Art has been her earliest and constant passion. She remembers copying illustrations from her early reading books, like Dr. Seuss. In high school she gained a reputation as the artist that could copy anything. She painted nearly all of the posters and run-through banners for her high-school football team. She also won a county-wide logo competition for United Way. She received many scholarships to art colleges and decided to become an art major at Harding University. She completed her 4-year graphic design degree in 2004. She enjoyed taking as many art courses as possible, including (but not limited to) Painting 101, Advanced Painting, Watercolor, Drawing, Mixed Media, Pottery, Jewelry-making, and many Graphic Design courses. After graduating college, she worked for eSports Partners (of Coppell, TX) designing brochures, advertisements, websites, and other e-commerce materials for many college and professional Football teams including the New York Giants, the New England Patriots, the Washington Redskins, the Detroit Lions, the Arizona Cardinals, the Los Angeles Chargers, the Miami Dolphins, the Tennessee Titans, the University of Tennessee, and others. After that she moved to Virginia and worked for a printing press called Payne Publishers. She learned so much and loved working there. It was so rewarding to work for a family-owned business with ethics and genuine love for their employees. She blossomed in this nurturing environment, and the experience was a wonderful one that allowed her to reach her potential as a graphic designer. She met her spouse during her time in Virginia and worked at Payne Publishers until the day her first child was born. She feels that with children we continually have a new beginning, a blank canvas. As one of the new RC3 art teachers, she considers it an honor and blessing to witness and encourage the talents of the children of the Royse City Christian Co-op.
She enjoys seeking new learning opportunities and experiences. Throughout her life, she has tried to learn about many different fields. Her hobbies have included piano, choir, art, sound engineering, piloting, astronomy, web development, sign language, and photography. During college, she discovered that she had an interest in technology. She graduated with her BA in Computer Science in 2003 and an MS in Computer Engineering in 2007. While working on her technical classes, she also took every American Sign Language class available, played in a steel band, joined the fencing club, and founded the university’s chess club. Her summers were filled with classes, mission trips, and internships. She had opportunities to help teach citizenship and ESL classes, lead a Girl Scout troop, take children on weekly field trips, and conduct public tours on solar physics at the National Solar Observatory. Upon completion of her Master’s degree, she moved to the Rockwall area and began work as a software engineer. During that time, she helped to create tools used by other groups for testing both hardware and software. She discovered her true passion was for bridging the technical understanding of the engineers with the non-technical requests from the end users. She soon moved into a systems engineering position that allowed her to interface with both end users and with engineers. She was able to architect solutions, create software requirements, test the software throughout its life cycle, and train the users on how to use the new tools.
In 2007 she married a wonderful Christian man who shares many of the same interests and passions that I have – including computer science, church ministry, and playing music. When their daughter was born in 2011, she left her engineering position to be able to stay home with her. Through first her daughter, and now also her son, she has rediscovered her passion for American Sign Language. ASL has provided a wonderful means for early communication with both children, and she continues to use it as a kinesthetic second language at home. In 2013, she joined the Signing Time Academy and began teaching basic American Sign Language vocabulary to families interested in using it for early communication with their children. She now has her own business, “Signing with Cheryl-Annette”, and she is very much enjoying teaching again.