Page 1


table of

contents

9%

50% LOWER FAILURE RATE

21%

HIGHER GROWTH RATE

24-33%

SAVINGS ON

HR ADMINISTRATION

LOWER TURNOVER RATE

InsperityMORE PARTICIPATION

2X

IN RETIREMENT PLANS

Source: NAPEO publications: Professional Employer Organizations: Fueling Small Business Growth, September 2013, and Professional Employer Organizations: Keeping Turnover Low and Survival High, September 2014, by Laurie Bassi and Dan McMurrer

04 06

Now, how can we help you improve your bottom line?

12

Citizen of the Year

18

Home Grown

22

Staying Power

24

Follow the Leader

28

insperity.com | 800-465-3800

30 HR and Business Performance Solutions: Workforce Optimization Services Human Capital Solutions | Payroll Services | Time and Attendance | Performance Management Organizational Planning | Recruiting Services | Employment Screening | Financial Solutions Expense Management | Retirement Services | Insurance Services ®

2 | Lake Houston Business Matters

Shift to Career and Technical Education

Why schools and students should shift gears from college to career readiness.

The numbers don’t lie. Tapping into Insperity’s depth, breadth and level of care can help your company run better, grow faster and make more money.

Message from the President

Meet State Representative, Dan Huberty.

Including Kids aims for an inclusive community for people with autism.

How businesses can attract and retain Millennials.

Three community members who inspire through involvement.

Small Business Education

Social Media led to large experience for local clothing boutique Dirt Road Divas.

Lake Houston Business Matters is a quarterly publication of Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce. It is distributed to Chamber members and regional businesses. Digital copies are available online at LakeHouston.org CONTACT INFORMATION Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce 110 West Main Street, Humble, Texas 77338 (281) 446-2128 | LakeHouston.org CHAMBER LEADERSHIP Chair of the Board Robert Sitton Edward Jones - Financial Advisor Chair-Elect The Rev. Jerry Martin Light of the World Christian Fellowship President & CEO Jenna Armstrong, IOM Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce EDITORIAL STAFF Contributing Writers Jenna Armstrong - jarmstrong@lakehouston.org Jill Todd - Jill.P.Todd@lonestar.edu Michael Prats – mprats@lakehouston.org Kelli White – kwhite@metromediapublishers.com Graphic Designer Jen Weber – jweber@metromediapublishers.com Photographers Lynn Cheney – lynn@hope-photography.com Diane Meredith – dm@dianemeredith.com PUBLISHER Metro Media, Inc. David Small – dsmall@metromediapublishers.com 4210 Shawnee Mission Parkway, Suite 314A Fairway, Kansas 66205 | (913) 951-8413 To Advertise contact Kathy Moore (913) 951-8441, kmoore@metromediapublishers.com

Behind the Business

From public to personal: five things you didn’t know about Robert Sitton.

The Chamber is not responsible for advertisements included in this magazine. The information in this publication was compiled with care to ensure a high level of accuracy. Nonetheless, Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce and MetroMedia cannot guarantee the correctness of the information provided or the complete absence of accidental errors. For changes or additions, contact the Chamber at 281-446-2128. No article may be reproduced without permission of the Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce. Winter 2016 | 3


table of

contents

9%

50% LOWER FAILURE RATE

21%

HIGHER GROWTH RATE

24-33%

SAVINGS ON

HR ADMINISTRATION

LOWER TURNOVER RATE

InsperityMORE PARTICIPATION

2X

IN RETIREMENT PLANS

Source: NAPEO publications: Professional Employer Organizations: Fueling Small Business Growth, September 2013, and Professional Employer Organizations: Keeping Turnover Low and Survival High, September 2014, by Laurie Bassi and Dan McMurrer

04 06

Now, how can we help you improve your bottom line?

12

Citizen of the Year

18

Home Grown

22

Staying Power

24

Follow the Leader

28

insperity.com | 800-465-3800

30 HR and Business Performance Solutions: Workforce Optimization Services Human Capital Solutions | Payroll Services | Time and Attendance | Performance Management Organizational Planning | Recruiting Services | Employment Screening | Financial Solutions Expense Management | Retirement Services | Insurance Services ®

2 | Lake Houston Business Matters

Shift to Career and Technical Education

Why schools and students should shift gears from college to career readiness.

The numbers don’t lie. Tapping into Insperity’s depth, breadth and level of care can help your company run better, grow faster and make more money.

Message from the President

Meet State Representative, Dan Huberty.

Including Kids aims for an inclusive community for people with autism.

How businesses can attract and retain Millennials.

Three community members who inspire through involvement.

Small Business Education

Social Media led to large experience for local clothing boutique Dirt Road Divas.

Lake Houston Business Matters is a quarterly publication of Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce. It is distributed to Chamber members and regional businesses. Digital copies are available online at LakeHouston.org CONTACT INFORMATION Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce 110 West Main Street, Humble, Texas 77338 (281) 446-2128 | LakeHouston.org CHAMBER LEADERSHIP Chair of the Board Robert Sitton Edward Jones - Financial Advisor Chair-Elect The Rev. Jerry Martin Light of the World Christian Fellowship President & CEO Jenna Armstrong, IOM Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce EDITORIAL STAFF Contributing Writers Jenna Armstrong - jarmstrong@lakehouston.org Jill Todd - Jill.P.Todd@lonestar.edu Michael Prats – mprats@lakehouston.org Kelli White – kwhite@metromediapublishers.com Graphic Designer Jen Weber – jweber@metromediapublishers.com Photographers Lynn Cheney – lynn@hope-photography.com Diane Meredith – dm@dianemeredith.com PUBLISHER Metro Media, Inc. David Small – dsmall@metromediapublishers.com 4210 Shawnee Mission Parkway, Suite 314A Fairway, Kansas 66205 | (913) 951-8413 To Advertise contact Kathy Moore (913) 951-8441, kmoore@metromediapublishers.com

Behind the Business

From public to personal: five things you didn’t know about Robert Sitton.

The Chamber is not responsible for advertisements included in this magazine. The information in this publication was compiled with care to ensure a high level of accuracy. Nonetheless, Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce and MetroMedia cannot guarantee the correctness of the information provided or the complete absence of accidental errors. For changes or additions, contact the Chamber at 281-446-2128. No article may be reproduced without permission of the Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce. Winter 2016 | 3


Over 20 years of experience in the insurance industry. Founded in 2001. Our Private Client Service advisors can customize a solution for all of your personal line accounts. Coverages include high value homes (1,000,000 +), artwork, jewelry, exotic & classic cars, domestic workers compensation & much more.

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Serna Insurance Company

The personal lines of coverage include home, auto, life, flood, and health.

281-812-9775

9232 Will Clayton Pkwy., Humble, TX 77338 www.sernainsurance.com

Welcome from the President A Leader in Education, a Legacy in Lake Houston

A

s I write this welcome, the recent announcement

stature in the community, Dr. Sconzo has always provided

of Dr. Guy Sconzo’s impending retirement as

help to anyone who asks. He has served as a constant re-

Superintendent of Humble ISD is still fresh on

minder that to achieve true success, you must make a com-

my mind. As he winds down his stellar career in 2016, I can’t help but feel sad, yet very thankful for time our

mitment to helping others succeed. Dr. Sconzo’s visionary leadership was the catalyst for

community has had with him. I have

one of our organization’s most successful programs, Lead-

never worked with a leader as genuine

ership Lake Houston. He led the initial steering committee

and compassionate as Dr. Sconzo. He

created to design, develop and launch the program. In the

has touched so many lives in our area,

five years since it has launched, we have watched it grow

both young and old, and has made a

and impact the community, far surpassing our expecta-

lasting impression on our organiza-

tions. His leadership initiated this program, which is in

tion, as well as me personally.

turn launching new leaders for our community. Outstand-

Not only has Dr. Sconzo worked tirelessly at the helm of one of the state’s largest fast-

ing leaders pass the torch with fire blazing. Dr. Sconzo is an outstanding leader.

growth school districts, but he has also been a true cham-

Thank you for your lead-

pion for our community. Dr. Sconzo fosters community

ership, Dr. Sconzo. Because

connectivity — often serving as the string that ties the

of your leadership, our

school district, the business community, and area social

Chamber is a better organi-

service agencies and nonprofits together. He has served

zation, and our community

as a volunteer chair for countless charitable drives, fund-

is a better place.

raising campaigns, boards and committees.

Jenna Armstrong, IOM

I’ve always been amazed at how he does it all, but I’ve come to realize the genius, yet simple, secret to his success — he seeks to help others first. Regardless of title or

President & CEO Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce

FACT:

Social and emotional intelligence may be the most important determinant of a child’s future success. Primrose School of Lake Houston PRIMROSE WAY: Being school-ready is just the beginning. CALL FOR A TOUR. Primrose School of Eagle Springs 17979 Eagle Springs Pkwy., Humble, TX 77346 281.852.8000 | PrimroseEagleSprings.com

Primrose School of Lake Houston 20027 W. Lake Houston Pkwy., Kingwood, TX 77346 281.812.6361 | PrimroseLakeHouston.com

4 | Lake Houston Business Matters

Each Primrose School is a privately owned and operated franchise. Primrose Schools and The Leader in Early Education and Care are trademarks of Primrose School Franchising Company. ©2015 Primrose School Franchising Company. All rights reserved. See primroseschools.com for ‘fact’ source and curriculum detail.

Winter 2016 | 5


Over 20 years of experience in the insurance industry. Founded in 2001. Our Private Client Service advisors can customize a solution for all of your personal line accounts. Coverages include high value homes (1,000,000 +), artwork, jewelry, exotic & classic cars, domestic workers compensation & much more.

The services that we offer will minimize property damage & bolster the safety of our clients and their families. We are experienced with all size companies offering products and coverages for commercial property, commercial auto, general liability, worker’s compensation, and business owners policies.

Serna Insurance Company

The personal lines of coverage include home, auto, life, flood, and health.

281-812-9775

9232 Will Clayton Pkwy., Humble, TX 77338 www.sernainsurance.com

Welcome from the President A Leader in Education, a Legacy in Lake Houston

A

s I write this welcome, the recent announcement

stature in the community, Dr. Sconzo has always provided

of Dr. Guy Sconzo’s impending retirement as

help to anyone who asks. He has served as a constant re-

Superintendent of Humble ISD is still fresh on

minder that to achieve true success, you must make a com-

my mind. As he winds down his stellar career in 2016, I can’t help but feel sad, yet very thankful for time our

mitment to helping others succeed. Dr. Sconzo’s visionary leadership was the catalyst for

community has had with him. I have

one of our organization’s most successful programs, Lead-

never worked with a leader as genuine

ership Lake Houston. He led the initial steering committee

and compassionate as Dr. Sconzo. He

created to design, develop and launch the program. In the

has touched so many lives in our area,

five years since it has launched, we have watched it grow

both young and old, and has made a

and impact the community, far surpassing our expecta-

lasting impression on our organiza-

tions. His leadership initiated this program, which is in

tion, as well as me personally.

turn launching new leaders for our community. Outstand-

Not only has Dr. Sconzo worked tirelessly at the helm of one of the state’s largest fast-

ing leaders pass the torch with fire blazing. Dr. Sconzo is an outstanding leader.

growth school districts, but he has also been a true cham-

Thank you for your lead-

pion for our community. Dr. Sconzo fosters community

ership, Dr. Sconzo. Because

connectivity — often serving as the string that ties the

of your leadership, our

school district, the business community, and area social

Chamber is a better organi-

service agencies and nonprofits together. He has served

zation, and our community

as a volunteer chair for countless charitable drives, fund-

is a better place.

raising campaigns, boards and committees.

Jenna Armstrong, IOM

I’ve always been amazed at how he does it all, but I’ve come to realize the genius, yet simple, secret to his success — he seeks to help others first. Regardless of title or

President & CEO Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce

FACT:

Social and emotional intelligence may be the most important determinant of a child’s future success. Primrose School of Lake Houston PRIMROSE WAY: Being school-ready is just the beginning. CALL FOR A TOUR. Primrose School of Eagle Springs 17979 Eagle Springs Pkwy., Humble, TX 77346 281.852.8000 | PrimroseEagleSprings.com

Primrose School of Lake Houston 20027 W. Lake Houston Pkwy., Kingwood, TX 77346 281.812.6361 | PrimroseLakeHouston.com

4 | Lake Houston Business Matters

Each Primrose School is a privately owned and operated franchise. Primrose Schools and The Leader in Early Education and Care are trademarks of Primrose School Franchising Company. ©2015 Primrose School Franchising Company. All rights reserved. See primroseschools.com for ‘fact’ source and curriculum detail.

Winter 2016 | 5


The Shift

in Education Why career & technical education programs are significant for economic growth. By Michael Prats V.P. of Economic Development Lake Houston Economic Development Partnership

The Lake Houston Area has long been a top residential community for families. Over the past decade and a half, our area, along with the entire Houston region, has seen tremendous growth in population and households. This rapid and tremendous population growth may be normalizing in some areas, but Lake Houston shows no signs of slowing growth. Currently, more than 13,000 units in 50 subdivisions are in varying phases of construction in addition to significant expansions in employers and job growth from the likes of FMC Technologies, Bush Intercontinental Airport, Amazon and JetCo Delivery. During any period of growth, it is important to keep in mind the question of how a particular area grows. An important question communities must ask is, “Are we getting our fair share of job and commercial growth to go along with household and population growth?�

6 | Lake Houston Business Matters

Winter 2016 | 7


The Shift

in Education Why career & technical education programs are significant for economic growth. By Michael Prats V.P. of Economic Development Lake Houston Economic Development Partnership

The Lake Houston Area has long been a top residential community for families. Over the past decade and a half, our area, along with the entire Houston region, has seen tremendous growth in population and households. This rapid and tremendous population growth may be normalizing in some areas, but Lake Houston shows no signs of slowing growth. Currently, more than 13,000 units in 50 subdivisions are in varying phases of construction in addition to significant expansions in employers and job growth from the likes of FMC Technologies, Bush Intercontinental Airport, Amazon and JetCo Delivery. During any period of growth, it is important to keep in mind the question of how a particular area grows. An important question communities must ask is, “Are we getting our fair share of job and commercial growth to go along with household and population growth?�

6 | Lake Houston Business Matters

Winter 2016 | 7


will

Fortunately Humble ISD and Lone Star College’s career

industry experience as part of their high school curriculum.

high-quality

and technical education programs are stepping up to the

Through the CTE department, students are exposed to a

plate to provide solutions for creating a competent and cre-

unique combination of classroom instruction and placement

well-

dentialed workforce. They are and will continue to be the

in technical work environments where they can acquire new

trained labor pool is

two most important institutions that will keep Lake Houston

information, concepts, techniques and procedures related to

critical and a strong

Area businesses competitive and secure the future competi-

their specific career interests. The goal is to ensure that stu-

community

tiveness of our region for attracting employers seeking ex-

dents are prepared to succeed in post-secondary education

pansion and relocation.

and in a world that is increasingly oriented toward highly

“This require

move

community schools.” “A

based

skilled,

college-

training

pro-

gram is required.” “We require a train-

skilled jobs. The program also provides opportunities to Lake

Humble ISD

Houston Area businesses to partner with HISD CTE by hav-

able workforce with

The Humble ISD Career and Technical Education De-

ing students engage in hands on job shadowing, internships

microscope and medi-

partment’s mission is to provide students with business and

and apprenticeships with their business. This helps to give

cal device or electronic experience.” “The community must possess a diAs we look ahead to the next approaching wave of

rect labor force with the education and skill pro-

growth, we know that to get our community’s fair share

file to support high-tech operations including

of job and commercial growth, we’ll rely on two factors:

managers, engineers, technicians, R&D teams,

the retention and expansion of local existing businesses

and production workers.”

and the attraction and re-location of outside businesses

We must be certain that our primary, secondary

to our area. These two factors are heavily dependent on

and higher education institutions are high quality and

our area’s capacity and ability to create a future work-

effective at producing individuals who possess the in-

force that is trained, certified and prepared with the

demand skills for today and the future. Therefore a top

requisite skills and acumen businesses seek. To ensure

notch career and technical education and training pro-

our community is creating a prepared labor pool for

gram that teaches knowledge and skills our area busi-

today and tomorrow’s businesses, we must have effec-

nesses currently need and will need is vital.

tive job and skills training programs in our secondary

The days of providing vocational training, certifica-

and higher education institutions. The most significant

tion and experience simply as “shop class” to those who

factor for retaining and expanding existing businesses

lack interest in traditional school work or learning habits

or attracting new businesses is the existence of job and

are obsolete. For the students’ sake we must realize that

skills training programs.

people have a vast and diverse range of skills and learn-

In our conversations with more than 200 existing

ing styles for which skills training and work experience

businesses in 2015, the Chamber and Lake Houston

programs provide a great service. Additionally, it should

Economic Development Partnership found that at-

be understood that certification and training programs

tracting and retaining talented workers was their num-

of the highest quality and effectiveness are absolutely

ber one issue. We found the same issue also raised by

necessary to compete for the retention, expansion and

businesses looking to expand or relocate to our area.

attraction of businesses. For today’s cutting-edge jobs, as

The following questions and statements were taken

well as tomorrow’s wide range of high-wage, high-skill

in 2015 directly from large employers considering re-

and high-demand careers, career and technical educa-

locating to the Houston and Lake Houston Area:

tion programs, commonly referred to as CTE, are key.

8 | Lake Houston Business Matters

Winter 2016 | 9


will

Fortunately Humble ISD and Lone Star College’s career

industry experience as part of their high school curriculum.

high-quality

and technical education programs are stepping up to the

Through the CTE department, students are exposed to a

plate to provide solutions for creating a competent and cre-

unique combination of classroom instruction and placement

well-

dentialed workforce. They are and will continue to be the

in technical work environments where they can acquire new

trained labor pool is

two most important institutions that will keep Lake Houston

information, concepts, techniques and procedures related to

critical and a strong

Area businesses competitive and secure the future competi-

their specific career interests. The goal is to ensure that stu-

community

tiveness of our region for attracting employers seeking ex-

dents are prepared to succeed in post-secondary education

pansion and relocation.

and in a world that is increasingly oriented toward highly

“This require

move

community schools.” “A

based

skilled,

college-

training

pro-

gram is required.” “We require a train-

skilled jobs. The program also provides opportunities to Lake

Humble ISD

Houston Area businesses to partner with HISD CTE by hav-

able workforce with

The Humble ISD Career and Technical Education De-

ing students engage in hands on job shadowing, internships

microscope and medi-

partment’s mission is to provide students with business and

and apprenticeships with their business. This helps to give

cal device or electronic experience.” “The community must possess a diAs we look ahead to the next approaching wave of

rect labor force with the education and skill pro-

growth, we know that to get our community’s fair share

file to support high-tech operations including

of job and commercial growth, we’ll rely on two factors:

managers, engineers, technicians, R&D teams,

the retention and expansion of local existing businesses

and production workers.”

and the attraction and re-location of outside businesses

We must be certain that our primary, secondary

to our area. These two factors are heavily dependent on

and higher education institutions are high quality and

our area’s capacity and ability to create a future work-

effective at producing individuals who possess the in-

force that is trained, certified and prepared with the

demand skills for today and the future. Therefore a top

requisite skills and acumen businesses seek. To ensure

notch career and technical education and training pro-

our community is creating a prepared labor pool for

gram that teaches knowledge and skills our area busi-

today and tomorrow’s businesses, we must have effec-

nesses currently need and will need is vital.

tive job and skills training programs in our secondary

The days of providing vocational training, certifica-

and higher education institutions. The most significant

tion and experience simply as “shop class” to those who

factor for retaining and expanding existing businesses

lack interest in traditional school work or learning habits

or attracting new businesses is the existence of job and

are obsolete. For the students’ sake we must realize that

skills training programs.

people have a vast and diverse range of skills and learn-

In our conversations with more than 200 existing

ing styles for which skills training and work experience

businesses in 2015, the Chamber and Lake Houston

programs provide a great service. Additionally, it should

Economic Development Partnership found that at-

be understood that certification and training programs

tracting and retaining talented workers was their num-

of the highest quality and effectiveness are absolutely

ber one issue. We found the same issue also raised by

necessary to compete for the retention, expansion and

businesses looking to expand or relocate to our area.

attraction of businesses. For today’s cutting-edge jobs, as

The following questions and statements were taken

well as tomorrow’s wide range of high-wage, high-skill

in 2015 directly from large employers considering re-

and high-demand careers, career and technical educa-

locating to the Houston and Lake Houston Area:

tion programs, commonly referred to as CTE, are key.

8 | Lake Houston Business Matters

Winter 2016 | 9


al and local economies, and educational and community based institutions along with businesses must respond appropriately. The most recent U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) figures show that about 68 percent of high school students attend college, meaning more than 30 percent graduate high school with neither academic nor job skills. Additionally, almost 40 percent of students who begin fouryear college programs don’t complete them, and out of the ones who do graduate with a degree, one-third or more end up in jobs that do not require a four-year degree. The BLS data shows 37 percent of college grads currently employed are doing work that requires only a high school degree. Data from researchers at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York shows in 2015, 40 million Americans have student loan debt totaling an all-time high of $1.2 trillion, which now accounts for the second highest form of consumer debt bestudents a better idea of what skills and careers they want to

With plans for building a Process Technology Center at

pursue while creating the chance for employers to recruit po-

Generation Park, Lone Star College – Kingwood is address-

Some good news in the midst of all the unsavory stats is

tential future workers.

ing key employment issues facing Houston companies to-

that data and studies show high school students who grad-

Humble ISD currently boasts more than 160 CTE courses

day. The Process Technology Center will prepare students

uate with job skills and training go into well-paying, skilled

at five comprehensive high schools, eight middle schools and

with the critical skills that are in high demand from the

jobs and without the burden of student loan debt. An em-

one technical center offering sequences of courses in all 16 ca-

world’s leading oil and gas companies.

phasis on providing effective CTE education to students

hind mortgages.

reer clusters and all five HB5 endorsements. Courses include,

“The acquisition of postsecondary knowledge and skills is

and adults can open alternate avenues to gaining skills

but are not limited to, building trades, criminal justice, engi-

critical to earning a living wage in the economy of today and

required to get employment and start working towards

neering, aero science, auto collision and technology, culinary

tomorrow,” said Dr. Katherine Persson, President at Lone

careers and compensation without the need for burden-

arts, cosmetology, manufacturing, advanced health sciences

Star College-Kingwood.

some student loan debt. Eventually lessening student loan

“In 2014, the residents of the Lone Star College System

debt can help boost economic and job growth nationwide

Students of Humble ISD are able to graduate with certifica-

passed a bond to support the building of facilities that will

because national debt carries many consequences such as

tions in Adobe, AutoCAD, CISCO, and OSHA. Students may

offer training in advanced technical programs. Specifically,

slowing economic growth, meaning fewer jobs being cre-

also graduate as a licensed vocational nurse, cosmetologist,

LSC-Kingwood will construct a process technology center in

pharmacy technician, or pursue other fields to obtain a license.

the first phase of the bond that will offer several high-end pro-

and computer technology.

ated and rising interest rates which make capital more difficult to access. Ultimately skills, jobs and career education, training and certification, when done effectively, translates to improved career success for youth and existing workers by allowing them a hands on approach to gaining skills and experience. Additionally it supports local and incoming businesses by making programs tailored specifically to their needs as an employer. It has been proven that high school students involved in CTE are more engaged, perform better and graduate at higher rates. Investing in CTE yields big returns for economies and addresses the needs of high-growth

indus-

tries and helps close the skills gap.

grams in this diverse field. This facility should be complete in

Lone Star College

late spring 2017. Additionally, the second phase of the bond

Today Lone Star College also is leading the way in the

will allow construction of a health care building to expand

community by offering many opportunities for learning and

current health care programs and add several new ones. All

receiving certifications for a variety of careers including fa-

of these two-year workforce degrees will ensure graduates a

cilities management, interior design, land surveying, distri-

starting salary of at least $50,000 a year.”

bution & logistics, automotive technology, aviation management and many others.

We know that in the wake of the Great Recession much change has taken place that has re-shaped our global, nation-

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Winter 2016 | 11


al and local economies, and educational and community based institutions along with businesses must respond appropriately. The most recent U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) figures show that about 68 percent of high school students attend college, meaning more than 30 percent graduate high school with neither academic nor job skills. Additionally, almost 40 percent of students who begin fouryear college programs don’t complete them, and out of the ones who do graduate with a degree, one-third or more end up in jobs that do not require a four-year degree. The BLS data shows 37 percent of college grads currently employed are doing work that requires only a high school degree. Data from researchers at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York shows in 2015, 40 million Americans have student loan debt totaling an all-time high of $1.2 trillion, which now accounts for the second highest form of consumer debt bestudents a better idea of what skills and careers they want to

With plans for building a Process Technology Center at

pursue while creating the chance for employers to recruit po-

Generation Park, Lone Star College – Kingwood is address-

Some good news in the midst of all the unsavory stats is

tential future workers.

ing key employment issues facing Houston companies to-

that data and studies show high school students who grad-

Humble ISD currently boasts more than 160 CTE courses

day. The Process Technology Center will prepare students

uate with job skills and training go into well-paying, skilled

at five comprehensive high schools, eight middle schools and

with the critical skills that are in high demand from the

jobs and without the burden of student loan debt. An em-

one technical center offering sequences of courses in all 16 ca-

world’s leading oil and gas companies.

phasis on providing effective CTE education to students

hind mortgages.

reer clusters and all five HB5 endorsements. Courses include,

“The acquisition of postsecondary knowledge and skills is

and adults can open alternate avenues to gaining skills

but are not limited to, building trades, criminal justice, engi-

critical to earning a living wage in the economy of today and

required to get employment and start working towards

neering, aero science, auto collision and technology, culinary

tomorrow,” said Dr. Katherine Persson, President at Lone

careers and compensation without the need for burden-

arts, cosmetology, manufacturing, advanced health sciences

Star College-Kingwood.

some student loan debt. Eventually lessening student loan

“In 2014, the residents of the Lone Star College System

debt can help boost economic and job growth nationwide

Students of Humble ISD are able to graduate with certifica-

passed a bond to support the building of facilities that will

because national debt carries many consequences such as

tions in Adobe, AutoCAD, CISCO, and OSHA. Students may

offer training in advanced technical programs. Specifically,

slowing economic growth, meaning fewer jobs being cre-

also graduate as a licensed vocational nurse, cosmetologist,

LSC-Kingwood will construct a process technology center in

pharmacy technician, or pursue other fields to obtain a license.

the first phase of the bond that will offer several high-end pro-

and computer technology.

ated and rising interest rates which make capital more difficult to access. Ultimately skills, jobs and career education, training and certification, when done effectively, translates to improved career success for youth and existing workers by allowing them a hands on approach to gaining skills and experience. Additionally it supports local and incoming businesses by making programs tailored specifically to their needs as an employer. It has been proven that high school students involved in CTE are more engaged, perform better and graduate at higher rates. Investing in CTE yields big returns for economies and addresses the needs of high-growth

indus-

tries and helps close the skills gap.

grams in this diverse field. This facility should be complete in

Lone Star College

late spring 2017. Additionally, the second phase of the bond

Today Lone Star College also is leading the way in the

will allow construction of a health care building to expand

community by offering many opportunities for learning and

current health care programs and add several new ones. All

receiving certifications for a variety of careers including fa-

of these two-year workforce degrees will ensure graduates a

cilities management, interior design, land surveying, distri-

starting salary of at least $50,000 a year.”

bution & logistics, automotive technology, aviation management and many others.

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Winter 2016 | 11


State Representative Dan Huberty fights for the

S

ince 1967, the Lake Houston Area Chamber of Com-

choose the winner. State Representative Dan Huberty was

merce has had the honor of recognizing one out-

chosen as the 2015 award recipient.

standing individual who is dedicated to public ser-

All of Huberty’s committee assignments are indicative of

vice and who stands as a pillar of our community

his background in education and business. He served on the

right thing in education,

by awarding the annual Haden E. McKay, MD Citizen of the

Humble ISD School board for five years before winning the

Year Award.

election that sent him to the Capitol.

business and beyond.

The Citizen of the Year Award recognizes selfless public

As a self-employed consultant, Huberty works with large

service by an individual, performed on his or her own time

corporations and small companies to improve their sales

and not in the regular course of earning a living or advanc-

processes. His expertise has allowed him to consult across a

ing professionally. Requests for nominations are sent out to

variety of sectors, from oil and gas to local real estate to the

the community each October and then past award recipients

parking industry.

Edited by Kelli White Photos by Hope Photography

Citizen of the year

12 | Lake Houston Business Matters

Winter 2016 | 13


State Representative Dan Huberty fights for the

S

ince 1967, the Lake Houston Area Chamber of Com-

choose the winner. State Representative Dan Huberty was

merce has had the honor of recognizing one out-

chosen as the 2015 award recipient.

standing individual who is dedicated to public ser-

All of Huberty’s committee assignments are indicative of

vice and who stands as a pillar of our community

his background in education and business. He served on the

right thing in education,

by awarding the annual Haden E. McKay, MD Citizen of the

Humble ISD School board for five years before winning the

Year Award.

election that sent him to the Capitol.

business and beyond.

The Citizen of the Year Award recognizes selfless public

As a self-employed consultant, Huberty works with large

service by an individual, performed on his or her own time

corporations and small companies to improve their sales

and not in the regular course of earning a living or advanc-

processes. His expertise has allowed him to consult across a

ing professionally. Requests for nominations are sent out to

variety of sectors, from oil and gas to local real estate to the

the community each October and then past award recipients

parking industry.

Edited by Kelli White Photos by Hope Photography

Citizen of the year

12 | Lake Houston Business Matters

Winter 2016 | 13


State Representative Dan Huberty was sworn-in to serve District 127 in the Texas House of Representatives on January 11, 2011. Within weeks of his arrival, he was appointed to two highly-respected committees: Public Education and State Affairs. Huberty’s strong efforts as a freshman were also

Aaron Mechanical

recognized outside of the Capitol as he was named “Rookie of the Year” by Texas Monthly Magazine. By the conclusion of the 82nd Legislative Session, he had passed five pieces of legislation, ranging from regulating the illegal sandmining along the San Jacinto River to duplicative reporting for special education teachers. After his re-election in

Kaustin & Associates

2012 and having honed his legislative skills in the last session, Huberty filed and passed more legislation in the 83rd Session. He passed more than fourteen bills that addressed over-testing of students in grades 3–8; sales options for co-generation facilities; and prohibiting the use of Common Core Curriculum in Texas

for property owners to have the right to vote on whether or

schools. Huberty was also vital in passing several pieces of

not they want to be annexed.

historic legislation like The Foundation High School Pro-

Active in his community, Huberty is a board member of

gram, which overhauled graduation requirements by setting

the Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce; works with

students on real paths to employment and decreasing the

the Kingwood Chamber of Commerce and the Crosby-Huff-

number of end-of-year tests.

man Chamber of Commerce. He is a member of the Knights

After his re-election in 2014, Huberty was again appointed

of Columbus, and the Humble Intercontinental Rotary

to serve on the Public Education committee and State Affairs

club; in addition, he is a board member of the Be an Angel

committee for the 84th Legislative Session. During the 84th

Fund, and is active in organizations for each of his children’s

session, he helped to pass legislation that reduced property

schools and their extra-curricular activities.

taxes, further reduced high stakes testing in grades 3-8, and

He and his wife Janet have been married nearly 20 years.

created the framework for high-quality prekindergarten. Hu-

They live in Walden on Lake Houston with their three chil-

berty was also instrumental in bringing the issue of annexa-

dren, Brianna, Ryan and Dylan, and yellow lab, Rocky.

Including Kids

tion to the forefront of policy discussion. He fought valiantly

14 | Lake Houston Business Matters

Winter 2016 | 15


State Representative Dan Huberty was sworn-in to serve District 127 in the Texas House of Representatives on January 11, 2011. Within weeks of his arrival, he was appointed to two highly-respected committees: Public Education and State Affairs. Huberty’s strong efforts as a freshman were also

Aaron Mechanical

recognized outside of the Capitol as he was named “Rookie of the Year” by Texas Monthly Magazine. By the conclusion of the 82nd Legislative Session, he had passed five pieces of legislation, ranging from regulating the illegal sandmining along the San Jacinto River to duplicative reporting for special education teachers. After his re-election in

Kaustin & Associates

2012 and having honed his legislative skills in the last session, Huberty filed and passed more legislation in the 83rd Session. He passed more than fourteen bills that addressed over-testing of students in grades 3–8; sales options for co-generation facilities; and prohibiting the use of Common Core Curriculum in Texas

for property owners to have the right to vote on whether or

schools. Huberty was also vital in passing several pieces of

not they want to be annexed.

historic legislation like The Foundation High School Pro-

Active in his community, Huberty is a board member of

gram, which overhauled graduation requirements by setting

the Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce; works with

students on real paths to employment and decreasing the

the Kingwood Chamber of Commerce and the Crosby-Huff-

number of end-of-year tests.

man Chamber of Commerce. He is a member of the Knights

After his re-election in 2014, Huberty was again appointed

of Columbus, and the Humble Intercontinental Rotary

to serve on the Public Education committee and State Affairs

club; in addition, he is a board member of the Be an Angel

committee for the 84th Legislative Session. During the 84th

Fund, and is active in organizations for each of his children’s

session, he helped to pass legislation that reduced property

schools and their extra-curricular activities.

taxes, further reduced high stakes testing in grades 3-8, and

He and his wife Janet have been married nearly 20 years.

created the framework for high-quality prekindergarten. Hu-

They live in Walden on Lake Houston with their three chil-

berty was also instrumental in bringing the issue of annexa-

dren, Brianna, Ryan and Dylan, and yellow lab, Rocky.

Including Kids

tion to the forefront of policy discussion. He fought valiantly

14 | Lake Houston Business Matters

Winter 2016 | 15


A Get-to-Know Session with State Representative, Dan Huberty: Q: What is your favorite thing to do as a family and/or with your children?

A: Each of my children like different things, but we love to watch Dylan play football and basketball and Brianna sing in choir and compete in Theater. We are teaching Ryan to play golf and he is learning about my business. But most of all, we enjoy water skiing and tubing on Lake Houston as a family.

Q: The Citizen of the Year award is chosen via a voting process. Why do you think people voted for you?

A: I actually was surprised. My wife Janet and I have been very involved in the community for over 15 years. I think it might be because of all the different groups we work with, whether it is St. Martha’s Church, The PTA and PTO’s, Family Time, The Chamber, The Humble Rotary Club or the Humble ISD Foundation, we try to give back as much as possible. I never expected to be recognized for doing what we think is right, rather we want to support our community because it makes it a better place to live. We have good friends in these organizations, and they are very supportive. We appreciate that very much. It is an honor.

know how important it is to fund programs like this to help our teachers and students. To date, we have helped fund several new initiatives and programs in our schools that help children like Ryan excel in school and have raised millions of dollars for our schools and children.

Q: You have a reputation for having a great sense of humor. How has that helped or hindered your professional and political career? A: That is interesting. I never try to be funny, perhaps funny things just happen around me and to me; I just happen to point them out with levity. I think that over the years you have to learn to laugh at yourself, even when you screw up. (Guilty on that one!) I have found that being personable helps you succeed, but having a sense of humor in life helps to keep your brain from exploding. Q: What would surprise readers to know about you? A: My passion in life is teaching. I last taught college about

ment… or a volunteer experience that deeply affected you?

ten years ago and am just starting to get back into teaching this spring at a local university. I have spent my career in business managing thousands of employees and large business units, but the most gratifying thing for me is to teach. In the classroom, I enjoy giving real-life examples of what works and what does not work and using my skillset as a mentor for others. Nothing pleases me more than to watch people who either have worked for me or were in my class become more successful.

from, learn about my heritage, and see some of my distant cousins. The land is beautiful, people are special, and I would look for the best place to play golf that held the Open Championship to see if I could break 100.

A: There have been a lot of groups we work with, but I have

Q: What surprises you about yourself as you become more

Q: What do you enjoy about living and working in Texas?

Q: What has been your most cherished volunteer mo-

been involved in two groups that stand out to me the most. The first is the Be an Angel Fund, where I am on the Advisory Board. This is an organization founded by Lt. Gov. Patrick that I was asked to join ten years ago. It helps special needs children in our community and throughout Houston with hearing aids, wheel chairs and other essential needs for families that cannot afford them. When Foster Elementary’s playground burned down a few years ago, we worked to secure funding through our foundation in coordination with other groups like Planet Ford to rebuild the playground as an ADA-accessible playground. Watching those kids be able to use this facility was an amazing gift. The second group we like to work with is the Humble ISD Foundation. A few years ago, we started a scholarship in my son Ryan’s name that helps fund grants for Dyslexic children. As a past member of the Humble ISD School Board, I

16 | Lake Houston Business Matters

seasoned professionally, and personally?

Q: If you could go anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?

A: I’d like to go to Ireland, to see where my grandmother came

A: I have loved working and living in Texas for the past 20+

ing. I educate myself about the issue at hand, gather the facts to the best of my ability, and pull the trigger. No one follows someone who needs to be told what to do, and indecision can paralyze an organization. As I have grown, so has my ability to make a decision that is fair and reasonable. Rolling over someone to get what you want is never good business.

years. We have been blessed to live in a wonderful community. The people, the weather, the economy are all great reasons to live and work here, but my family heritage started here in the late 1800s when my great grandfather was stationed at Fort Sam Houston. His family portrait is in the visitor brochure. Having lived across the country over the years, my connection to the State made it all the more reason for us to call this home.

Q: If you knew the next meal you eat would be your last, what would you choose?

Q: What is a change you hope the youngest generation gets to experience?

A: Bacon on white toast with Lays potato chips on the side.

A: I would love to see less reliance on social media, texting,

A: I have learned to be more decisive in my decision mak-

I am a simple guy.

sonal connection went. I tell my kids, what you say and write about someone stays forever. When people come to work with and for me, I try really hard to communicate in person or on the phone to let them know I care what they think. We are losing our one-on-one negotiating skills by relying on our phones, tablets, etc. Plus, the online bullying and ferocious attacks on people for no other reason than to tear people down is hurting the foundation of our country. I am a big boy, I can take it, and have lived this for years, but I worry about it for my kids, for everyone’s kids. I tell my kids, “Pick your head up and put your phone down. There is a big, bold world in front of you and you’re missing it.”

Q: You’ve been highly recognized for your various accomplishments. What character trait do you most attribute to earning such recognition? A: Determination. I try to do the right thing to help people or accomplish the goal, even when it is not the “politically safe” thing to do. Last session, I was determined to do what was right keeping the following in mind: if what I am doing helps our community, my family, and your family and some of the people in Austin don’t like it, then I must be doing something right.

emails, etc. to communicate. I am not sure where our per-

Winter 2016 | 17


A Get-to-Know Session with State Representative, Dan Huberty: Q: What is your favorite thing to do as a family and/or with your children?

A: Each of my children like different things, but we love to watch Dylan play football and basketball and Brianna sing in choir and compete in Theater. We are teaching Ryan to play golf and he is learning about my business. But most of all, we enjoy water skiing and tubing on Lake Houston as a family.

Q: The Citizen of the Year award is chosen via a voting process. Why do you think people voted for you?

A: I actually was surprised. My wife Janet and I have been very involved in the community for over 15 years. I think it might be because of all the different groups we work with, whether it is St. Martha’s Church, The PTA and PTO’s, Family Time, The Chamber, The Humble Rotary Club or the Humble ISD Foundation, we try to give back as much as possible. I never expected to be recognized for doing what we think is right, rather we want to support our community because it makes it a better place to live. We have good friends in these organizations, and they are very supportive. We appreciate that very much. It is an honor.

know how important it is to fund programs like this to help our teachers and students. To date, we have helped fund several new initiatives and programs in our schools that help children like Ryan excel in school and have raised millions of dollars for our schools and children.

Q: You have a reputation for having a great sense of humor. How has that helped or hindered your professional and political career? A: That is interesting. I never try to be funny, perhaps funny things just happen around me and to me; I just happen to point them out with levity. I think that over the years you have to learn to laugh at yourself, even when you screw up. (Guilty on that one!) I have found that being personable helps you succeed, but having a sense of humor in life helps to keep your brain from exploding. Q: What would surprise readers to know about you? A: My passion in life is teaching. I last taught college about

ment… or a volunteer experience that deeply affected you?

ten years ago and am just starting to get back into teaching this spring at a local university. I have spent my career in business managing thousands of employees and large business units, but the most gratifying thing for me is to teach. In the classroom, I enjoy giving real-life examples of what works and what does not work and using my skillset as a mentor for others. Nothing pleases me more than to watch people who either have worked for me or were in my class become more successful.

from, learn about my heritage, and see some of my distant cousins. The land is beautiful, people are special, and I would look for the best place to play golf that held the Open Championship to see if I could break 100.

A: There have been a lot of groups we work with, but I have

Q: What surprises you about yourself as you become more

Q: What do you enjoy about living and working in Texas?

Q: What has been your most cherished volunteer mo-

been involved in two groups that stand out to me the most. The first is the Be an Angel Fund, where I am on the Advisory Board. This is an organization founded by Lt. Gov. Patrick that I was asked to join ten years ago. It helps special needs children in our community and throughout Houston with hearing aids, wheel chairs and other essential needs for families that cannot afford them. When Foster Elementary’s playground burned down a few years ago, we worked to secure funding through our foundation in coordination with other groups like Planet Ford to rebuild the playground as an ADA-accessible playground. Watching those kids be able to use this facility was an amazing gift. The second group we like to work with is the Humble ISD Foundation. A few years ago, we started a scholarship in my son Ryan’s name that helps fund grants for Dyslexic children. As a past member of the Humble ISD School Board, I

16 | Lake Houston Business Matters

seasoned professionally, and personally?

Q: If you could go anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?

A: I’d like to go to Ireland, to see where my grandmother came

A: I have loved working and living in Texas for the past 20+

ing. I educate myself about the issue at hand, gather the facts to the best of my ability, and pull the trigger. No one follows someone who needs to be told what to do, and indecision can paralyze an organization. As I have grown, so has my ability to make a decision that is fair and reasonable. Rolling over someone to get what you want is never good business.

years. We have been blessed to live in a wonderful community. The people, the weather, the economy are all great reasons to live and work here, but my family heritage started here in the late 1800s when my great grandfather was stationed at Fort Sam Houston. His family portrait is in the visitor brochure. Having lived across the country over the years, my connection to the State made it all the more reason for us to call this home.

Q: If you knew the next meal you eat would be your last, what would you choose?

Q: What is a change you hope the youngest generation gets to experience?

A: Bacon on white toast with Lays potato chips on the side.

A: I would love to see less reliance on social media, texting,

A: I have learned to be more decisive in my decision mak-

I am a simple guy.

sonal connection went. I tell my kids, what you say and write about someone stays forever. When people come to work with and for me, I try really hard to communicate in person or on the phone to let them know I care what they think. We are losing our one-on-one negotiating skills by relying on our phones, tablets, etc. Plus, the online bullying and ferocious attacks on people for no other reason than to tear people down is hurting the foundation of our country. I am a big boy, I can take it, and have lived this for years, but I worry about it for my kids, for everyone’s kids. I tell my kids, “Pick your head up and put your phone down. There is a big, bold world in front of you and you’re missing it.”

Q: You’ve been highly recognized for your various accomplishments. What character trait do you most attribute to earning such recognition? A: Determination. I try to do the right thing to help people or accomplish the goal, even when it is not the “politically safe” thing to do. Last session, I was determined to do what was right keeping the following in mind: if what I am doing helps our community, my family, and your family and some of the people in Austin don’t like it, then I must be doing something right.

emails, etc. to communicate. I am not sure where our per-

Winter 2016 | 17


+Home Grown

clusion in the community, and to inspire them to become productive citizens.

ed Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore for a Post Graduate Certificate in Autism. When Stephen, Dantzler’s husband of 14

"We can’t turn our cheek any longer. Autistic

years whom she had met shortly before leaving for Johns Hopkins University, asked her to marry him, she returned to the Humble area to begin serving fami-

people have

lies with autism once again. Dantzler saw

the right to be

in the area.

a part of our community.” Jennifer Dantzler

a tremendous need for autism treatment Dantzler is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst and has a Texas Teaching Certification in Special Education K-12. She said her desire to enter this field was somewhat of a spiritual path. She was

In 2003, in Humble, Texas,

first introduced to people with autism on

Including Kids began by serv-

a mission trip followed by a high school

ing six children and their families.

experience in which she worked with se-

Today, Including Kids serves more

verely handicapped children. These ex-

than 150 children per year and spreads

periences were the catalyst for Dantzler’s

awareness for the rising occurrence of au-

higher education training in special edu-

tism. The nonprofit has served 665 fami-

cation.

lies to date. Families have relocated from across Texas and other states, and even from oversees and South America to seek

Including Kids, Inc. Including Kids aims to instruct, inspire and include children & young adults with autism. By Kelli White Photos by Diane Meredith

It’s a startling statistic: one in 68.

treatment from the organization. Jennifer Dantzler, Executive Director, moved to Houston in 1998 after receiv-

“Some say it was fate or faith,” she said. The goal of Including Kids is to build an inclusive community for people with autism. Right now, only six percent of adults with autism are employed.

ing her Master’s in Education in Inten-

“As the statistic one in 68 continues to

sive Special Needs from Simmons Col-

rise, it won’t be long until our entire com-

lege in Boston, Mass. While receiving her

munity is affected. When these kids are

Master’s, she was working at The New

adults, what will we do if we don’t teach

England Center for Children, where she

them how to succeed in society?” Dantzler

worked with a child from Houston. That

said.

family had relocated to Boston to receive

Children with autism typically show

the intensive one-on-one teaching us-

difficulties in verbal/non-verbal commu-

ing the principles of Applied Behav-

nication, social interactions, and leisure/

That is how often a child is diagnosed with autism. And that

cally appears in the first three years of life and is the result

ior Analysis. After completing her

play activities making it extremely hard

is why Including Kids, Inc., a 501 c(3) nonprofit started its

of a neurological disorder that affects the functioning of the

graduate degree, Dantzler relo-

for a child with autism to fit into a typi-

new campaign, “1 in 68 Can’t Wait.” To put that number in

brain. Including Kids provides research-based behavioral in-

cated to Houston to start a clinic

cal classroom setting without the right

perspective, the polio epidemic affected one in 8,000 peo-

tervention and instruction for children and young adults ages

to help families with autism. In 2000,

supports. This is why early intervention

ple in the early 20th Century.

2-30 with autism and other related delays, striving to cul-

she returned to the Northeast and attend-

is so crucial. It could mean the difference

Autism is a complex developmental disability that typi18 | Lake Houston Business Matters

tivate their learning and social skills, to facilitate their inWinter 2016 | 19


+Home Grown

clusion in the community, and to inspire them to become productive citizens.

ed Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore for a Post Graduate Certificate in Autism. When Stephen, Dantzler’s husband of 14

"We can’t turn our cheek any longer. Autistic

years whom she had met shortly before leaving for Johns Hopkins University, asked her to marry him, she returned to the Humble area to begin serving fami-

people have

lies with autism once again. Dantzler saw

the right to be

in the area.

a part of our community.” Jennifer Dantzler

a tremendous need for autism treatment Dantzler is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst and has a Texas Teaching Certification in Special Education K-12. She said her desire to enter this field was somewhat of a spiritual path. She was

In 2003, in Humble, Texas,

first introduced to people with autism on

Including Kids began by serv-

a mission trip followed by a high school

ing six children and their families.

experience in which she worked with se-

Today, Including Kids serves more

verely handicapped children. These ex-

than 150 children per year and spreads

periences were the catalyst for Dantzler’s

awareness for the rising occurrence of au-

higher education training in special edu-

tism. The nonprofit has served 665 fami-

cation.

lies to date. Families have relocated from across Texas and other states, and even from oversees and South America to seek

Including Kids, Inc. Including Kids aims to instruct, inspire and include children & young adults with autism. By Kelli White Photos by Diane Meredith

It’s a startling statistic: one in 68.

treatment from the organization. Jennifer Dantzler, Executive Director, moved to Houston in 1998 after receiv-

“Some say it was fate or faith,” she said. The goal of Including Kids is to build an inclusive community for people with autism. Right now, only six percent of adults with autism are employed.

ing her Master’s in Education in Inten-

“As the statistic one in 68 continues to

sive Special Needs from Simmons Col-

rise, it won’t be long until our entire com-

lege in Boston, Mass. While receiving her

munity is affected. When these kids are

Master’s, she was working at The New

adults, what will we do if we don’t teach

England Center for Children, where she

them how to succeed in society?” Dantzler

worked with a child from Houston. That

said.

family had relocated to Boston to receive

Children with autism typically show

the intensive one-on-one teaching us-

difficulties in verbal/non-verbal commu-

ing the principles of Applied Behav-

nication, social interactions, and leisure/

That is how often a child is diagnosed with autism. And that

cally appears in the first three years of life and is the result

ior Analysis. After completing her

play activities making it extremely hard

is why Including Kids, Inc., a 501 c(3) nonprofit started its

of a neurological disorder that affects the functioning of the

graduate degree, Dantzler relo-

for a child with autism to fit into a typi-

new campaign, “1 in 68 Can’t Wait.” To put that number in

brain. Including Kids provides research-based behavioral in-

cated to Houston to start a clinic

cal classroom setting without the right

perspective, the polio epidemic affected one in 8,000 peo-

tervention and instruction for children and young adults ages

to help families with autism. In 2000,

supports. This is why early intervention

ple in the early 20th Century.

2-30 with autism and other related delays, striving to cul-

she returned to the Northeast and attend-

is so crucial. It could mean the difference

Autism is a complex developmental disability that typi18 | Lake Houston Business Matters

tivate their learning and social skills, to facilitate their inWinter 2016 | 19


between a child growing up to be an independent mem-

for example, could be broken down into 25 steps. Writ-

ber of society versus the possibility of being placed into

ing, as another example, doesn’t start with writing a

a group home or institutional setting away from their

letter, it begins with holding a pencil. The behavioral

family. While there are common characteristics among

aspect reinforces appropriate behavior and ignores

autistic children, they all learn differently. It is not re-

negative behavior.

alistic for a group to learn at the same pace with traditional teaching methods. Each child has 40 teaching objectives and every treatment plan is different to reach those objectives. Dantzler said there is an expression in the field, “If you’ve met one child with autism, you’ve met one child with autism.”

“As the statistic one in 68 continues to rise, it won’t be long until our entire community is affected."

The 60-member staff at Including Kids uses Ap-

Jennifer Dantzler

plied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) to develop customized learning programs for each child. ABA analyzes each child and then takes a skill and breaks it down to smaller, more achievable steps.

“All behavior is maintained by attention. And it is human nature to draw attention to the negative, but

“We build on each skill successively and separate

positive reinforcement gets better results. Very rarely

each into a learning aspect and a behavioral aspect,”

will you hear us say ‘no’ or ‘stop.’ Instead, redirection

Dantzler explained.

to appropriate behavior and praising that appropriate

For the learning aspect, a task like brushing teeth,

“You might not be affected by autism, but some-

are many community involvement opportunities. In-

one you know is. We can’t turn our cheek any longer,”

cluding Kids continues to educate and spread aware-

Dantzler said. “Autistic people have the right to be a

ness for Autism.

part of our community.”

Dantzler is very grateful for the ongoing support of

And they have the potential to be successful members

her Board of Directors who help guide, support, and

of our society. Awareness and early intervention are im-

raise funds for the efforts. Her parents, Marilyn and

perative to the Including Kids mission.

Tony Crossley, were two of the founding board mem-

Including Kids offers full-time therapeutic pro-

bers who had also relocated from the Northeast to help

grams, multiple inclusion programs including part-

her start the program. “Without my board support, I

nerships with Holy Trinity Episcopal School and

would feel like I was on an island trying to navigate

Northeast Christian Academy, after-school, com-

these rough waters, but with their support the possi-

munity outreach and development programs, parent

bilities are endless,” Dantzler said.

training, sibling support and more. Every person can

For every theory on the cause of Autism, there is a

contribute to developing an inclusive community.

counter theory. “We still don’t know the cause,” Dant-

From hosting a gathering and adapting the menu

zler said. “I can’t change that. But what I can do is en-

and activities for guests with autism to opening

sure that the one in 68 is becoming functioning mem-

business doors for classes and job trainings, there

bers of our community.”

behavior is key,” Dantzler said.

Including Kids’ unique bridge site at Holy Trinity Executive Director, Jennifer Dantzler

20 | Lake Houston Business Matters

Episcopal School brings together children with autism and typical peers in an inclusive setting.

Winter 2016 | 21


between a child growing up to be an independent mem-

for example, could be broken down into 25 steps. Writ-

ber of society versus the possibility of being placed into

ing, as another example, doesn’t start with writing a

a group home or institutional setting away from their

letter, it begins with holding a pencil. The behavioral

family. While there are common characteristics among

aspect reinforces appropriate behavior and ignores

autistic children, they all learn differently. It is not re-

negative behavior.

alistic for a group to learn at the same pace with traditional teaching methods. Each child has 40 teaching objectives and every treatment plan is different to reach those objectives. Dantzler said there is an expression in the field, “If you’ve met one child with autism, you’ve met one child with autism.”

“As the statistic one in 68 continues to rise, it won’t be long until our entire community is affected."

The 60-member staff at Including Kids uses Ap-

Jennifer Dantzler

plied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) to develop customized learning programs for each child. ABA analyzes each child and then takes a skill and breaks it down to smaller, more achievable steps.

“All behavior is maintained by attention. And it is human nature to draw attention to the negative, but

“We build on each skill successively and separate

positive reinforcement gets better results. Very rarely

each into a learning aspect and a behavioral aspect,”

will you hear us say ‘no’ or ‘stop.’ Instead, redirection

Dantzler explained.

to appropriate behavior and praising that appropriate

For the learning aspect, a task like brushing teeth,

“You might not be affected by autism, but some-

are many community involvement opportunities. In-

one you know is. We can’t turn our cheek any longer,”

cluding Kids continues to educate and spread aware-

Dantzler said. “Autistic people have the right to be a

ness for Autism.

part of our community.”

Dantzler is very grateful for the ongoing support of

And they have the potential to be successful members

her Board of Directors who help guide, support, and

of our society. Awareness and early intervention are im-

raise funds for the efforts. Her parents, Marilyn and

perative to the Including Kids mission.

Tony Crossley, were two of the founding board mem-

Including Kids offers full-time therapeutic pro-

bers who had also relocated from the Northeast to help

grams, multiple inclusion programs including part-

her start the program. “Without my board support, I

nerships with Holy Trinity Episcopal School and

would feel like I was on an island trying to navigate

Northeast Christian Academy, after-school, com-

these rough waters, but with their support the possi-

munity outreach and development programs, parent

bilities are endless,” Dantzler said.

training, sibling support and more. Every person can

For every theory on the cause of Autism, there is a

contribute to developing an inclusive community.

counter theory. “We still don’t know the cause,” Dant-

From hosting a gathering and adapting the menu

zler said. “I can’t change that. But what I can do is en-

and activities for guests with autism to opening

sure that the one in 68 is becoming functioning mem-

business doors for classes and job trainings, there

bers of our community.”

behavior is key,” Dantzler said.

Including Kids’ unique bridge site at Holy Trinity Executive Director, Jennifer Dantzler

20 | Lake Houston Business Matters

Episcopal School brings together children with autism and typical peers in an inclusive setting.

Winter 2016 | 21


Millennials have been labeled as a self-centered group, but actually this generation is quite socially conscious. They volunteer time and money for many worthy causes, so it makes sense that they want to work for a company that shows it cares about the environment, about curing disease, and about the less fortunate. Millennials want to participate in volunteer opportunities alongside their organization. This generation wants to make a difference in the world and they want the company they represent to want that, too. Technology is paramount for Millennials since they grew up with it. To attract and retain Millennials, companies should be progressive. Companies that highly value cutting-edge technology and that engage in social media can create a loyal following to their brand or organization. Lastly, mentor your new hires. Millennials want a boss who is a mentor and coach, not a fearsome authority figure. They want to connect with their boss to talk about career options and about creating their own map to success. Provide a strong support system for your younger staff and you just might find that your business reflects a fresher, more vibrant organization. Job-hopping often results from lack of inclusion, fulfillment, growth, or sense of security. Overcome these obstacles and you can attract and retain the latest generation to enter the workforce.

How to attract and retain millennials in the workplace. By Jill Todd

Millennials. Generation Y. The Boomerang Generation.

ing, regardless of employee level. Allow them to

These are just a few of the monikers assigned to

them responsibility and they will live up to expec-

the most recent generation entering the work-

tations. Millennials aim to please.

voice their opinions and ensure that they stay abreast of the ins-and-outs of the company. Give

place. This generation consists of individuals born

Millennials want variety, interest and meaning

between 1982 and 2001, a range of time that of-

in their jobs. They want opportunities to branch

ten varies by source. They grew up on video games

out and learn new things. They want to build their

manager for career services

and trophies for everyone. They are also a well-

skills and gain new responsibility. If you will give

at the Kingwood campus of

educated and diverse group. And they are a large

them reasons to believe in themselves, then you

Lone

group, rivaling Baby Boomers. By the year 2020,

will find that they will competently accomplish

Millennials will make up about 40 percent of the

tasks and goals on their own. Because of their per-

workforce. So it’s important for companies to con-

formance, they expect future increased compensa-

sider what Millennials want in a job and what busi-

tion and quick advancement. Foster their ambi-

nesses need to do to keep them.

tion, and you will create high-performers.

Jill Todd is the program

Texas.

Star

College,

Houston,

She received her Bachelor

of Science in Mathematics from the University of Kentucky and her Masters of Arts in Higher Education Administration from Sam Houston State University.

Millennials want to be fairly compensated for

They want added valuables that make them feel

the work they do and to be treated as profession-

special to your company. Flexible work hours and

Todd has over 15 years’ experience in the

als and equals. They want to feel they are making

conditions are important to them, and perks such

education industry in the areas of research,

a difference in their organization. Plan to include

as yoga classes, gym memberships, or concert tick-

instruction,

them in company discussions and decision-mak-

ets go a long way with this generation.

22 | Lake Houston Business Matters

advising,

coordination

and

management. Winter 2016 | 23


Millennials have been labeled as a self-centered group, but actually this generation is quite socially conscious. They volunteer time and money for many worthy causes, so it makes sense that they want to work for a company that shows it cares about the environment, about curing disease, and about the less fortunate. Millennials want to participate in volunteer opportunities alongside their organization. This generation wants to make a difference in the world and they want the company they represent to want that, too. Technology is paramount for Millennials since they grew up with it. To attract and retain Millennials, companies should be progressive. Companies that highly value cutting-edge technology and that engage in social media can create a loyal following to their brand or organization. Lastly, mentor your new hires. Millennials want a boss who is a mentor and coach, not a fearsome authority figure. They want to connect with their boss to talk about career options and about creating their own map to success. Provide a strong support system for your younger staff and you just might find that your business reflects a fresher, more vibrant organization. Job-hopping often results from lack of inclusion, fulfillment, growth, or sense of security. Overcome these obstacles and you can attract and retain the latest generation to enter the workforce.

How to attract and retain millennials in the workplace. By Jill Todd

Millennials. Generation Y. The Boomerang Generation.

ing, regardless of employee level. Allow them to

These are just a few of the monikers assigned to

them responsibility and they will live up to expec-

the most recent generation entering the work-

tations. Millennials aim to please.

voice their opinions and ensure that they stay abreast of the ins-and-outs of the company. Give

place. This generation consists of individuals born

Millennials want variety, interest and meaning

between 1982 and 2001, a range of time that of-

in their jobs. They want opportunities to branch

ten varies by source. They grew up on video games

out and learn new things. They want to build their

manager for career services

and trophies for everyone. They are also a well-

skills and gain new responsibility. If you will give

at the Kingwood campus of

educated and diverse group. And they are a large

them reasons to believe in themselves, then you

Lone

group, rivaling Baby Boomers. By the year 2020,

will find that they will competently accomplish

Millennials will make up about 40 percent of the

tasks and goals on their own. Because of their per-

workforce. So it’s important for companies to con-

formance, they expect future increased compensa-

sider what Millennials want in a job and what busi-

tion and quick advancement. Foster their ambi-

nesses need to do to keep them.

tion, and you will create high-performers.

Jill Todd is the program

Texas.

Star

College,

Houston,

She received her Bachelor

of Science in Mathematics from the University of Kentucky and her Masters of Arts in Higher Education Administration from Sam Houston State University.

Millennials want to be fairly compensated for

They want added valuables that make them feel

the work they do and to be treated as profession-

special to your company. Flexible work hours and

Todd has over 15 years’ experience in the

als and equals. They want to feel they are making

conditions are important to them, and perks such

education industry in the areas of research,

a difference in their organization. Plan to include

as yoga classes, gym memberships, or concert tick-

instruction,

them in company discussions and decision-mak-

ets go a long way with this generation.

22 | Lake Houston Business Matters

advising,

coordination

and

management. Winter 2016 | 23


By Kelli White

Charles Cunningham Key Accounts Consultant for Center-Point Energy Charles Cunningham grew up in Artesia, New Mexico, a small town filled with community pride. When remembering his school years, Cunningham said he was focused on playing football and basketball, running track and serving as homeroom president. But he also emphasized being indebted to talented teachers who inspired his passion for history and geography, which led to Army service and a degree from Our Lady of the Lake University. To this day, Cunningham continues to value education, the area of volunteerism that he’s most passionate about. “When education is a priority, our children, teachers and community win. There is a reason that Humble ISD was named the 2015 Best Large District in Texas. It’s because of the people, with everyone playing their part,” he said. Cunningham has lived in Humble for 22 years where he is a Key Accounts Consultant for CenterPoint Energy, the company for which he has worked for 33 years. In his spare time, he plays a round of golf when he can, but he also exercises his leadership skills by serving for many educational organizations. He has served on the Humble ISD School Board since 2007 and uses his business skills by serving as Chairman of the Board’s Audit Committee and as a member of the Finance Committee and the Building and Planning Committee. “School board members from throughout Texas elected me to a three-year term on the Texas Association of School Boards governing board. TASB Board members meet four times a year and are focused on issues affecting the millions of public school students in Texas,” he said. 24 | Lake Houston Business Matters

Some of his former volunteer roles include serving on a Buy Board that helps school districts save taxpayers millions by working together to make purchases and as past president of the Gulf Coast Area Association of School Boards, a voluntary organization of more than 50 school boards in the greater Houston area focused on enhancing the quality of education for public school children in the Texas Gulf Coast area. In the 1990s, he was involved with other community leaders in discussions that led to what is today the Humble ISD Education Foundation. His role was to help organize the first golf tournament fundraiser. Cunningham said three older gentleman have served as his role models, each influencing a specific area of his life. “One encouraged me to focus on school and learning, because knowledge is power. One helped me grow in faith. The other encouraged me to become involved in community events. I have realized that if you care about your country, your state, your community, then it just feels right to become involved,” he said. Cunningham’s continued leadership in education shows dedication to his community and to future generations. “When you become involved in schools, you receive priceless, rewarding moments. I was honored and humbled the day a young boy in a school told me, ‘When I grow up, I want to be like you!’”

Mary Hubbard Marketing Director at Patrick G. Hubbard, Attorney at Law Time, Society of St. Stephens, and A Texas native, Mary Hubbard special events through the Lake grew up in Abilene with her three sibHouston Chamber of Commerce. lings and loved the small town where And what’s more, she has emshe played baseball every day with barked on a second career, outside neighborhood children and went to of education. the corner drugstore for a popsicle “I am fortunate to work behind after each game. Hubbard’s famthe scenes for my husband’s law ily moved to Houston when she was firm. My role is to do the marketin middle school and she graduated ing, payroll and the bookkeeping. from Sam Houston High School. She It has been exciting for me to get received a B.A. degree in Elementary out of my comfort zone in the pubEducation from Sam Houston State lic school setting and to network University and a Master’s degree in with businesses and Chamber Educational Leadership and Adminmembers,” she said. istration from Stephen F. Austin State Her hobbies include gardening, University. She has lived and worked cooking, home staging and playing in the Lake Houston area for 37 years, golf with her husband. but living in the same state all of her “I’ve been playing for three life hasn’t kept Hubbard from learnPhoto by Hope Photography years and absolutely love being on ing and trying new things. the course and trying to improve For 16 years, Hubbard taught first and second grade then became an assistant principal in my game,” Hubbard said. In addition to her volunteer role in education, Hubbard Humble ISD and principal at Liberty and Splendora ISD. Despite her retirement from a 32-year career in the pub- is also passionate about donating time to non-profit organilic school system, Hubbard remains involved in education zations that help the less fortunate in our community. “It brings me great joy to help people, whether it means through volunteering at River Pines Elementary. “From my experience in the classroom and as an ad- bringing lunches to their homes or working in the pantry ministrator, I know how hard our teachers work inside and sacking groceries. To see smiles on their faces is priceless,” outside of the classroom. It gives me great satisfaction to she said. “Through volunteering in our community, we can help know these teachers can count on our small group of volunteers to help them with their classroom needs. It could people in need and encourage them to give back to others be cutting laminating out, copying, cutting and pasting, or who are in need as well. Also, I think that there is no better making small books for children to make their own stories. way to teach our children to share their blessings than by It doesn’t matter what we are asked to do, teachers are so helping others.” grateful and we are grateful for them,” Hubbard said. Hubbard’s other community volunteer efforts include the Kingwood Women’s Club, Feed My Lambs, Family Winter 2016 | 25


By Kelli White

Charles Cunningham Key Accounts Consultant for Center-Point Energy Charles Cunningham grew up in Artesia, New Mexico, a small town filled with community pride. When remembering his school years, Cunningham said he was focused on playing football and basketball, running track and serving as homeroom president. But he also emphasized being indebted to talented teachers who inspired his passion for history and geography, which led to Army service and a degree from Our Lady of the Lake University. To this day, Cunningham continues to value education, the area of volunteerism that he’s most passionate about. “When education is a priority, our children, teachers and community win. There is a reason that Humble ISD was named the 2015 Best Large District in Texas. It’s because of the people, with everyone playing their part,” he said. Cunningham has lived in Humble for 22 years where he is a Key Accounts Consultant for CenterPoint Energy, the company for which he has worked for 33 years. In his spare time, he plays a round of golf when he can, but he also exercises his leadership skills by serving for many educational organizations. He has served on the Humble ISD School Board since 2007 and uses his business skills by serving as Chairman of the Board’s Audit Committee and as a member of the Finance Committee and the Building and Planning Committee. “School board members from throughout Texas elected me to a three-year term on the Texas Association of School Boards governing board. TASB Board members meet four times a year and are focused on issues affecting the millions of public school students in Texas,” he said. 24 | Lake Houston Business Matters

Some of his former volunteer roles include serving on a Buy Board that helps school districts save taxpayers millions by working together to make purchases and as past president of the Gulf Coast Area Association of School Boards, a voluntary organization of more than 50 school boards in the greater Houston area focused on enhancing the quality of education for public school children in the Texas Gulf Coast area. In the 1990s, he was involved with other community leaders in discussions that led to what is today the Humble ISD Education Foundation. His role was to help organize the first golf tournament fundraiser. Cunningham said three older gentleman have served as his role models, each influencing a specific area of his life. “One encouraged me to focus on school and learning, because knowledge is power. One helped me grow in faith. The other encouraged me to become involved in community events. I have realized that if you care about your country, your state, your community, then it just feels right to become involved,” he said. Cunningham’s continued leadership in education shows dedication to his community and to future generations. “When you become involved in schools, you receive priceless, rewarding moments. I was honored and humbled the day a young boy in a school told me, ‘When I grow up, I want to be like you!’”

Mary Hubbard Marketing Director at Patrick G. Hubbard, Attorney at Law Time, Society of St. Stephens, and A Texas native, Mary Hubbard special events through the Lake grew up in Abilene with her three sibHouston Chamber of Commerce. lings and loved the small town where And what’s more, she has emshe played baseball every day with barked on a second career, outside neighborhood children and went to of education. the corner drugstore for a popsicle “I am fortunate to work behind after each game. Hubbard’s famthe scenes for my husband’s law ily moved to Houston when she was firm. My role is to do the marketin middle school and she graduated ing, payroll and the bookkeeping. from Sam Houston High School. She It has been exciting for me to get received a B.A. degree in Elementary out of my comfort zone in the pubEducation from Sam Houston State lic school setting and to network University and a Master’s degree in with businesses and Chamber Educational Leadership and Adminmembers,” she said. istration from Stephen F. Austin State Her hobbies include gardening, University. She has lived and worked cooking, home staging and playing in the Lake Houston area for 37 years, golf with her husband. but living in the same state all of her “I’ve been playing for three life hasn’t kept Hubbard from learnPhoto by Hope Photography years and absolutely love being on ing and trying new things. the course and trying to improve For 16 years, Hubbard taught first and second grade then became an assistant principal in my game,” Hubbard said. In addition to her volunteer role in education, Hubbard Humble ISD and principal at Liberty and Splendora ISD. Despite her retirement from a 32-year career in the pub- is also passionate about donating time to non-profit organilic school system, Hubbard remains involved in education zations that help the less fortunate in our community. “It brings me great joy to help people, whether it means through volunteering at River Pines Elementary. “From my experience in the classroom and as an ad- bringing lunches to their homes or working in the pantry ministrator, I know how hard our teachers work inside and sacking groceries. To see smiles on their faces is priceless,” outside of the classroom. It gives me great satisfaction to she said. “Through volunteering in our community, we can help know these teachers can count on our small group of volunteers to help them with their classroom needs. It could people in need and encourage them to give back to others be cutting laminating out, copying, cutting and pasting, or who are in need as well. Also, I think that there is no better making small books for children to make their own stories. way to teach our children to share their blessings than by It doesn’t matter what we are asked to do, teachers are so helping others.” grateful and we are grateful for them,” Hubbard said. Hubbard’s other community volunteer efforts include the Kingwood Women’s Club, Feed My Lambs, Family Winter 2016 | 25


Centerpoint Energy

A Senior Moment

Devon Alexander Director of Continuing Education at Lone Star College – Kingwood The oldest of four, Devon Alexander • Kingwood Medical Center grew up in many places in the United • Lake Houston Chamber of Commerce States, and across the pond. Her fa• Memorial Hermann Northeast Foundation ther was a geologist for Conoco and her One volunteer experience that resonates mother was a teacher. To view a timewith Alexander is when she spent several years line of Alexander’s life, it would begin at The Village, an organization serving the in Casper Wyoming, but dotted along needs of adults with disabilities. While at The the way the timeline would show stops Village, she helped to start a private pay resiin California, Nebraska, New Jersey and dence for independent adults; assisted in obLondon, where she spent her middle taining over one million dollars in grants and school and high school years. donations; and developed and implemented “It was a fascinating time to be in public relations programs. London – with Carnaby Street, Twiggy, “I am thankful for the many lessons I acand The Beatles,” Alexander said. “Elquired there. Most of all, I learned to be grateton John played two concerts at my high ful.” school!” Alexander said she feels blessed to have But she said her family was one of only a few that stayed in played a small part in many organizations over the years and London until graduation, and she attributes that duration to has enjoyed every minute. her ability to make friends quickly. “I especially loved the time I spent volunteering with my “Most expat families were transient. Many of my friends children. There is no better sense of accomplishment than had lived all over the world in countries like Egypt, Indonesia when we see that the next generation gets it. We can truly pay and Australia. If you wanted a friend, you had better make one it forward,” she said. fast before they moved,” she said. With a degree in Business Administration from the UniverPerhaps it’s the people skills acquired from adapting to dif- sity of Nebraska and an MBA from Walden University, Alexanferent communities during her upbringing that drive Alexan- der is now the Director of Continuing Education for Lone Star der’s passion for volunteerism and community involvement. College Kingwood where she has worked for nine years. She She started volunteering when she was in high school and since is responsible for developing and implementing communitythen has been involved in a multitude of organizations. From based programs and working with local businesses to provide medical centers and schools to the YMCA and the American skilled employees. Heart Association, Alexander has lived her life by demonstrat“My position requires me to foster long-term relationships ing steadfast leadership and volunteerism. with faculty, staff, organizations, the media, and the commu“Early in my career, I felt that volunteering was a way to nity at-large. I am a champion for students and consider it a get to know people, gain experience and learn about the com- privilege to serve this community and an honor to represent munity.” our college,” she said. Alexander has lived in Kingwood since 1992 and currently “To be acknowledged in this way is humbling,” Alexander is serving various roles for the following organizations: said. “I have had so many opportunities to be involved in a lot • Aim at Melanoma Foundation of great organizations in our community, but there is so much • Humble Area Assistance Ministries more to be done. I just hope that there will continue to be a • Village at Hickory Glen place for me.” • Kingwood BizCom

26 | Lake Houston Business Matters

❝Changing the small business world,

one network at a time.™

☛ Divergys ☛

  ☛ Desktop Support ☛ Network Security ☛ Server Support ☛ Email/Spam Protection

☛ ☛

Hardware as a Service Managed IT Services Backup & Disaster Recovery On-Demand IT Services

Chamber Member since 2003.

281-852-5129

www.divergys.com

Same quality. Better value.

Buy • Sell • Trade • Repair Computers | Tablets | Phones

Experimac Save up to 50% when

50%

you buy pre-owned Apple products

(832) 995-5434

9473 FM 1960 Bypass #100 Humble, TX 77338 www.HumbleExperimac.com

Payroll Services Apex Payroll

• Online • Tax Services • Mobile Apps • Compliance Reporting • Manager & Employee Self Service • HR Support/401K & Workmens Comp

Luis “Lou” Hernandez 281-358-4164 | www.apexpayroll.com 22020 Rye Hollow Lane, Kingwood, TX 7739

Humble ISD Education Excellence

Humble Independent School District 2013 Superintendent of the Year for the Houston Area

State WINNER of the 2015 H-E-B Excellence in Education Large District Award Our Education Foundation has awarded more than $7.8 million for innovative projects Class of 2015 offered over $20 million in scholarships Quest Early College High School: earn a degree – free! One of only 29 Texas districts on the College Board’s AP Honor Roll Download the Humble ISD App Learn more at www.humbleisd.net Winter 2016 | 27


Centerpoint Energy

A Senior Moment

Devon Alexander Director of Continuing Education at Lone Star College – Kingwood The oldest of four, Devon Alexander • Kingwood Medical Center grew up in many places in the United • Lake Houston Chamber of Commerce States, and across the pond. Her fa• Memorial Hermann Northeast Foundation ther was a geologist for Conoco and her One volunteer experience that resonates mother was a teacher. To view a timewith Alexander is when she spent several years line of Alexander’s life, it would begin at The Village, an organization serving the in Casper Wyoming, but dotted along needs of adults with disabilities. While at The the way the timeline would show stops Village, she helped to start a private pay resiin California, Nebraska, New Jersey and dence for independent adults; assisted in obLondon, where she spent her middle taining over one million dollars in grants and school and high school years. donations; and developed and implemented “It was a fascinating time to be in public relations programs. London – with Carnaby Street, Twiggy, “I am thankful for the many lessons I acand The Beatles,” Alexander said. “Elquired there. Most of all, I learned to be grateton John played two concerts at my high ful.” school!” Alexander said she feels blessed to have But she said her family was one of only a few that stayed in played a small part in many organizations over the years and London until graduation, and she attributes that duration to has enjoyed every minute. her ability to make friends quickly. “I especially loved the time I spent volunteering with my “Most expat families were transient. Many of my friends children. There is no better sense of accomplishment than had lived all over the world in countries like Egypt, Indonesia when we see that the next generation gets it. We can truly pay and Australia. If you wanted a friend, you had better make one it forward,” she said. fast before they moved,” she said. With a degree in Business Administration from the UniverPerhaps it’s the people skills acquired from adapting to dif- sity of Nebraska and an MBA from Walden University, Alexanferent communities during her upbringing that drive Alexan- der is now the Director of Continuing Education for Lone Star der’s passion for volunteerism and community involvement. College Kingwood where she has worked for nine years. She She started volunteering when she was in high school and since is responsible for developing and implementing communitythen has been involved in a multitude of organizations. From based programs and working with local businesses to provide medical centers and schools to the YMCA and the American skilled employees. Heart Association, Alexander has lived her life by demonstrat“My position requires me to foster long-term relationships ing steadfast leadership and volunteerism. with faculty, staff, organizations, the media, and the commu“Early in my career, I felt that volunteering was a way to nity at-large. I am a champion for students and consider it a get to know people, gain experience and learn about the com- privilege to serve this community and an honor to represent munity.” our college,” she said. Alexander has lived in Kingwood since 1992 and currently “To be acknowledged in this way is humbling,” Alexander is serving various roles for the following organizations: said. “I have had so many opportunities to be involved in a lot • Aim at Melanoma Foundation of great organizations in our community, but there is so much • Humble Area Assistance Ministries more to be done. I just hope that there will continue to be a • Village at Hickory Glen place for me.” • Kingwood BizCom

26 | Lake Houston Business Matters

❝Changing the small business world,

one network at a time.™

☛ Divergys ☛

  ☛ Desktop Support ☛ Network Security ☛ Server Support ☛ Email/Spam Protection

☛ ☛

Hardware as a Service Managed IT Services Backup & Disaster Recovery On-Demand IT Services

Chamber Member since 2003.

281-852-5129

www.divergys.com

Same quality. Better value.

Buy • Sell • Trade • Repair Computers | Tablets | Phones

Experimac Save up to 50% when

50%

you buy pre-owned Apple products

(832) 995-5434

9473 FM 1960 Bypass #100 Humble, TX 77338 www.HumbleExperimac.com

Payroll Services Apex Payroll

• Online • Tax Services • Mobile Apps • Compliance Reporting • Manager & Employee Self Service • HR Support/401K & Workmens Comp

Luis “Lou” Hernandez 281-358-4164 | www.apexpayroll.com 22020 Rye Hollow Lane, Kingwood, TX 7739

Humble ISD Education Excellence

Humble Independent School District 2013 Superintendent of the Year for the Houston Area

State WINNER of the 2015 H-E-B Excellence in Education Large District Award Our Education Foundation has awarded more than $7.8 million for innovative projects Class of 2015 offered over $20 million in scholarships Quest Early College High School: earn a degree – free! One of only 29 Texas districts on the College Board’s AP Honor Roll Download the Humble ISD App Learn more at www.humbleisd.net Winter 2016 | 27


Small Business Education:

“Your Business,” a television program offering practical

Dirt Road Divas

Social media led to a small screen appearance and business advice for this boutique.

and actionable advice for small business owners, is broadcast nationally on MSNBC at 7:30 a.m. EST. The show, hosted by JJ Ramberg, aims to cover all areas a small business would need to keep up to date: hiring, financing, marketing, social media, manufacturing, licensing, legalities, etc. “I thought it was a long shot,” Robinson said. But she researched the show and decided to go for it. She sent Underhill pictures of her store, told him about her business, and Dirt Road Divas was chosen. Television crews showed up for filming on November 6, 2015.

By kelli white

Frank Silverstein, Producer of “Your Business” told Robinson that the show would profile her business as part of a

J

series called Small Business Makeover.

odie Robinson, Co-owner of Dirt Road Divas, a

learning about why people buy. From display strategies to

clothing and accessories boutique in Kingwood,

store scent, a lot goes into providing the optimum shop-

“In this segment, we seek to find small businesses that are

has a passion for shopping. But even more so,

ping experience, which often translates to optimum profit

facing a certain challenge, and we bring experts from all over

for a business.

the country to help them out,” Silverstein said.

she loves the science behind shopping. Robinson earned degrees in social work and psychology and said she loves

Robinson’s interest, education and background caused

The main challenge for Robinson and Dirt Road Divas

her to become an avid reader of Paco Underhill, an author

wasn’t related to store setup and design, but rather point-

whose niche is psychology behind shopping. She read his

of-sale automated systems. She needed advice on how to

books and followed him on Facebook. It was that social me-

streamline financial processes.

dia act that eventually led to Dirt Road Divas’ television debut, which resulted in Robinson learning valuable industry tips that have helped streamline her business practices.

“I knew what needed to be done but didn’t understand the programs that could do it for me,” she said. And although financial systems were the main focus of

Underhill reciprocated Robinson’s social media ges-

Robinson’s learning experience, she has implemented some

ture. He followed Robinson’s business Facebook page,

of Underhill’s aesthetic suggestions. She painted the main

liked her display photos and messaged her about an op-

storefront sign with a pop of bright color to help it stand out

portunity on a show called “Your Business,” on which he

more, plans to change the color of the dressing rooms, and

often consulted.

relocated some key merchandise so that it relates better to customers. Robinson said the entire process was highly professional and the experience was definitely a testament to social media and how it can help your business. The episode featuring Dirt Road Divas is scheduled to air in January. The website for “Your Business” is www.americanexpress. com/us/small-business/openforum/yourbusinesstv/.

Visit Us!

1660 West Lake Houston Pkwy Kingwood, Texas www.dirtroaddivasboutique.com 28 | Lake Houston Business Matters

Winter 2016 | 29


Small Business Education:

“Your Business,” a television program offering practical

Dirt Road Divas

Social media led to a small screen appearance and business advice for this boutique.

and actionable advice for small business owners, is broadcast nationally on MSNBC at 7:30 a.m. EST. The show, hosted by JJ Ramberg, aims to cover all areas a small business would need to keep up to date: hiring, financing, marketing, social media, manufacturing, licensing, legalities, etc. “I thought it was a long shot,” Robinson said. But she researched the show and decided to go for it. She sent Underhill pictures of her store, told him about her business, and Dirt Road Divas was chosen. Television crews showed up for filming on November 6, 2015.

By kelli white

Frank Silverstein, Producer of “Your Business” told Robinson that the show would profile her business as part of a

J

series called Small Business Makeover.

odie Robinson, Co-owner of Dirt Road Divas, a

learning about why people buy. From display strategies to

clothing and accessories boutique in Kingwood,

store scent, a lot goes into providing the optimum shop-

“In this segment, we seek to find small businesses that are

has a passion for shopping. But even more so,

ping experience, which often translates to optimum profit

facing a certain challenge, and we bring experts from all over

for a business.

the country to help them out,” Silverstein said.

she loves the science behind shopping. Robinson earned degrees in social work and psychology and said she loves

Robinson’s interest, education and background caused

The main challenge for Robinson and Dirt Road Divas

her to become an avid reader of Paco Underhill, an author

wasn’t related to store setup and design, but rather point-

whose niche is psychology behind shopping. She read his

of-sale automated systems. She needed advice on how to

books and followed him on Facebook. It was that social me-

streamline financial processes.

dia act that eventually led to Dirt Road Divas’ television debut, which resulted in Robinson learning valuable industry tips that have helped streamline her business practices.

“I knew what needed to be done but didn’t understand the programs that could do it for me,” she said. And although financial systems were the main focus of

Underhill reciprocated Robinson’s social media ges-

Robinson’s learning experience, she has implemented some

ture. He followed Robinson’s business Facebook page,

of Underhill’s aesthetic suggestions. She painted the main

liked her display photos and messaged her about an op-

storefront sign with a pop of bright color to help it stand out

portunity on a show called “Your Business,” on which he

more, plans to change the color of the dressing rooms, and

often consulted.

relocated some key merchandise so that it relates better to customers. Robinson said the entire process was highly professional and the experience was definitely a testament to social media and how it can help your business. The episode featuring Dirt Road Divas is scheduled to air in January. The website for “Your Business” is www.americanexpress. com/us/small-business/openforum/yourbusinesstv/.

Visit Us!

1660 West Lake Houston Pkwy Kingwood, Texas www.dirtroaddivasboutique.com 28 | Lake Houston Business Matters

Winter 2016 | 29


We Stand For Your Success! Our goal is to provide friendly, efficient service with a personal touch. When you bank with us, you are not only our customers but our neighbors and friends.

Citizens Bank

Behind the Business See the personal side of Robert Sitton.

Every day, we see people around town who work hard to provide for their families, to improve the community and to further their professional career. We often forget that behind all that hard work is a personal side. “Behind the Business” is the Chamber’s tribute to public figures who are so much more behind the scenes. A lifelong resident of Humble, Robert Sitton is a partner with the investment firm, Edward Jones, which has been located in Atascocita for 14 years. Prior to entering the investment profession, Robert was a teacher and coach at Aldine Senior High in Aldine ISD. But the passion for quality education hasn’t left his blood. He was elected to the Humble ISD Board of Trustees in 2011 and re-elected in 2013. He currently serves as the Board President and on the following committees: Build-

ing and Planning, Program Evaluation and Board/Superintendent Evaluation. Volunteerism is an integral part of Sitton’s life. Prior to being elected to the Board of Trustees, Sitton served on the 2008 Bond Study Committee and the Humble ISD Education Foundation Board. An active member of the Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce since 2002, Sitton has served on the Board of Directors for several years and is the Board Chair for 2016. He has chaired the Chamber’s largest fundraiser, the Chamber Classic and the Party on the Green for the past eight years. He and his wife, Jen, have four children; Jon, Cody (who is serving in the United States Navy), Keanen and Kaitlyn, a daughter-in-law, Katherina (KT) and two grandchildren, Robert (RJ) and Avery Grace.

Five things you didn’t know about Robert Sitton. •

What is the last book you read? Good to Great by Jim Collins

What’s the last song on your iPod? Cold Beer Conversations by

8811 FM 1960 Bypass Rd. W Humble

281-446-4445 James L. “Jamey” Smith, CEO

www.citizensbanktx.com

Postponing an education postpones increased earnings and career advancement. Lone Star College offers: • Over 60 areas of specialization including business, computers, design, education, fire science, healthcare, marketing, and more • Campuses close to home

Lone Star College

• University transfer courses, 1-year and 2-year career programs

• Flexible scheduling: Full-time or part-time, days, evenings, weekends, online, and hybrid

Start building your future today! Get started at

lonestar.edu/registration

For more information:

281.312.1600

LoneStar.edu/Kingwood Affirmative Action/EEO College

Waste Connections of TX

George Strait •

What’s a normal Saturday? Weekends are for grillin’ and chillin’.

How do you relax? Every morning I start the day with a hot cup of coffee, some good country music on my Bose, while sitting in my hot tub for about 25 minutes. Nothing is more relaxing before starting another hectic day.

30 | Lake Houston Business Matters

Who was your mentor? My dad, John Sitton

Winter 2016 | 31


We Stand For Your Success! Our goal is to provide friendly, efficient service with a personal touch. When you bank with us, you are not only our customers but our neighbors and friends.

Citizens Bank

Behind the Business See the personal side of Robert Sitton.

Every day, we see people around town who work hard to provide for their families, to improve the community and to further their professional career. We often forget that behind all that hard work is a personal side. “Behind the Business” is the Chamber’s tribute to public figures who are so much more behind the scenes. A lifelong resident of Humble, Robert Sitton is a partner with the investment firm, Edward Jones, which has been located in Atascocita for 14 years. Prior to entering the investment profession, Robert was a teacher and coach at Aldine Senior High in Aldine ISD. But the passion for quality education hasn’t left his blood. He was elected to the Humble ISD Board of Trustees in 2011 and re-elected in 2013. He currently serves as the Board President and on the following committees: Build-

ing and Planning, Program Evaluation and Board/Superintendent Evaluation. Volunteerism is an integral part of Sitton’s life. Prior to being elected to the Board of Trustees, Sitton served on the 2008 Bond Study Committee and the Humble ISD Education Foundation Board. An active member of the Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce since 2002, Sitton has served on the Board of Directors for several years and is the Board Chair for 2016. He has chaired the Chamber’s largest fundraiser, the Chamber Classic and the Party on the Green for the past eight years. He and his wife, Jen, have four children; Jon, Cody (who is serving in the United States Navy), Keanen and Kaitlyn, a daughter-in-law, Katherina (KT) and two grandchildren, Robert (RJ) and Avery Grace.

Five things you didn’t know about Robert Sitton. •

What is the last book you read? Good to Great by Jim Collins

What’s the last song on your iPod? Cold Beer Conversations by

8811 FM 1960 Bypass Rd. W Humble

281-446-4445 James L. “Jamey” Smith, CEO

www.citizensbanktx.com

Postponing an education postpones increased earnings and career advancement. Lone Star College offers: • Over 60 areas of specialization including business, computers, design, education, fire science, healthcare, marketing, and more • Campuses close to home

Lone Star College

• University transfer courses, 1-year and 2-year career programs

• Flexible scheduling: Full-time or part-time, days, evenings, weekends, online, and hybrid

Start building your future today! Get started at

lonestar.edu/registration

For more information:

281.312.1600

LoneStar.edu/Kingwood Affirmative Action/EEO College

Waste Connections of TX

George Strait •

What’s a normal Saturday? Weekends are for grillin’ and chillin’.

How do you relax? Every morning I start the day with a hot cup of coffee, some good country music on my Bose, while sitting in my hot tub for about 25 minutes. Nothing is more relaxing before starting another hectic day.

30 | Lake Houston Business Matters

Who was your mentor? My dad, John Sitton

Winter 2016 | 31


Kingwood Medical Center has obtained Comprehensive Stroke Center status – the ultimate in stroke care. What are your chances of surviving a stroke? It all depends on time – the time between when your symptoms begin and you seek treatment for your stroke.

ET: STROKE HONOR ROLL ELITE TARG

GOLD PLUS

Kingwood Medical Center has also received the “Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award” indicating reduced time for treatment. And with stroke, time lost is brain. Symptoms of a stroke include any of these sudden changes: numbness or weakness, vision change, trouble speaking, confusion, walking or balance problems, severe headache. If you or someone you love suddenly experience any of these, call 911 or go to your nearest hospital.

Kingwood Medical Center

Physician referral: 1-800-258-5064

Advanced hospital care close to home.

Kingwood Medical Center | 22999 US Highway 59 North Kingwood, TX 77339 | 281-348-8988 | KingwoodMedical.com KMC-15-086_ChamberMagazineAd.indd 1

12/21/2015 16:32:35

Profile for Lake Houston Area Chamber

Lake Houston Business Matters Magazine Winter 2016  

Meet Citizen of the Year Representative Dan Huberty, Explore the educational shift to career and technical programs, Learn about Including K...

Lake Houston Business Matters Magazine Winter 2016  

Meet Citizen of the Year Representative Dan Huberty, Explore the educational shift to career and technical programs, Learn about Including K...

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