The Woodlands Business November 2015
ELLIS AMONG “BEST OF BEST” FINANCIAL ADVISORS AT BARRON’S SUMMIT – Byron W. Ellis, managing director of Ellis & Ellis, a division of United Capital Financial Advisers located in The Woodlands, attended the seventh annual Barron’s Top Independent Advisors Summit, hosted by Barron’s magazine to promote best practices in the industry and the value of advice to the investing public. The invitation-only conference was held recently at the Fairmont Princess Hotel in Scottsdale, Ariz. Ellis was one of the 500 financial advisors who were either selected by Barron’s or their affiliated firm to participate in the event.
Many of the top 100 independent financial advisors in the U.S., as ranked and published in Barron’s August 23, 2014 issue, were in attendance. This annual ranking is the basis for the summit and the advisors are chosen based on the volume of assets overseen by the advisors and their teams and the quality of the advisors’ practices. A total of 500 elite advisors took part in the event, which is designed to promote best practices and generate new ideas across the industry.
“The Barron’s conference always gives me the opportunity to hear from the top players in the industry and provides a great place to influence where the industry is headed,” said Ellis.
REMODELERS COUNCIL AT GREATER HOUSTON BUILDERS ASSOCIATION WINS NATIONAL AWARDS – The Greater Houston Builders Association (GHBA) Remodelers Council was honored with a national award, the Council Award for Demonstrating Remodeling Excellence (CADREs), in two categories from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Remodelers.
The awards – known in the housing industry as the CADREs – were announced during NAHB Remodelers annual awards presentation at the 2015 Remodeling Show in Chicago on Oct. 1.
NAHB Remodelers and Professional Remodeler magazine presented the national awards for outstanding service and performance by a remodelers council.
Lisa Pepitone, director of membership at the GHBA, was honored as the Outstanding Council Coordinator for advising and guiding the remodelers council leadership. Pepitone is key to the health of the group’s finances and membership, organizing programs that make the remodelers council one of the largest in the nation.
In the public relations category of the CADREs, the Remodelers Council of the GHBA took home the honors for their work
to combat remodeling scams and educate home owners following the floods that
devastated Houston in 2015. Accepting the award for the Houston Remodelers Council was its public relations chairman, Amy Ahlbrand Robinson with the Fort Bend Publishing Group.
The CADRE is the NAHB Remodelers’ highest national award for work at the local level. The awards, judged by members of NAHB Remodelers’ leadership, are presented each year to local remodelers councils and individuals whose work at a local remodelers council exemplifies the best practices of the remodeling industry.
For more information about remodeling, visit, ghba.org or nahb.org/remodel.
INTERFAITH COMMUNITY CLINIC’S CONTINUED PARTNERSHIP WITH MEMORIAL HERMANN TW HOSPITAL – Continued support from Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Hospital has allowed Interfaith Community Clinic to better serve the uninsured patients that come to the clinic for their immediate medical needs. Thanks to a generous grant given by Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Hospital, the clinic is able to continue its ongoing commitment of making a difference in Montgomery County.
“Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Hospital has been partnering with Interfaith Community Clinic for most of our 20-year history in The Woodlands and surrounding communities,” shared Josh Urban, senior VP and CEO of Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Hospital. “Interfaith Community Clinic is a well-run and respected agency. We are proud to support the work they do for our community.”
The grant from Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Hospital will provide operating funding support as well as in-kind support. “We are grateful and could not do what we do without our donors and volunteers,” shared Dr. Jack Lesch, director of health services for Interfaith Community Clinic.
Interfaith Community Clinic opened its doors in 1996. Programs are provided free of charge and are funded by the financial support of grants, faith-based organizations, businesses, civic groups, and individuals. Visit interfaithcommunityclinic.org or call 281-364-7889 for more information.
THE WOODLANDS AREA EDP ANNOUNCES NEW BOARD MEMBERS – The Woodlands Area Economic Development Partnership (EDP) has announced the newly-appointed board members for its 2015-2016 term. New members include Terry Sellers of Gallagher Benefit Services as chair, Debra Sukin of Houston Methodist The Woodlands Hospital as vice chairman, Heidi Carney of Prosperity Bank as secretary, Mike Shultz of Consolidated Communication as treasurer and Stuart Lapp of Stibbs & Co. PLLC as immediate past chair.
Other board members include David Argueta of CHI St. Luke’s Health, Steve Berry of Waste Connections, Nelda Blair of The Blair Law Firm, Lisa Britt of Nexeo Solutions, Shane Frugé of Northwestern Mutual, Steve Head of Lone Star College System, JJ Hollie of The Woodlands Area Chamber of Commerce, Frank Holmes, Mayor James Kuykendall of City of Oak Ridge North, Mark Lashier of Chevron Phillips Chemical Co., Michael Maher of The John Cooper School, Brett Martin of One Source, Don Norrell of The Woodlands Township, Paul Oman of Carr, Riggs & Ingram, Steve Pate of Strike LLC, Chris Payne of Aon Hewitt, Steve Pilgrim of Entergy Texas, Jim Pollard of Community Impact Newspaper, Michael Richmond of Woodforest National Bank, Mike Shultz of Consolidated Communications, Alex Sutton of The Woodlands Development Company, Brad Thompson of Wells Fargo, Bruce Tough of The Woodlands Township, Josh Urban of Memorial Hermann The Woodlands Hospital, Mayor Garry Watts of City of Shenandoah and Richard Wright of Wright’s Printing & Marketing.
The EDP promotes the economic development of The Woodlands Area through the support of existing businesses and recruitment of new businesses that can bring opportunities to the area.
STUART W. LAPP JOINS STIBBS & CO., P.C., ATTORNEYS – Jack Stibbs, managing shareholder and founder of Stibbs & Co., P.C., Attorneys recently announced that Stuart W. Lapp has joined the law firm as a partner.
Lapp has handled various forms of business matters on a wide range of issues including complex litigation cases as well as commercial real estate and other large transactional matters. Lapp was most recently the general counsel for a large privately held multi-state branded motor fuel distributor and real estate developer.
Lapp has served on the board of The Woodlands Area Economic Development Partnership since 2007 and is the 2014-2015 president of the organization. He also serves as a director of The Woodlands Area Chamber of Commerce and is vice president of government affairs for 2015-2016. Lapp has lived in or near South Montgomery County since 1973, and has been very active in this community. “We are excited to add Stuart to the firm,” said Stibbs. “His depth of experience in both complex litigation and in large transactional matters will be of great benefit to our clients.”
Stuart earned his law degree from the University of Houston Law Center. He earned his bachelor of arts at Southern Methodist University.
Stibbs & Co. is a business law firm with roots in The Woodlands and North Houston area dating back to 1981. The firm handles a broad spectrum of commercial legal transactions with a primary focus in energy and real estate.
LAUNCH OF HTC NORTH IN PARTNERSHIP WITH HARC – Leaders from the Houston Technology Center (HTC) and Houston Advanced Research Center (HARC) have officially launched HTC North, the new HTC North/HARC collaboration located in The Woodlands, signifying what is considered a win-win relationship for the region. Looking on at the celebration held at the Lonestar College System Training and Development Center were representatives from local corporations, technology start-ups, The Woodlands Area Economic Development Partnership and the Conroe Economic Development Council – all committed to innovation, the environment and economic growth.
“This is the start of something great,” said Walter Ulrich, HTC president and CEO. “The HTC has not only expanded its scope to create HTC North, it has done so with a partner holding complementary interests to ours. The opportunities are significant.”
HTC North is an accelerator and incubator program, designed to better serve entrepreneurs on the I-45 corridor north of Houston. It is focused on early stage companies with technologies and applications supporting clean air and water, sustainable energy and renewable resources resulting in an ecosystem that will drive economic growth, create jobs and diversify a region.
HARC, the result of the vision and initiative of Houston oilman, real estate developer and philanthropist George P. Mitchell, is a research hub providing independent analysis on energy, air and water issues to people seeking scientific answers.
“Our partnership with HTC North gives HARC a significant opportunity to advance real solutions to sustainability problems,” said Jim Lester, HARC president and CEO. “We hope this leads to commercial success of clean energy, air and water technologies.”
Houston Technology Center North will serve early stage companies and entrepreneurs located in Montgomery, Walker, Grimes, Brazos, Waller, Washington and North Harris counties. Cities include The Woodlands Township, Shenandoah, Oak Ridge, Conroe, Spring, Cypress, Magnolia and Montgomery. Innovators in the region will not only be able to take advantage of HTC North’s curriculum, but also the critical connections necessary to become viable players in other programs being held in the community.
“We provide access to guidance, technology experts, customers, strategic partners and funding opportunities,” said Charles Wohl, HTC North managing director. “The HTC has a track record of providing mentorship with in-depth strategic and tactical business guidance, fundraising advice, and connection to opportunities, allies and capital. This enables success.”
The HTC, with offices in Houston’s Midtown area, the Johnson Space Center and now The Woodlands, has assisted over 300 companies and graduated more than 91 from its accelerator program. It has helped entrepreneurs raise over $2.5 billion and create more than 5,000 jobs.
HTC North staff will share office space with its HARC partner, moving with HARC in 2016 to the new HARC building – a LEED Certified Green structure – situated on 3.5 acres behind HARC’s current Lone Star location. It will function as the headquarters for HARC and HTC North and be used for educational outreach opportunities and as a community meeting facility.
HUGHES LANDING RIBBON CUTTING – Executives from The Howard Hughes Corporation and its wholly-owned subsidiary The Woodlands Development Company, The Woodlands Township, and The Woodlands Convention and Visitors Bureau joined The Woodlands Area Chamber of Commerce as they officially welcomed eateries at Restaurant Row and retailers into Hughes Landing.
Situated along Lake Woodlands, Hughes Landing is a premier “lifestyle intersection” that features a mixture of upscale restaurants; popular retailers including Whole Foods Market; up to 800 multifamily residences including One Lakes Edge; entertainment venues; multiple Class A office buildings with additional development underway; and a full-service Embassy Suites by Hilton for business and leisure travelers scheduled to open by the end of 2015.
“Hughes Landing is a vibrant waterfront community within The Woodlands which creates an exciting hub where people can live, work and play,” said Paul Layne, executive vice president of Master Planned Communities for The Howard Hughes Corporation. “We are excited to see Hughes Landing become one of the premier destinations within this award-winning community.”
California Pizza Kitchen, Del Frisco’s Grille, Escalante’s Fine Tex-Mex & Tequila and Local Pour are now open in Restaurant Row with Truluck’s and Fogo de Chão under development. Retailers now open include Cadence Bank, CUPS Frozen Yogurt, KB Kasuals, Kriser’s Natural Pet, Pier 1 Imports, Starbucks, Venetian Nail Spa and Whole Foods Market. 18|8 Fine Men’s Salons, Macaron by Patisse and Willa Boutique will open soon.
SAMUELS JEWELERS CELEBRATES GRAND REOPENING AT THE WOODLANDS MALL – Samuels Jewelers held its grand reopening ribbon-cutting ceremony with the Woodlands Area Chamber of Commerce on Oct. 2 at its newly remodeled location in The Woodlands Mall. The store’s new modern design that creates an inviting atmosphere. The store’s new look, combined with the jewelry expertise of the store associates, provides customers with a memorable shopping experience.
The store’ also has significant enhancements in its energy efficiency and environmental sustainability. The store features high-quality long-life modern flooring, newly designed jewelry cases with modern indirect LED lighting, 60” ultra HD flat-screen TVs and innovative overhead energy efficient LED lighting.
“We are proud of our newly remodeled store and our continued presence in The Woodlands community,” said Ajay Rai, CEO of Samuels Jewelers.
LEADERSHIP MONTGOMERY COUNTY CLASS OF 2016 EXPLORES ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT – The Leadership Montgomery County (LMC) Class of 2016 recently explored county economic development at its Economic Development Session. The session was sponsored by long-time supporters of Leadership Montgomery County, The Woodlands Township, with their special Economic Development Partnership with LMC.
Session Directors Gil Staley, CEO of The Woodlands Area Economic Development Partnership, and Danielle Scheiner, deputy director of the Greater Conroe Economic Development Council, planned the session for the class that began at Strike, LLC in Hughes Landing.
The day began with the Leadership Development Series, sponsored by Repsol and led by Chad Patterson along with LMC alumni facilitators. The series was followed by a panel of economic development experts from throughout the region. The panel consisted of Fred Welch, Greater Conroe Economic Development Council; Nick Wolda, The Woodlands Township; Elizabeth Huff, Greater Houston Partnership; Gil Staley; and John Tarver, Entergy Texas. Class members were able to ask questions and interact with the panel throughout the morning.
The class then boarded a bus for a driving tour of Conroe Park North and the Deison Technology Park. The class arrived at Lone Star College–Conroe Center for a tour of the Workforce Training Facility.
After lunch and a class project discussion, members heard from another economic development panel including Tana Ross from the City of Magnolia, Shannan Reid from the City of Montgomery, Susan Cates from the City of Oak Ridge North, and Hector Forestier from the City of Willis. Then Pravin Tampi, VP of global procurement and supply chain for Newpark, spoke about why Newpark chose Montgomery County. The class then toured the Borden Plant in Conroe, before ending the day back at Strike.
LMC is a nonprofit organization dedicated to cultivating the future leaders of Montgomery County. Its mission is to prepare emerging and existing leaders to understand local issues, grow their leadership skills and connect with others to better serve the county.
The Conroe/Lake Conroe Chamber of Commerce, The Woodlands Area Chamber of Commerce, the Greater Magnolia Chamber of Commerce, the Community Chamber of East Montgomery County, the Montgomery County Hispanic Chamber, and the Magnolia Parkway Chamber of Commerce are all partner Chambers in the LMC program. Participants are chosen by application process in June of each year. For more information, visit LMCTX.org.
STRYK’N IT PRO – Nine current and former players of The Woodlands Strykers have been drafted into Major League Baseball in 2014 and 2015.
The Tampa Bay Rays drafted former Stryker Carter Burgess, a junior from Sam Houston State. Burgess was pick number 847 in the 28th round for the Rays and plays third base.
The Boston Red Sox drafted Jake Cosart as pick number 103 in the third round––an impressive start to his professional career. Cosart played for Seminole State (FL) as a right-handed pitcher, though he began his college career as an outfielder at Duke. Cosart throws an excellent fastball reaching 98 miles/hour and a tricky curveball.
The New York Yankees drafted Andre Del Bosque – current Stryker player – as pick number 1142 in the 30th round; a right-handed pitcher from the University of Houston-Victoria, Del Bosque was he first UHV pitcher to be drafted into the MLB.
The New York Mets drafted former Stryker Alex Palsha as pick number 805 in the 27th round. Palsha is right-handed pitcher and senior out of Sacramento State (CA).
The Cleveland Indians drafted former Stryker Drake Roberts as pick number 878 in the 29th round. A second baseman from St. Mary’s University, Roberts batted .289 his Junior year with a .935 fielding percentage.
The Washington Nationals drafted former Strykers pitcher and Rice University star, Chase McDowell in round 26, pick 784. McDowell is currently playing single A for the Auburn Doubledays in the New-York Penn League.
The San Francisco Giants signed undrafted Strykers pitcher Nolan Riggs from Sam Houston State University. Riggs was signed in 2014 and is currently playing single A ball for the Salem Keizer Volcanoes in the Northwest League.
Former Strykers pitcher and Sam Houston State alum Andrew Godail was drafted in 2015 by the Phillies in round 26. Godail is playing single A in the New York Penn League for the Williamsport Crosscutters.
University of West Alabama and former Strykers right-handed pitcher Gandy Stubblefield was drafted by the Philadelphia Phillies in 28th round of the Major League Baseball’s First-Year Player Draft. The senior from Lufkin, Texas posted a 7-3 record with a 1.82 earned run average as a junior for UWA this year.
For more information about the Strykers, visit woodlandsstrykers.com.