Where Funeral Service is Our Only Major
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Faculty

The Commonwealth Faculty

Raising the Bar of Educational Excellence

Jason C. Altieri

President and Chief Executive Officer
Jason C. Altieri

Jason C. Altieri

Dr. Altieri earned a B.S. in Funeral Service Education from the University of Central Oklahoma; an M.S. in Management Science from Southern Nazarene University; and is a Doctor of Education specializing in higher education administration, a degree he earned from Texas Tech University. He is also a licensed practitioner in both Oklahoma and Texas.

The native of Massachusetts’ South Shore moved to Amarillo, Texas, in 1998 to start the Amarillo College Mortuary Science program. He served there, as a faculty member and administrator, until 2005, when he became President of Commonwealth Institute. He has designed and taught numerous academic and continuing education courses (both traditional and on-line formats), including: business law, mortuary jurisprudence, history of funeral service, funeral directing practices, small business management, accounting, restorative art, technical procedures and regulatory compliance.

In addition to administration and teaching, Dr. Altieri serves on the Committee on Accreditation for the American Board of Funeral Service Education; the programs and education committee for the Texas Funeral Directors Association; the Board of Regents for the National Museum of Funeral History; and previously on the Editorial Review Board for the Journal of Funeral Service Education.

Christopher C. Layton

Dean of Students
Christopher C. Layton

Christopher C. Layton

Christopher Layton has a bachelor’s degree from Arizona State University and a master’s degree from the University of Houston. Layton graduated from the mortuary science program at Cypress College in Cypress, Calif., and is a licensed funeral director and embalmer in Arizona, California and Texas.

Layton  began working, as a teenager, for his cousin’s funeral home in Safford, Ariz. While attending Arizona State University, he served his apprenticeship at Messinger Mortuary in Scottsdale, Ariz. After graduation, he relocated to Los Angeles, where he taught school and continued working in the funeral profession on the weekends. In 1988, he joined the training department of Pierce Brothers Mortuaries, one of the largest and oldest funeral firms in Los Angeles. In 1991, he accepted a position with the training department of Service Corporation International in Houston, the world’s largest provider of funeral and cemetery services. At that time, he began teaching part-time at Commonwealth Institute and full-time in 1992, he accepted it. He is currently Dean of Students and teaches mainly in the funeral service arts.

In Los Angeles, Layton was a board member of the Los Angeles County Funeral Directors Association. He currently serves on the board of the Houston Metropolitan Funeral Directors Association and chairs the Programs and Education Committee of the Texas Funeral Directors Association.

Stuart Moen

Dean of Academic Affairs, Instructor
Stuart Moen

Stuart Moen

Stuart Moen, a native of Rapid City, SD, graduated in 1978 with an M.A. degree in Adult and Higher Education from the University of South Dakota at Vermillion. In 1980, he graduated with a B.S. degree with distinction from the University of Minnesota—Dept. of Mortuary Science.

Dean Moen began his career in funeral service education in February, 1984. He teaches Anatomy I & II, Embalming I, II & III, Forensic Pathology, Microbiology and Thanatochemistry.

In May 1988, Moen became Dean of Academics at Commonwealth Institute.

Patricia Moreno

Registrar
Patricia Moreno

Patricia Moreno

Patricia Ann Tamayo Moreno graduated from Commonwealth College of Sciences in 1980 and began her apprenticeship with Darling Mouser Funeral Home in her hometown of Brownsville, Texas. She completed her apprenticeship at Heights Funeral Home in Houston and came to work for the Commonwealth Institute of Funeral Service in 1981. She is married to Jesse B. Moreno, who is also a graduate of Commonwealth College of Sciences.

Moreno is a member of the National Funeral Service Honor Society; president of Commonwealth Institute Alumni Association; member of Texas Funeral Directors Association; and past-president of the Houston Metropolitan Funeral Directors Association.

David Taylor

Clinical Coordinator

 

Melissa B. Davis

Librarian
Melissa B. Davis

Melissa B. Davis

Melissa Brady Davis received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Henderson State University, Arkadelphia, Arkansas, in 1972. She completed her Master of Library Science degree in 1980 at Sam Houston State University. For 34 years she served an area school district as campus Librarian, Technology Coordinator, and District Library Coordinator. She joined Commonwealth Institute in 2013.

Mrs. Davis is a member of the Texas Library Association, the Texas Classroom Teachers Association, and the Texas Retired Teachers Association. She and her husband are “The Invented Wheel Education Consultants”. In her spare time Mrs. Davis enjoys reading, woodworking, and flying.

Rene’ Altheimer

Admissions Representative
Rene’ Altheimer

> Rene’ Altheimer

Rene’ Altheimer has been working at Commonwealth Institute since November, 2012. Rene’ currently serves on the Admissions Team as an Admissions Representative.

Cody L. Lopasky

Associate Dean of Academics

M.A. Univeristy of Houston – Victoria

B.A. Texas State University

A.A.S. Commonwealth Institute

Professional Licensure: Texas


 

Marlene Perry

Financial Aid Advisor

B.S. St. Mary’s University


Shannon Altieri

Distance Education Coordinator

B.S. University of Central Oklahoma

Professional Licensure: Oklahoma


Lauren Budrow

Instructor

M.B.A Butler University

B.A. Indiana University

A.S. Vincennes University

Professional Licensure: Washington and Indiana


Dr. Jose Cortes

Instructor

D.V.M., National University of Colombia

M.Sc., Lousiana State University


Jenine D. Fastuca

Instructor

M.L.A. Houston Baptist University

B.S. Indiana University of Pennsylvania


Coiette P. Gaston

Instructor

M.A. Texas Southern University

B.A. Prairie View A&M University


Quianna Glapion

Instructor

M.A. Texas Southern University

B.A. Loyola University


Jane Hemberger

Instructor

M.Ed. Boston College

B.F.A. University of California Berkley

A.A.S. Commonwealth Institute

Professional Licensure: Texas


Shantelle D. Holts

Instructor

M.A. University of Houston-Clear Lake

B.S. Prairie View A&M University

A.A.S. Commonwealth Institute


Jessika Jenkins

Instructor

M.Ed. Texas Tech University

B.S. Texas A&M University

A.A.S. Commonwealth Institute

Professional Licensure: Texas


Gustave Milburn, Jr.

Instructor

M.A. University of Texas at San Antonio

B.S. Texas A&M University


Remo Portelli

Instructor

M.S.W. Fordham University

B.A. Upsala College

Certificate of Proficiency, Funeral Directing – St. Louis Community College


Carolina Ramos

Administrative Assistant

Eugenia P. Robbins

Instructor

M.A. University of Alaska Fairbanks

B.S. University of Texas Austin

Certificate of Proficiency, Funeral Directing – St. Louis Community College

Professional Licensure: Texas


Jennafer Schnautz

Instructor

M.A. Texas A&M University

B.S. Rice University


 

 

Main Campus

Commonwealth Institute
415 Barren Springs Drive
Houston, Texas 77090
Office Telephone: (281) 873-0262
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Fax: (281) 873-5232
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