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2701 Westheimer – River Oaks Penthouse The Regency House in River Oaks has four distinctive Penthouse suites available for purchase. The loft-like 3 bedroom North suite features spectacular views of River Oaks. The 3 bedroom East suite, architecturally crafted by Carlos Jimenez, has a dynamic view of the downtown skyline. The 2 bedroom West suite features a gas fireplace and amazing sunsets. The 1 bedroom South suite has a balcony overlooking the private 2 acre park. Regency House residents are only steps away from Upper Kirby’s finest restaurants and shopping, including West Ave directly next door.

Lance Rosmarin Realtor

713.446.6846

Lrosmarin@cbunited.com


CONTENTS 5

Publisher’s Letter

14-15

8-9

Arts & Events 10 - 11, 30

The Buzz

18-20

12 - 13

Martin Valerio

24-25

14 - 15

An Interview with Kelvin Sampson 18-20

Sky High Living In Houston On Upswing

28-29

24 - 25

Moon Shots Update Dr. Jim Allison 26 - 27

Is Life Insurance A good Investment?

ON COVER Jim Allison, Ph. D. Professor and Chair of Immunology and the director of Immunotherapy platform at the M. D. Anderson Cancer Center.

28 - 29

Marketer of the Year

Photo credit: F. Carter Smith

PUBLISHER M.A. Haines

www.houstonintown.com MAY/JUNE 2014

EDITOR Lisa June

PRODUCTION Web Design: Melaroo Layout & Graphic Design: Cristian Paris Photographer: Wells Brown

CONTRIBUTORS Lindsay Mowad Buddy Bailey William Hanover John Granato Sean Pendergast Nicholas Chiosa Evelyn Hurtado

For advertising rates and information: 713.525.8607 intownmagazine@gmail.com Space reservation deadline is 15 days prior to publication.

Intown Magazine is published bi-monthly by SNS Media. Articles are welcome and will be given careful consideration for possible publication. Intown Magazine des not assume any responsibility for unsolicited materials. Materials submitted will be returned if accompanied by a stamped, self-addressed envelope. Box 980757 Houston, TX 77098. You can also e-mail intownmagazine@gmail.com Copyright 2014 by Intown Magazine. All rights reserved. Content may not be reprinted or reproduced with permission from Intown magazine.

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PUBLISHER’S LETTER

spaces

FOR HOME

A Major Milestone in Quest for the Moon

A

nyone that knows anyone has been affected by cancer. Despite our mortality, cancer remains our modern day tuberculosis and a medical quagmire that eludes the brightest minds and kills children and loved ones far too

soon. While there have been many improvements in early detection and treatment of cancers, the recent discovery by scientist Dr Jim Allison of The University Of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center has sent shock waves throughout the industry and around the world. There are many who believe this discovery will garner a Nobel Prize. Leading that charge is MD Anderson’s President Dr. Ronald A. DePinho, who recruited Allison to be part of the Moon Shots Program and lead the immunotherapy platform at MD Anderson. Allison relocated from New York back to his home state after a courtship by DePinho, when the Moon Shots program was just getting under way a year and a half ago. Allison who grew up in Alice, Texas outside of Corpus Christi, also spent time at the MD Anderson’s new science camp in Smithville, just outside Austin before coming to Houston. This has certainly turned out to be DePinho’s finest moment and the famed center is bearing the fruits of his labor. Having been under fire by the media since his arrival from New York, DePinho's indignation has not gotten in the way of his foreshadowing notion of one day curing cancer. MD Anderson and The Texas Medical Center, has at times been overshadowed by the space industry and more recently the energy industry. This medical milestone coming from the Moon Shots program should again catapult MD Anderson’s rightful place at the top of the pecking order for cancer treatment worldwide. Hopefully, one day the moon.

2439 WESTHEIMER ROAD HOUSTON, TX 77098 TEL>> 713.520.7167

www.spacesforhome.com intown 6


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ARTS& EVENTS Museums Museum Of Fine Arts Houston The Age of Impressionism: great French paintings from the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute. Ongoing through May 4 Made for Magazines: Iconic 20th Century Photographs. Ongoing through May 4 Georges Braque: A Retrospective Opens Ongoing through May 11 Beyond Craft: Decorative Arts from the Leatrice S. and Melvin B. Eagle Collection. Ongoing through May 26 John Singer Sargent: The Watercolors. Ongoing through May 26 Recent Accessions in Design Ongoing through August 10 Soto: The Houston Penetrable May 8 through September 1 Alexander Archipenko: The Berlin Drawings May 15 through August 17

Charles Marville: Photographer of Paris June 15 through September 14 Houghton Hall: Portrait of an English Country House June 22 through September 21 Arts of Islamic Lands: Selections from The al-Sabah Collection, Kuwait. Ongoing through August 31

Contemporary Arts Museum Houston

Houston Museum of Natural Science Special Exhibits Faberge Gemstone Carvings Magna Carta Ongoing through August 17

Upcoming Exhibits

Melanie Smith Ongoing through June 15 Trenton Doyle Hancock: Skin & Bones, 20 Years of Drawing Ongoing through August 3

Holocaust Museum Houston

Bulgari: 130 Years of masterpieces. Opens May 2 Nature Unleashed: Inside Natural Disasters May 23 through August 14

Permanent Exhibits

Magritte: The Mystery of the Ordinary 1926 - 1938 Ongoing through June 1

Alfred C. Glassell, Jr. Hall Hall of Ancient Egypt Morian Hall of Paleontology Cullen Hall of Gems & Minerals Wiess Energy Hall Lester & Sue Smith Gem vault John P. McGovern hall of African Wildlife Welch Wall of Chemistry Earth Forever Strake Hall of Malacology Farish Hall of Texas Wildlife

In the Midst of Things-Fred Baldwin and Wendy Watriss. Ongoing through July 6

Music Houston Symphony

“The Wartime Escape: Margret and H. A. Rey’s Journey from France.” Ongoing through June 15 “The Rescuers: Picturing Moral Courage” Ongoing through August 31

The Menil Collection Lee Bontecou: Drawn Worlds Ongoing through May 11

Memories of a Voyage: The Late Work of Rene Magritte. Ongoing through July 13

Beethoven’s Triple Concerto. May 1 3 - 4 Symphony of A Thousand. May 9 - 10 Symphonic Spectacular. May 23 - 25

Tradition Matters For over 50 years, Tradition Bank has been developing partnerships with local business owners to help them grow by providing: Equipment Financing Accounts Receivable Financing Working Capital Lines of Credit Owner Occupied Real Estate Financing

How may we help you grow? Dr. Randy Mitchmore, Owner of LifeS miles at 1722 W. Alabama, with Charlie Norris, President of Trad ition Bank ’s Plaza Banking Center.

713-666-2511 Grand Parkway • Pin Oak • Fry Road • Alief • Bellaire • The Plaza • The Woodlands intown 8

TraditionBank.com


Linda Eder. May 29 Ima Hogg Competition. May 31 Ben Folds. June 14

Theater A. D. Players Theater Over The River Through The Woods May 28 - June 29

Alley Theater Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike May 28 through June 15 Good People June 4 through June 29

Main Street Theater

Ethan Bortnick May 8 Ars Lyrica’s A Baroque Wedding Feast May 9 Leslie Jordan & Varla Jean Merman May 10 The Nature of Nurture May 11 Mostly Blues May 16 Dancing Around The World May 17 War Horse May 27 - June 1 Men Are From Mars Women Are From Venus May 30 - 31 Hands on a Hardbody June 12 - 22 The Little Mermaid June 13 - June 29 Eddie Izzard June 30 - July 1

Miller Outdoor Theatre Swing, Jive & Pop! Into Dance June 4, 11 a.m.

James and The Giant Peach Ongoing through May 23

The Magician’s Nephew June 5-6, 11 a.m. Sizzling Summer Dance June 6, 8:30 p.m.

Girls Only The Secret Comedy Of Women Ongoing through May 18

Kings and Queens June 7, 6 p.m.

Heartbreak House May 8 through June 1

Broadway Across America War Horse May 27 through June 1

The Hobby Center For Performing Arts Fantasia May 4 Evita May 6 - 18

Jacques Offenbach’s Orpheus in the Underworld June 8, 8:30 p.m. Big, The Musical June 11-12, 11 a.m., open seating, no ticket needed. June 13, 8:15 p.m. June 14, 8:15 p.m. Houston’s Juneteenth Celebration June 19, 7 p.m. ExxonMobil Summer Symphony Nights June 20-21 and 27-28, 8:30 p.m. each night Houston Young Artist’s Concert June 23, 11 a.m., July 1 at 11 a.m. Sounds Like Fun! June 24, 11 a.m.

The Music Box Theater “I love You,You’re Perfect, Now Change” Ongoing through May 3 “High Standards” Opens May 16

Houston Ballet Modern Masters May 22 through June 1 Swan Lake June 5 through 15

Sports Houston Astros Minute Maid May 2 - 4 vs Seattle May 12 - 14 vs Texas May 16 - 18 vs Chicago White Sox May 29 - June 1 Baltimore June 3 - 5 Los Angeles Angels June 11 - 12 Arizona June 13 - 15 Tampa Bay June 24 - 26 Braves June 27 - 29 Detroit June 30 through July 2 Seattle Houston Dynamo BBVA Compass Stadium May 7 Columbus Crew May 11 Real Salt Lake May 17 LA Galaxy June 6 Sporting Kansas City

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Food MARTIN VALERIO Instead of spending his days in a culinary classroom, Chef Martin Valerio received his culinary education through hard work and dedication in Houston kitchens. He credits his kitchen skills to the chefs he's worked under and the way they ran their kitchens. At the Lancaster Hotel, where he spent the past 11 years, he was a line cook, then chef de cuisine, and finally executive chef for four years. Today, you can find this up-and-coming chef at The Bird & The Bear Bistro creating cutting edge dishes and reinventing menus from the open kitchen located in River Oaks. Valerio is the first Executive Chef at The Bird and The Bear Bistro, a title passed to him by legendary Houston restaurateur Elouise Adams Jones of Ouisie's Table fame in December 2013. His cuisine is classic with Mediterranean and Southwest/Mexican influences showcasing the flavors of his Mexican heritage.

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FOIE GRAS

AND DATES

• Madjool dates • Maytag bleu cheese • Bacon • Corn syrup • Brown sugar • Paprika PREPARATION: For dates: Open the date in the middle, take the seed out and fill with maytag bleu cheese. For bacon (1 lb): 1 cup of corn syrup, 3 spoons brown sugar and 1 spoon of paprika

ANOTHER HILARIOUS COMEDY FROM THE AUTHOR OF I LOVE YOU, YOU’RE PERFECT, NOW CHANGE

Mix all marinate the bacon in for 30 min. Pre heat the oven on 350 degrees and bake the bacon half way, take out of the oven let cool, then wrap the dates and finish cooking. For the foie gras: Sear the foie gras. PRESENTATION: Toast brioch bread (triangles) and place the foie gras on top, and serve with the dates on a plate decorated with candied pecans then drizzle port wine reduction and green pesto on the foie gras and the dates.

by: Joe DiPietro

May 28 - June 29, 2014

Group, Senior, and Student Discounts

713-526-2721 ADPlayers.org intown 13


The Game

Kelvin Sampson has had his share of trials and tribulations in his previous coaching jobs at the collegiate level. He has been a successful basketball coach everywhere he has been, including his most recent job as a Rockets assistant. Sampson will take the reins of the University Of Houston Cougars basketball team this fall and try to bring back the glory days of Phi Slama Jama. Fred Faour: Congratulations on the new gig. Kelvin Sampson: Fred and AJ, I appreciate it and I get to stay in Houston and just slide from the Rockets to the Cougars – that’s not a bad thing.

AN INTERVIEW WITH

KELVIN

SAMPSON

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Fred: Well as a UH guy I am thrilled to see you get this job and I know you’ve had a chance to look at some of the players you’ve got and talk to some of the kids, how good do you feel about this group that’s there that James Dickey left you? KS: Yeah, well first of all, James Dickey left this program in good shape. Sometimes when you take over a program, the leap you have to make to get it to the point where it’s competitive is similar to trying to jump through the Grand Canyon, that’s how big of a leap it is. We’ve got a lot of work to do but it’s not instrumental. The kids we have


coming back – with a good spring, good summer, good fall of really hard work and being committed to skill development and buying in to a new style of play – which I think is going to help them all – we have a chance. Our goal next year will certainly be to be one of those teams contending for an NCAA tournament berth. I went out with the team this afternoon for the first time, taking advantage of the two hour rule – so, we’re going to put a lot of time into these kids. We’re going to work with them; I’m going to have a good staff that’s going to be able to help with development. We’re excited about it.

fellas is the importance of pace. We’re going to be committed to playing fast. We’re going to be committed to being a high assist team. The defense obviously is going to be important. All the teams I’ve had, we’ve always defended pretty well. I want it to be exciting. I want the fans to enjoy the experience to come in here to play. I want kids that are growing up in Houston to look at our style and say, “You know what? That looks like fun I want to go play for the Cougars.” We’re committed to playing fast, playing with great pace and I think it’s going to be fun.

Fred: Coach we appreciate you spending a few minutes with us and we know it’s been a busy day for you. Congratulation on the job, looking forward to seeing what you can do there man and as a UH alum I’m fired up about this so make me a proud man. KS: We’re going to do our best. I appreciate you guys having me on and I wish you the best.

Fred: Speaking of your staff, how cool is it for you to have your son on the staff and be able to work with him? KS: That is kind of a neat deal. My dad was my high school coach and Kellen played for me for three years at Oklahoma. So now to be reunited with him here in Houston is something that I’m going to really enjoy. Fred: I saw a tweet earlier but we’ve been doing the show so is Alvin Brooks going to continue to be on your staff, is that correct? KS: Yeah, we haven’t sat down and talked but it’s looking that way. I have a lot of respect for Alvin and I know a lot of people in this area respect Alvin so we’re hoping Alvin stays with us. Fred: Coach as you look back on your career, you’ve had a ton of success in college. Has being in the NBA the last few years – has that helped you in terms of finding some different strategies in things or is it really the same game on a different level? KS: No, no, no your first point was exactly right. I was a head coach at a young age so I developed a style of play based on where I was and the kind of kids I could recruit. My first head coaching job was at an engineering college in Montana. Every degree curriculum required a minimum of 30 credits of math. It was all extractions of minerals from the ground and that was the job I got. If it has been a good job I’d of never gotten it. It was a hard job so they hired me. But being able to go in there and develop a philosophy and figure out how to play a style that fit that team and they could win; and then going to Washington State - different situation, similar circumstance. And then in Oklahoma, obviously Indiana we recruited better athletes, better players and our style evolved based on the talent level we had. The one thing I learned from the NBA intown 15


Weldon Rigby

Marlene Foad

Keller Williams Realty Metropolitan

RE/MAX 360 281-686-4444 Mobile

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Members and

Beverly Smith CLHMS, Lake Conroe Specialist Carrie Ousley CIC, CISR Coldwell Banker Realtors Luxury Home andUnited, Condo Insurance David Michael Young (713) 569-2113 HUB International Personal Insurance REALTOR®, CLHMS, GREEN, CNE www.har.com/bevsmith Coldwell Banker681-5020 United, Realtors (832)

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Richard Hill Broker, Sports Star Relocation Weldon Rigby Keller Williams Metropolitan Founding Member KW Luxury (713)Realty 863-9494 Keller Williams Metropolitan www.richardhill.com

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Carrie Ousley CIC, CISR

Broker, CIPS Luxury Home and Condo Insurance Uptown Real Estate Group, Inc. HUB International Personal Insurance 5416 Doliver Tanglewood (713) |629-7771 (832) 681-5020 List Price $2,300,000 | MLS # 85126438 www.uptownhouston.com www.hubousley.com One the the neighborhood’s best locations just off Tanglewood Blvd. on oversized lot. Six bedrooms, 6 full and 2 1/2 baths, circular driveway and very well kept 7,210 square foot home that won’t last. Hurry! Mariana Saldana | Uptown Real Estate Group Phone: 713-629-7771

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Vice President/Sr. Mortgage Planner Hometrust Mortgage Company 182 Bentwater Bay Estates (713) 369-4040 Lane Mabray List Price $1,199,000 www.kenjacobson.com CRS GRI CLHMS Custon Waterfront Home in gated community of Bentwater Lake Conroe. One Laneon Mabray Home Team story home with formals, game room, family area, large wet bar, 4 bedrooms, and 3 (281) 925-3023 full baths. Outside living area includes pool / spa screened in porch which has fireplace, summer kitchen, covered boat lift and 2 jet ski lifts.www.lane2houston.com Call to see now. Beverly Smith | Coldwell Banker United 713-569-2113

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Vice President/Sr. Mortgage Planner HomeLane and Condo Insurance 12Luxury Windermere 5315 Doliver | Tanglewood Hometrust Mortgage Company List price $3,499,000 | MLS # 80877884 HUB International Personal Insurance $1,725,000 | MLS # 95980412 (713) 369-4040 681-5020 Peaceful retreat(832) tucked away on a quiet street ensures complete privacy. This custom luxury home, Spectacular Mediterranean style home in sought after Tanglewood neighborhood. www.kenjacobson.com built on 1.25 acres with a standing seam copper roof and lush surroundings, possesses grand elegance Tile roof, 5 or 6 bedrooms, 6 full baths, 3 1/2 baths in almost 9,000 square feet. Pool www.hubousley.com and inspires quiet evenings or spectacular entertaining. Oversized windows provide abundant natural and outdoor kitchen and parking for six cars. light. Huge deck and pool afford tranquil views overlooking Buffalo Bayou. Spacious first floor Mariana Saldana | Uptown Real Estate Group master bedroom with luxurious bath, private study, open gourmet kitchen and 3-car garage. Phone: 713-629-7771 Weldon Rigby | Keller Williams Realty Metropolitan 713-621-2555

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Real Estate

SKY HIGH

LIVING IN HOUSTON ON UPSWING by Jacob Sudhoff

H

ouston is truly becoming a major city condo market unlike ever before from both

a mid-rise and high-rise standpoint. People are looking for a lock-and-leave lifestyle for several reasons including stress-free living, security and desirable locations. Condo buyers in today’s market are people thinking about the future. The demographic, depending upon the condo project, falls into two major categories: young professionals and empty nesters.

The Royalton At River Oaks

Cont. on page 20

SALE

PENDING

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

JacobSudhoff Jacob Sudhoff, a native of Corpus Christi, Texas, began his real estate career at the age of sixteen after developing a mentorship with Marilyn Hoffman of Dallas-based Hoffman International. He convinced her to open him an office and began buying and selling homes during high school. In 2010 he started Sudhoff Properties, a full-service real estate marketing firm in Houston. They offer a comprehensive builder, land and investment service for residential developers. Using proprietary lead

generation software, they work with some of Houston’s top builders and communities, including Interfin, Pelican builders, RÜhe & Wright and the Butler Brothers. This partnership is designed to effectively save clients time and money in coordinating and securing many of the services on their own. Sudhoff has more than 35 full-time employees and closed transactions have climbed to the hundreds of million dollar level with nearly 150 million dollars of inventory in escrow.

From cool to comfortable at the touch of a button

BoConcept Houston 4302 Westheimer RoadHouston, TX 77027 intown 19


Cont. from page 18 Young professionals moving out of apartments are looking to build equity while still living a low maintenance, convenient lifestyle. This demographic is attracted to the fixed cost of ownership that condo living offers. Things break in a house and a roof needs to be replaced, but with a condo it’s not an issue. Low maintenance living is equally attractive to empty nesters. Condos offer a wonderful quality of life while eliminating the stress of worrying about the garden and pool. In a condo sixteen hundred square feet can feel like two thousand. Unlike townhomes with multiple levels and staircases, you simply don’t need as much square footage in a condo

to feel spacious. In many ways it’s less cost of ownership, by lower taxes and all wrapped up on one convenient floor. People are also often concerned about HOA dues. Dues are actually starting to come down and some of our our projects have low HOA dues because we don’t offer common amenities. There are no massive pools or common areas. It is still less expensive than home ownership and you get a lot of value on those HOA dollars. The bottom line is whether you are a young professional, empty nester or somewhere in between, condo living offers a stress-free, lock-and-leave lifestyle that is becoming increasingly attractive to Houstonians.

HOUSTON HIGH RISES CURRENTLY UNDER CONSTRUCTION 2929 Weslayan Developer;PN realty Architect: RTKL Type: Rental #of Floors : 40 Completion 2016 Hanover Post Oak Developer: Hanover Architect: Solomon Cordwell Buenz Type: Rental Location: Post Oak at San Felipe Road # of Floors: 29 Completion: Winter 2014 Astoria Developer: Randall Davis Architect: Page Southerland Page Type: Residential Location: Post Oak Blvd # of Floors: 28 Completion: 2015 Belfiore Developer: Inter-Pier LLC Architect: Kirksey Type: Residential # of floors: 26 Location: S. Post Oak Lane at South Wynden Drive Completion Date: Spring 2016 SkyHouse River Oaks Developer: Novare Group Architect: Smallwood, Reynolds, Stewart & Associates Type: Rental Location: 2013 Westcreek Lane # of Floors: 24 Completion: Early 2015

2727 Kirby Photo courtesy of Teoh Properties and www.houstoncitylife.com

RECENT HIGH RISE SALES IN HOUSTON

SkyHouse Houston Developer: Novare Group Architect: Smallwood, Reynolds, Stewart & Associates Type: Rental Location: 1625 Main Street # of Floors: 24 Completion: Spring 2014 The Sovereign Developer: GID Development Group Architect: Ziegler Cooper Type: Rental Location: 3233 West Dallas St # of Floors: 21 Completion: Summer 2014 Old Texaco Building Developer: Provident Realty Advisors Architect: Hnedak Bobo Group Type: Rental Location: 1111 Rusk Street #of floors: 18 Start Date: 4Q 2015

HIGH RISE: HIGHLAND TOWER How Much: $1,060,000 Where: 2207 Bancroft What: 3 bedroom, 2.5 baths Agent: Mariana Saldana Uptown Real Estate

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HIGH RISE: THE MERCER How Much: $627,000 Where: 3388 Sage What: 3 bedroom, 2 baths Agent: Weldon Rigby Keller Williams Metropolitan

HIGH RISE: FOUR LEAF TOWERS How Much: $645,000 Where: 5110 San Felipe What: 3 bedrooms, 2.5 baths Agent: Mariana Saldana Uptown Real Estate

Brazos Towers at Bayou Manor (A retirement community) Developer: Brazos Presbyterian Homes Architect: THW Design 4141 S. Braeswood Completion Date: 2015 Tower at Hermann Place Developer: TEMA Development Architect: Corgan Associates Type: Rental Location: Hermann Drive #of floors: 42 Opens: Summer 2015


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HOUSTON RENOVATOR

6WAYS to

Decorate your High Rise or smaller space Ashley Seals Marketing/Account Manager

Decorating a smaller space such as a high rise condo, an apartment, loft, cottage home or guest house can be a daunting task because everything must be carefully planned and executed to avoid overcrowding. Regardless, do not let the challenges of a small space interfere with your decorating style. Try using these six tips to make your small space feel more open.

MINIMAL PATTERNS: Large and bold prints stand out. If too many are used, a space may look like it has shrunk in size. Try using more solids and textures.

MIRRORS: Mirrors make a big difference. Large wall mirrors make a room look like it has more depth because they reflect large portions of the room. Hanging a mirror directly across from a window allows for natural light to be reflected back into the room. Branch out from the usual rectangle or square. Be creative and find a mirror in a unique shape or style that accentuates with your home.

LIGHT COLORS: Dark colors are popular and trendy for decorating, but actually make a room look smaller than it is. Lighter colors automatically make a room seem more open. White surfaces allow light to bounce off of them creating a brighter setting. Dark colors can still be used, but should be kept to a minimum. If white is too plain, try a light blue, yellow or purple.

FURNITURE WITH LEGS: Raised chairs and sofas elevate rooms and look more light weight. Being able to see the floor and space beneath keeps the room open and airy. Furniture that sits on the floor can make a room feel heavy. When furniture is lifted it enhances and shows off your beautiful rugs and floors.

MULTI-USE FURNITURE: Pieces of furniture that can be used in more ways than one are ideal. An ottoman is a popular choice for small spaces. It can be used as a coffee table, as storage and as extra seating. Other great multi-use pieces of furniture are day beds and benches. The more functions an item has, the better!

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frederickbuilders.net

CALL ON 42 YEARS

OF HIGH RISE EXPERIENCE

ACRYLIC: 2014 has been the year of Acrylic, commonly known as Lucite. Due to the fact that it is clear, it creates an illusion of not taking up any space at all. It is also a great alternative to glass because it weighs half of the weight, is more durable and impact resistant and is easily repaired if scuffed or marked. It is available in tinted colors also, so clear is not the only option.

Brought to you by

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Cover Story

MOON SHOTS UPDATE

Photo credit: F. Carter Smith

DR. JIM ALLISON

body’s immune system. By rebooting the immune system you kick it into overdrive to fight the cancer cells. For melanoma patients the use of Yervoy can lead to a decade of remission, something previously unheard of.

“Dr. Allison’s work has already saved numerous lives and shines a bright light on a future direction of oncology,” said Alex Matter, M.D., CEO of Experimental Therapeutics Centre & D3, A*STAR in Singapore and winner of the 2013 Szent-Györgyi Prize.

Imagine a way to treat cancer without the side effects of radiation or chemotherapy, simply taking drugs that make your own body destroy the cancer cells.

The Moon Shots Program combines research with drug company collaborative agreements for preclinical and clinical trials to extend cancer patients lives.

Today Allison continues his work in tumor immunotherapy as Professor and Chair of Immunology and the director of Immunotherapy platform of Moon Shots at MD Anderson. Late last year he won the $3 million Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences, sponsored by, among others, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg.

“Jim Allison is a brilliant basic scientist who rigorously pursued his curiosity about the biology of T cells, leading to remarkable discoveries and a truly disruptive approach to treating cancer,” MD Anderson President Ron DePinho, M.D., said.

MAY BE ON TRACK TO CURING CANCER AND WIN A NOBEL PRIZE ON THE WAY.

By Marene Gustin he University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center’s tagline is Making Cancer History. A couple of years ago the double entendre may have sounded a bit pretentious but not any more. Because MD Anderson is on the verge of making cancer history and possibly curing cancer. And it’s all thanks to a groundbreaking program dubbed Moon Shots. Begun in 2012, and named after President Kennedy’s challenge to put a man on the moon in a decade, the program has brought some of the best and brightest minds to Houston and the results have been nothing less than remarkable. Jim Allison, Ph. D., is the main person behind the breakthrough technology at MD Anderson. He started out as a small town Texas boy, but in middle school he attended summer programs at The University of Texas at Austin that sparked his interest in science and research. In the 1990s, in his research at the University of California, Berkeley, he was the first person to isolate the T-cell antigen receptor complex protein, which led to the development of the drug Yervoy, approved in 2011 as a treatment for late-stage skin cancer. In layman’s terms, he treats the immune system, not the tumor. His research has shown that cancer cells activate CTLA-4, an off switch for T-cells in the

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Dr. Allison getting ready to fire up his harmonica at MD Anderson function.

At the time he said: “I’m honored and exhilarated to receive this generous award established by the founders of the Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences Foundation. My profound thanks go to them for recognizing my own work and for establishing this prize to promote research, celebrate scientists and to generate excitement about careers in science.”

Could Dr. Allison be on his way to becoming the next Houstonian to win a Nobel Prize? Maybe. But more importantly, MD Anderson is on the way to making cancer history.

Part of the prize money will be used for a program for high school students and college undergraduates to foster their interest in biomedicine, just as his interest was encouraged in his youth. Allison has said that because “checkpoint blockade” is not tumor specific it can be used to fight cancers other than melanoma. Currently, the Moon Shots Program is also focusing on breast and ovarian cancer, two types of leukemia, lung and prostate cancer. The Breakthrough Prize was hardly his first award, nor will it be Allison’s last. Earlier this year he was awarded the 2014 Szent-Györgyi Prize for Progress in Cancer Research from the National Foundation for Cancer Research.

MD Anderson President Dr. Ronald DePinho was instrumental in the recruitment of Dr. Allison


INTOWN INTERVIEW

Will this eventually lead to a cure for cancer or decrease early mortality rates?

WITH DR. ALLISON What has had the most influence on your life? I’ve always wanted to know how things work. My father was a doctor in Alice, Texas, and as a doctor, you can’t make mistakes. Scientists make mistakes all of the time. You go back and do another experiment. Scientists only need to be right some of the time – preferably about something important. Also, my family has suffered greatly from cancer – my mother, a brother and other relatives died of the disease. What made you go into the field of immunology after it had such enormous promise and then a big drop off by researchers as a possible answer to cancer? I was fascinated by the complexity and versatility of immune response and wanted to learn the details of how it functions. That was the challenge, I didn’t set out to develop a cancer treatment. It’s important to remember

that checkpoint blockade emerged as a cancer therapy only because we first uncovered the basic science of the biology and function of T cells – the immune system’s attack cells. People sometimes don’t understand the essential value of basic science research. During your years of research was there an aha moment or something similar? When we thoroughly demonstrated that a molecule on T cells called CTLA-4 shuts down an immune response, it occurred to me that blocking CTLA-4 might allow T cells to attack cancer cells. T cells had been found in tumors for decades, so we knew the immune system tries to destroy cancer. Next, we treated mice that had cancer with the antibody I developed to block CTLA-4. The results of this immune checkpoint blockade were dramatic – treated mice lived, untreated mice died.

Ipilimumab is decreasing mortality in late-stage melanoma patients right now. About 22 percent live for three years or longer, and certainly some of those have been in remission for so long – up to 13 years – that they could be considered cured. Since this approach treats the immune system, rather than a specific tumor type, it’s applicable across cancers. What are you looking forward to now? Increasing the impact of immunotherapy by applying it to more types of cancer and by identifying efficient combinations of checkpoint inhibitors with other cancer treatments. The field is really just beginning. More immunotherapy targets have been identified and new drugs are in the pipeline. What are your favorite things about Houston? It’s great to be back in Texas with the opportunity to lead a unique cancer immunotherapy effort at MD Anderson that will play a significant role in the further development of immunotherapy to benefit cancer patients.

As we raise our glass to celebrate 47 years of Ouisie’s Table... ...we toast to the next adventure!

Elouise Adams Jones Proprietress/Chef

Award Winning ● 3939 San Felipe ● (713) 528-2264 ● www.ouisiestable.com intown 25


FINANCIAL FOCUS

IS LIFE INSURANCE A GOOD

INVESTMENT? Christopher J. Maurer Certified Financial Planner

Many people believe that cash value life insurance is a bad investment. Oftentimes this position is held almost as a matter of faith – with no definition of “bad” and no analysis supporting the proposition. When there is an analysis proffered, it oftentimes consists of a buy term and invest the difference analysis. Oftentimes this analysis can be misleading. To me, what is good or bad depends upon the alternatives available. For example, Is term insurance good because it has a low premium? Or are there more factors to be considered? I don’t think term life insurance is an investment at all because there is no buildup in value. In fact, while cash outlays are low, if the insured does not die during the term of the insurance, the rate of return on the premiums paid is a whopping negative 100%. The balance of this article pertains only to traditional cash value whole life insurance – what I will refer to as permanent life insurance. Permanent life insurance is designed to stay

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in force for life. It has two parts – a cash or investment component and a death benefit component. The sum of these two parts equals the policy. Permanent life insurance policy values are oftentimes guaranteed as long as premiums are paid. Moreover, if structured properly, the policy will stay in force for life and ultimately an income tax free death benefit will be paid to beneficiaries. Some life insurance Evans Attwell companies allow the use of the death benefit while

alive to satisfy long term health care needs.


But is permanent life insurance a good investment? It

I consider traditional whole life insurance to be a part of a

depends. From a rate of return standpoint, almost any

person’s bond allocation. Unlike bonds, which can go down

permanent life insurance policy will result in a higher rate of

in value when interest rates rise, the cash value of permanent

return than would a term insurance policy unless the insured

life insurance will only increase. Traditional whole life insurance

died during the term of the policy. If the insured lives to

can also play an important role in college funding planning and

life expectancy, the rate of return on the permanent life

retirement planning.

insurance policy will be higher than the term policy. See your financial advisor for details! Moreover, permanent life insurance cash values are guaranteed to only increase.

Annual increases are not

subject to income tax or alternative minimum tax. Lifetime distributions, structured properly, can be income tax free. Moreover, having a lifetime death benefit in place may allow for rapid spend-down of investment assets during retirement years, because investment accounts need not last for the

Christopher J. Maurer, J.D., CFP® is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ in Bellaire, with over 20 years of experience. He can be reached at 713667-4884 or cmaurer@parkplacefinancial.co. This material is intended for educational purposes only.

lifetimes of both the husband and wife. The life insurance death benefit is available to replenish investment assets that have been spent more rapidly than would have been possible

Please consult your investment professional or tax advisor

without the life insurance.

for specific information pertaining to your situation. All information contained herein is derived from sources deemed

In retirement years, cash on cash tax free rates of return on

to be reliable but cannot be guaranteed. Insurance services

the investment portion of the policy can exceed 5% per year

offered through Park Place Financial. Legal advice provided by

– higher than the current yields on municipal bonds. Plus

Christopher J. Maurer. 6750 West Loop S, Suite 920, Bellaire,

there’s the death benefit.

Texas 77401, (713) 667-4884.

Securities and advisory services offered through SagePoint Financial, Inc., member FINRA/SIPC. Insurance services offered through Park Place Financial, which is not affiliated with SagePoint Financial or registered as a broker-dealer or investment advisor. SagePoint Financial, Inc. does not offer tax or legal advice. Legal advice provided by Christopher J. Maurer. 6750 West Loop S, Suite 920, Bellaire, Texas 77401(713) 667-4884.


Business

marketer of the year

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The Houston chapter of the American Marketing Association is the largest chapter in the nation (out of 74) with approximately 1100 members, and is the oldest professional services organization in Houston. The event is eight years old and has been held for the last seven at the Alley Theatre. Nominations of firms are judged by the members and nominating committee to determine a "Best of Category" (BOC) winner in each of the 25 categories. These winners are then asked to complete a detailed questionnaire explaining strategies and results in more detail. These completed questionnaires are then distributed to 22 senior marketing professionals across the country (none in Houston). These senior marketing professionals read, rate, and score each questionnaire. From their scores an overall winner is determined and this year the YMCA of Greater Houston was voted and recognized as AMA Houston's overall Marketer of the Year.


What role does social media play in your marketing plan? We have a blog and maintain a strong presence on Facebook and Twitter. We try to make our social media efforts a two-way conversation, engaging our audience rather than just pushing out information. We try to make sure that our messages aren’t all about sales and promotions; we meet people where they are, offering wellness tips, motivation and a few laughs along the way.

Trazanna Moreno Trazanna Moreno is YMCA of Greater Houston’s senior vice president and chief marketing officer. She previously served as the associate superintendent for community relations in the Klein Independent School District and worked for nine years as a television news anchor and reporter, at KPRC-TV in Houston. Moreno earned her Accreditation in Public Relations (APR) in 2010. She holds a Masters Degree in Professional Writing and Technical Communication from the University of Houston-Downtown, as well as undergraduate degrees in both English Textual Studies and Journalism from Syracuse University.

How has the YMCA's brand changed over the years? A couple of years ago the YMCA of the USA launched a rebrand. Prior to that, there were

actually 250 different logos, with YMCAs using their own look and feel. The brand revitalization changed that and now we all use one logo, but the brand wasn’t just about the logo. We weren’t consistent about how we conveyed the impact of our work; we were not perceived as a cause-driven organization that relies on donations to strengthen our communities. Looking ahead, what are the Y's greatest marketing challenges? We, like many organizations, need to stay in tune with the changing cultural landscape in Houston. We are a diverse city and the YMCA’s programming and marketing must reflect that.

There’s more to

AT THE GARDENS OF BELLAIRE!

There are 38 Y's in the Houston area. How many people do you serve and what role does the corporate office play in marketing each of these? The YMCA of Greater Houston serves 800,000 people in nine counties, an area that is larger than the state of New Jersey. Close to 30% of our members receive financial assistance to help them participate in and benefit from YMCA programs. Our office handles all areawide campaigns promoting membership and programs, including: paid media, search, digital ads, social media, print collateral, email marketing, video production and more. We also provide more location-specific support based on the individual needs of a YMCA in a particular community. We have a saying that “if you’ve seen one YMCA you’ve only seen one YMCA.” All 38 locations are different based on the communities that they serve.

Assisted Living Community & Skilled Nursing Facility

CAREFREE LIVING STARTS HERE.

Meals, Housekeeping and Linen Services

Scheduled transportation to doctors appointments

Healthy Generation Calendar of Events and Programs

Rehab & Wellness Center, with on-site Physical, Occupational and Speech Therapy

Call today to schedule a visit and learn more about our special move-in promotions!

Do you do consumer research as a part of developing your marketing plans? We are extremely targeted in our approach. Our core audience is families and our messages target moms. We look carefully at multiple factors when buying media. We undertook a major website redesign in 2012 and prior to the relaunch we conducted focus groups, surveys and usability studies. That feedback played a huge role on our final design. We have added digital advertising to our tactics, and we’ve added a new operating system that allows busy moms to browse our site and find what they need a lot faster and easier. Our marketing plans and tactics are based on sound research into who our customer is and who makes purchasing decisions.

life

4620 Bellaire Boulevard • Bellaire, TX 77401

713-665-3888

www.GardensOfBellaire.com SNF #000233 • ALF #000579

Pet Friendly

©2014 Five Star Quality Care, Inc.

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