American Graduate Champion: Joellen Gates

KLRU shares the inspiring stories of the people that are making our community a success! As part of our American Graduate initiative, we’re honoring American Graduate Champions that have been submitted by the community.


Today’s champion is Joellen Gates! Joellen Gates is a community member in Buda, Texas. When she isn’t working for the IRS, Gates works to help addiction sufferers through a support group – 1313 – she and her husband started. “She is a champion because she puts everything to the side to help another,” her nomination form said. “In her 1313 meeting in Austin, TX, she leads the meeting and speaks with addicts, alcoholics, and recovering people and works with them through a 12 step process that she has found worked for her in her time of weakness. She receives phone calls from these people all day every day no matter what time it is, and speaks with them in a comforting but firm way to lead them down the path of success.”

Do you know someone in our community who is working to improve high school success for students throughout Central Texas? Recognize them as an American Graduate Champion! American Graduate Champions can be students who work as mentors, business leaders who serve as role models, school officials making changes to better the system, parent activists, and even struggling students who are overcoming obstacles in order to graduate.