Harlan Neal, Lufkin High School Associate Principal
Harlan Neal is a Lufkin native and homegrown educator. He graduated from Lufkin High School in 1985, and he went on to get his Bachelor of Art in Fine Arts from Stephen F. Austin State University. He also earned a Master Degree in Elementary Education (Art emphasis) and a Master Degree in Educational Leadership with a Principal Certification. With 31 years of experience, Mr. Neal has served as a teacher and administrator, most recently being a 9th grade Assistant Principal at Lufkin High School.
Mr. Neal stated, “I am honored to be selected as the Associate Principal at Lufkin High School. I believe it is important that students know that our faculty and staff play a vital role in their success at Lufkin High School. I also believe that developing positive relationships with our students is an extremely critical component for success. I look forward to help providing great opportunities for all students to succeed at Lufkin High School.”
Mr. Neal is married to Cindy Neal, also a former Lufkin Panther. They have four children. Kristen Neal, Haley Roe and Patrick Neal, all Lufkin High School graduates, and Delaney Neal, a student at Lufkin Middle School.
Mollie Havard, Lufkin Middle School Associate Principal
Mollie Havard is a graduate of Stephen F. Austin State University with a Bachelor’s of Science in Mathematics and Statistics. She earned her masters degree in Educational Leadership through Lamar University where she also completed her Principal and Superintendent certifications. Mrs. Havard has called Lufkin ISD home for the last 13 years as a math teacher and most recently as an Assistant Principal at Lufkin High School.
Mrs. Havard stated, “I am honored and excited to have the opportunity to serve Lufkin Middle School as the Associate Principal. I am passionate about helping all students succeed, and I look forward to working alongside our staff to ensure we are providing the very best environment for our students.”
Mrs. Havard is married to Shayne Havard, and they have two sons, Gunner, who attends Slack Elementary, and Cooper, who is a student at Burley Primary.
Starla Hill, Coston Elementary Principal
Starla Hill started her educational career 16 years ago, all with Lufkin ISD. At Slack Elementary, she taught 4th grade Reading and Science, 3rd grade ELAR/Math Transitional, and 5th grade Dual Language. During this time, she served on numerous committees, sponsored Student Council, coached the LMS Twirling Team, and implemented the Latino Literacy Project on campus. Mrs. Hill has spent the last seven years working as Instructional Coach at Coston Elementary. She is a graduate from Lufkin High School and attended Texas A&M University where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies. Later, she received her Master’s degree in Educational Leadership and a principal certification from Stephen F. Austin State University.
Raised in Lufkin, where her parents Starkey and Sheila Sorrell reside, Mrs. Hill knew early on she would enter into a career in education.
“My mother was an educator for 34 years, and she inspired me to enter the field of education. I saw the difference she made in the lives of her students, and I wanted to dedicate my life in helping others and instill a desire for lifelong learning in my own students. I am both honored and excited to serve as principal of Coston Elementary,” said Mrs. Hill.
Mrs. Hill has been married to her loving and supportive husband, Kipp Hill, for 10 years. They enjoy gathering with family, spending time outdoors, and traveling.
Yaneth Clifton, Burley Primary Principal
Yaneth Clifton began her career in education 23 years ago with Lufkin ISD. For 14 years she served as a classroom teacher at Slack Elementary where she taught in both One Way and Two Way Dual programs. In 2011, Mrs. Clifton joined the district’s Division of Instruction department as a Bilingual Instructional Coach serving the district K-5 campuses. During this time she also served as the district’s Science Instructional Coach. In 2014, Mrs. Clifton joined the Slack Elementary administration team as the Assistant Principal. In 2017 she began her service as a district principal at Slack Elementary.
Mrs. Clifton is a proud member of Lufkin High School’s class of 1995. After high school she pursued her teacher certification through Lufkin ISD’s Grow Your Own program. She attended Stephen F. Austin State University where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies. In 2011 she completed her Master’s Degree in Teacher Leadership with a principal certification through Lamar University.
“We are very proud of our new administrative staff members. We look forward to their leadership, hard work, and dedication to Lufkin ISD. Each one of them is especially suited for their roles and will do great things for the Lufkin Panther Family,” said Lynn Torres, Superintendent.
Danny Whisenant, Slack Elementary Principal
Danny Whisenant earned his bachelor’s degree from Stephen F. Austin State University with a double major in English and History and his master’s degree in Educational Leadership. He began his career as an English Language Arts/Reading Teacher. He has served at Lufkin ISD in the following capacities: classroom teacher, 7th grade Assistant Principal, Special Education Assistant Principal, Instructional Coach and Principal.
His wife, Aunchalee, also works in the district at Herty Primary. His daughter, Ivy, will enter fourth grade this year at Slack Elementary.
Mr. Whisenant said, “I am honored to serve the students and staff at Slack Elementary. Slack holds a special place in my heart—and I am excited to be a part of the wonderful things happening across our campus.”