Tracy headshot

Tracy Maness

Reporter/Storyteller

Location icon United States

I love to reach into the depth of a story to bring out what is important as well as the little details that pull it all together.

As a reporter for Houston Community Newspapers, a branch of the Houston Chronicle, I have covered the Katy and Bellaire/West University beats. While developing community relationships, I have done a lot of education reporting but have also written about COVID-19 efforts, elections, health care and local events. I have featured businesses, nonprofits and everyday people doing newsworthy things.

Before HCN, I worked as a freelance writer and intern for Community Impact Newspaper. There, I addressed topics like education, health care, nonprofits, law enforcement, transportation, the environment and local business and calendar developments.

I am skilled at interviewing subjects, writing and editing, and I look forward to hearing from you about the stories you need told.

Portfolio
HoustonChronicle.com
10/13/2020
Katy Budget Books recommends these favorite Halloween reads

Since Halloween is just around the corner, Katy Budget Books has some spooky book recommendations for readers of all ages. After more than 30 years around the same Fry Road intersection, the bookstore moved to 870 S. Mason Road, Katy, in December 2019. This month is its 37th anniversary.

HoustonChronicle.com
10/01/2020
Lone Star Flight Museum ready for fall events with restored TBM Avenger

Ahead of its 30th anniversary in November, Lone Star Flight Museum has a full schedule of fall events and reintroduces its TBM Avenger on Friday, Oct. 2. The Avenger is the same model of plane as the one former President George H.W. Bush was shot down in over the Pacific during World War II in 1944.

HoustonChronicle.com
09/28/2020
Katy ISD board candidates discuss issues facing the district

The Katy Independent School District Board of Trustees has three positions on the Nov. 3 ballot. Ahead of early voting, which runs Tuesday, Oct. 13, through Friday, Oct. 30, the five candidates were asked to submit written answers on five topics.

HoustonChronicle.com
09/18/2020
National Recovery Month: The Salvation Army helps men escape addiction

Everyday across the Houston area, people struggle with drug and alcohol addiction, so The Salvation Army Adult Rehabilitation Center is there to help men recover. September is National Recovery Month. In its 31st year, the special month brings awareness and a better understanding of mental and substance use disorders and shines light on those who recover.

HoustonChronicle.com
09/08/2020
First day of in-person instruction for nearly 41,000 Katy ISD students

As Katy Independent School District greeted nearly 41,000 students for the first day of in-person instruction on Tuesday, Sept. 8, McElwain Elementary School opened for the first time for approximately 370 young learners. School started virtually on Aug. 19 for the district's nearly 84,000 students, but Sept.

HoustonChronicle.com
09/02/2020
Suicide Prevention Month: Take advantage of telehealth during COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected mental health, so Suicide Prevention Month is all the more important this year. The Texas Psychological Association is educating the public about preventing suicide with tips and resources. Texas Psychological Association President Megan Mooney, Ph.D., says circumstances of the pandemic continue to impact Texans' lives and mental health.

HoustonChronicle.com
09/02/2020
Houston oncologist discusses COVID-19's impact on cancer community

Dr. Philip Salem said the United States has an elaborate system to prevent a nuclear attack but was caught off guard when a viral threat hit instead. Salem has spent 52 years in medicine and is the president of Salem Oncology Center in the Texas Medical Center and the director emeritus of cancer research at Baylor St.

HoustonChronicle.com
08/28/2020
PPE distribution at Cinco Ranch brings out area residents

Even though COVID-19 numbers are decreasing, Fort Bend County Judge KP George advised community members to stay vigilant about the virus as personal protection equipment (PPE) was handed out on Friday, Aug. 28. Vehicles lined up for the distribution drive-thru in the Cinco Ranch Branch Library parking lot to receive PPE kits.

HoustonChronicle.com
08/13/2020
Katy ISD gets ready for in-person instruction with PPE, demo videos

Armed with masks, gloves, thermometers, hand sanitizer and more, Katy Independent School District is preparing for in-person instruction starting Tuesday, Sept. 8, and has online videos that families should watch to get ready. At a press conference at Paetow High School on Tuesday, Aug.

HoustonChronicle.com
08/12/2020
Houston partners with UNICEF USA to become more child friendly

Mayor Sylvester Turner said taking care of Houston's children should be a priority, so the city announced on Wednesday, Aug. 12, that it is joining the UNICEF USA Child Friendly Cities Initiative (CFCI) to help improve their lives. "These are our children, and, you know, we often say that children are our leaders for tomorrow.

HoustonChronicle.com
08/11/2020
Tompkins H.S. economics teacher honored with statewide award

After 31 years in education, Tompkins High School teacher Mike Clark has been recognized for his excellence in the classroom. At a virtual meeting of the 2020 Association of Texas Professional Educators Summit in July, Clark received the Charles Pickitt Secondary School Teacher of the Year Award.

HoustonChronicle.com
07/29/2020
Katy ISD expects property taxes to decrease for 2020-2021

The Katy Independent School District Board of Trustees studied the proposed 2020-21 budget at its meeting on Monday, July 28. Property taxes are expected to decrease. Chief Financial Officer Christopher J. Smith said the budget goals include having a balanced budget, offering competitive salaries and health care and keeping the safety of students and staff members a high priority.

Houston Chronicle
07/16/2020
Katy ISD superintendent chides TEA for talking to media first

In an online open letter to parents, guardians and staff on Wednesday, July 15, Katy Independent School District Superintendent Ken Gregorski chided the Texas Education Agency for communicating about schools' reopening through media and not directly with school districts.

HoustonChronicle.com
07/13/2020
Outdoor events attract Katy-area shoppers despite heat, COVID-19

Though the high temperature for Saturday, July 11, flirted with the century mark and the coronavirus was raging, some Katy-area residents were out and about at a farmers market and garage sales. By the time farmers and vendors were getting started at the monthly market outside Whiskey Cake, early morning bargain hunters had already sifted through items at the Westfield subdivision's community garage sale.

HoustonChronicle.com
06/25/2020
First Paetow H.S. graduating class finishes strong

While deep gray clouds loomed on Tuesday, June 23, the weather at Legacy Stadium seemed to hold off just for the first graduating class of Patricia E. Paetow High School to receive their diplomas. It would only seem fitting for a group that had risen above so much to get there.

HoustonChronicle.com
06/05/2020
Prepare for hurricane season now

Hurricane season officially runs June 1 through Nov. 30, so preparing now could help protect Katy residents later. Greg Goedecker, Katy emergency management coordinator, shares some thoughts on what to do now to be ready. He said this year's hurricane season is different from past ones because the novel coronavirus is a concern, but the city is planning around that.

HoustonChronicle.com
04/24/2020
Help Brookwood by ordering takeout

Because The Brookwood Community "citizens" are still in quarantine, the adults with disabilities are not able to work right now at their regular jobs to support the community. But ordering takeout or picking up a family meal from the Brookwood Café is an easy and quick way to support the community that has served adults with disabilities since 1985.

Houston Chronicle
01/29/2020
Bellaire council votes to continue work at Spruce and Fifth

At its meeting on Monday, Jan. 27, the Bellaire City Council voted by a 4-3 margin that the Spruce and Fifth Street Reconstruction Project work would continue. The vote at City Hall sided along lines of the four veteran council members and the three newly elected ones.

Houston Chronicle
06/03/2019
D-Day unites French family, American soldiers for generations

Traveling to Normandy, France, for the 75th anniversary of D-Day, Memorial resident Jim Trippon will remember his father's service there but also rekindle friendships that have spanned nations, generations and one world war.

Houston Chronicle
05/14/2019
Three Brothers Bakery loses Kosher license after 70 years

Although Three Brothers Bakery learned they had lost their Kosher license on the eve of their 70th anniversary, community members from across Houston are rallying behind the popular business. On May 7, the baker's co-owners Janice and Bobby Jucker were preparing to celebrate their big day when they received the bad news that they would no longer be considered Kosher.

Houston Chronicle
03/20/2019
Faith secret to 110-year-old woman's long life

On her 110th birthday, Mary Coffey kept holding the microphone after joyfully leading a dining room full of friends and family through the first verse and chorus of her favorite song, "How Great Thou Art." The longtime Sugar Creek resident wanted to continue singing and telling the world about her God, something she's been doing for more years than most of us have been alive.

Houston Chronicle
10/06/2018
Bellaire city council adopts 2019 budget

The Bellaire city council voted unanimously Sept. 17 to adopt the city's fiscal year 2019 budget and ratify a property tax increase. The $20.94 million budget for Oct. 1, 2018, through Sept. 30, 2019, is up from the 2018 budget of $20.78 million.

Community Impact Newspaper
01/12/2018
Balmoral's Crystal Clear Lagoon, new Humble, New Caney ISD facilities, updates at Generation...

Lone Star College's Process Technology Center will open in January. Atascocita-area neighborhood Balmoral will feature the state's first crystal lagoon. Courtesy Balmoral Humble ISD has plans for several new schools by 2022.Courtesy Humble ISD The first office building in Generation Park's Redemption Square is expected to open this summer.

Community Impact Newspaper
12/04/2017
Best Wishes Gifts thrives on communal connections after 10 years in Kingwood | Community Impact...

Chris Shelton Chris Shelton Chris Shelton Chris Shelton Best Wishes Gifts has offered artisan-type gifts to the Kingwood area for more than 10 years and has thrived by building personal relationships with customers, owner Dana Koslovsky said. Koslovsky said she was working for another retailer near the Galleria in Houston when she decided to open her own shop.

Community Impact Newspaper
11/14/2017
Friendswood nonprofit aims to provide coats, gloves to children

The Infinite Hands Initiative hopes to hand out new coats and gloves to at least 100 children at Greater Houston area shelters this year, despite the fact that its founder and president is displaced from her own home after Hurricane Harvey.

Community Impact Newspaper
11/06/2017
Humble business Hometown Chef Catering Co. provides food service for events | Community Impact...

The Hometown Chef Catering Co. also caters breakfast.Courtesy The Hometown Chef Fried mac and cheese balls are served as an appetizer. Courtesy The Hometown Chef Julio Avila opened the company five years ago with his wife, TiffanyCourtesy The Hometown Chef Several beef dishes are on the menu at The Hometown Chef Catering Co.Courtesy The Hometown Chef The Hometown Chef Catering Co.

Katy Times
10/11/2017
Active shooter class teaches residents to `stay aware'

Fulshear Police Department Chief Kenny Seymour said because it typically takes law enforcement three to 3 1/2 minutes to respond to an active shooter situation, citizens need to know how to fend for themselves until help arrives. The department hosted a "Surviving an Active Shooter" class, or Civilian Response to Active Shooter Events.

Community Impact Newspaper
09/11/2017
Abbey Humble Carpet and Tile provides support after Harvey | Community Impact Newspaper

Ab bey Humble Carpet and Tile owner Charlie Crabtree said he planned to spend the week after Hurricane Harvey helping family members, friends and customers who were affected by flooding. Following the hurricane, which hit the Houston area in late August, Crabtree said he would only begin charging customers for their carpeting, flooring, tile and countertop repairs after Labor Day.

Community Impact Newspaper
07/31/2017
After personal battle with childhood cancer, Addi's Faith Foundation owners support others facing...

After Addi passed away a couple of weeks short of her second birthday, her mother Amber Bender decided she wanted to help other families battling pediatric cancer. Amber and Tony Bender founded Addi's Faith Foundation in April 2007 and have since raised funds to provide financial assistance to families of children who have cancer and to fund research at MD Anderson Cancer Center in the Houston Medical Center.

Community Impact Newspaper
05/22/2017
Restaurant Week raises money for OakBend Medical Center through Memorial Day | Community Impact...

Diners can order three-course meals at local restaurants now through Memorial Day, all while raising money for the OakBend Medical Center. Fourteen restaurants in Richmond, Rosenberg, Sugar Land and Fulshear will participate in the first OakBend Restaurant Week May 19-29. A percentage of proceeds from select three-course menus will be donated to the hospital.

Community Impact Newspaper
05/20/2017
Montgomery ISD redistricts for new schools | Community Impact Newspaper

Montgomery ISD has drawn new attendance zones for its 2017-18 school year as it prepares to open two new schools this fall. Substantial construction for Keenan Elementary School will be complete by June 5 and by July 5 for Oak Hills Junior High School.

Community Impact Newspaper
05/02/2017
HPD captain Colin Weatherly discusses public safety in Kingwood, Summerwood | Community Impact...

After taking over as captain of the Kingwood Division of the Houston Police department in November, Colin Weatherly has focused on becoming more present in the community and creating a family atmosphere at the station. From meeting with community leaders, Weatherly said it is important he knows the intricacies of the Lake Houston area and residents recognize his face.

Community Impact Newspaper
03/22/2017
B-52 Brewing Co. | Community Impact Newspaper

What began as a college hobby has become much more for B-52 Brewing Co. owners Brent and Chad Daniel. The Conroe craft brewery produces upward of 40 to 50 different beers. The brewery opened in May 2014 and offers a taproom, beer garden, food trucks, games and tours in a family-friendly environment.

Community Impact Newspaper
03/08/2017
Richmond Summer Camp Guide 2017 | Community Impact Newspaper

Summer Adventure Club at Primrose Waterside Estates Children from kindergarten through fifth grade focus on music, science, cooking, and reading and writing. Campers enjoy trips to various museums and local parks, animal encounters, crazy science, food experiments and field days. The adventure club runs Monday through Friday, June 5-Aug.

Community Impact Newspaper
02/22/2017
Old Iron Works | Community Impact Newspaper

From a 1915 Stutz Bearcat to a 2010 Jeep Wrangler, Old Iron Works in Montgomery has touched 95 years of automobile history. The shop has specialized in concourse show car restoration since it opened in August 2012. General Manager Justin Hamaker said the business originally began when its crew started building cars at the home of shop owner Richard Mitchell.

Community Impact Newspaper
12/15/2016
New Year's Resolution Guide for the Katy area | Community Impact Newspaper

22756 Westheimer Parkway, Ste. 160, Katy 2770 FM 1463, Ste. 102, Katy 281-395-0827 *www.esnhealth.com Two Katy facilities offer private fitness training, small group classes, nutritional coaching, supplements and ready-to-go healthy meals. The gyms take a holistic and synergistic approach toward one-on-one personal training and fitness, providing the personal attention clients need to help them improve their health, bodies and lives.

Community Impact Newspaper
10/04/2016
Long-time Cy-Fair dance studio to launch second location on Mueschke Road

The Dance Factory launched its second location today at 17810 Mueschke Road, Cypress, inside of the Cypress Oaks Church. The original family-owned dance studio has been around for 23 years on FM 529 in Houston. Its classes, which are offered to students ages 2 through teen, include ballet, tap, jazz, hip-hop and technique.

Community Impact Newspaper
09/01/2016
I Love Kickboxing to open on Spring Cypress Road next week

A new location of I Love Kickboxing is slated to open next week at 15014 Spring Cypress Road, Ste. 130, Cypress. The gym is complete with a mat and numerous heavy bags. Each class lasts an hour. "It's a fast-paced energy workout that is fun and can burn more than 700 calories in an hour," gym manager Paige Gallemore said.

Community Impact Newspaper
08/31/2016
C4Cryo brings sub zero therapy to Mueschke Road

Cy-Fair natives Lindsay and Matt Laboski celebrated the soft opening of their cryotherapy center, C4Cryo, Aug. 29 at 16341 Mueschke Road, Ste. 180, Cypress. The business offers whole body cryotherapy, which works using a walk-in cryosauna that exposes the body to temperatures of -200 degrees Fahrenheit for three minutes or less.

Community Impact Newspaper
08/30/2016
Astros great to celebrate 70th birthday at golf fundraiser for Cy-Hope

The public is invited to join Larry Dierker and other local celebrities at the Blackhorse Golf Club Sept. 22 to celebrate the Houston Astros legend's 70 birthday. The celebration also serves as a fundraiser for local nonprofit Cy-Hope, of which Dierker serves as president of the board of directors.

Community Impact Newspaper
08/26/2016
Tru Tri Sports plans move to Mueschke Road

Triathlon specialty store Tru Tri Sports, currently located at Hwy. 290 near Barker Cypress Road, will relocate the third week in September to 16341 Mueschke Road, Ste. 220, Cypress. The shop carries all the equipment needed to run, swim and bike in a triathlon.

Community Impact Newspaper
08/03/2016
Savvas Greek Cuisine and Grill | Community Impact Newspaper

L arry Savvas, the founder of Savvas Greek Cuisine and Grill, was no stranger to the restaurant industry when he opened his new eatery in Atascocita in June 2011. He had operated a restaurant in Greece, his native country, since 2001, before he and his wife and restaurant manager, Lisa Savvas, decided to move back to the U.S.

Community Impact Newspaper
07/27/2016
Greater Houston Area colleges, universities

Tuition: $12,015 (undergraduate), $9,990 (graduate) Test averages: Minimum GPA 2.0 (undergraduate); 2.5 (Masters of Science); 2.8 (Master's of Business Administration) Test averages: open admissions policy Transfer rate: 15.1 percent 1300 Holman St., Houston central.hccs.edu * 713-718-6000 6815 Rustic St., Houston www.southeast.hccs.edu 713-718-7000 10041 Cash Road, Stafford www.southwest.hccs.edu 713-718-7800 LSC-CyFair offers satellite campuses at the LSC-Fairbanks Center, located at 14955...

Community Impact Newspaper
06/14/2016
Conservation groups raise water awareness among local students | Community Impact Newspaper

Regional water authorities, tasked with reducing the use of groundwater in Harris County over the next 20 years, consider water conservation to be a big piece of groundwater use efforts. To that end, officials are partnering with local conservation groups to teach children about water conservation through a historical lens.

Community Impact Newspaper
06/01/2016
Helping Hands Community Garden | Community Impact Newspaper

With the help of volunteers ranging from elementary school children to retirees, Magnolia's Helping Hands Community Garden gives back to the community through growing fresh produce for those in need and teaching organic gardening practices.

Community Impact Newspaper
05/25/2016
Humble ISD selects lone finalist for superintendent | Community Impact Newspaper

The Humble ISD board of trustees named Elizabeth Celania-Fagen the lone finalist for superintendent at its May 24 meeting. Fagen's appointment as superintendent will be voted on at a June 14 board meeting after a 21-day period for public input. If approved, she will replace retiring Superintendent Guy Sconzo, who will serve as a consultant until December.

Community Impact Newspaper
05/09/2016
Volunteers work to refurbish Camp Hope in Cy-Fair | Community Impact Newspaper

More than 500 local Comcast employees and their family members volunteered April 30 to refurbish the PTSD Foundation of America's Camp Hope campus in Cy-Fair. Camp Hope residents and staff worked alongside volunteers to plant 12 large oak trees, stain decks and furniture and make building repairs to an on-site family residence.

Ubahouston
Union Baptist Association - Jesus Guillen

UBA Pastor since 1999 by Tracy Maness, UBA Writer's Team, 09/14/2015 Pastor Jesús Guillen of Iglesia Bautista Redención and his family came from Mexico to the United States in 1974 in search of opportunities. He and his wife were married in Nueva Laredo and arrived in Houston in 1977.

Ubahouston
Union Baptist Association - John Bisagno

UBA Pastor since 1970 by Tracy Maness, UBA Writer's Team, 06/29/2015 When Dr. John Bisagno preached at Houston's First Baptist Church, he said there were always two invitations: one to join the church and one to leave to help support other churches and ministries.

Ubahouston
Union Baptist Association - Jason Lee

UBA Pastor since 1982 by Tracy Maness, UBA Writer's Team, 05/04/2015 Reverend Jason Lee, pastor of Tallowood Chinese Mission, grew up in a Buddhist family in South Taiwan and at the age of 20 became the first Christian in his family while participating in a college campus Bible fellowship.

Ubahouston
Union Baptist Association - John D. Morgan

UBA Pastor since 1966 by Tracy Maness, UBA Writer's Team, 03/30/2015 With June 1, 2015, marking his 49th anniversary as pastor of Sagemont Church, Dr. John D. Morgan, a former Moderator of UBA, has seen many changes in his church, community and Union Baptist Association.

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