Meet Our Elders
(Left to Right) Troxel Ballou, Tim Byers, Byron Gage, Rick Linn
Troxel has lived in Houston his entire life. He graduated from Rice University in 1971 with a BA in Mathematical Sciences, and was married in 1975 to his best friend, Kelia, who continues to support him and share with him in his service to God. Their son and his family live in Bowling Green, Kentucky, and their daughter and her husband in Crossville, Tennessee. He has many hobbies, perhaps the foremost being long-distance walks in Europe. He loves people and learning about their background and their cultures.
His consultancy, Troxel Ballou & Associates, which he operated from 1979 to 2015, allowed him many opportunities to interact with others, listening, leading, teaching, and counseling. Many of the skills he learned he has put to good use in his work as a shepherd. Troxel’s passion in the Alston Road family is teaching in the adult classes, and his mantra is "Transformation, not just information!”
Tim has lived off and on in the Houston area since starting his work career with Shell in 1980 as an Oil & Gas Reservoir Engineer. Later on with Shell he held various IT leadership positions across various parts of the company. He retired from Shell in 2013 and, along with his wife Ann, lives in Richmond, TX. Tim was baptized into Christ in 1969 in Temple Terrace, FL and has been an active member in congregational families in Florida, Michigan, California, Texas, and for few years, in Scotland.
Tim and Ann have two grown children, Sheena who lives in Palmetto, FL and Jared who lives in Tomball, TX. Tim and Jared currently own a small Oil Exploration and Production company. Tim enjoys working, interacting with others, and studying/teaching God’s word. Prior to being appointed as an elder at Alston Rd in 2015, Tim served as a deacon in the congregation for many years.
Byron was born in central Texas and grew up in West Texas. He began working in an automotive machine shop in high school, and, after a year at Odessa College, dropped out and married his high school sweetheart Shari. After becoming an industrial machinist and working in oilfield machine shops for several years, Byron began "full time" preaching at age thirty. He preached in Corpus Christi, TX, Lafayette, LA, San Antonio, TX (two different churches), and Granbury, TX. Byron retired from "full time" preaching in 2020 and he and Shari moved to Richmond, TX. He began serving as one of the elders at Alston Road in November of 2022.
Byron and Shari have been married for fifty-five years and have two children and five grandchildren, all of whom are Christians. His daughter and family also attend Alston Road. Although retired from "full time" preaching, Byron preaches at every opportunity. He is an avid outdoorsman and hikes, hunts, and fishes when he can.
Rick was born and raised in Orlando, Florida. He received an AA degree from Florida College where he met his wife, Debra. After marriage he received BS degrees in Chemical Engineering and Computer and Information Sciences from the University of Florida, then moved to Texas to take a job with Shell.
Rick and Debra adopted and raised three children, all of whom continue to live in the Sugar Land/Katy area and are members of the Alston Road church. They also have two “nearly perfect” grandsons. Rick worked nearly 33 years in both the development and application of process control and optimization software, as well as in the management of people. He retired from Shell in November 2015 and is now able to devote more time to being a grandfather and shepherd. Rick runs regularly and enjoys playing sports of all kinds. He also enjoys volunteering every summer (since 1989) as a camp counselor.