Wisdom from Women in The Woodlands: Meet Dr. Ann K. Snyder
THE WOODLANDS, Texas -- Dr. Ann K. Snyder has had several mentors in her life, learning along the way as she experienced her first volunteer encounter at age 12 to where she is today.
'Sometimes someone doesn't see their gift and they just need a little encouragement' Dr. Ann K. Snyder
"We all have mentors," Snyder said. "They reach out and give you guidance, they help you grow in life. I've had many mentors, but it started with my mother and father. They were my role models."
Snyder's parents, Army veteran and surgeon Dr. Robert Koefoot, and her mother Vera "Bobbie" Koefoot, instilled the importance of community service at a young age.
"My father was a physician," Snyder said. "I would work with him at his office, and sometimes people would come in and pay him with corn they had raised on their farm. My mother was an incredible volunteer. She volunteered at the Head Start program in schools, and that's where I saw firsthand the things we take for granted – a toothbrush, food on the table. It opened my eyes to the reason that those who have are to help those who have not."
Originally from Nebraska, Snyder wanted to be a teacher – and she did just that. She's taught preschool through college, and went on to serve 15 years on the Conroe ISD Board of Trustees and as president for two terms.
Snyder holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Education from Colorado State University, a Master of Education degree from the University of Missouri at Columbia, and a Doctorate in Curriculum and Instruction from Baylor University. She met her husband Jerry during undergrad studies in Colorado.
"When we moved to The Woodlands in the late 80's, it was much, much smaller," Snyder said. "Not quite 20,000 people. We raised our family here, and now our grandchildren live here. It's been a wonderful community to be a part of. And that's why I ran for the Township."
After her time at Conroe ISD, she wasn't sure what to do next – but she said the lack of respect in local politics ignited a fire.
"You can disagree, but still be respectful," Snyder said. "That's why I initially ran for office. My husband always tells me 'you can do this.' But we prayed about it a lot before I filed the first time for the Township."
Snyder was elected in 2015. She is currently secretary on the Township board of directors, and also serves as chairman of the Township's Economic Development Committee.
Snyder's term expires in 2019.
"Right now, it's my plan to run again," she said, "but time will tell."
Meanwhile, Snyder is enjoying her latest role as Executive Director of Generosity for The Woodlands United Methodist Church and as Head of Schools for The Woodlands Methodist Schools.
Prior to her position at The Woodlands United Methodist Church, Snyder served as President and CEO of Interfaith of The Woodlands.
Snyder's words of wisdom for women is one of unity.
"I've always been a strong proponent of encouraging women to become all that they can be," Snyder said. "I think it's important for our youth as well as for those who are later in life to join the workforce, join whatever their passion is. We need to help each other, build that strong camaraderie. Don't undercut each other or see each other as threats. Instead, see the potential and learn from each other.
"It's not about 'me', it's about 'we'."