Full Time Faculty Bios
Jason B. Waller, M.S.
Professor Jason Waller has been a member of the full-time faculty since 2001 and had previously taught as an adjunct professor since 1994. He became Department Chair for the Criminal Justice and Public Administration programs in 2008. He holds an Associate in Applied Science degree from Tyler Junior College (TJC), and both a Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Texas at Tyler. He is also a graduate of the East Texas Police Academy, where he was the Valedictorian of his academy class.
Professor Waller has been in law enforcement since 1982, when he began his career as a Police Cadet with the TJC Police Department. He then spent three and a half years as a Senior Patrolman with the Tyler Police Department. In 1987 he went to work at the Smith County Sheriff's Department where he spent nearly 14 years working as violent crimes, such as homicides, robberies & sex crimes. He spent the last 5 years of his full-time career as a Lieutenant supervising violent crimes and the Crime Scene Unit. He currently is also a Police Officer with the TJC Police Department, donating his time to the college's police department. He holds a Master Peace Officer License and is a Licensed TCLEOSE Instructor.
He and some of the cases he investigated over the years have been featured on A&E's Cold Case Files & Justice Files, ABC's PrimeTime Live, the WE channel's Women Behind Bars, and the ID Channel's Hardcover Mysteries. One of his capital murder cases has had two award winning documentaries movies made about the case, Licensed to Kill, which won the 1996 Sundance Film Festival Documentary Award and Lone Star Hate, a BBC Documentary film that won numerous international awards.
Professor Waller has twice been awarded the NISOD Excellence Award for Teaching by the University of Texas at Austin and was awarded the Dorothy Faye & Jack White Endowed Chair for Teaching Excellence in 2010 and 2011.
Mr. Waller also serves as a faculty advisor for the Criminal Justice Students Association (CJSA) at Tyler Junior College.
Mary E. Pyle, M.S.
Professor Mary Pyle has been a member of the Criminal Justice faculty since the 2007-2008 school year. She received her Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees in Criminal Justice from Kaplan University. She holds a Masters of Education degree from Kaplan. She is a graduate of the Central Texas Police Academy.
Mrs. Pyle began her law enforcement career in 1988 as a Military Police Officer with the United States Army. During her military career she also worked as an Investigator, D.A.R.E. Officer, and Instructor at the III Corp Non-Commissioned Officer Academy. She served at military posts across the United States, including Fort Hood, Japan and Korea. During her time at Fort Hood, she served as a special investigator for the 1st trial of a gang member to ever be tried in a military court.
After leaving the Army in 1999 with a Honorable Discharge, she became a Police Officer with the Lampasas, Texas Police Department. In 2002, she moved to East Texas and worked with the Cherokee County Sheriff's Office, including working as an undercover narcotics officer. In 2005, she went to work for the Whitehouse, Texas Police Department as a Detective and Community Resource Officer. She currently is a Police Officer with the TJC Police Department, donating her time to the college's police department.
She holds a Master Peace Officer License as well as being a certified TCLEOSE Instructor. She also serves as a faculty advisor for the Criminal Justice Students Association (CJSA) at Tyler Junior College.
James A. Ledet, M.A.
Professor James Ledet joined the TJC faculty in the fall of 2012 and serves as a professor for both the Criminal Justice & Public Administration programs. He received his Associate degree in Criminal Justice from Kilgore College. He holds a Bachelor of Applied Arts & Science in Criminal Justice and a Master of Arts in Professional Development (with an emphasis in Criminal Justice) from Dallas Baptist University. He is also a graduate of the East Texas Police Academy.
Mr. Ledet began his law enforcement career in 1976 with the Gladewater, Texas Police Department. Over the next 15 years, he worked as a Police Officer for the Kilgore Police Department and later with the Upshur County Sheriff's Office where he served as a Patrol Deputy, Detective and Patrol Sergeant.
The last twenty and a half years of his law enforcement career, Professor Ledet was spent with the Coppell Police Department where he served in many capacities, including School Resource Officer, Detective, Corporal and Sergeant. While at Coppell PD, he was twice awarded their Officer of the Year Award. He was also awarded their Community Services Award.
Professor Ledet holds a Master Peace Officer License and is a Licensed TCLEOSE Instructor. He also serves as a faculty advisor for the Criminal Justice Students Association (CJSA) at Tyler Junior College.