2018 DRFFA Scholarship Announcements

2018 DRFFA Scholarships Announcement by David Gibson, Scholarship Committee

The Dallas Retired Fire Fighters Association is awarding nine scholarships this year to deserving family members of the Dallas Fire Rescue Department. The DRFFA is awarding seven one thousand dollar scholarships and the independent scholarship selection committee is donating two one thousand dollar scholarships. We are forever grateful for Ms. Harriet Miers who has given her valuable time for many years to chair and organize an exemplary selection committee. We also would like to thank William E. Marple, Attorney & Director of Pro Bono and Bar Relations, Legal Aid of Northwest Texas and a former Municipal Judge and Gregory Smith, M.A. Vice President, The Center for American and International Law, Director, Institute for Law Enforcement Administration for their service on the selection committee. This is a time consuming process as there have been many impressive applicants.

We are pleased to announce the 2018 DRFFA Scholarship recipients:

Kaitlyn Nicole Amundson is the daughter of firefighter Brett Amundson and granddaughter of retired fire fighter Vernon Amundson. Kaitlyn graduated Magna Cum Laude from Texas A&M University and is now continuing her education at Texas A&M University School of Law. Upon graduation she hopes to practice law in her own community giving those in a rural area the access to legal services they deserve that are not always available. She is passionate about serving her community and has demonstrated this by volunteering for numerous opportunities.

Kourtney Breanne Amundson is the daughter of firefighter Brett Amundson and granddaughter of retired fire fighter Vernon Amundson. Kourtney graduated from Clifton High School where she was a member of the concert and marching bands, National Honor Society and was involved in a countless number of community service projects. She also participated in a mission trip to Honduras with the North Texas Missions. Kourtney plans on attending Tarleton State University to obtain a Bachelor’s Degree in Kinesiology.


Garrett Michael Janek, son of fire fighter Stephen Janek, graduated from Italy High School where he was on the football, baseball and basketball teams. And he was a member of FFA for four years and volunteered with his local community food bank. Garrett plans on attending Texas A&M University majoring in Agriculture Business and is looking forward to using the knowledge he gains to further the success of their family farm. Garrett also aspires to the possibilities of joining the Dallas Fire Department to be of service to the community.


Stormi Leonard is the daughter of fire fighter Scott Leonard and granddaughter of retired fire fighter Roger Chumley. She plans on continuing her college education at Ouachita Baptist University where she has been on the volleyball team for three years, team captain for two years and has been outstanding in their numerous wins. Stormi is currently president of the Student Athletic Advisory Committee and takes an active role in other school activities. Her love of sports has inspired her to someday be working with the NFL in some capacity or to be involved in sports broadcasting.


Taylor Michelle Piper is the daughter of fire fighter Joseph Piper. She is a graduate of Woodrow Wilson High School where she was a National Honor Society member for several years. She has been active in community service by volunteering with the Department of Aging & Disability Services, March of Dimes, American Heart Association and participated in North Texas Giving Day. Taylor plans on attending the University of Houston to major in Pharmaceutical Sciences or Biochemistry with a focus on the research, design and development of drugs for chronic diseases.


Austin Smithey is the son of fire fighter Jason Smithey. He is a graduate from Waxahachie High School where he was on the varsity tennis team, a member of FFA and was part of his school band that was awarded several honors. During the past four years part of his community service was volunteering approximately 200 hours for four different mission trips. Austin plans on attending the University of Texas to major in Biomedical Science. His interest in animals is expressed by his goal of being a Veterinarian.


Kaitlyn Michelle Stambaugh is the granddaughter of retired fire fighter David Stambaugh. She graduated from Kaufman High School where she was involved in many school activities. She was a class officer, on the honor roll and finished her education in three years. Kaitlyn has been involved in community service opportunities impacting the lives of her peers, children, parents and senior citizens. She plans on attending Texas A&M University as a communications major with a minor in business and using this as a stepping stone to a profession as a Dentist or Lawyer. Her ultimate goal is to serve her community and others.


Baylie Elizabeth Vike is the granddaughter of retired fire fighter Rodney Vike. She has completed the Masters Academy Home School Program excelling in several honors subjects and has taken classes from Collin County Community College. Baylie has been involved in many community service areas, participates in church activities and was part of a mission trip to Guatemala. She plans on attending the University of North Texas and major in Political Science and minor in Spanish and wants to use this education to continue serving the people of Guatemala and other countries.


Stephanie Lynn Vike is the granddaughter of retired fire fighter Rodney Vike. She attended Forney High School where she was in the band and participated in other school activities. She is involved in volunteer work and is currently assisting with childcare at the Community Life Church and helped to complete a project at Cornerstone Church. Stephanie plans on attending Trinity Valley Community College pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree in Science with the intent to further her education to obtain a Nursing Degree. Her goal is to someday work as a NICU Nurse.