Discovery Retreat Staff

  • Discovery Retreat

    David Coco

    David S. Coco, Ph.D. 

    David currently works at Texas School for the Deaf in Austin, Texas as an Outreach Specialist developing educational technology and providing outreach training. David founded the Discovery Retreat program that brings together mainstream high school students to meet deaf adult role models and explore career opportunities. David has a Ph.D. in Space Physics and Astronomy and worked for over 20 years as a Research Physicist at the Univ. of Texas focusing on developing Global Positioning System (GPS) technology. David was born hard of hearing and lost the remainder of his hearing during high school. He is now profoundly deaf and uses sign language and a cochlear implant for communication. 

    Aaron Mowell Aaron Mowell

    Aaron works as an assistant to David Coco, helping with logistics and staffing for Discovery Retreat. Aaron attended Discovery Retreat several times as a college representative for Rochester Institute of Technology/National Technical Institute for the Deaf before moving to Austin, Texas. Upon arrival, Aaron joined David’s staff to become more involved in Discovery Retreat. In his free time, Aaron is a Social Studies teacher for the Middle School Department at Texas School for the Deaf. Born deaf, Aaron is a native signer and well versed in various forms of sign language.

    Debbie S Debbie Schiraldi

    Debbie is the assistant to both David Coco and Aaron Mowell acting as Discovery Retreat liaison to Schools, Parents and Students. She also coordinates much of the ‘behind the scenes’ details for Discovery Retreat. Debbie graduated from Mississippi State University with a degree in Accounting and has been working with Discovery Retreat since 2011. Over the past several years, Debbie, who is hearing, has been involved in the Deaf Community and taken many sign language courses that have helped to increase her signing skills.