Meet our team at Plano Podcast, who you might see running around Plano with microphones and notepads in hand. Don’t worry, they’re friendly.
Host, Tammy Hooker
Producer, Mary Jacobs
Tammy Hooker makes our guests comfortable having an open conversation, and to do that she draws on 26 years of experience as an Human Resources and Organizational Development professional.
A North Texas resident for 31 years, she arrived in Plano in 2007. She is a graduate of Leadership Plano; and served on the team that brought TEDxPlano to our city as Marketing Chair and Co-Host.
She is driven to share Plano Podcast stories that move listeners into a deeper understanding of the people shaping our culture and has a singular purpose to forge an entertaining, creative outlet for characters to tell their stories, in their own distinctive voices.
Tammy does freelance work in website development, sound editing, copy writing and graphic design in North Texas. Her education-related and non-profit community work has been recognized with multiple local awards. She is a graduate of the University of Arkansas. Her son is a Senior at TCU, despite her best efforts to make him a Razorback.
Tammy spends her free time shouting at the TV while watching politics on CNN. She has an eminently patient husband and a softball-playing daughter in Plano ISD.
Mary Jacobs spent 20 years living in the Park Cities and North Dallas, long enough to internalize plenty of stereotypes about the purportedly bland and boring suburb of Plano. After remarrying in 2009, she ended up in Plano and developed a passion for telling the “real story” of the city.
An award-winning freelance writer, Mary is a regular contributor to the Dallas Morning News Senior Living section, with a special interest in features relating to those living with Alzheimer’s and dementia and their caregivers. Her work has appeared in Scouting magazine, the Senior Voice, the Washington Post, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and Intuit’s Small Business Blog. A longtime freelance writer for the Dallas Morning News’ nationally-recognized Religion section, she has also written for the United Methodist Reporter and Religion News Service. In 2004, Ms. Jacobs was named Religion Communicator of the Year by the RCC’s Dallas-Fort Worth chapter. Her work has also been honored nationally by the Associated Church Press, the Religion Communicators’ Council, and the American Association of Orthopedic Surgeons.
With an English degree and an MBA from Case Western Reserve University, Mary’s career included stints at Bain & Company in Boston, and as a news producer for WJW-TV, then a CBS affiliate in Cleveland. She is a graduate of Leadership Plano and a founding organizer of TEDxPlano. Mary and her husband Steve Lavine have four grown children and one 5-lb. Yorkshire terrorist named Lulu.