Editor's note: The story has been corrected to have Adrienne Davitz's correct last name.

The Katy ISD board received a name recommendation from the Naming Advisory Committee in the working session held Nov. 6 to name the district’s 10th high school in honor of the Freeman family, who have a 125-year history in Katy spanning six generations.

What to expect

The new school will be located at 7800 Katy Hockley Road, Katy, and is set to open fall 2024. Gina Cobb will serve as the first-ever principal of the new school. Cobb is currently serving as principal of Mayde Creek High School.

“I am so excited to start this next chapter and to partner with the students, parents and staff of Katy ISD’s newest high school,” Cobb said in a statement. “Together we will establish a community of excellence for years to come. We will build something special.”

The backstory

W.E. and Mae Belle Freeman were the first generation of Freemans who settled in Katy in the late 19th century. Five generations of Freemans have graduated from KISD schools, and members of the sixth generation are currently enrolled in the district’s schools.

Freeman family members have served the city in positions such as mayor and city council member, and served on the volunteer fire department and the school board, officials said. In addition to their civic service contributions, they have been deeply rooted in agriculture and education.

The family has also supported many service groups, such as the Katy Literary Club, Katy Heritage Society and Keep Katy Beautiful Board.

In their own words

The district held a public forum regarding the proposed name Nov. 8 at the KISD Education Support Complex. Family, friends and other supporters of the Freeman family gathered to share their enthusiastic remarks in favor of naming the new high school in their honor.

“I want to commend the Naming Advisory Committee for recommending that the 10th Katy ISD high school be named for one of Katy’s cornerstone families and wholeheartedly urged the board of trustees to approve the name,” state Rep. Mike Schofield, R-Katy, said. “I applaud the Katy ISD board's practice of naming some of our schools after the founding families that contributed so much to the formation of our community.”

Community member Adrienne Davitz said the Freemans made the journey to Texas in a covered wagon, and their descendants have remained an integral part of the Katy community, engaging in various professions, such as farming, ranching, teaching and civic service.

“Their enduring legacy of commitment to education and extensive civic service make them exemplary candidates for this recognition,” Davitz said.

What’s next

Senior members of the naming committee met following the hearing to go over the public testimony and to move the recommendation forward, said Andrea Grooms, chief communications officer for the district.

“It is anticipated that the board will take formal action on the name this coming Monday [Nov. 13],” Grooms said.