Veronica R. (“Nicki”) Harle earned her bachelor of arts in speech/journalism in 1971 at Texas State University. She has maintained ties to her alma mater as a past president and lifetime member of the Alumni Association and as a former member of the Advisory Council for the College of Fine Arts & Communication. She received the Alumni Achievement Award in 2008 in recognition of personal and professional achievements.
Harle is co-founder of Texas Midwest Community Network (TMCN) for which she served 20 years as Executive Director. TMCN is the premier regional organization in Texas providing resources, training and networking opportunities related to community and economic development for local leaders in more than 50 small cities in West Texas. For her work in the region, she was honored with special recognition by the West Central Texas Council of Governments and also appointed by Speaker Tom Craddick to the Citizen Advisory Board for the state agency Office of Rural Community Affairs (ORCA).
Prior to launching TMCN, Harle helped establish the first veterinary clinic in Callahan County with her husband Dr. Robert P. Harle. She then opened and operated her own business training young students in the art of dance and performance. This led to a teaching position at Cisco College followed by a position as host/producer for a talk show on local affairs at KRBC-TV, NBC affiliate in Abilene. Along the way, she began publishing the West Texas Travel Guide to promote amenities in rural communities. Her commitment and passion to help rural communities continued after retiring from TMCN when she began “Moving Rural Forward!” a consulting and facilitation service as well as a service for coordinating and conducting leadership programs in rural counties.
Harle is a member of Texas Economic Development Council (TEDC) since 1996. She completed the basics economic development course and has been certified in courses for Open Meetings Act and Public Information Act. She currently conducts orientations for EDC boards in rural areas.
Following the loss of her husband in 2018, Harle continues their small ranch operation in Callahan County and holds a leadership role in the Callahan-Shackelford County Farm Bureau. Their three sons – JW, Kirt and Lee – inherited the entrepreneurial spirit that she and her husband shared and have each pursued unique professional paths. She is also “Nana” to seven grandchildren. Harle's term on the Board of Regents expires in 2023.