We thank God that Tonya survived the terrorist attack of September 11, 2001 with only a few scrapes. She enjoyed Manhattan for 2 years, but after witnessing the World Trade Center tragedy first hand, it was time to move on and away from the traumatic memories of that fateful day. You can read her story of the World Trade Center disaster (may not be suitable for children).
Tonya grew up in Little Rock and Benton, Arkansas. She has lived in Austin, Texas, near New York City, in Dallas Texas, and now lives in Little Rock, Arkansas. Tonya worked in the investment banking business for about a decade after graduating in 1999 from the University of Texas at Austin with a Bachelor of Business Administration Degree in Finance.
Tonya's first job out of college was at Lehman Brothers in New York City. Lehman Brothers was a full-service global investment bank with offices in 40 cities worldwide. Tonya lived in Hoboken, New Jersey across the river from Manhattan where she worked in the downtown financial district. Tonya worked as an Operations Analyst in the Equities Division until shortly after 9/11 when she left the New York City area and moved back to Austin, Texas in late 2001. Tonya has worked at large and small investment companies in Austin and Dallas, Texas including Merril Lynch, Penn Investment Group, and UT Investment.
When Tonya moved to Austin, Texas, 2 of my brothers, David and Dale, lived there. We could drive to Austin in a day, or Tonya could drive home. When Tonya moved to the big city far away, things were different. We have been trusting God to be with her, and we believe that angels are protecting her.
When I wrote the previous paragraph in 1999, I had no idea that Tonya would need God's special protection in September, 2001. We thank God that Tonya survived. Would I be so confident in God's protecting power if she had not survived? I probably don't want to know the answer.Tonya graduated from Bryant High School in 1993. She took English in the summer of 1992 so that she could graduate from high school a year early. 1992 was also the year that Tonya got her first job working part time at a grocery store.
Tonya received scholarship offers from The University of Central Arkansas in Conway, and the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. She commuted to UCA from our home near Benton for one semester.
Tonya attended UALR, the University of Arkansas at Little Rock for a semester. Then she decided to follow her dream and attend the University of Texas in Austin.
Tonya moved to Austin in the fall of 1994. While establishing Texas residency, she worked as a full time teller at Worthen Bank and a part time customer service associate at Highland Mall. After one year she was able to attend college as a Texas resident and avoid the high out-of-state tuition costs.
Tonya attended the UT College of Business and also took some classes from Austin Community College. While going to school, she worked part time (nearly 40 hours some weeks). She worked as a teller and accounting assistant at a credit union for employees of the Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA), and later worked as an accountanting assistant at Executive Association Management, Inc.
We are proud of Tonya as she continues to pursue her goals in life. We pray for God's continued blessings for Tonya.