system, including one in Seville, Spain, and the soon-to-opened one in Costa Rica. But two other projects – a dental school in El Paso and a vet school in Amarillo -- are also in the works.

Texas Tech’s enrollment numbers will continue to climb and university officials are working to ensure the rate at which the school grows doesn’t sacrifice quality. The system’s chancellor, Robert Duncan, says the right balance is important.

Just more than 37,000 students enrolled at Texas Tech University last fall. In the fall of 1997, the number of undergraduate and graduate students stood at around 25,022. That’s more than a 32 percent increase in 20 years.

Texas Tech alum Dr. Jeremy Brown knows that trying to fill the shoes of his predecessor at Hospice of Lubbock isn’t realistic. But he’s dedicated to working every day to ensure the nonprofit is the best it can be and continues to provide dignity and relief to those in its care. Brown is also the medical director of the organization.

Charlie Wasson served as executive director at Hospice of Lubbock for eight years before his sudden and unexpected death in May. His successor, Dr. Jeremy Brown, will now serve as both executive director and medical director.
 

Melanie Tatum, unit assistant director for sustainability and warehouse operations
Betsy Blaney

Melanie Tatum never dreamed recycling on the Texas Tech campus would pay off so big for students. Proceeds from the university’s recycling efforts since 2013 have led to scholarships totaling $130 thousand dollars since 2013. In the last fiscal year the sustainability program recycled almost 600 tons of materials dropped off at the University Student Housing Recycling Center.

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