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APRIL ANCIRA Building Bridges to Success with Family, Business and the City


US $3.95

SAW Celebrates 15 Years of Strong, Intelligent Women


SPECIAL SECTIONS Holiday Gift Guide Women in Business Directory

San Antonio WOMAN










What’s New


At Home


Holiday Gift Guide






SA Woman Connect


Business Woman Spotlight


Women on the Move


SA 2020


2018 Resolutions


Sustainable Gardening




San Antonio Seniors


Mommy Matters


Role Model

100 Guys to Know 102 Artbeat 104 Coffee to Cocktails–Holiday Edition 110 Entertainment Calendar 113 Weddings


20 16 PROFILE April Ancira is charting her own path stepping into the family business, participating in large non-profits, and raising the next generations of Anciras. Meet this dynamic, and fun young woman.

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20 15 YEARS! We celebrate fifteen years of publishing with updates on 15 of our profile ladies.


San Antonio is one of the top cities in the nation for female entrepreneurs. Meet four trailblazers for inspiration.

SPECIAL SECTION 57 Women in Business Directory 75 2018 New Years Resolutions

108 DINING Everyone is talking about it... the delicious cuisine in a vintage fire station. Discover why The Battalion has become a Southtown favorite.

San Antonio WOMAN



FROM THE EDITOR Pamela Lutrell, Editor San Antonio Woman

EDITOR Pamela Lutrell ASSOCIATE EDITOR Jasmina Wellinghoff COPY EDITOR Kathryn Cocke FASHION & BEAUTY EDITOR Aquila Mendez-Valdez CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Scott Austin, Robyn Barnes, Molly Cox, Iris Gonzalez, Pamela Lutrell, Pamela Miller, Dawn Robinette, Janis Turk, Jasmina Wellinghoff

Dear Readers:

PHOTOGRAPHY Janet Rogers, Lexi Murzea, Al Rendon, David Teran

2017 in my rearview mirror is a nice visual. I truly hope we see some of the venom and

GRAPHIC DESIGN Tamara Hooks, Maria Jenicek

divisiveness left on the road behind us and more unity and optimism on the road ahead. We need to end the year with a reverent appreciation for the holiday season and all it means. The ideas of thankfulness, family, friends, community and celebrations are critical

ONLINE MEDIA Raleigh Hart, Social Media BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT & MARKETING Susan Deitiker, Cindy Jennings

ones for our attention as we plan for 2018.


With that in mind, SAN ANTONIO WOMAN is celebrating 15 years as the voice of local

PRINTING Shweiki Media, San Antonio, Texas

women. We are so thankful for each and every reader … for each and every woman profiled in our pages … and for the support of our advertisers. All of you are the friends and

EDITOR EMERITUS Beverly Purcell-Guerra

family we hold on to so dearly. It is a joy to bring you these stories six times a year and to represent all the wonderful women in our thriving community.

FOR ADVERTISING INFORMATION call (210) 826-5375 email:

In this issue, we profile the inspiring April Ancira, a friendly, approachable representative of the younger generation in a family business. She is joined by four women in business


who are growing their own dreams in different entrepreneurial endeavors. Their stories will inspire you and show you why our city is one of the tops in the nation for womenowned businesses.

8603 Botts Lane, San Antonio, TX 78217 210-826-5375

Also, take a moment to catch up with a selection of our past profile/cover personalities. See what they are up to now and how their stories continue to help San Antonio. ‘Tis the season to spend time with those who are special to us, and that is exactly what happens in this issue of our publication. With hope and smiles, we encourage you to celebrate the holidays and the New Year with a new vision for 2018. May we all support one another and speak kindly to everyone around us. Keep Smiling, Pamela

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San Antonio Woman is published bimonthly by PixelWorks Corporation (Publisher). Reproduction in any manner in whole or part is prohibited without the express written consent of the Publisher. Material contained herein does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the publisher or its staff. San Antonio Woman reserves the right to edit all materials for clarity and space and assumes no responsibility for accuracy, errors or omissions. San Antonio Woman does not knowingly accept false or misleading advertisements or editorial, nor does the Publisher assume responsibility should such advertising or editorial appear. Articles and photographs are welcome and may be submitted to our offices to be used subject to the discretion and review of the Publisher. All real estate advertising is subject to the Federal Fair Housing Act of 1968, which makes it illegal to advertise “any preference limitation or discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status or national origin, or an intention to make such preference, limitation or discrimination.” Printed in the U.S.A.



IRIS GONZALEZ Iris Gonzalez is a freelance writer who enjoys meeting people and learning about the variety of topics she covers. For the Rivard Report, she writes about technology, cybersecurity, bioscience and veterans’ issues. Iris also writes for Edible San Antonio about local, sustainable food. Her first career as a government research analyst exposed her to issues such as public health and emergency planning for the city of Houston and the safety of the U.S. food supply and countering bioterrorism. Iris blogs on her latest writing project, currently a book in progress about her travels alone across Cuba, on her new website

DAWN ROBINETTE A communications and marketing expert who loves to tell stories, Dawn Robinette was told by her high school English teacher that she couldn’t write. Proving her wrong, Dawn is an awardwinning writer who enjoys telling the stories behind the places and faces that make San Antonio such a terrific city. A military spouse and mom who made her way to Texas as fast as she could, she’s Accredited in Public Relations by the Public Relations Society of America and works with clients to help them share their stories. She’s also a regular contributor for Alamo City Moms Blog. 10 |


STAY CONNECTED /SanAntonioWoman We reach nearly 30,000 people and engage nearly 3,000 on our posts each week. And we are currently liked by almost 12,000 people.

SAWOMAN.COM Check out the stories and the extraordinary women making it all happen in the current issue of



Over 10,200 people follow us. Do you?

And if you miss an issue, our website features profiles published throughout our 15-year history — that's more than 90 issues!

ON THE COVER April Ancira is known as the smiling face of Ancira Auto Dealers. Go beyond the smile and read about her impressive strength as a businesswoman, philanthropist, Iron Man competitor, wife and mother. Photography by Janet Rogers

@SanAntonioWoman We just reached close to 10,500 followers.

CATCH US ON THE WEB AND THROUGH OUR SOCIAL MEDIA FOR THESE AND OTHER TRENDING STORIES is a resource for connecting professional women from all over San Antonio. For more information, please call 210-826-5375.




Make your table décor special this year by combining foliage from your yard with décor from our many wonderful sources. Make it a table to remember.

Send us your best recipes or favorite place to buy our city’s top holiday cuisine! Don’t forget the delicious dessert tamales.

For a fun Christmas party, consider renting a trolley car, serving hot chocolate, and going Christmas caroling for the evening. It’s all on trend.

SAN ANTONIO WOMAN wants to inspire you. Sharing events and stories of local women via social media.




Living in South Texas means layering is a woman’s best friend. Make it through from cold to hot in layers of well- styled garments. Include houndstooth … on trend this year.

Holiday shopping is one of the best times to visit Gruene. Stay in a B&B or eat at the Grist Mill and experience Hill Country shopping at its best! Send us your pics.

Whether a pumpkin gin sour or a taste of wassail, holiday drinks are everywhere. Share with us on Instagram.

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DID YOU KNOW? We distribute 30,000 copies of SAN ANTONIO WOMAN to nearly 500 locations throughout San Antonio and surrounding areas and to subscribers in 244 cities throughout the U.S.


H-E-B PRESIDENT AND COO SPEAKS TO SMH STUDENTS One of the hallmarks of Saint Mary’s Hall is providing students with opportunities like no other. It is common for speakers who are authorities in their fields, such as local business leaders, to visit the SMH campus and share their expertise and wisdom with students. Leaders of major companies, including Zachary Construction, Holt Cat Machine & Engines, and H-E-B, have volunteered time to give presentations and answer student questions related to their respective industries. In September, Craig Boyan, president and chief operating officer (COO) of H-E-B Grocery Company, visited Saint Mary’s Hall to speak to students in Upper School Mathematics Teacher Jose Molina’s Financial Math classes. Boyan, who has served as president and COO since 2008 and been with the grocery chain for more than ten years, discussed H-E-B as a company and the competitive marketplace of the retail grocery business. He specifically addressed the three major factors in running the company, including what makes H-E-B work, their major concerns, and the macroeconomics of the company. The students learned about how H-E-B is able to turn a profit with low-cost products, offer competitive wages, and maximize sales by enticing consumers to purchase their products. Following the presentation, Boyan answered questions from students as well as some faculty members also in attendance. Boyan’s ties to the SMH community extends beyond visits to campus to present to students. He is also the proud parent of SMH graduates John (Class of 2013) and Hailey (Class of 2014), and current student Grace (Form 10). As the premiere school in South Texas, Saint Mary’s Hall strives to ensure students are set on a course for achievement and fulfillment in life by providing them real-world experiences they cannot get anywhere else. To learn more, visit

2017 ENTREPRENEURIAL SPIRIT IMPACT AWARD GOES TO DEBORAH BAUER The Entrepreneurial Spirit Impact Award honors a Commercial Real Estate Woman (CREW) Network member who has achieved a unique career success or milestone as the result of taking a risk. The individual is willing to step outside of the box to create something new or different, and provide services, develop products, or improve practices by organizing, developing, or deploying available resources in an innovative way. Deborah Bauer launched her brokerage company, Drake Commercial Group, in the early 1990s as one of the few women leaders in a male-dominated industry. She has grown her business to become one of the most well-known and respected companies in the San Antonio area today. Bauer’s company represents some of the largest and most prominent land, retail, and multi-family sites in the San Antonio area. She consistently uses the Network to ensure the entire transaction team is comprised of fellow members – including a current deal regarding one of the largest land transactions in San Antonio. 14 |


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Finding fulfillment in family, philanthropy & business.


ou have seen her on TV, spiritedly advertising the Ancira automotive offerings, and more recently hosting the weekly Arts show on KLRN, with that same high-energy style. Her name is April Ancira, and, yes, she’s the daughter of Ancira Auto Group founder Ernesto Ancira, but she has also been a vice-president of the company since 2007. Though she no longer handles the day-to-day nitty-gritty of business, she is very much involved with the “bigger picture” and community work. As part of the “bigger picture” team, April participated in recent negotiations to purchase two Houston dealerships to add to the 11 the company already has, and she regularly gets involved in issues that affect the entire Ancira enterprise, such as large advertising packages, strategic changes, sponsorships and philanthropic activities. Given that the car business is always changing, staying on top of market trends is definitely part of her focus. “The market has slowed down almost to the 2008 level for car sales,” she explains. “It had been at an artificial high for a while (following the slow recovery after the recession), so we knew that was not sustainable but it has slowed down more than we expected. So we have to adjust the way we do business. We have new cars and used cars, but nobody can make money on new cars because all new cars are the same. The Jeep Wrangler we have here is the same Jeep Wrangler a competitor has. However, each used car is unique, depending on how much it was driven, how well it was taken care of, etc. So we are redefining the ratio of used versus new cars to help us get through this downturn.” She further explains that dealerships may even lose money on new cars because manufacturers set sales goals tied to special incentives but based on the previous year’s sales: “So if we sold, say, 200 of a particular model last year, they set a goal of 250, and if we sell those, then it will be 300, and it eventually becomes unsustainable. Clearly, we need to change this model of operation.”

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cures everything, “ Laughter I find funny elements

everywhere, no matter how grim the occasion may be.

Listening to her, one suddenly sees the car business from the other side of the typical car-buying experience that most

for making sales transactions as easy as possible, leaving behind some traditional ways of doing business.

of us are familiar with. April goes on to talk about other tricky

But business success depends also on the employees, and

situations dealers encounter, and you realize just how finely

that’s where Ancira Auto Group excels. “We all come to work

tuned the business must be in order to prosper. Clearly, man-

to better ourselves, and our goal is to be able to provide that

ufacturers and dealers need each other, but “the partnership

environment for everybody,” says the upbeat VP. “We like to

is an exciting one,” she says with a chuckle.

promote from within. I think 90 percent of our managers were

Customers are the other part of the equation. A family-run

salespeople before or started behind the parts counter. The

business that’s been around for 40 years appeals to people,

employees can see that and realize, ‘Hey, if I work hard and

she says. “I think that people perceive how much we care. We

stick it out, I get to be part of this company’s growth’ ...“ When

have an investment in this city and the people here. In fact,

I was hiring a new manager for one of the stores, we inter-

what’s beautiful in San Antonio is that a lot of the dealerships

viewed 15 people, all from inside. It’s kind of exciting to have

are family owned, and you don’t have that in a lot of other

so many talented people to choose from right here!”

places. But we maximize that aspect; family members, including my children, are in our commercials. We want to send that message, that we are a family from here, and we are not going

Always Challenging Herself

When the teenage April first got a summer job in her father’s

anywhere. The other, even more important thing for customers,

company, filing and answering phones, she was “just going

is price, plain and simple. People often say that it’s customer

cross-eyed.” The car business was not for her, she thought,

service that counts the most, and that may indeed bring them

and she set her sights on Wall Street while studying market-

back, but what brings them in in the first place are low prices.

ing and finance at Trinity University. Her first car sales

If we post a price that’s $100 less than our competitor’s, the

changed all of that. The new graduate was very nervous at

phones ring all day. It’s another tricky dance to be always com-

first and didn’t even want to use her last name in the show-

petitive.” In addition, the dealership is developing strategies

room. Then her first customer showed up, looking for a vehi-

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cle for his business. April showed him a Jeep Grand Cherokee and did whatever he asked for. She completed the paperwork sitting on the ground outside by a bench where the buyer was seated. The man came back the next day to purchase a second auto and told her that he was delighted by her efficient, straightforward handling of the previous transaction. He later sent her his sister, and the sister sent a friend. That was it. “I fell in love with it.” To really learn the ropes, the young woman pursued an MBA at UTSA and decided to attend the National Auto Dealers Association Academy, where she also met her husband, Jason

business at home is pretty much the norm in their household. “It’s hard to know where work ends and family begins; the lines are completely blurred,” admits April. “We love what we do. This business is the family.” The couple have two children, now 7 and 4. She proudly reports that her 7-year-old son, who was born with club feet (later corrected), recently ran three miles with his daddy. And her daughter is becoming a little athlete, too, by trying to imitate her athletic mom’s training for the truly challenging Iron Man races. April explained, "Ironman is a prime example of how you have no idea what you are capable of until you believe in your-

races “ Ironman are what

continue to remind me that with hard work, focus and heart, I can achieve anything I want to. Never underestimate the power of human will.

Thompson, who eventually followed her to San Antonio and is now a valuable member of the Ancira leadership team. Talking

self. When I began my post-baby fitness I became bored with the gym and began with a 5k race. Had someone told me then that I was capable of covering 140.6 miles in one day I would

Always seeking to stretch herself, she has increasingly been

have laughed at them. After a 5k, I wanted to see if I could step

drawn to community work in recent years. Two charities that are

up and I did a super short triathlon, after that I did a 10k. I

“near and dear” to her heart in a special way are the Brighton

continued to wonder how much more I could do and my journey

Center, which provides developmental services for disabled chil-

began... 1/2 marathon, marathon, 1/2 Ironman, and finally the

dren, and the ALS Association “for very personal reasons” — her

full 140.6 miles of swimming and biking and running. Ironman

dear grandmother suffered and died from the disease. April re-

races are what continue to remind me that with hard work,

calls a hospital visit with grandma when the latter asked her “to

focus and heart, I can achieve anything. Never under-estimate

walk for ALS.” Walk participants raise money for the organiza-

the power of human will."

tion, and the determined April raised the most, $40,000, and

Perhaps the youngsters are also learning from their mom’s inclination to bring laughter into most situations. “Laughter

got to cut the ribbon at the start of the event in front of her ailing grandmother. It’s a memory she cherishes.

cures everything,” says April in her forceful, confident way. “I

She has now added Brighton’s board membership to her

find funny elements everywhere, no matter how grim the oc-

other volunteer responsibilities. “I always joke that I leave one

casion may be. My best friends are a couple of comedians.”

board meeting early to be late to another one,” she comments,

Knowing April today, it’s hard to believe that she once was

adding that after our interview she will be rushing to the Parks

a shy little girl, but she says she was -- so shy, in fact, that she

Foundation board meeting, which she chairs. Clearly, she finds

wouldn’t even dial 411 for information. What helped her

fulfillment in helping others and wishes she and the company

change was a college speech class that she forced herself to

could do more: “I wish that someday Ancira will be big enough

take. It turned out to be an impetus for seeking other chal-

to play in the larger charitable arena. Look at the impact of

lenges to conquer. “You only have one life, and you don’t want

Haven for Hope on the community! I would like us to be able

to have all these regrets at the end,” she notes.

to be that effective. That will be my long-term goal.” november/december 2017 | 19

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15 Years and counting...

San Antonio Woman Celebrates By JASMINA WELLINGHOFF

With this issue of SAN ANTONIO WOMAN, we are celebrating 15 years of publication, bringing you stories about amazing women who shape the life of our community in business, government, the arts, health, community work and many other areas. To mark the occasion, we caught up with some of our “Cover Girls” to see how life has changed for them and what’s on their minds. Read on!

november/december 2017 | 21




The untiring fighter for social justice, Janie Barrera, founded the micro-lending ACCION Texas back in

The founder of the Drake Commercial Group, Deborah Bauer

1994 to help startups

is easily one of the most successful commercial real estate bro-

and small businesses

kers in the city. She was instrumental in the development of

get off the ground and prosper.

several Stone Oak area communities. Her sights are now set

The organization has since changed its

on the far West Side, in the area of US 90 and SH 211, as well

name to LiftFund and is now helping small

as the intersection of Potranco and 211, where several builders

business entrepreneurs in 13 states. These

are already creating master planned communities on more than 4,000 acres of

are folks who cannot get loans from banks,

land. “These are very active areas, with a lot of job growth,” she notes. On another

yet 96 percent of them repay their LiftFund

front, Bauer has teamed up with three other businesswomen to form Women Give

loans. A former nun, Barrera is inspired by

Back, a charity that helps local nonprofits such as ChildSafe and the Battered

her faith. “Not only I, but this whole organ-

Women’s Shelter. And she has two more grandchildren, twins born to her son, Travis

ization is guided by Providence and doing

and his wife. Deborah was recently awarded the National Entrepreneurial Spirit

God’s work,” she says.

Award by CREW for her phenomenal career success and risk taking.



Susan says she has been enjoying her freedom since she left the district attorney’s office after 16 years as DA. She spends about a week a month serving as an appointed senior (visiting) judge on various cases and remains involved with organizations such as the Fiesta Commission, the All-Star After School Program and the Rodeo. Travel is a favorite pastime. In fact, when we caught up with her, she was about to embark on a trip to Paris and Rome to take some cooking classes and have fun.

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Following a great career as a WNBA basketball star and an Olympian, Hammon surprised many when, after her retirement, she became the assistant coach for the Spurs, only the second woman to hold such a job with an NBA team. She grew up in Rapid City, S.D., in a family that spent Sundays going to church and playing basketball and softball. As a child, she would sneak onto the basketball court and start shooting. “I was so good at it people thought I was a boy, even though I had long hair,” she told SAN ANTONIO WOMAN back in 2012. Good indeed! In October of this year, she was inducted into the San Antonio Sports Hall of Fame for 2018, with the ceremony planned for Jan. 27.


The model and TV personality who opened the Bird Bakery on Broadway with her husband, actor Armie Hammer, in 2012, reports big changes in her life. “I have been blessed with two beautiful children — Harper, who is almost 3, and Ford, 8 ½ months,” she says. And Bird Bakery has

not only opened a second location in Dallas, it has also expanded the San Antonio restaurant by adding extra dining space as well as a party room for events.

november/december 2017 | 23



The former councilwoman

and former first lady of San Antonio continues her work with American Sunrise, a nonprofit she and her husband started as an afterschool



elementary school kids in their West Side neighborhood. The emphasis is on teaching kids basic reading and math skills, as well as teaching parents how to help their children. She is also happy to report that her famous husband’s health is good following treatment for prostate cancer, and that their son, John Paul, who recently earned an MBA from Columbia, is now working for “our” company — Siebert Cisneros Shank & Co, LLC


Dr. Chou, a breast care specialist and radiation oncologist, founded the Aurora Breast Center in 2009 to offer women state-of-the-art cancer care with the most sophisticated imaging technology and treatment. She is also a sur-

vivor of the disease herself. “Your article had a huge impact,” she tells us. “People found out that I was a breast cancer survivor in addition to being a breast cancer doctor, so they trust me to understand what they are going through.” Since then, her clinic has added 3-D mammography imaging (more accurate cancer detection), which most insurances cover. The doctor is a big supporter of organic gardening and urban agriculture and has a “demonstration garden” at her clinic. The idea is to inspire patients to grow and eat their own fresh food.

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As the general manager of the San Antonio River Authority (SARA), Scott oversaw two of the most visible urban improvements in recent time — the Museum and Mission Reach extensions of the River Walk and the rehabilitation of the entire river ecosystem south of downtown. Now she is at it again with the restoration of San Pedro Creek, and her sights are already set on other local creeks that could all become part of a green network residents could use for recreation. She promises that the first segment of the San Pedro Creek project will be ready for the Tricentennial celebration. SARA recently received the 2017 Thiess International Riverprize from the International River Foundation, “the Nobel Prize for rivers,” says Scott.


The former sheriff is in excellent spirits these days. She says

she’s proud of the efforts her office made in confronting domestic violence in the county and in identifying



among the people arrested through the criminal justice system. She continues to serve the community by working on a number of boards, including those of the United Way, the Bexar County Family Justice Center Foundation and the San Antonio Master Leadership Program. And she remains open to new opportunities. “There’s a bigger plan,” she says, “God’s plan, and I am excited about what’s going to happen next.”

november/december 2017 | 25




Kim Ford is now the head of her own firm, the KFORD Group, which offers

employs 17 people, seven of whom


are CPAs. With a new tax code being

Angels star still resides in Boerne, where

the same full range of accounting services as it did under the name of Hill & Ford PC. The KFORD Group


Yes, that Cheryl Ladd! The former Charlie’s

proposed in D.C., we asked her opinion of it. She believes

she loves the small-town life, and is now a

that changes are necessary as things have changed con-

custom homebuilder in the area. Along

siderably in the country since the last reform in 1986. The

with her husband, Brian Russell, Ladd

proposed code simplifies filing for many people, she says,

has launched their homebuilding business

while a lower corporate tax, envisioned by the plan, may

— Cheryl Ladd Signature Homes. The first model house will be

open new opportunities for businesses. She advises tax-

shown November 11 at the breath-taking Cordillera Ranch.

payers to “pay attention, plan early and get advice from a

Ladd is thrilled to be the Grand Marshal for the 2017 Holiday

tax adviser.” A longtime supporter of good causes in San

River Parade. “The parade sets the tone for the holidays, and is

Antonio, Ford is proud of her recent appointment to the

a wonderful event for families,” she said. When asked how she

board of the Texas Tech University Foundation, which gives

was able to keep such a youthful appearance, Ladd mentioned

her a opportunity to “give back” to her alma mater.

the importance of weight maintenance and good health.

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Sondra created Shining Star EN-

ERGY to negotiate and manage the mineral rights owners’ interests visa-vis oil and gas drillers on her properties in the Eagle Ford Shale Play. An astute businesswoman, she also tries to do as much good in the community as she can. Though considerably fewer rigs are running in the play these days — affecting the income of owners and operators alike — Grohman continues her charitable work that largely focuses on teaching girls the basics of finances and entrepreneurship through the Girl Scouts of SW Texas’ Council Path Program. In addition to mentoring, her company has established a $5,000 scholarship named I AM-I CAN-WATCH ME.



Shane and her husband, Wayne, started Massage Heights in 2004 in Alamo Heights as a membership facility akin



clubs. Today, she is invited to speak to business students about entrepreneurship and franchising. The company now has 158 franchisees all over the U.S., with the goal of reaching 300. Her advice for those students or anyone who dreams of starting a business: “Do your homework, develop a business plan, and then find a mentor or two who will poke holes in the plan and ask hard questions.”

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Susan is excited to announce that her family’s Franklin Companies have been chosen to operate the future senior living community at the Pro Football Hall of Fame complex in Canton, OH. The facility will be part



Every year brings new milestones and mem-

of an $800 million expansion of the com-

ories, and 2017 was no different for Isis

plex. The company already owns and runs seven upscale sen-

Romero of KSAT 12. The anchorwoman

ior living communities in Texas under its Franklin Park brand

launched the first season of her new prime

name, including the latest addition – Franklin Park Alamo

time show, “Up Close with Isis Romero,”

Heights. The latter will have a grand opening celebration on

in which she serves as both host and pro-

Nov. 16. An early board member of the Tobin Center for the

ducer. Most notably, Romero, who is married to

Performing Arts, Franklin continues to support the “game

fellow television anchor Phil Anaya of KENS 5, learned her fam-

changing” performing arts hall as a member of the newly

ily will grow yet again in 2017. The couple are expecting their

formed Annual Giving Committee.

third son during the week of Christmas.

november/december 2017 | 29





any of us are familiar with the rush of holiday decorating. Carving those pumpkins and setting out ghosts for Halloween, yanking them down and putting up Pilgrims and turkeys for Thanksgiving, and then suddenly it’s time to trim that tree and hang the garland. For many San Antonio homeowners, this means choosing decorations for a home with an average size of 2,236 square feet. That’s challenging enough, but what if you live on an estate? Where would you begin? Cheri Stith and Jamie Weyand of Feather, Fluff and Flings have dealt with this situation a number of times, recently with an estate on Wildwood, near Olmos Park. Over the years, Stith and Weyand have learned some important lessons about holiday decorating for estates. The first is to attend the Dallas Holiday & Gift Market in January every year to acquire items scaled for these homes. “Ribbon, ornaments, nutcrackers, reindeer — anything you can imagine is there,” Stith says. “It’s a must for us for decorating estates.” They also learned to meet with clients early in the year. “We ask about colors and themes to establish what they are looking for. We show them things we bought at market, to see what appeals. Meeting early in the year is essential to acquire the necessary items and to schedule installation,” Weyand says.

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W AT HOME Traditional Charm “The home on Wildwood is an incredible estate,” Stith says. “It is a grand three-story home, so our holiday decorations were scaled to match.” This particular home is built in the Southern plantation style with ornate moldings, paneling and crystal chandeliers. The homeowners asked Stith and Weyand for a traditional theme to complement the architecture and designated which areas they wanted decorated. Stith relates that estate owners often begin decorating one or two areas and then add rooms as years go by. This couple decided to begin with the front door, formal living and formal dining areas. Because of their Southern roots, they plan to add magnolia garland to the banisters next. “We always offer to incorporate the homeowner’s own decorations because many times they are heirlooms,” Stith says. “In Wildwood’s case, the homeowner wanted to use her own ornaments on the tree.” Stith and Weyand worked with the front door first. Because the house is set back from the street, the pair knew they’d have to double the garland for enough width to make a visual impact. They wound two kinds of ribbon through the garland and added cranberry florals, pinecones and a variety of colorful glass ornaments. LED lights were added last to ensure their sparkle could be seen from the street. The two large wreaths on the ornamental wrought iron front doors are a glittery combination of several kinds of red and gold ribbons, cranberry picks, gold foil poinsettia florals and red and gold balls. Crafting these sumptuous creations takes several hours of planning and yards and yards of ribbon. After the holidays are over, they need special storage containers to keep them in pristine condition.

Living Room Sparkle In the formal living room, the homeowner chose red, white, gold and lime green as the color palette for the mantel and the tree. The white stone fireplace is a work of art in itself, with intricate carving covering the surface. Stith and Weyand wanted to create a garland that would complement the mantel and celebrate the season. 32 |


“We began with about 30 feet of garland,” Stith says. “We

sconces. The rectangular dining table seats 10 and is laid with

always work in layers when we design decorative garlands.

poinsettia-embellished placemats and table runner. Antique

First, we added more than a hundred floral picks -- pearly

silver candelabra hold cranberry tapers.

white berries, matte lime green berries, shiny red foil leaves

The fireplace at the end of the room features a white marble

and glittery red leaves. Gold ornaments were then attached.

surround and hearth beneath a carved mantel. Stith and

The next layer was 24 yards of lime green ribbon edged in gold

Weyand fashioned a garland of gold and white ribbon, sage rib-

and a red and white ribbon woven through the garland. Finally,

bon, green and white berry picks and glittery tiny pears to

we added yards of LED twinkle lights, carefully tucked around

complement the marble. Gold foil ornaments, tiny silver rein-

the other layers.”

deer and magnolia florals complete the piece.

Two oversized nutcrackers were positioned on either side of the fireplace to complete the space. The designers used a similar color palette for the 10-foot tree. Glittery lime green berry picks were added to the berry

After the New Year What happens to these gorgeous decorations when the holidays end?

selection, as were gold foil and green leaf picks. Matte and

“We’re great elves!” Stith chuckles. “Estate homeowners

shiny red balls were added, too. It took a team of three about

are busy people. They don’t have time to take these decora-

three hours to complete the project. The result was a stunning

tions down, so our team goes in with packing materials and

Christmas tree.

boxes -- even crates -- to store them. Each box is labeled with

Elegant Dining

installation faster the following year. The homeowner then

the contents and where the item was displayed. This makes The formal dining room features burnished molded wood paneling, a large sparkling chandelier and crystal wall 34 |

stores everything.” And the decorating cycle begins again!

november/december 2017 | 35

ft i G

iu de G



Miniature alcohol arrangements that will make your party something to rave about. Centerpieces that do more than complete your table setting. Have someone TM difficult to shop for? Get them a Blooming Bottles bouquet with their favorite alcohol, color, and theme.

11854 Wurzbach Road


MORETTI’S FINE JEWELRY The Capri Collection by Pomellato Rings in 18k rose gold with chrysoprase and blue sapphires or turquoise and rubies. Pomellato, founded in 1967, introduced the revolutionary concept of "prêt-à-porter" jewelry, pieces designed to be worn day or night. Each individual jewel is crafted by hand to create flawlessly composed, unconventionally elegant pieces, both high-fashion and classic and prized around the world.

14230 San Pedro Avenue


THE PALM BYGONES OF CASTLE HILLS Bygones is pleased to announce that we are now selling gift cards just in time for the holiday season. Have someone on your list that's hard to buy for? We've got the perfect solution....get them a gift card! These make great stocking stuffers, gifts for Christmas, birthdays or weddings. Think Bygones this holiday season and remember, we are "the fun place to shop!"

2211 NW Military #107


See new arrivals and Follow us on Facebook!

36 |

At The Palm, our philosophy is simple: Treat guests like family, serve great food, and always exceed expectations. A Palm Gift Card is the perfect gift for your friends and family and richly appreciated by colleagues and clients... and let us give you a gift in return! Stop in to see us for the holidays! Book your party with Melanie Moran at

233 East Houston Street




Put Some Swing in Your Celebrations in this 1950s Style Black & Fuchsia Pink Floral Delores Swing Dress – material with some stretch, back zipper, unlined, side pockets.

Clove Berry Tabletop Tree Handmade, Austrian-style topiary packed with cloves, cinnamon, star anise, berries and cones. This beautiful decoration smells wonderful and is a treasure for years to enjoy. $250

Be chic, classic and truly elegant in these black Fleece Bow Trim Wrist Gloves with fold over hem, leatherette bow, notched detail, and white embroidered accent at the wrist, right hand features tiny embroidered detail on index and thumb for touchscreen capabilities.

5932 Broadway


3615 Broadway


CKO SAN ANTONIO 1 HOUR FITNESS KICKBOXING CLASSES All ages and levels (men & women) modify and go at your own pace. Kickboxing, cardio, ab work, calisthenics, plyometrics, agility work, weights, etc. We offer military discounts, kids classes and private group training options as well as Team Build private classes (private classes for a group of workers, church goers, military groups, etc..). We also offer free daycare on certain class times!

17700 US Highway 281 N., Suite 500


PEÑALOZA & SONS Color your world beautiful with diamond and colored stone ring guards. Mix and match colors for the coordinated fashion look of the season. Available in platinum, yellow or white gold at Peñaloza & Sons.

2001 N.W. Military Hwy.


november/december 2017 | 37


Beþrly Purcell-Guerra


hen one steps into the home of former SAN

As we sit down to discuss the 15th anniversary of SAN AN-

ANTONIO WOMAN Editor Beverly Purcell-

TONIO WOMAN, she tells me her path to editor was far from

Guerra, a feeling of ease, comfort and a

typical. Her career began in New York as Vogue’s merchandising

delicate touch of glamour pique your

editor under Diana Vreeland and Anna Wintour, names that

senses. There’s a sunshine-soaked sitting

would strike awe into any fashionista’s heart. The balance of

room to the right, and a piano begging to be played on the left.

children and marriage took her from that position to a brief stint

In the midst of such a beautiful space is Beverly herself, telling

with Glamour, and back to a remote position with Vogue in San

me she needs to change shoes for our photographer. “The other

Antonio before telecommuting was even a word.

ones were too strappy,” she says, ever the image of sophistica-

She remembers when wearing pants to the office was a dar-

tion. For all her illustrious career and vast accomplishments,

ing move and recounts watching Ralph Lauren determine that

however, Purcell-Guerra is welcoming, inviting and more than

denim was to be the next big thing. She sat next to designers in

happy to pass along her knowledge to the next generation.

their studios and spoke across the country to shape the trends

38 |


FRAGRANCE Want the inside scoop on Beverly’s tips for holiday dressing? Spritzing! “I have what I like to call a wardrobe of fragrances,” she says, and advocates a different scent for different occasions. “I prefer light fragrances, and I do treat myself to a wide variety.” Below are her current favorites for the season. Try one, try them all, but she says never be afraid to change it up when it comes to your signature scent.


of the fashion world. But ask her for fashion advice, and she’ll simply tell you the basics are best. “I hardly ever throw things out,” she says. “I have one jacket from Santa Fe that I wear every year during the holidays, and I don’t care if people have seen me in it. I love it, so I’m going to wear it.” It’s this sense and sensibility she brought to SAN ANTONIO WOMAN that shaped her eye as an editor. “I love a classic look with a little bit of fun,” she smiles. “These days I’m traveling so much and going to see grandchildren around the country, but I still love to get dressed.” Indeed, Beverly and her husband of 35 years, Dr. Fernando Guerra, maintain an active social calendar, serving with numerous boards and volunteering their time on a local and national level. “We’ve stayed busy, and I think that’s been key,” says Beverly. “We’re not just sitting around the house wondering what we’re going to do today.” That would make sense, given the vibrant and vivacious life they’ve lived so far. They’re not slowing down any time soon, and the San Antonio community is all the better for it.

Flora by Gucci


Safari by Ralph Lauren


Burberry Weekend


Anais Anais by Cacharel


Bill Blass Perfume for Women november/december 2017 | 39



SAN ANTONIO GARDENIA AND MUSICAL CLUB New members of the San Antonio Gardenia and Musical Club gathered at The Argyle in September. New members and new board members were tapped into service. The club provides fine arts scholarships to local students.

MARCH OF DIMES SIGNATURE CHEFS FUNDRAISER The March of Dimes held their gala fundraiser to benefit babies and families Oct. 6. The event at the La Cantera Resort & Spa featured top chefs from around the area and emcees Ernie Zuniga of KABB Fox News First and Lillian Riojas, director of media relations and communication at Valero.

FIRST FRIDAY NETWORK The First Friday Network met Oct. 6 at Blanco BBQ for the monthly networking event. Joining in were Selena Gaitan, Rob Kelley, Dawn Hamilton, Adreen McDonald and Karla Lopez-Guerra.

40 |

BEXAR COUNTY FAMILY JUSTICE CENTER On October 20, the Bexar County Family Justice Center held its annual fashion show and luncheon to raise funds and awareness of domestic violence in our community..The chair was District Attorney Nicholas “Nico” Lahood; the Master of Ceremonies was Bill Taylor of KENS 5; and the fashions were provided by Dillards. SAW Fashion Editor, Aquila Mendez-Valdez walked the runway representing our magazine.


DELICATE I DECOLLETAGE: San Antonio Beauty Professionals Provide Tips For The Care and Maintenance of Your Neck and Chest BY AQUILA MENDEZ-VALDEZ

42 |

n the tender teenage years, basking in the sun on Spring Break, many of us never thought twice about our neck and chest peeling away after far too much exposure. But as we age, this area tends to deteriorate rapidly, with wrinkles and sagging skin creeping in faster than the speed of light.

We spoke with local beauty professionals to find out what women can do to prevent the aging process for such a delicate zone of the body, and perhaps even turn back the hands of time. Shine Beautifully Spa owner April Monterrosa says she frequently hears complaints about this area from clients. “They’re worried about age and sun spots, deep lines and wrinkles, and especially crepiness,” she says. “I always suggest PCA chemical peels and glycolic peels to reverse the signs of aging.” If you’re more the DIY type, April suggests taking Vitamin E to strengthen the skin’s elasticity, quitting smoking and drinking lots of water. “It’s also important to eat healthy foods,” she says. “A better diet gives your body what it needs to stay radiant.”







Dermatologist Dr. Linda Banta of Stone Oak Dermatology says most of her clients are frustrated when the neck area ages even more rapidly than the face. She recommends medical grade sunscreen such as eltaMD or Skin Medica to protect the area. “We also love a brightening agent called Lytera and a good antioxidants serum to reverse the signs of aging and prevent skin cancer,” she says. For those seeking a more drastic approach, plastic surgeon Dr. Regina Fearmonti warns against internet schemes. “I’ve had clients bring ‘neck tape,’ silicone sheets, and other other online remedies to the office,” she says. “My advice? Save your money.” For effective cosmetic procedures, she recommends a little Botox, Dysport or Xeomin. “A nice adjunct to these options is laser skin tightening to improve contour,” she says. “Surgery in the form of a neck-lift is sometimes the most cost-effective solution when all else fails.” When it comes to submental, or under the chin, fat deposits, Dr. Fearmonti suggests a chemical dissolution called Kybella. The injection series helps dissolve unwanted fat deposits in a noninvasive format. Above all, she says, sunscreen and a good retinol cream are always good bets for skin care. It turns out avoiding the dreaded “turkey neck” takes a bit of prevention, a bit of maintenance and surgery if all else fails. But this holiday season, it’s a relief to know that the “gobbler” at the family get-togethers might only be referring to the one on the dinner table.

november/december 2017 | 43



November 1 Love to Give Shop benefitting Ballet San Antonio Neiman Marcus The Shops at La Cantera 11:00am November 5 – 11 Fall Scent Event Nordstrom The Shops at La Cantera November 7 – 8 Lela Rose Spring 2018 Trunk Show Julian Gold November 10 Chanel Collection Preview Neiman Marcus The Shops at La Cantera 10am – 4pm November 9 Sensational Evening: The 12 Services of Christmas! Dillard’s The Shops at La Cantera To make reservations: (210) 558-6121 November 14 – 15 Carolina Herrera Spring 2018 Trunk Show Julian Gold November 15 David Yurman Personal Appearance Neiman Marcus The Shops at La Cantera 1 – 3pm November 16 FGI Holiday Party Location: TBD Members Only

November 30 Akris Punto Trunk Show Neiman Marcus The Shops at La Cantera 10am – 5pm November 30 Sisley Meet the Expert Event Neiman Marcus The Shops at La Cantera 10am – 5pm December 6 Chanel Cosmetics Les Exclusives Event Neiman Marcus The Shops at La Cantera 10am – 5pm December 6 – 8 Vivian Fine Jewelry Show and Personal Appearance Julian Gold December 7 – 8 Naeem Khan Spring 2018 Trunk Show Julian Gold December 8 Maison Francis Kurkdijan Neiman Marcus The Shops at La Cantera 10am – 5pm December 9 Le Metier Beaute Brow Bar Neiman Marcus The Shops at La Cantera 10am – 5pm December 14 – 15 Julie Voss Jewelry Trunk Show Julian Gold

November 28 – 29 Sarah White Handbag Trunk Show Julian Gold

november/december 2017 | 45

46 |


Combined Talents of Four Generations Create Beloved Flavors and Memories BY DAWN ROBINETTE

A treasure of sights, sounds and smells, Mi Tierra Café y Panadería is a San Antonio icon, as much of a tradition as


are the lights, piñatas, papel picado, the mariachis … but it all creates a feeling, an ambiance that draws people.”

the Alamo and the River Walk. The restaurant that now fills

The second generation added four sons and a daughter

almost an entire city block in historic Market Square started

to the family, including Deborah’s father, Jorge, while Deb-

as a simple family business, a three-table café with a wife

orah’s generation has a greater mix of women. “We’re taking

cooking family recipes in the kitchen while her husband

over!” she laughs and goes on to explain how the family

worked the café and another job to build their dream. Flash forward 76 years and the family team of Pedro and Cruz Cortez includes second, third and fourth generations working in La Familia Cortez Restaurants, a family-owned

works together, “We have a common vision. Each of us has a responsibility to fulfill the gift our grandparents started. It’s challenging and fulfilling.” From a second-generation perspective, Rosalinda — the

company with a staff of 600 operating four restaurants in

only girl born to Pedro and Cruz — serves in an informal

the Market Square area—Mi Tierra, with its adjacent Mari-

human resources role. “She’s the heart and glue that holds

achi Bar, La Margarita Restaurant & Oyster Bar, Restau-

us together. People always feel comfortable turning to her,”

rante Pico de Gallo and Viva Villa Taquería.

explains Deborah.

But even as large as the company has become, everything

Along with Deborah, other third-generation women work-

comes down to family. “My grandmother (matriarch Cruz) has

ing in the restaurants include project manager Cariño, who

always played a role. Even now, at 96, she lectures us about

uses her culinary arts degree to add new angles to the

working hard and we have to continue to serve our commu-

Cortez tradition, like the latest restaurant, Viva Villa Taque-

nity,” explains Deborah Cortez, the oldest granddaughter. Like

ría. Another culinary talent is Angelica, a pastry chef who

many of the family children, Deborah grew up working along-

creates in Mi Tierra’s beloved Panadería, while Christina’s

side her grandparents, actively learning from them.

nurturing nature founded the company’s formal human re-

“We’re a family, but we’re also individuals who have honed our passions and used them to help the business,” explains Deborah Cortez.

sources department. In addition to now working at Pico de

ping into a role in the business: High schoolers Ashley and

Deborah now works alongside her father, Jorge, further de-

future may be for the infants who are starting to populate

Gallo, Christina also serves as an informal mentor to company employees. While still young, the fourth generation is already stepSarah both work as hostesses. It’s too early to say what the


veloping the brand and marketing of La Familia Cortez Restau-

the fifth generation, but it’s a good bet that the great-great-

rants, curating the beloved restaurants’ authentic culture and

grandchildren will continue to honor the tradition that keeps

feel. “We are culturally driven — it’s who we are. The tangibles

us all coming back time and time again.



Bexar County Judge

I currently sit on the bench of County Court at Law #10. I have served as a judge for over two decades. I have also served as a visiting senior judge throughout the state of Texas. Being a judge is my profession, but my passion is my family. I am a wife, mother, daughter, and sister who happens to be a full-time judge. Would you encourage your children to go into the same field? I would encourage my kids to follow their own passions. Then, they have a job they love doing every day. The law has been very good to me, but every one of my children has their own interests. What are the keys to balancing home and work life for you? A supportive family. I realize it’s important to balance my career and my family life. Our family’s motto is “if it’s not on mom’s calendar, it’s not happening.” We live a very organized and disciplined life. Tell us about your family. I feel so lucky. I have a great family. First is my mother, who reared me to be a strong independent woman. My husband, Gerald Flores, loves me very much and is very supportive in everything I do. My three loving, energetic teenage kids are Gerald William, Nicholas, and Lillianna who are the joy of my life. What do you love most about San Antonio? San Antonio is a major city that feels like a small town. It is a city filled with a confluence of cultures. Its most endearing quality is the friendliness of its inhabitants. What do you enjoy doing? I love making family celebrations very special for our family. My parents used to call it “making memories with the children.” For example, I love the winter holidays, which were always a great time in our home. My husband and I have nine

family birthdays during the week of Christmas — so it is still a very special time in our house. The season starts in November with the making of gingerbread houses. And, ends with the New Year celebration.

around the world parties, splatter paint parties, volcano parties, Einstein parties and many, many more. The wildest party theme we ever had has got to be the Madagascar hissing cockroach races we held inside the house.

What do you enjoy about the holidays? My favorite time during the holiday season is when the chaos is over. Sitting on the couch with my husband and gazing at the Christmas tree, focusing on a particular ornament that tells a story. Looking at the ornaments on the tree, we reminisce about our life adventures together through those cherished ornaments.

What is one thing you do that you never imagined yourself doing? I have become a jock mom attending cross country meets, track and field events, basketball and volleyball games. I had no interest in any of those sports before I became a mom. I enjoy being their No. 1 cheerleader. My sons, Nicholas and Gerald, say, “Mom, people in the next two counties can hear you!”

What is something that you have enjoyed as a mother? Planning unique celebrations for my children, including bug parties, rocket parties,

What advice will you give to your children? Believe in yourself and follow your dreams, and remember your family is your rock. november/december 2017 | 49

BUSINESS CALENDAR November 10 North SA Chamber 2017 Salute to Excellence La Cantera Hill Country Resort 16641 La Cantera Pkwy 11am – 1pm November 11 SA Women’s Chamber Constellation of Stars Awards Gala Location: TBA Reception – 6:30pm, Dinner/Program – 7:30pm November 14 North SA Chamber Nov. Networking Breakfast The Petroleum Club 8620 N New Braunfels Ave 7 – 9am November 30 NAWBO Monthly Meeting Petroleum Club 8620 N New Braunfels Ave. 7:30 – 9:30am December 6 NAWBO Holiday Social North Park Lexus


611 Lockhill Selma Rd. 5:30 – 8pm December 7 SA Women’s Chamber Mistletoe Madness Mixer Location: TBD 5:30 – 7:30pm

December 12 North SA Chamber Dec. Networking Breakfast The Petroleum Club 8620 N New Braunfels Ave 7 – 9am December 12 NAWBO Coffee Connections Location: TBA 7:30 – 9am December 13 NAFE Meeting Old San Francisco Steakhouse 10223 Sahara Dr. Check-in & Networking 11:30 – 11:45am Lunch / Speaker/ Networking 11:45 – 1:30pm



Best City in Texas for Women Business Owners BY IRIS GONZALEZ

Growing a Business Beyond Yourself Is Key


Location plays a key role in the success of any business but an even bigger one for women-owned firms. Some places can be more encouraging for female-driven entrepreneurship. According to the 2016 WalletHub study, San Antonio ranks first in Texas and 21st in the U.S. for its number of women-owned businesses. The San Antonio-New Braunfels area also has the fourth- highest percentage of both female-owned businesses and the highest average revenue for those businesses nationwide. Despite the different business areas of these four owners, they all share one common ability that contributes directly to business success—the ability to scale up, or expand, their business. This crucial stage for a business owner transitioning from a oneperson startup to a company poised for growth requires determination, market partnerships and strategic vision. These four San Antonio business owners share what it takes to succeed on the entrepreneurial journey from self-starter owner to a scaled up business.

november/december 2017 | 51

Marta Paul Nova Aesthetics

Marta Paul moved to San Antonio in 2005 to work as an aesthetician partner in a medical spa. The only business owner of the four profiled here not born and raised in San Antonio claims nearby Fredericksburg as her hometown. Over the 13 years she worked as an employee, Paul realized she was always thinking about ways to improve the operations of someone else’s business. In 2013, she had her “aha” moment and was determined to open her own medical spa on Blanco Road. “It happened quickly once I decided,” Paul said. “Within three months I plunged into opening my own business.” At first Paul was the sole practitioner and employee. After six months she hired her first employee, who remains at the spa to this day. By the end of 2014 Paul had grown her practice to five employees running at full force. For those thinking about opening a business, Paul stresses the importance of hiring employees who are just as passionate about your business as you are. “Having a solid team is essential, so surround yourself with people who share your passion for your industry,” she said. Paul thinks of herself as a risk taker, but the reality is that she was exposed to successful entrepreneurship from an early age. Business comes naturally to the medical spa owner. “It’s in my blood—my grandparents owned a women’s shoe store in New York, and my parents have also owned their own separate companies, so I’ve always been exposed to strong business-minded people,” Paul said. She has met many strong entrepreneurial women in San Antonio, especially since many are clients at her medical spa. She finds San Antonio to be a tight-knit community with many sources of support for women in business to help them grow their enterprises. She cautions those contemplating starting a new business that it’s not always easy. Passion, dedication to industry standards and a keen focus on client satisfaction are all factors Paul thinks are essential to the success of a business. For her, maintaining the passion to start a business is her primary driver when the company cycles through peaks and valleys over time. Paul stresses the bottom line for those interested in starting a business is to work hard to create the environment that the owner wants for her business. Creating and maintaining high standards for the business can lead to the best conditions for owner and customer alike. “We care about our patients and about their outcomes,” Paul said. “We are building their confidence with our many services that ultimately help our clients—both men and women—feel good about themselves.”


Dedicated to patients’ outcomes

Arlene Evans

Exceptionalities Academic Services

Arlene Evans started at the Winston School of San Antonio first as an educator, then as a department director. The birth of her first child triggered a desire for more targeted, yet flexible work as a consultant working with pediatric neurologists in San Antonio to help students with special educational needs. It did not take long before Evans realized the need was much greater than she could fulfill on her own. “I decided to contact learning disability specialists with whom I worked previously and asked that they tutor some of these children one-on-one,” she said. “Parents were searching for specialists familiar with different learning styles who could reach out and help these students succeed.” Because there was such demand for one-on-one specialized educational support, Evans realized quickly she needed specialists with a variety of backgrounds and skills as well as different types of degrees and teaching experiences to help students who needed her services. Evans now has over 30 different learning disability specialists working with students both in the San Antonio area and beyond. In some cases, the tutor will continue to work with a student even after high school graduation throughout his or her college years. “I’ve had consultants working with students at different college campuses,” Evans said. “We’ve worked with one student during his undergraduate time at Baylor University and his two graduate degrees at SMU and Georgetown University.” Evans’ father was vice president of San Antonio College for 19 years, and her mother was a consulting director of nurses who traveled and managed high levels of geriatric care for a patient population. The Evans family also owns apartment complexes in San Antonio. For Evans, exposure to the family’s businesses gave her an appreciation for both the hard work and possible rewards from starting her business providing families with specialized learning consultants. “I don’t think anyone is successful in isolation,” Evans said. “I come from a successful family.” Evans sees San Antonio as a wide-open market. She realized after attending international conferences for educational specialists that most of the consultants working with students who have special needs tend to be from the U.S. “I discovered we are leading the industry,” she said. “As Americans, we tend to seek outside intervention for those who learn differently.” Evans advises women starting businesses to seek advice and to be prepared for possible setbacks. “Especially if you seek to carve out a niche for yourself, there will be some failures,” she advises. “When there’s no established pathway for your business, you will be the trailblazer.”

Education from different perspectives When Evans first started her business, it was focused 80 percent on student tutoring. Today about 80 percent of her clients request home schooling support for students with special needs. It is not always a child with educational special needs that triggers the search for an educational consultant. For health reasons the child might need home schooling, or the family could be traveling long term. Evans stresses the need to have a passion for your business and “love it as if it were your child.” She also emphasizes how strategic partnerships with other related businesses help in both growing her business and meeting her clients’ needs, for example, with referrals to a vetted governess. Her final piece of advice is an extension of her professed love for her business. If you have children, at some point a parent prepares an estate plan in the event of unforeseen circumstances. The same should apply to one’s business. “Think about the continuity plan for your business—what if something were to happen to you?” Evans asked, “You have your clients and your employees who depend on you, so it’s a big responsibility. Remember to plan.”

november/december 2017 | 53

Dina Petrutsas

Concordis Practice Management The founder of Concordis Practice Management decided to start her business after realizing there was a niche for office management services for busy medical practices in San Antonio. Dina Petrutsas had worked as a certified public accountant (CPA) with Ernst & Young before starting her own CPA practice. Once she became a mother, being her own boss allowed her to have a more flexible work/life balance. Over 11 years Petrutsas built a booming business. Yet in all those years she was the only employee. “I had to stop taking clients because I couldn’t do more business,” she said. “It wasn’t until a health care client asked me to be a CFO [chief financial officer] that I realized I should start my company.” Regrouping in 2011, Petrutsas launched her health care consulting business in which busy medical practices outsource vital office management services to her firm. “I looked at the competition in San Antonio and saw very few competitors,” she said. “I had to let go of my fears and trust in the people I was hiring in order to be able to grow.” She now has seven employees and has experienced robust growth in her company. Petrutsas advises those starting out to constantly evolve and stay current with the business sector, pertinent regulations and changing client needs. She also cautions new business owners to be extremely attentive to details and passionate about what they do. “People do business with you because they like you,” Petrutsas said. “We work hard to establish that relationship of trust, because we want to be our client’s trusted advisor.” As a board member of the National Association of Business Women Owners San Antonio chapter, Petrutsas is enthusiastic about the support for female entrepreneurs starting businesses in San Antonio. “We meet with lawmakers in Austin regularly—Gov. Abbott is a huge proponent of what it takes to get San Antonio to No. 1,” Petrutsas said. “There are so many alliances in San Antonio dedicated to helping women in business.” Despite overseeing her growing company and volunteering, Petrutsas stresses the importance for all business owners to continue growing their network. She advises female business owners to not only join professional organizations but also to get involved by volunteering on committees or serving on a board. “Over time it does pay off, but you need to be consistent,” Petrutsas said. “Be ready to work very long days and make some sacrifices.” She also reminds those just starting to focus on how your business sets you apart from your competition. “I know my competition, and I will refer to them for areas I don’t cover,” Petrutsas said. 54

Committed to clients’ success For mothers seeking to balance the demands of home life and work, achieving that balance may be difficult, but if you’re the business owner, you get to decide how to strike that balance. “You need to bring on employees to grow your business,” Petrutsas advised. “There are an alarming percentage of female business owners working alone, and that is just not sustainable.”

Shirley Crandall Crandall & Associates

Shirley Crandall started her insurance company specializing in commercial insurance and employee benefits programs in 1987 when she realized she could go beyond what she could accomplish as an insurance sales agent working for someone else. Her exposure to business started when Crandall interned as a high school student at Travelers Insurance Company, then stayed with the company as she attended college full time. After college Crandall moved to Transport Life insurance, where she discovered she excelled at selling employee benefits insurance to companies of 100 or more employees. By age 29 Crandall was looking to achieve more. She took the advice of a headhunter and began planning to start her own insurance business. “She told me to save every cent I could and helped me to plan over the course of an entire year,” Crandall recalled. At first, Crandall and Associates consisted of only one employee—Shirley. She has since hired nine employees and recommends to new business owners to “surround yourself with people who are smarter than you and who share the values that are important to you.” After her first five years running her company, she learned about and got her license to sell commercial insurance. Crandall now calls on all companies regardless of size, from the small business to the very large company, selling commercial insurance, disability and life insurance for employees, as well as personal lines of insurance products for home and auto coverage for the business owner. Crandall warns that running your own business is hard work. When she first started, the insurance market was male dominated, particularly in the commercial sector. Now she says there are as many females as males who are owners of insurance agencies. “You have to want a better life for yourself, where you work for yourself and you are your own boss,” she said. Her lessons for beginning business owners include finding a reputable mentor who will be helpful and focusing on building lasting relationships. The value of strategic partnerships also adds to Crandall’s business-building efforts. Despite being friendly competitors, Crandall refers clients to a competitor whose company offers payroll and human resources and 401K retirement plan services, while Crandall focuses on insurance. “Sometimes a person’s current agent is just fine, but I’d like to be first in line if something changes because in this world the only constant is change,” she said. Crandall has no plans to stop anytime soon, despite running her business for 30 years. “I go above and beyond

Going above and beyond for clients for clients, staying current and alerting them to changes in government regulation,” she said. “I love helping people and making sales.”

november/december 2017 | 55

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Supporting local business women across the professional spectrum.

november/december 2017 | 57

Commercial Realty Drake Commercial Group 4630 N Loop 1604 W Suite 510 San Antonio, TX 78249 O: 210.402.6363 F: 210.402.6767

DEBORAH BAUER Founder, Drake Commercial Group

Deborah Bauer is founder of Drake Commercial Group, a commercial real estate brokerage company founded in 1989 and based in San Antonio, TX. The last twenty-eight years, Deborah has been representing investors and developers for retail, office multi-family and large master planned developments. Drake Commercial Group’s reputation, as well Deborah Bauer’s commitment to excellence, earns her the respect of the commercial real estate community as a top professional. Deborah has been the recipient of numerous awards including: Entrepreneurial Spirit and Visionary award from NAWBO, Business Achievement Award from North Chamber, Entrepreneurial Leadership award from San Antonio Business Journal, Best in Commercial Real Estate – Land Deal from San Antonio Business Journal. Deborah was also featured in NSIDE Magazine and was on the cover of San Antonio Woman Magazine. In 2017, she received Best Office Lease award for the Vistas Corporate Center from San Antonio Business Journal. In October, Deborah was presented with the 2017 National Entrepreneurial Spirit Impact Award from CREW, an international organization of over 10,000 members. The entrepreneurial award is given to one member that has achieved a unique career success or milestone as the result of taking a risk. Deborah is one of the founders of Women Give Back, a non-profit organization dedicated to giving back to the San Antonio community. All monies raised are donated 100% to the charity. The Women Give Back mission is to inspire the next generation of women leaders in both business and community. Through fundraising campaigns, WGB has reinvested thousands of dollars back into San Antonio charities.


Courtesy: Daniela Riojas

CYNTHIA LEE CCIM, GRI “None of us is as good as all of us.” – Ray Kroc Cynthia Lee is the first to admit that her latest success as a top 25 real estate Broker® for KW Commercial nationwide is because of her outstanding support staff. Cynthia continues to experience exponential growth in her business after creating an office environment where employees are respected, understand their value and are rewarded for their hard work. “Real estate is a people business, but you have to first invest in your people,” says Cynthia, who re-enforces the critical component: client communication. “There is no such thing as over-communicating in real estate. Our goal is to keep the client continually informed so they never wonder where their deal stands.” Cynthia Lee is among an elite 7% who holds the CCIM designation, Certified Commercial Investment Member. CCIMs are recognized as leading experts in commercial real estate with advanced knowledge in financial and market analysis. With this expertise, Cynthia specializes in office and retail tenant representation and carries the prestigious title of Director of Real Estate for two national brands including San Antonio-based Massage Heights and The Gents Place. She is also the Master Broker for several other national brands. In addition to franchising and some residential transactions, Cynthia manages the real estate of other large groups such as The San Antonio Orthopaedic Group, Kalypso Wellness Centers and Consultants in Pain. Cynthia’s background includes 16 years as a television news anchor and reporter for KABB-TV in San Antonio. She currently serves on three non-profit boards: Hemisfair Park Area Redevelopment Corporation (City of San Antonio), CCIM San Antonio and South Texas Strong. She is a Leadership San Antonio alum and was featured as a top Broker in the June 2016 & 2017 issues of Texas Monthly magazine. Cynthia is a mother to a six-year-old daughter and in her spare time, is a certified kickboxing and boot camp instructor for two local gyms and plays the piano. Cynthia grew up in Seguin, Texas and is a graduate of SMU in Dallas, Texas.

Commercial Realty KW City View Keller Williams Realty Licensed Broker Associate #0607833

M: 210.386.8148 O: 210.630.6100

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Green Bank 1717 West 6th Street, Suite 110 Austin, TX 78703 210.857.0632


A CHAMPION FOR SMALL BUSINESS AND WOMEN Vice President, Government Guaranteed Lending, Central Texas Market Team Leader, Green Bank A true professional has the heart of an educator and a passion for service, and few exemplify that level of professionalism like Helena Hauk. For the past ten years Helena has championed access to capital and business finance education for small businesses in San Antonio and beyond. Her knowledge of SBA loan programs is unparalleled, earning her recognition as one of the SBA’s Small Business Champions and a track record of facilitating over $125 million in SBA and other government guaranteed business loans that have generated hundreds of new jobs in Central Texas. “The SBA has better terms and structures than conventional loans, allowing small businesses to gain access to the capital they need. I help them do it,” says Helena. Her passion for service extends beyond her clients to numerous professional organizations where she has held leadership positions including past-president for Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) and the Central Texas Association for Government Guarantee Lenders (CTAGGL). Helena is especially passionate about the development and mentorship of professional women. As a member of the Risk Management Association she launched the Women In Finance Affinity group, which hosts quarterly presentations on topics of interest to professional women in all industries. She also launched the now famous CREWtini, an annual fundraiser that raises money for a scholarship endowment given to students pursuing a career in commercial real estate. When asked why she focuses so much of her time and energy on developing professional women, Helena responds by saying, “there are so many amazing and talented women with passion and grit who just need a little guidance and support to achieve their goals.” Helena is currently a Vice President and Central Texas Market Manager of the award-winning SBA Lending Division for Green Bank.


TIFFANY TAYLOR SEARLS Owner, Bygones Fine Furniture Consignments

As a young girl I grew up playing in my mother's furniture consignment store. After graduating from college I was honored to become her partner. Together we built a business where people know they will continuously find quality preowned merchandise at a fraction of the original cost. I take pride that people trust us and come back over and


Bygones Fine Furniture Consignments 2211 NW Military Highway Suite 107 210.348.1919

over not only to purchase from us but to consign as well. I laugh because it's now my two precious boys who are growing up in the store. In May of 2014, my world was shattered when I suddenly lost my beloved mother and partner. I had just completed chemo and radiation a month earlier so it was the toughest time of my life. I knew failure was not an option since I had a loving husband and two young boys counting on me. What I took away from this situation is that we are not in control of our own lives! Each morning I remind myself that today is a gift and that I am going to make the most of that blessing that has been bestowed on me! I apply this in my personal as well as in my professional life. I help customers when they are in the middle of a move, a remodeling job, a death or just because they are making a change. The other aspect of my job is helping customers find beautiful treasures for their homes. My mother's words always ring true in my head "Only buy what you love!" "Never make do, just do without." These are principles I tell people on a daily basis. If you don't love something wait until you find that right piece. It's great advice! I enjoy hearing the history on a piece and then I get to pass that history onto a new owner who will give it new life and new history. It's a rewarding feeling! Although I mourn the loss of my mother daily, I am fortunate that I now work with my brother and that together we are carrying on our mother's wonderful legacy.

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Coldwell Banker D’Ann Harper, REALTORS® 18756 Stone Oak Pkwy, Suite 301 San Antonio, TX 78258 210.483.7004

LEESA HARPER RISPOLI President, Coldwell Banker D’Ann Harper, REALTORS®

Coldwell Banker D’Ann Harper, REALTORS® has long been one of the strongest real estate brands in San Antonio and South Texas. At the helm, Leesa Harper Rispoli serves as President, and continues her family’s legacy as a passionate and innovative leader of more than 425 real estate professionals. The company continues to be named as a Best Places to Work for over 10 years running by the San Antonio Business Journal and the San Antonio Express News. In 2015, and again in 2016, they reached over one billion dollars in sales volume — helping more than 6,000 families achieve their real estate dreams each year. In June of 2017 the Global Luxury division was launched, complete with innovative tools such as CBx and WealthEngine, and key partnerships with companies such as Proxio to build the most comprehensive global reach to the most affluent clientele. And just last month, the company opened the doors to its latest sales office in San Marcos, a progressive layout with a tech bar, mobile-friendly agent desks, and multimedia displays. As a leader in the real estate industry, Leesa Harper Rispoli is building on the success her company has earned for over 30 years. “The heritage of our past defines the continued innovation of our future.” says Leesa Harper Rispoli. “We are thrilled to be growing and expanding our real estate services, from starter homes to high-end luxury properties. We’re proud of our past and where we’ve come from. This is the new Coldwell Banker D’Ann Harper, REALTORS® and we invite folks to experience the difference.”


ANDREEN MCDONALD Owner, Starlight Homes Assisted Living

Andreen McDonald is the owner/operator of Starlight Homes Assisted living which consists of two facilities providing personal care services for the elderly in the San Antonio region. She is also a wife and mother. Originally from the small island of Jamaica, Andreen migrated to Texas where she graduated from the University of Texas at San Antonio earning a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Finance with honors, Magma Cum Laude. Her academic achievements also included Top 100 Business Students in 2012. She is also a Certified Dementia Practitioner and a Certified Assisted Living Manager. Andreen was able to utilize her education in business and strong work ethic by starting her own assisted living business. Starlight Homes has earned numerous awards throughout the years and has developed a good reputation in San Antonio. Andreen believes strongly in providing excellent care and services to all her residents.

Assisted Living

Starlight Homes Assisted Living 401 Brn Mawr, San Antonio, TX 78209 4623 Briardale Street, San Antonio, TX 78217 850.376.6443/210.560.1497 Email:


President and Owner, Toolbox Studios Cece Smith is the President and Owner of Toolbox Studios, a strategic marketing and branding firm in San Antonio. A forwardthinking innovator and digital media marketing specialist, Cece provides clients with a unique and wide range of capabilities in all media settings including web, digital marketing, social media management and Search Engine Optimization. Cece’s primary focus throughout her career as a manager and business owner has been to provide the highest quality product tailored to each unique business situation. Marketing has changed due to ever-emerging technologies, and it continues to evolve. Gone are the days of traditional advertising’s hit-or-miss methods. Cece and her team are armed with the latest digital tools and strategies which allow them to monitor and track real time results for Toolbox clients.

Marketing & Branding

Toolbox Studios 454 Soledad Street, Suite 100 San Antonio, TX 78205 O: 210.225.8269 C: 210.289.0179 november/december 2017 | 63


Den-Tex Central, Inc. dba Denny’s Franchise Restaurants

Dawn Lafreeda, founder and CEO of Den-Tex Central, Inc., is one of the largest and most successful restaurant franchise owners in the country. Working her way up from waiting tables at Denny’s at 16, she currently owns 82 of their restaurants and employs over 3,000 in her seven-state operation. During her career, Lafreeda has been featured in numerous publications, such as Entrepreneur, Food and Drink International, and Multi Unit Franchisee, among others. She has received numerous business and service awards, including Working Woman 500’s Largest Women Owned Businesses in the Country; Denny’s Operator of the Year; The Presidential Leadership Award from Big Brothers, Big Sisters, Denny's Developer of the Year, The Anchor Award from Equality Texas and the Human Rights Campaign Equality Award. As a successful business owner, she was recently asked to film a web series for Entrepreneur called “Entrepreneur Elevator Pitch” which premiered this fall and provides entrepreneurs a chance to pitch their idea to a board of successful investors. Lafreeda is involved in supporting and assisting San Antonio through Big Brothers, Big Sisters, Family Endeavors, Equality Texas, Family Equality Council, The Human Rights Campaign, and No Kid Hungry, among others.

Den-Tex Central, Inc. dba Denny’s Franchise Restaurants P.O. Box 690730, San Antonio, TX 78269 210.694.0707



Platinum Wealth Solutions of Texas, LLC, Member of John Hancock Financial Network

“My clients have really become my friends. I want to be there for them through all of life’s ups and downs and to help them address their financial worry and concern in their time of need. I have a passion for building relationships that will help my clients be ready and prepared for their financial future. It is important to me to help create a strong support system for women in the San Antonio Community. This is what led me to help begin the Women’s Advisory Council, a group of established professionals who understand the challenges of running a business and managing their families.” Jennifer L. Scroggins is a trusted professional who believes in the empowerment of women through financial security and networking. She offers comprehensive financial services and analysis. Registered Representative/Securities and Investment Advisory Services offered through Signator Investors, Inc., Member FINRA, SIPC, a Registered Investment Advisor. 28411 Northwestern Hwy., Suite 1300, Southfield, MI 48034. 248-663-4700. Platinum Wealth Solutions of Texas, LLC, is an independent firm affiliated with Michigan Financial Companies-John Hancock Financial Network. 225-20151222-268008

Financial Services

Platinum Wealth Solutions 3522 Paesanos Pkwy. #100 San Antonio, TX 78231 C: 210.789.2003 O: 210.998.5000 64


Licensed Real Estate Broker/Owner BA, ABR, ALHS, GRI, SRS, LTG

Tracie is the sole broker owner of Hasslocher Boutique Realty, LLC. Located on Crownhill Boulevard, Tracie has sold residential, land, and farm and ranch real estate since 2005 in all areas of San Antonio, including Charlotte, Karnes City, and Hondo. Personal service, mutual respect and trust are qualities she strives to accomplish with every client she helps. She earned her Master’s degree in real estate in 2017. Tracie currently serves as Chairman of Governmental affairs at the San Antonio Board of Realtors and will be on the Board of Directors in 2018. MEMBERSHIPS: San Antonio Board of REALTORS® Texas Association of REALTORS® National Association of REALTORS®

Real Estate Broker

Hasslocher Boutique Real Estate 8520 Crownhill Blvd. San Antonio, TX 78209 O: 210.568.9595 C: 210.863.2629


President, Bain Medina Bain, Inc. Engineers & Surveyors, HUB, SBE, WBE, TxDOT Pre-Certified Firm, TBPE Registered Firm Engineering

Bain Medina Bain, Inc. 7073 San Pedro Avenue San Antonio, TX 78216 210.494.7223, ext. 223

Engineers & Surveyors

Over the past thirty-six years in the professional world of engineering, we have witnessed many changes. From the type of work done in-field and in-office to the inclusion of drones, this is an evolving business, in order to meet client needs and deal with this ever- changing world, We have composed a talented team at Bain Medina Bain, Inc. which includes one-third women. As our city evolves, so have we in order to service a growing community. We have had the honor of working on the most exciting projects in San Antonio and the growth areas around it. You will receive quality service with your engineering plans and specifications for construction. Plus, we care about the community. We volunteer and support education, schools, libraries, museums, parks, waterways, conservation and preservation. november/december 2017 | 65

DR. PHALLON DOSS Doss Audiology & Hearing Center

Dr. Phallon Doss graduated Summa Cum Laude from Texas Woman’s University, and received her Doctorate in Audiology from the University of North Texas in Denton. Dr. Doss was previously featured in San Antonio Woman Magazine as a leader in senior healthcare and is the San Antonio Magazine 2016 and 2017 Face of Hearing Healthcare. In 2017, Dr. Doss received the honor of being named a Healthcare Hero by the San Antonio Business Journal. Dr. Doss teaches distance learning Diagnostic and Pediatric Audiology for the University of Guyana in South America and also serves as a guest lecturer for the University of North Texas in the area of Private Practice Audiology. Dr. Doss recently expanded her practice and now provides exemplary hearing healthcare at two convenient locations in the greater San Antonio area. She maintains her Clinical Certification from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and is a Fellow of the American Academy of Audiology.


Doss Audiology & Hearing Center 5000 Schertz Parkway, Suite 300, Schertz, TX 78154 1605 US Hwy 181 N, Suite A, Floresville, TX 78114 210.819.5002

LESLIE KOMET AUSBURN President & CEO, Komet Marketing Commumincations

Leslie Komet Ausburn is President of Komet Marketing Communications, a boutique strategic marketing firm that believes in exceptional, personalized service. Her team of senior level strategists pride themselves on being ideas people dedicated to results. For more than 20 years, Leslie has provided public relations and crisis communications support to businesses and nonprofits across the U.S., Canada, Mexico and Sweden. A graduate of UT Austin and Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism graduate program, Leslie developed her love of storytelling as an award-winning television reporter/anchor. She uses that natural intuitiveness to develop strategic marketing campaigns that are informative, timely and move clients' goals forward. Her love of community service includes current board positions with the South Alamo Regional Alliance for the Homeless, Alamo Youth Center and Les Dames d’escoffier, and membership on the San Antonio Botanical Garden Development Committee, and the San Antonio Organizing Committee’s PR committee for the 2018 NCAA Men’s Final Four.

Public Relations and Marketing

Komet Marketing Communications 16607 Blanco Road, Suite 601 San Antonio, TX 78232 210.326.8992 66

KIMBERLY C. FORD, CPA, CVA, MAFF Owner and President of theKFORDgroup

We have a team of experienced and talented professionals who will work hand-in-hand with you to achieve your financial goals. Every client is assigned a professional team comprised of a partner, manager, and staff accountant to provide personalized service that few firms can achieve. Over the last 40 years, our firm has distinguished itself in three specialized areas: Forensic Accounting and Litigation Support, Entrepreneurial Business Advisory Services and Tax & Accounting Services. In these areas of accounting, our ability to work hand-in-hand with our clients to help interpret financial data and use it as a foundation for good decisions is unmatched. Because we match team members to our clients carefully, the benefit of getting personalized quality service is beyond comparison. We also have a strong sense of community. From soldier care packages, to adopting needy families during the holiday season, to funding education initiatives to help break the cycle of poverty, theKFORDgroup is dedicated to giving back to causes that are meaningful to our team and our clients.

Certified Public Accountants

theKFORDgroup 8620 N. New Braunfels, Suite 300, San Antonio, TX 78217 O: 210.340.8351 F: 210.340.8359


Founder/Medical Aesthetics Practitioner Maintaining a youthful and beautiful appearance has never been easier than with Nova Aesthetics. Nova Aesthetics combines the top medical grade treatments in a relaxing spa atmosphere. As a state-of- the-art, full service medical spa and skincare clinic, we offer the latest in non-surgical cosmetic enhancements, skincare, and anti-aging treatments. Our patients choose from a full array of skincare treatments such as botox, dermal fillers, photofacials, microdermabrasions, and chemical peels. We also offer weight loss programs, laser hair removal , and hormone replacement therapy. Our attention to detail and eye for a natural, aesthetically pleasing look, is what sets us aside from the rest. We welcome you to come experience the best aesthetics services offered in San Antonio.

Medical Aesthetics

Nova Aesthetics 6465 Blanco Road San Antonio, TX 78216 O: 210.348.9164. F: 210.348.9436

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Executive Vice President, The Bank of San Antonio

Brandi Vitier leads the Private Banking group at The Bank of San Antonio, which has over $710 million in assets. Brandi specializes in providing banking for healthcare professionals and high net worth individuals. She empowers her team of cutting-edge private bankers to deliver knowledgeable strategies and customized banking solutions. Brandi has two decades of experience in banking and is a valuable resource for her clients and team. Prior to heading up the Private Banking division for The Bank of San Antonio, Brandi earned her Masters of Public Administration from the University of Texas at San Antonio. She is dedicated to giving back to the San Antonio community and currently serves on the following boards: Texas Public Radio, The Prosthetic Foundation, Say YES Foundation, and Alamo Area Mutual Housing Association.

Financial Services

NANCY K. COOPER, CPA Financial Associate, Alamo Associates Thrivent Financial®

85 NE Loop 410, Suite 600 San Antonio, TX 78216 O: 210.477.8801 C: 678.314.7900

As a Fortune 500 not-for-profit membership organization, Thrivent Financial helps its members achieve financial security by offering a broad range of products and services. We make decisions based on our member’s best interests. In addition, we make it easier for you to help your congregation and community through various outreach programs and activities.

Property Tax Services


Sr. Director of Business Development Assessment Technologies

40 NE Loop 410, Suite 607 San Antonio, TX 78216 O: 210.222.1221 C: 210.270.1452

Mary-Elizabeth Andrews has one goal: reducing your property tax expenses. As senior director of business development for Assessment Technologies, she is a board-registered blood banker/microbiologist and brings a wealth of knowledge about medical office buildings in addition to working with commercial, industrial and bankruptcy property tax protesting. 68

The Bank of San Antonio 1900 NW Loop 410 San Antonio, TX 78213 210.807.5581

Graphic Design


CHRISTINE SYKES Sole Proprietor of Studio Sykes

210.557.2690 Christine Sykes has created graphic design solutions for a vast array of clientele in San Antonio, Texas for the past three decades. From logo creation to a comprehensive branding campaign, Christine is dedicated to making your vision a reality.



DBE, HABE, MBE, SBE, WBE, ESBE, HUB President, Crandall & Associates Insurance

5406 Prue Road San Antonio, TX 78240 O: 210.696.8333, ext. 102 C: 210.582.0260

My company’s philosophy can be summed up in two words…..”Crandall Cares”! Providing superlative service is not complicated; it’s treating each client like family. Professional development for our associates ensures our clients receive the best products and services in the ever-changing insurance business. Each client’s needs are addressed on their specific requirements; a reason that a large portion of those we serve are long standing relationships.



CYNTHIA P. HILL Commercial Real Estate Law

San Antonio Real Estate Attorney Cindy Hill officially launched her law firm focusing exclusively on commercial real estate in late 2014. Her goal is simple: To apply her legal expertise in an area of the law she loves on behalf of select clients—customizing her services to meet their specific needs. Focusing on commercial real estate acquisition/sales and contract projects, Cindy’s expertise leads the clients on a path toward maximized profits and efficiency. • Managed real estate, contract and corporate legal issues for two large publicly-traded convenience store companies • Served as General Counsel for $12-Billion wholesaler and retailer of gas and convenience store merchandise in its first two years of operation • Provided commercial real estate legal counsel to multiple clients in five years with a South Texas law firm

Commercial Real Estate Law

Law Offices of Cynthia P. Hill, PLLC 210.216.1392


CEO, Heart of Texas Fitness, LLC dba Koko FitClub San Antonio

Leslie Edwards is the CEO of Heart of Texas Fitness, LLC dba Koko FitClub San Antonio. She owns and manages the Koko FitClub franchise in the city with locations in Alamo Heights at the Shops at Lincoln Heights, on 1604 at Ventura Plaza and in Leon Springs at the Boardwalk. With these three locations, Leslie’s Koko FitClubs rank within the top 5 in the nation for number of members after only 3 years of operation. Leslie was elected and serves on the Owner Advisory Board for Koko FitClub Headquarters. Leslie is involved in the community as a member of the Junior League of San Antonio, where she serves as the VIVA SA race committee chair and a troop leader for Girl Scouts of Southwest Texas at Cambridge Elementary. Recently, she began volunteering with the Mayor’s Fitness Council.

Koko FitClub San Antonio Alamo Heights @ Lincoln Heights Dominion @ The Boardwalk North SA @ Ventura Plaza 210.636.1375


President and CEO, Vickrey & Associates, Inc., Consulting Engineers Brenda Vickrey Johnson serves as the president of Vickrey & Associates, which employs over 70 professionals in San Antonio and Austin. Vickrey is the recipient of numerous ACEC Engineering Excellence and San Antonio Best Places to Work awards. Brenda is active in the community and currently serves on the UTSA Development Board, the P-16 Plus Education Council of Bexar County, and the San Antonio Chamber of Commerce Board. She is a former chairman of the board of the Greater San Antonio Chamber of Commerce and a graduate of the University of Texas.

Consulting Engineers

Vickrey & Associates, Inc. 12940 Country Parkway, San Antonio, TX 78216 210.349.3271


Natalie Newell has a passion for San Antonio and serves the city on two major fronts. She has worked as a realtor for Phyllis Browning Company since 2000, and been recognized as a consistent winner of the gold and platinum awards. She also is a Platinum Top 50 finalist and winner, and one of the San Antonio Business Journals’ Top 25 Luxury Agents. In addition to her active real estate life, she also runs Café Dijon, a family restaurant and catering company. This unique eatery has been awarded the WOAI TV Blue Plate Award, a Readers’ Choice Award for San Antonio Top Brunch Spots; as well as, recognition in Texas Monthly and Edible Magazines. She is equally as passionate about finding the perfect home for her clients, as she is about fashioning the perfect catering menu for customers of Café Dijon. She also loves to travel, and share her experiences learning new cultures, foods, and architecture with San Antonio.


Phyllis Browning

Café Dijon

210.824.7878 210.822.2665

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Women on the Move


KENDRA JOSEPH Kendra Joseph has joined the Real Estate by Design Group with Keller Williams City View. Using her background in education, she is committed to walking her clients through the buying or selling process with a full understanding of everything that takes place. She looks forward to using her knowledge of San Antonio and her passion for helping people to be a great resource for her clients.

KAREN MAWYER Karen Mawyer joins Broadway Bank as senior executive vice president, chief sales and service. She comes from a top Fortune 500 company, and brings 25 years of experience in the banking industry. She leads teams at 36 financial centers across the San Antonio and Austin regions, offering excellence in relationship banking, private and business banking and wealth management services.

MICKI MOORE Micki Moore has joined the Circa team in San Antonio,bringing a wealth of DMC and hospitality industry sales experience to her role as senior sales executive. She spearheads Circa DMC’s business development efforts in San Antonio and partnering the company’s diverse destination management offerings to groups staying at the JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country Resort & Spa.

ASHA RODRIGUEZ After a nationwide search, CHRISTUS Santa Rosa Health System selected Asha Rodriguez as president of CHRISTUS Santa Rosa Hospital – Westover Hills (CSRH— WH) in September. She is no stranger to the hospital, having served as CSRH – WH’s assistant administrator in 2016, and most recently as the administrator of CHRISTUS Santa Rosa Hospital – Medical Center (CSRH—MC).

DEAUNDRA WADDELL Deaundra Waddell has joined Noisy Trumpet Digital and Public Relations and will serve as COO and senior vice president. She brings a wealth of marketing and public relations knowledge to the integrated agency with experience delivering results for clients such as City of San Antonio, Papa John’s, The Claro Group and CPS Energy. Prior to Noisy Trumpet, Deaundra was VP of client services at KGBTexas and spent 16 years at FedEx.

SHAN WILEY Shan Wiley assumes the position of executive director at Any Woman Can, a nonprofit women’s health center that offers free counseling, pregnancy tests, STD tests and limited free sonograms. She previously served at Community Bible Church for 16 years and said, “At CBC I had the privilege and honor to marry, bury and baptize. Now with Any Woman Can I can support women’s health and help bring new life into the world.”

SANDI WOLFF Sandi Wolff has joined the Linebarger, Attorney at Law firm, as the director of marketing and community relations, overseeing communications, marketing, and community and media relations. She previously worked in communications, external relations and governmental affairs for the San Antonio Water System. “Linebarger has an excellent reputation in San Antonio. I look forward to doing my part to help promote and advocate for the outstanding work we do,” says Wolff.

FRAN YANITY Fran Yanity has launched Noisy Trumpet Digital and Public Relations and will serve as CEO and president. She has over 25 years of strategic marketing, advertising and promotions experience across industries including sports marketing, multi-unit casual dining and fast food, eye care and medical, financial, nonprofit, retail and CPG, manufacturing and more. She is the 2018 chairwoman for the American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women movement and serves on the Board of SAYES.



Mission Pharmacal Company is a privately held pharmaceutical company based in San Antonio. For over seven decades, the company has been improving the lives of people through every stage of life by identifying unmet healthcare needs and delivering innovative, high-quality prescription, over-thecounter, and dietary supplement products to meet these needs using only the purest ingredients and FDA-approved methods of manufacturing. Mission offers leading products through its women’s health, urology, pediatric, dermatology, primary care, and long-term care service lines. We celebrate the legacy and contributions made by the women of Mission Pharmacal and congratulate San Antonio Woman on their 15th Anniversary!

CPS Energy is celebrating 75 years of City San Antonio ownership this year. In 1942, the City purchased the utility for $34 million. Since then, CPS Energy has returned $7 billion to the City. The revenue helps pay for police and fire protection, parks, libraries and other City services. Author Catherine Nixon Cooke captured the historic purchase in a book titled Powering a City. A fascinating read about the CPS Energy’s and San Antonio’s past and path to growth, Powering a City reaches back to 1860 and includes tales of rich oilmen, lawsuits and power struggles. Available at The Twig and Barnes & Noble.

Mission Pharmacal Company 10999 Interstate Highway 10 West, Suite 1000 San Antonio, TX 78230-1355 210.696.8400

CPS ENERGY P.O. Box 1771 San Antonio, TX 78296

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Giving Back: What’s in it for our community? By MOLLy COX

When our community set a vision for itself, we made sure to include philanthropy as a shared goal — not just because giving is a nice thing to do, but because it can help move the needle on all of our other goals. When more San Antonians support the organizations committed to driving change toward our vision, we know that vision becomes more attainable. That’s why at SA2020 we encourage not just giving, but giving intentionally. We want everyone — from individuals to foundations — to find their “why” for giving. Why are you supporting this organization or program? What community result can you shift by giving? Fortunately, there’s no shortage of philanthropic spirit — or creativity — in San Antonio. At SA2020, we’re especially inspired by one of our newest partnerships. Cherrity Bar, opening across from the Alamodome this winter, will put the spotlight on three different area nonprofits each month. Guests will earn votes through food and cocktail purchases, and they can cast their ballots for the organization they most want to support. But in the spirit of goodwill and charity, it’s not a winner-take-all system. The organization with the most votes wins the lion’s share of the pool, but second and third place win a cut as well. Even third place should get a nice cut since Cherrity Bar will donate 100 percent of the profits each month to charity. When Cherrity Bar shared their ideas with SA2020 and asked us to be a partner, we were excited to do so for several

reasons. First and foremost, the concept shakes up philanthropy and makes it incredibly easy to give back. Just by grabbing a cocktail (created by the one and only Jeret Peña) or some food (by local favorite Sweet Yams), you’ll be increasing philanthropy in San Antonio. Secondly, Cherrity Bar — and those who visit it — are giving back intentionally. SA2020 is working with the bar’s advisory board to find and select organizations that have proven that they’re impacting community results, like our 100-plus SA2020 Partners. The featured organizations each month will get to share more of their impact and connect with new supporters. They’ll even have opportunities to put on special programming and provide a closer look at what they do. And by asking customers to vote on who their money goes to support, Cherrity Bar will encourage people to think more about the community impact and discover their own “why” for giving. As we enter this season of giving, we encourage you, your family, your business, to think about why you give. What do you ultimately want to help impact? What is your piece of the broader San Antonio puzzle? Then find an organization that is creating that result. In 2016, Giving USA reported that Americans gave $390 billion, $282 billion of which came from individuals. In San Antonio, only one in seven is giving philanthropically. You have the ability to create impact in our community, and we have a list to start with at Happy giving!

AROUND W TOWN UT HEALTH CENTER PRESIDENT’S GALA The 2017 President’s Gala for the UT Health Center of San Antonio was hosted by President William L. Henrich, M.D., MACP, and attended by more than 1,000 guests on Sept. 23 at the Grand Hyatt. Proceeds from the gala establish the President’s endowment in heart disease research, and more than $1 million was raised. Photo (Left to right): Honorees Joe and Lacie Gorder visit with Mary Henrich and President William L. Henrich at the 2017 UT Health San Antonio President’s Gala.

CREWTINI The seventh annual Crewtini fundraiser was held Sept. 14 at the Landmark One Office Building. This event, hosted by the Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) of San Antonio, is noted for its entertainment value. Enjoying the fun were Yesenia Dominguez, Stephanie Briseno, Sam Cardreon, Steven L. Burch, Maitlyn Youngblood, Hector Martinez,Virginia Santiago, Jesse Torres, David Naylor, Joseph LaRocca.

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the art of self-care BY: PAMELA LUTRELL

Self-Care…we hear about the concept all the time. Some will scoff at a self-care plan as selfish and time-consuming. Some will see it as a dream that only happens when others on our list are cared for first. Some will say it means a scented candle on a cold evening and others, a yoga mat to start the day. But licensed therapist Tracey Cleantis writes in her book An Invitation to Self-Care, “It’s an invitation to see self-care as an attitude that permeates your life, a consistent self-replenishment. Self-care is a state of mind that offers a sense of abundance, a well that never runs dry.” With this refreshment in mind for a new year, the editorial staff of SAN ANTONIO WOMAN has set 5 purposeful resolutions for you, in order to experience for yourself all of the care you need for a vibrant year ahead. Self-care is a multi-level plan that helps you to enjoy life from day to day. It may be about entertaining, and it may be about health and beauty, but if it brings joy to you, then it is self-care! Happy New Year to everyone from SAN ANTONIO WOMAN. november/december 2017 | 75


PRACTICE CLEAN EATING The new way to lose weight and stay healthy is simple — eat clean, fresh foods. San Antonio has become a community overflowing with many ways to discover the tastes of locally grown foods. Farm-to-table restaurants, new farmers markets and new grocery retailers are bringing more options and helping all of us stay out of the potato chip aisle. Do what is best for you and eat clean this year.

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APPRECIATE 300 YEARS Self-care includes an appreciation for your surroundings. This is the beginning of San Antonio’s Tricentennial celebration, and we encourage you to fully recognize and enjoy the best qualities of our special place here in Texas. Mark your calendar with the Tricentennial events that are designed to improve the city, connect the residents and foster compassion for one another.

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MAKE OVER A ROOM Most of us want to change our surroundings, and one way to start small plus have some fun is to begin with a one-room makeover. Decide which room you want to tackle first, and know there are ways to begin, no matter how large or small your budget is. Our fabulous furniture consignment shops even have experts ready to help you make plans and save a little cash as well. Check out the featured paint colors for 2018 at our local paint stores, and dive in. Yes, this is also self-care.

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PURCHASE A NEW CAR The economy is finally thriving, and there is no better time to update your vehicle or add a family car. It is a component of self-care to make sure you and your family members are in a safe car with new features such as hands-free phone options. Place this at the top of your priority list for 2018.

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SAVE FOR YOUR DREAMS Your dreams may be a new home, luxury vacation or retirement plans. Whatever you dream, make certain you have been financially savvy and implemented a smart financial plan to make it a reality. There are many responsible and innovative financial institutions and planners in our city who are ready to help you get there.

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Tips and Recipes to Make it Easy and Enjoyable STORY AND PHOTOGRAPHY BY IRIS GONZALES

The cooler weather not only brings football games and tailgate parties, it also heralds the start of the holiday season. This time of year means there will be plenty of social gatherings with indulgent food choices. With so many opportunities to enjoy holiday treats, the temptations to abandon your healthy diet will be plentiful. There are ways to maintain a clean diet and still enjoy this special time of year.Remember to leverage the season’s bountiful produce — pumpkins, cranberries, pomegranates, citrus, dark leafy greens, root vegetables — for healthier whole food dishes.


For more Clean Eating tips, online resources and recipes, visit

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7 TIPS TO AVOID REGRET COME JANUARY: 1 Keep the focus on fun activities, not food. So many get-togethers use food as the centerpiece — think of the classic dishes on a Thanksgiving or Hanukkah table. Instead, try to focus on the time you will spend with family and friends.

drinking alcohol? Alcohol often lessens inhibitions, leading to poor eating choices, and drinks contain lots of calories, compounding the challenge. Choose low- to no-sugar drinks like a wine spritzer that dilutes wine with club soda.

2 Choose your indulgences wisely. Think of the calories represented by each food choice much like the choices you make while shopping on a budget. Instead of “wasting” calories on foods that are readily available any time of the year, select those items that are unique to the season, like your child's first batch of holiday cookies.

5 Stock the refrigerator and freezer with healthy food choices. This time of year can be a busy one, with less time for grocery shopping, meal preparation and cooking. Try to double up on healthy meal prep during the weekends and freeze extra portions for easy reheating on harried days.

3 Eat before going to a party, shopping or holiday event. Your will power is much like a muscle, becoming exhausted the more you need to exercise it. This is why grocery shopping while hungry is so challenging. 4 Make mindful choices in holiday drinks. Ever notice how voracious your appetite can be when

6 Pop a sugar-free mint or gum in your mouth. When you have eaten enough and don’t want to eat more, the feeling of a fresh mouth can help curb snacking. 7 Finally, bring your own healthy food to potlucks and parties. The best way to ensure there will be healthy, yet enticing food to eat at a holiday gathering is to bring it yourself!

Roman Roasted Grape and Olive Crostini An ancient Roman recipe, this oven-roasted appetizer is easy to make and is both flavorful and healthy. A splash of olive oil and vinegar and some thyme give this crostini topping a sweet and savory flavor. This yields 12 2-ounce servings of crostini topping. INGREDIENTS: • • • •

2 cups halved seedless red grapes 1 cup halved pitted black Kalamata olives 1 tablespoon olive oil 1 tablespoon sherry or red wine vinegar

• 1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped fine (can substitute dried) • Salt and black pepper to taste • 1 large loaf bread (baguette, ciabatta, etc.), sliced to 1/2-inch thickness

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Add the ingredients to an ovenproof dish and toss to mix evenly. Roast for about 20-25 minutes, then serve alongside the sliced bread.

Holiday Roasted Butternut Squash The recipe is a forgiving one, so feel free to play with the spices and amounts for your family. I prefer using a mild New Mexican red chile powder for its flavor and low heat. Sweet paprika is a good substitute. If you use smoky or hot paprika or a hot chile powder instead, be sure to add ¼ teaspoon at first. You can always add more heat, but removing it is next to impossible. INGREDIENTS: • Salt and black pepper to taste • 1 bag of cubed, peeled butternut squash, • 1/2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar 10 ounces • 1/2 tablespoon olive oil • 1/2 tablespoon brown sugar • Optimal: pomegranate seeds as garnish • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon • 1/2 teaspoon cumin • 1/2 teaspoon to 1 teaspoon ground New Mexican red chile (mild or spicy) or paprika (sweet, smoky, or spicy)

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Add all ingredients except the pomegranate seeds to an ovenproof dish and toss to mix evenly. Roast for 55-60 minutes or until squash can be pierced with a fork. Scatter pomegranate seeds on squash and serve.

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he range of vitamins and supplements runs from A to Z and then some, but knowing what you need isn’t as simple as knowing the alphabet. Keeping up with latest information on which vitamin or supplement should be a part of your health care regimen is as daunting as trying to make sure that you’re eating a balanced diet, especially when your schedule may mean you don’t have time to dig into a salad, let alone read up on vitamins. That daily, or not-so-daily salad, as well as the rest of your diet, plays a role in determining which vitamins and supplements you need. “We all think we eat well, but in reality, we probably don’t get enough regular vitamins to make sure our bodies function at their best,” explains Dr. Cheryl Mueller with Huebner Family Medicine and a Fellow of the American Acad-

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emy of Family Physicians. “A basic multivitamin is a good start to keep you healthy and keep your body functioning well.” That’s even more important if you follow a vegan diet or have dietary allergies, like lactose intolerance, that limit you from eating a full range of foods. “Bottom line, there’s only so much cheese, yogurt and milk we can eat daily,” explains Dr. Kristin Brozena Shah, Fellow of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, with San Antonio’s Women Partners in OB/GYN. “Or leafy greens. We just can’t get everything we need in our diets.” To find a good multivitamin, Dr. Mueller suggests one that meets the daily Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA), the average daily level of intake sufficient to meet the nutrient requirements of nearly all healthy people. However, even the

best multivitamins do not contain the full RDA for some essentials, like vitamin D. Most people need 1,000 to 5,000 IU (international units) of vitamin D daily. “We also get Vitamin D from the sun, but most of us aren’t outside enough, especially without sunscreen, to get what we need. I always suggest that patients have their vitamin D level checked. Most of us are deficient without supplementation,” explains Dr. Mueller. That deficiency can lead to fatigue and contribute to depression. It also plays a role in calcium absorption, an issue that can lead to osteoporosis, which is why you often see calcium and vitamin D paired together in one supplement.

“Calcium and vitamin D work to support bone health by making the bone strong and preventing bone reabsorption,” explains Dr. Brozena Shaw. “Osteoporosis risk is more common in post-menopausal women and also in women with other lifestyle risks, like smoking.” In addition to vitamin D, Dr. Mueller also recommends fish oil containing Omega-3 and daily probiotics, as well as making sure that your daily multivitamin contains the recommended dosage of the B complex vitamins, but notes that it’s important not to go overboard. “Taking too many vitamins and supplements is not going to help. What you don’t need, your body gets rid of.” But in some cases, like iron, too much of a good thing is actually bad. Many women, especially younger women, are iron deficient. Iron is an important component of red blood cells, responsible for carrying oxygen to the cells and tissues of the body, but too much iron can cause problems for postmenopausal women.

“It’s why you see ‘senior vitamins’ on the market:; as we age, our bodies need different levels of things like iron, and senior vitamins better meet those needs,” explains Dr. Mueller. Women of child-bearing age also need to consider taking prenatal vitamins versus a regular multivitamin. “Folic acid supplementation is important to help reduce risk of neural tube defects/spina bifida. A daily prenatal vitamin has a more than adequate amount (need at least 400 much daily),” explains Dr. Brozena Shah. Before you start taking vitamins and supplements, you should talk to your physician. “Have a conversation with your physician before just taking something over the counter. Incorporate your physician in selecting the appropriate vitamin/supplement, especially if you have other medical conditions, to make sure that what you’re taking addresses your specific needs,” explains Dr. Brozena Shah. “Not all vitamins are created equal, and the contents need to be carefully examined prior to taking.” november/december 2017 | 89


hat’s been described as the graying of America — the country’s growing senior population — has another color to it: green. The industry dedicated to caring for that aging population is growing as well, creating job opportunities for those interested in elder care. To put the need in perspective, the American Health Care Association estimates that America’s senior population will hit 88 million people in 2050, up from 48 million today. That population needs assistance managing chronic health conditions and disabilities. To meet the need, the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that an additional 1.1 million elder care workers will be needed by 2024. In San Antonio, opportunities in the elder care field are bountiful—as are job applicants. But not everyone is the right fit. “It is not




difficult to find bodies, but it is difficult to get workers who are passionate about what they are doing,” explains Cary Larsen, director of corporate operations for Franklin Companies, an affiliate of Franklin Park. Franklin Park employs more than 300 people across six different residences in San Antonio that offer independent living, assisted living and memory care for seniors.

“There is a difference with someone providing caregiving for a paycheck compared to the individual who is happy and fulfilled with providing a service. The task is to find the right person the first time,” says Larsen. That sentiment is echoed by Andreen McDonald, the owner/manager of Starlight Homes Assisted Living, with two resident facilities in San Antonio. “Most people do not possess the patience to do this job. You have to be patient, nurturing and willing to provide care to

Creates Job Opportunities

people who need it,” she explains. “We’re all going to grow older. If


we could put ourselves in their shoes, see things as they do in their situation — that empathy is key to getting people to join the industry.” In addition to empathy, the only qualifications for working in the elder care industry are those imposed by the companies who are hiring. Some of the available jobs may be surprising, as resident facilities are often little cities providing everything the residents need. From providing resident care and assistance with personal care needs to housekeeping, receptionist, wait staff, concierge and life enrichment positions, the industry offers an array of opportunities. Larger facilities may offer medical and dietary positions, while smaller facilities may feature jobs with far-reaching responsibilities for resident care. The qualifications for each position vary, however, and most elder care companies require applicants to have a high school diploma or GED. Some positions require professional certifications, such as Certified Nursing Assistant or Certified Medical Assistant. However, many opportunities include on-the-job training and continuing education to ensure that both staff and the facilities meet all state licensing requirements. “We actually provide more training and conditioning education than is required,” notes McDonald. “We work to make sure our staff more than meets our residents’ needs.” So who makes an ideal candidate? “One who helps people without being asked. We use a group interview process to quickly find this at-

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tribute. We will bring several candidates into a group setting, and two of our managers will come into a disheveled room and make the comment to each other that they need to straighten up before the meeting starts. Then, we watch to see which of the candidates take it upon themselves to help move things around. If they reach out to help without being asked, they are usually good workers,” explains Larsen. McDonald personally interviews every applicant and looks for people who understand caregiving. “They may not have worked in an assisted living facility before, but they may have cared for a family member. I want to know that they are willing to care for others,” says McDonald. She also looks for people who will enjoy the job. “If you’re not happy, you can’t do this job. Our residents know—they can tell. We don’t want negative energy around them.” Franklin Park has had success finding the right staff by communicating effectively with the workforce to help them understand what the job is. Their website also features photos and videos of employees describing what their typical day is like to give job applicants a glimpse of what working at Franklin Park can be. “Let’s put the caregivers first and then build our program around them. Our job is to elevate the role in the minds of the staff, family and residents to such a status that even though they are a caregiver, dietary aide or a housekeeper, they can be the best caregiver, housekeeper and aide,” explains Larsen. Both Larsen and McDonald agree that there’s no set description for who should consider joining the elder care industry. “This job is for anyone who wants to help others and to be in a position to make a change in the resident’s life,” notes Larsen.

“Elder care is a lifestyle and is a fit for those who are willing to make their lifestyle about caring for others. It takes a special type of person to care for a complete stranger. Of course, over time, you build bonds, and the residents become family to you,” explains McDonald. “You have to love it, so be honest with yourself. Do a self-assessment: Is this really what I want to do?” To help gain insight into elder care, interested candidates can volunteer at facilities and help with resident activities. There are also industry groups, such as San Antonio Seniors’ Guide, that hold networking events and activities that provide a better glimpse of what working in elder care entails. Larsen offers an honest assessment of what it means to join the industry: “It is a hard job and one that does not get much visibility. It can be mentally and physically challenging. But if you want some of the best ‘feel good’ moments about what you can do for a resident or family member, then this is a role for you. Staff who are the happiest in this industry typically have a passion and desire to make a contribution to the lives of others.”

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-Kind, Caring

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210-846-5787 210-410-2935 FOR MORE INFO

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ur children are growing up in a world plagued by political feuds, international complications and social issues that

can be difficult for them to understand. Furthermore, their level

of exposure to these issues has been amplified by access to TV,

social media and the internet. Raising children in this climate is one of the major challenges parents face today, and raising kind-hearted children is extremely important to our future. Modern parents are being tasked with molding a future that stands against the negative messages that are proliferating. We must work to dismiss the anger and bitterness holding us back as humans and setting us back as a people. In an effort to mend and move forward, parents will need to teach their children to be more compassionate, tolerant and embracing of diversity.

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Your children will only know the world as it is shown to them, and knowledge is power. By educating, exposing and engaging your children in diverse situations, you can take their understanding and appreciation of people to higher levels. By taking only a few moments in your daily routine to encourage your children to embrace diversity, to be tolerant and to show greater compassion for the world, you could be making a difference and setting the tone for a brighter future.

HERE ARE FIVE WAYS TO RAISE KIND-HEARTED CHILDREN IN TODAY’S WORLD: TALK ABOUT IT Communication is key. Talk to your children about the challenges we are facing in a way that they can understand. If they are not already hearing about it through the internet or TV, they could be hearing about it at school. An unbiased, educated explanation from their parents trumps playground gossip and dismisses falsehoods. Instead of shielding them from the issues, offer them an explanation and discuss possible solutions. This is their world, too – and we all need to be a part of the solution. (TIP: Not sure where to start? Begin with what they think they know and go from there.)

november/december 2017 | 95

W MOMMY MATTERS TV, INTERNET AND SOCIAL MEDIA Use these outlets to your advantage. Show your children the good in the world that is often overlooked by all the negativity that trolls the internet. These same outlets that expose them to hate, bitterness and anger have the ability to show them compassion, understanding and love. Take a moment to show them videos or news stories of people of different talents, exemplary heroes, relief efforts and humankind coming together to support each other. They need to know that there are a great many kind-hearted people in the world, like themselves, that make extraordinary contributions to humankind. (TIP: For inspirational stories of kids making a difference in the world, check out or

EXPOSURE Put the fear of the unknown to rest by educating them. Exposing them to different people, religions and cultural backgrounds can help them to understand the world better. Visit your local library and pick up books on diversity, explore different cultures together, and/or visit cultural festivals or exhibits that broaden their horizons. One of the best ways to learn about and appreciate the world is to experience it. (TIP: Check out our Calendar of Events!)

GET INVOLVED One of the greatest gifts to receive is the feeling of knowing you made a difference in someone’s life. Volunteering your time as a family to a nonprofit organization, local shelter or food bank can expose children to new people and things they don’t normally see. Show them compassion, and they will feel it. (TIP: There are so many local organizations that could use your help! Check out for opportunities.)

PRACTICE WHAT YOU PREACH Children learn through observation, so modeling the same behaviors you expect from them is key. Set the expectation that bullying and racial and cultural insensitivity are unacceptable. Be open to new people and experiences, and they will follow suit. With so many different kinds of people and cultures out there, you can appreciate together all the world has to offer. Being a parent in today’s world can be a difficult task. We won’t always have the right answers or be able to solve all the world’s problems, but raising our children to be compassionate, tolerant and embracing of diverse people and backgrounds is a hopeful path to a solution. The future rests in our hands, and training the younger generations to be kind-hearted can make a difference in our world.

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KINDNESS BEGINS AT HOME There are many ways you can make a difference in your community and foster the seeds of kindness in your child. Here’s a list of some local volunteer opportunities to get you started: • Elf Louise Christmas Project

• Toys for Tots

• Any Baby Can

• The Children’s Hospital of San Antonio

• Salvation Army

• Meals on Wheels

• San Antonio Food Bank

• H-E-B Feast of Sharing 2017

• SAMMinistries

• Family Service Association

• Children’s Bereavement Center of South Texas

• Family Violence Prevention Services

november/december 2017 | 97



The Right Place, the Right Time and the Right Attitude


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tepping into your dream career while you’re

give up. Never stop trying. Never stop working hard. Study your

still in high school sounds like a fairy tale, but

facts, study what you do. Love what you do, and don’t ever let

for Alicia Guerrero, it’s a true news story. And

someone tell you you can’t do something. Because you ab-

she should know — as a producer at WOAI

solutely can. Never let anyone tell you you’re too young.”

News 4 in San Antonio, she sees more than her

Family influence is strong with Guerrero, who lists her parents

share of news every day, working hard behind the scenes to help

as role models as well, crediting them for her strong work ethic

News 4 deliver the news viewers need to know.

and inspiring her to be the best that she can be. She also cites

“I’m so proud to be a part of this industry. Not a day goes by

lessons from her grandfather as guiding her work efforts. “He al-

that I don’t think about the enormous responsibility we have to

ways tells me, ‘It’s not enough to be good at what you do. It’s not

get the right, accurate information — to get the news to you that

enough to be smart. It’s not enough to be pretty. You have to be

matters the most. That’s our goal every day,” she explains.

the best at what you do, and you have to work the hardest.’”

Guerrero started on the path to her current role after intern-

She goes on to say, “I know there are areas I can improve

ing at the station during high school at San Antonio Christian

on—there are areas that everyone can improve on. So I keep

School. She worked the station’s “Friday Night Fever” coverage,

working and trying to be the best news producer that I can. Each

sometimes working Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights at the

day, I learn something new. You take that and go with it.”

station before going back to school on Monday. “I didn’t look at

At 25, Guerrero is one of the youngest members of the sta-

going to the station as a job — I wanted to be here. It wasn’t an

tion’s news team, but she doesn’t let youth get in her way. “Don’t

obligation, it was a joy,” she says.

let anyone mistake your youth for a lack of knowledge or a lack

But her career route wasn’t quite that simple. Baylor Univer-

of wisdom. Sometimes because you are young, you can bring a

sity was her dream school, but it didn’t offer a broadcast jour-

fresh perspective to the table, a view someone else may not have

nalism degree. After a year, her love of news lured her to Trinity

thought of. Don’t think that because you’re young, you don’t have

University, and the WOAI sports team welcomed her back as a

something to contribute, ” she says.

college intern. She also worked as the Spurs Sports and Entertainment digital associate producer, creating content for the Spurs, Rampage and Stars websites, all before earning her bachelor’s degree. Her early entry into the industry gained her notice among “21 Rising Stars in their 20s in San Antonio” by the San Antonio Express-News. After graduation, a temporary associate producer position

She also believes you can never stop improving yourself. “Every day is another day to become the best version of who you are. At the end of the day, take away what you can and apply it to the next day.”

at WOAI opened the door to her current role. The two-week position turned into two months, then the position became perma-

To keep honing her craft, Guerrero records newscasts and

nent. She ultimately moved into a full producer position, all

watches them at home, looking for ways to improve, while

before turning 25. She produces the weekend 5 and 10 p.m.

watching national outlets as well: “It’s a fair amount of learning

News 4 newscasts and also serves as an associate producer

and absorbing. What can I learn from them and how can I im-

throughout the week.

plement it?”

As a producer, Guerrero is part of the team who put the

Thanks to the ever-changing nature of news, no two days are

newscast together. Her days start with editorial meetings, dis-

ever the same—and that’s what Guerrero loves. “Today is not

cussing story ideas and things the news staff needs to monitor.

the same as tomorrow or the one before it. You never know

They then decide which stories to assign reporters, and while

what’s going to happen. It never gets boring,” she comments.

the reporters work the stories, Guerrero builds a rundown, lay-

That cycle can also be grueling, especially during breaking

ing out the actual newscast that viewers will see, before writing

news. The station’s coverage of Hurricane Harvey kept the news

stories, building graphics and helping pull everything together

team working around the clock. Guerrero even helped remotely

for the broadcast.

produce a sister station’s broadcast in Beaumont, then spent a

She credits luck for her break into the industry, explaining,

week there to help the exhausted crew get a break. “It was a

“You have to be good at your job, you have to be good at what

challenge to make it all work, but I’m proud of how it all came

you do, but a certain amount of this industry is being at the right

together,” she says.

time, the right place and a sheer amount of luck. I honestly think that is what has brought me to where I am.”

The San Antonio native can’t imagine herself in another career and doesn’t know what’s ahead or where she’ll be in 10

But her advice to others gives a glimpse of the tenacity that

years, but that doesn’t concern her. “It’s OK to stop and enjoy

put Guerrero on her successful career path, advice that she re-

where you are. Use that time to learn and prepare yourself so

ceived from her own role model, her late grandmother: “Never

that when you see something you want to do, you’re ready.”

november/december 2017 | 99



Founder of Texas Dermatology and Laser Specialist BY JASMINA WELLINGHOFF.

fter obtaining his medical degree from the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, Dr. Browning embarked on not one but two residencies, first in pediatrics and then in dermatology, both at the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. He followed this up with a fellowship in pediatric dermatology, which combined both specialties. A San Antonio native, Dr. Browning then returned to his hometown to work in an academic setting for several years, teaching and serving as chief of pediatric dermatology at UT Health San Antonio. In 2013, he established the Texas Dermatology and Laser Specialists private practice, which now employs five physicians offering comprehensive services for children and adults in three locations — Alamo Heights, New Braunfels and the Dominion area. The doctor also continues to train medical students as an assistant professor at Baylor and oversees the dermatological care at the Children’s Hospital of San Antonio. Dr. Browning is an active member of the San Antonio community and the father of three children.

100 |


You are board certified in both pediatrics and dermatology. Few doctors choose to endure two residencies, plus a fellowship. Why did you pick this path? In my pediatric training in Houston I realized that there were so many children with rashes, while there were very few pediatric dermatologists available to evaluate and treat their skin conditions. So in the middle of my pediatric residency I applied for the residency in dermatology. I did the full three years of the former, finishing on June 30 (2004) and started my next residency on July 1. I wanted to be the one to take care of all the kids with rashes. Are you the only pediatric dermatologist in town? I’ve been in San Antonio for 10 years, and yes, I am the first in the city. I have a colleague here at the clinic, Dr. Emily Becker, whom I trained at UTHSC (now UT Health), and she is the second and only other children’s dermatologist in San Antonio. How common are skin disorders in kids, and what are the most common problems? About 20 percent of children who visit a pediatrician are there because of skin complaints. The common ones are hemangiomas (raised red bumps), port wine stains (large red birthmarks), eczema, psoriasis (chronic scaly patches) and alopecia areata (autoimmune patchy hair loss), all of which can be treated. Are kids good patients? They are kid patients! They like direct communication with them, and they don’t like surprises. If something is going to be painful or difficult, they like to know about it. One skin condition that afflicts lots of teens is acne. Is Accutane still the best treatment? Some years ago, there was talk about the FDA wanting to ban it. Accutane is still a wonderful treatment for severe acne. But there are other products like chemical peels, for instance, that can help remove blackheads and whiteheads, and those are popular here. We also have something called a HydraFacial, a new procedure to exfoliate and clean pores. And we still recommend topical treatments and oral antibiotics if necessary, as well as washing your face twice a day and not picking at your acne. In addition, recent studies have shown that an increased intake of dairy products may aggravate acne... As for Accutane being banned, yes, the FDA considered it because of birth defect risks for females taking it, but instead the agency decided to regulate the use of the drug more stringently. Now the females taking it must be on two forms of birth control while taking Accutane, and there’s an educational component as well. You are also involved in clinical trials of new treatments. What are some of the things you are focusing on right now? We are doing trials for a condition called epidermolysis bullosa, which causes chronic blisters all over the body. It’s a genetic disorder that appears in young children. Fortunately, the drug we are testing is looking very promising. Another drug being tested is Dupilumab, which treats eczema in children. We have a research

center right here in our clinic, and we are involved in about 10 clinical trials currently. Your clinic treats adults as well, and one skin disease people fear the most is, of course, skin cancer. Has the incidence of it gone down? No, it’s gone up. People are getting too much sun; they are not being cautious. There are three types of skin cancer, but the most dangerous is melanoma, which accounts for about 5 percent of all skin cancers. It is also the leading cause of death from skin cancer. The other two types, squamous cell and basal cell skin cancer, are easier to spot and therefore more likely to be treated early. We recommend annual checkups for all individuals with a family history of cancer, a history of sunburns and for those with lots of moles. I volunteer at a free monthly clinic at the Travis Park Methodist Church, and I see a lot of large skin cancers there. A melanoma can grow silently on the back or on the back of legs without a person noticing it… Everybody needs sun protection. Kids should wear long sleeves when they are swimming outdoors. There’s no reason to put your skin at risk. Many of our readers are interested in cosmetic procedures. Your clinic offers some well-known ones such as laser resurfacing, but also something called Silhouette Instalift. Could you describe the latter? That’s our newest cosmetic procedure. It involves placing three to five dissolvable stitches under the skin of the upper cheeks to provide a lift. My colleague, Dr. Fowler, does that, and it’s getting popular. It’s a nice treatment. How do you take care of your own skin? I use a moisturizer with sunscreen every morning. I wash my face twice a day, and I use a topical retinoid at night, Skin Better, which is a product we sell here. And I always have a hat and extra sunscreen when I am in direct sunlight. Speaking of creams, which commonly available brands would you recommend? Neutrogena, Aveeno, Ceravé, Cetaphil — they are all good products. There’s a little café in this building. Is it all about healthy foods? My wife, Lauren, runs it — Café Cita. She’s a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America in New York. They serve breakfast and lunch, soups, salads and the best cookies in the world. You should taste those cookies! She often tests the recipes on the children and me; we love it. With your practice, teaching, family and the Children’s Hospital, do you ever have time for anything else? (Laughs)) I volunteer with the children’s schools, and our church is very important to me. I also enjoy running; I ran in the San Antonio half-marathon. We like to explore the city with the kids. San Antonio has changed so much since I was growing up here; it’s a different city, but it still has that small-town feel, which I like.

Dr. Browning’s comments have been edited for publication november/december 2017 | 101





The contemporary arts festival known by the beautiful name of

minute of it. “I like a challenge and an opportunity to grow,” she

Luminaria has been a moving fest since its inception in 2008. In

says. “I had volunteered with Luminaria for several years and was

2016, it took place on the near East Side, for instance, while the

exposed to so many artists working in all kinds of media, well be-

year before it clustered most of its activities around the San Anto-

yond the visual arts that I exclusively worked with at SSA. Lumi-

nio Museum of Art. The 2017 edition will unfold within the foot-

naria is the only event that brings together all the arts. I had a huge

print of Hemisfair Park, encompassing the Yanaguana Garden, the

respect for what all these artists had done over the years and for

Magik Theater, the Mexican Cultural Institute and the park’s build-

the history of the event.”

ings and spaces in between.

In fact, she has been part of that history since 2011, when she

The idea behind the changing footprint is to spotlight different

served as a volunteer curator for one of the shows, which gave

areas of the central city and encourage networking between busi-

her a taste of what Luminaria can do. “It was so much fun to work

nesses, artists and art organizations in those neighborhoods. And

on it, with the focus on making it experiential, allowing the audi-

when the festival moves, so does the office of executive director

ence to see the art-making process right there,” recalls the soft-

Kathy Armstrong. This year, she is renting a small place in Hem-

spoken director, who says she was an art photographer at one time

isfair Park. “It’s best for me to be on site, to respond to whatever comes

but no longer “practices.” She also served as a volunteer associate artistic director in 2013.

up, from working with the surrounding community and our com-

Initiated by former mayor Phil Hardberger, Luminaria started

munity partners to overseeing the logistics of organizing and pro-

as a single-night extravaganza inspired by La Nuit Blanche, a sim-

ducing the event,” she explains.

ilar city-wide night fest in Paris. It has since become a nonprofit

In 2015, Armstrong left her position as exhibition director at

organization, though it still enjoys a solid support from the city’s

the Southwest School of Art (SSA) to become Luminaria’s first, and

Arts & Culture Department. According to its website, since incep-

so far, only paid executive director. In that capacity, she works with

tion, 3,000 artists have taken part in the festivities, presenting

“a very small staff and an army of volunteers” and loves every

1,200 visual arts Installations and 900 performances, for a col-

102 |

lective audience of 1 million people. This year’s 10th anniversary fest is scheduled for Nov. 9-11, with the outdoor free art fair taking place on the 10th. About 50 “amazing” art groups will participate, selected from about 150 submissions. Among them are both local and national and even international artists, including groups from sister cities in Spain and Namibia. The latter is sending us a band from the sister city of Windhoek, while the visual art group from Spain, known as the Reskate Arts & Craft, will create one of its glow-in-the-dark murals revealing hidden images visible only at night. A more traditional muralist, Gera Lozano from New York, will work on a permanent mural that will stay in the park. Other visual artists of note are nationally recognized Michael Menchaca, who plans to create an installation on one of the historic houses on the grounds, and Jared Theis with partner Sarah Cox, both accomplished, innovative artists and collaborators on a new stop-motion film. Then there are the music acts, the flamenco and modern dancers, new theater pieces, even an interactive poetry installation by San Antonians Melanie Robinson and Claudia Cardona. And that’s just a sampling of the rich array of offerings. Since she took the helm of the organization, Armstrong has introduced some ticketed events, such as a VP preview, brunches with artists and a closing party, all necessary to defray the production costs of the festival. She also assembles an

exhibitions in charge of selecting artists and curating exhibitions,

annual Artistic Advisory Committee charged with selecting what

as well as overseeing the departmental budget, outreach and spe-

will be presented. “I work hard to pull together people (committee

cial programs

members) who represent different art forms and the community as a whole,” she says. “Luminaria gives artists the space to experiment and collab-

Along the way, the family took a big break from the American work-centered culture by spending more than a year in New Zealand, where they could experience a better balance between

orate and create cutting-edge pieces, and they often go on to

career and family life and get acquainted with different cultures.

perform or exhibit these works in other venues afterwards. We

The trip was also a way to challenge themselves by moving away

give them a chance to try something new that may also lead

from the known and familiar. “I loved New Zealand” she says.

them in a different direction in their artistic development,” explains the director.

This is clearly a woman who doesn’t shy away from challenges. Following in her mother’s footsteps, Armstrong is a board member of Planned Parenthood South Texas, and is, in fact, its current

Artist, Leader, Advocate

chair-elect. “It’s a politically difficult time for us because the gov-

A Philadelphia native who also lived in Europe during parts of

ernment is cutting funding, but we are responding to that,” she

her childhood, Armstrong grew up with a feminist activist mother

notes. “We are expanding our services — birth control services,

who was involved with the Family Planning Council for Southeast

basic health screenings, teen pregnancy prevention, treatment for

Pennsylvania and discussed access to reproductive health services

sexually transmitted diseases — for the people who need them the

for poor women at the dinner table. This influenced the young

most. It’s an issue of access to reproductive health care for

Kathy, but more about that later. Armstrong attended Smith College, where she majored in stu-

women.” She even organized other artists to take part in advocacy events in the past.

dio art and minored in film, and later received a master’s in fine

In a few months, she will be looking at yet another challenge

arts from the University of Arizona. Her photographic work was

— the 2018 Luminaria, which will be different from all previous

featured in galleries in Tucson, Durham, N. C., and San Antonio,

ones. With everybody else in San Antonio, the festival plans to

and she also held several jobs as curator and teacher between

mark the 300th anniversary of our city’s birth, and artists will be

1989 and 1997.

asked to create work relating to that theme. Building an archive

Armstrong is married to occupational therapist Chris Gilles

to preserve the history of the event is also on her agenda. And

with whom she has two children who are now young adults attend-

then, she plans to organize and enjoy many more Luminarias.

ing colleges in Rochester, N.Y., and Portland, Ore., respectively.

“Just watching a multitude of projects developing from concept to

What brought the family to San Antonio back in 1996 was her first

reality is really exciting,” says Armstrong. “Luminaria wouldn’t

job at SSA as an instructor. In 2008, she became the director of

exist without the caliber of artists we have here in San Antonio.” november/december 2017 | 103


Holiday Edition

Coffee to Cocktails! We all know women have distinctive tastes when it comes to dining out. So, ladies, this new restaurant guide is custom tailored just for you. Let us know about your favorite places on Instagram. ( Joyeux Noël!

Coffee, Tea & Treats

Breakfast or Brunch

Scrumptious Hot Chocolate

GUENTHER HOUSE Stunning home setting at Pioneer Flour Mills in King William serving traditional American brunch. Outdoor and indoor dining plus a museum tour and store. $$ 205 E. Guenther

Let’s Lunch MAX AND LOUIE’S NEW YORK DINER A traditional New York diner from the hearts of immigrant families serving deli staples, big salads, stacked sandwiches, potato latkes and NY knish. $$ 226 W. Bitters

Magnolia Pancake Haus Boss Bagel & Coffee Ghiradelli

BOSS BAGEL & COFFEE Unique bagels, smears and coffees from exceptional farms created by chef Brannon Soileau. $ 6458 N. New Braunfels LA PANADERÍA Exotic Latin American breads, coffees and specialty bakery items. $ 8305 Broadway, 301 E Houston St. LOCAL COFFEE Completely focused on the taste and quality of the coffee, including their own Merit Roasting Company brand in an eclectic neighborhood setting. $ Six locations: Shavano Park, Leon Springs, Alamo Heights, Pearl Brewery, Medical Center and Stone Oak

GHIRADELLI IN THE SHOPS AT RIVERCENTER Delicious hot chocolate made with premium cocoa from Ghiradelli’s own line. $ 849 E. Commerce #171 MANGOLIA PANCAKE HAUS Arrive early to get a seat at this popular country café serving classic American breakfasts to locals and tourists. $$ 606 Embassy Oaks and 10333 Huebner LAS RAMBLAS AT THE HOTEL CONTESSA Relaxed patio dining by the San Antonio River serving breakfast and brunch with Spanish, vegetarian and gluten-free options. $ 306 W. Market St.

ALAMO CITY CHOCOLATE FACTORY Enjoy a hot beverage made from real chocolate (not powder) and found on the North Side. $ 1203 North Loop 1604 W #117 CHOCOLLAZO Ask for the European Drinking Cocoa, made to order once you arrive, in this specialty chocolate shop. $ 4013 Broadway

CAPPYCCINO’S BISTRO Casual dining offering highquality hamburgers, pizzas, salads, soups, and sandwiches. Bistro and patio dining. $ 5003 Broadway

Pharm Table

PHARM TABLE Charming, organic health food eatery easily reached in downtown. Menu changes daily with market-fresh, health- conscious, vegan and paleo options. $$ 106 Auditorium Circle

Casual Our favorite holiday specials around town... Smoked Turkey and Dressing from Cooper’s Sweet Potato Pie at Ruth’s Chris Tamales from Delicious Tamales Peppermint Mocha Lattes at Starbucks Vegan Thanksgiving at Green Butternut Squash Ravioli from Piatti’s 104 |

LA HACIENDA SCENIC LOOP New addition to the Barrios family restaurants with similar menu plus chicken-fried steak and cheeseburgers. $ 25615 Boerne Stage Road

TWO BROS BBQ MARKET Casual, laid-back Texas setting known for oak-smoked meats and home-style sides. The large play yard makes this kidfriendly with outdoor dining. $ 12656 West Ave.

OCHO IN HOTEL HAVANA Riverside Old World charm with a Latin flair, featuring unusual foods and mojitos.$$ 1015 Navarro

GREEN VEGETARIAN CUISINE A favorite of veggie lovers and even meat-eaters. They serve clean salads and healthy favorites from veggie burgers to fried pickles. $ 200 E. Grayson St. 10003 NW Military Hwy.

Memorable Takeout Desserts SCOOPED COOKIE DOUGH BAR Consumer-safe, delicious raw cookie dough. Take pints to a party. Vegan and gluten-free options.$ At North Star Mall 7400 San Pedro Avenue Find them on Facebook: scopecookiedoughbar Nothing Bundt Cakes

NOTHING BUNDT CAKES Select the Turkey Day, Holly Jolly or Ring in the New Year designs of popular cakes made with rich, fresh ingredients. $$ 5164 Broadway 11620 Bandera Rd 700 E. Sonterra Blvd


HANZO Popular casual gastropub for creative cocktails, Japanese beer, and unusual oriental cuisine. $$ 7701 Broadway #124

Wine and Dine FREDERICK’S BISTRO Elegant dining with a complete wine list. The fare is a unique Asian-French-local fusion menu... quite special. $$$ 14439 NW Military in the Olmos Creek Shopping Center BLISS Chef Mark Bliss is noted for putting San Antonio on the map in fine dining. This restored former filling station in trendy Southtown features his best New American fare with a wellstocked wine list. $$$ 926 S. Presa St.

CUPCAKE COUTURE BAKERY AND BOUTIQUE Handcrafted cupcake creations made with finest ingredients. Seasonal flavors available. $$ 11851 Bandera Rd, Helotes J. Prime Steakhouse

Happy Hour AZUCA Fun Nuevo Latino restaurant with live music, special mojitos, sangria and an eclectic menu with a Caribbean flair. $$ 709 S. Alamo

J. PRIME STEAKHOUSE For a taste of New York dining, visit this exquisite contemporary steakhouse. Unwind with a vast wine list and live piano music. $$$ 1401 North Loop 1604 W

San Antonio Eats cont. november/december 2017 | 105

LEON VALLEY CAFE Simple building, elaborate tastes. Run by chef Eduardo Reyes and family. Daily specials from polenta spinach fried egg to homemade apple pie. $$ 6417 Evers Road

Late Night Mi Tierra

Best-Kept Secrets

MI TIERRA CAFE & BAKERY Open 24 hours with classic Tex-Mex fare, baked goods, margaritas, and mariachis. Since 1942, Mi Tierra Cafe & Bakery has been a San Antonio landmark in Market Square. $$ 218 Produce Row MAX’S WINE DIVE IN QUARRY VILLAGE With a new late night menu for weekends until 1 a.m., they feature comfort food with a twist, like their famous fried chicken and Champagne. $$ 340 E. Basse Road JIM’S A San Antonio staple for 70 years, Jim’s has locations throughout the city with most open 24 hours. They offer classic Americana diner cooking and serve breakfast, lunch, and dinner at all hours. $ Check website for your nearest location.

Eclectic and Eccentric

TRUE TEXAS BBQ Rave reviews are in for the pitmaster and the product at the barbecue restaurant embedded in the H-E-B Bulverde Marketplace; meats are smoked in Texas oak wood up to 14 hours. $ 17238 Bulverde Rd. TRE ENOTECA Chic, modern setting by chef Jason Dady featuring small plates and unique creations of pizza, steak and seafood. Make reservations. $$$ 555 W Bitters in Artisans Alley Chama Gaucha

CHAMA GAUCHA BRAZILIAN STEAKHOUSE Besides the perfectly grilled meats, Chauma Gaucha is also known for one of the best and most complete salad bars in town, which is a best-kept secret! $$$ 18318 Sonterra Place

#Only in SA Bin Tapas Bar

THE BIN TAPAS BAR A cozy setting of red walls flanked by menu chalkboards, serving cocktails and small Spanish plates. $ 511 E. Grayson on facefook: thebintapasbar THE BROOKLYNITE A known favorite for eclectic, artful ambience, vintage décor, chandeliers, and original twists on classic cocktails. $$ 516 Brooklyn Ave. 106 |

Supper at Hotel Emma

SUPPER AT HOTEL EMMA Chef John Brands brings daily farm-to-table American cuisine with new flavors and a desire

to see visitors gather round the table with a smile. A moderneatery atmosphere that’s worth the visit. $$$ 136 E. Grayson EL JARRO Whether you choose Tex-Mex or gourmet Mexican fare, you’ll find it is delicious with famous margaritas and drinks. $$ 281 at Bitters

LA CANARIAS AT THE OMNI LA MANSION DEL RIO Elegant, romantic dining amidst holiday festivity. They serve American fare with fresh local ingredients. $$$ 112 College St. omnihotelscom



CAPPY’S From mimosas to truffled scrambled eggs with crab and lobster in a champagne butter sauce, this is a perfect brunch setting in the beauty of Alamo Heights and loved by locals. $$$ 5011 Broadway

BOUDRO’S Holiday favorite for American bistro cuisine available for river barge dining amidst lighted river décor. Make barge reservations through catering office. $$$ 421 E. Commerce

Holiday Dining Crumpets

CRUMPETS RESTUARANT AND BAKERY Quaint European eatery noted for holiday menus in a beautiful setting. and a must is the Strawberry Chantilly Cake. $$ 3920 Harry Wurzbach Rd Signature at La Cantera

SIGNATURE AT LA CANTERA RESORT AND SPA Dine on exquisite Texas cuisine by chef Andrew Weissman in a rustic setting with fireside dining. $$$ 16401 La Cantera Pkwy signature-restaurant THE GREY MOSS INN Enjoy rustic, romantic dining with a view, or cozy up to the fireplace for fresh steaks, seafood and a famous wine list. $$$ 19010 Scenic Loop Rd. in Helotes

Ruth’s Chris

RUTH’S CHRIS STEAK HOUSE Enjoy a popular steakhouse experience with holiday favorites like the sweet potato pie. $$$ 7720 Jones Maltsberger 600 E. Market 17803 La Cantera Terrace

Coming soon.... november/december 2017 | 107



Serving Italian Food and Atmosphere Just Right BY SCOTT AUSTIN


tefan Bowers and Andrew Goodman team up again,

to two items from each section and make sure you bring some

adding Battalion to their growing restaurant family

friends; this food is delicious and perfect for sharing. Start off

that includes Feast and Rebelle. Battalion offers sim-

your meal with the house-made ricotta served with grilled pears

ilar design notes to its sister restaurants, but this time

and finished with a drizzle of olive oil and fresh rosemary. Forget

it’s housed in a completely renovated 1920s firehouse.

what you know about ricotta if what you know is that mystery

The building is impressive and masterfully remodeled to accom-

cheese jammed in between the frozen layers of lasagna we some-

modate this two-story upscale Italian eatery.

how ate as children. House-made ricotta is light and airy, a perfect

They kept the original fireman poles intact but covered the open-

tipasti items are served with the house-made focaccia bread.

ings with glass, a great touch that will keep you on your toes the

Order one or two antipasti options and a cocktail; you don’t want

first time you realize you are standing on a glass floor. Bowers

to rush your menu selections.

foil for all kinds of flavors like honey or rosemary. All of the an-

and Goodman were the catalyst and visionaries behind this space and new restaurant concept, but they would be the first to tell you

They have an excellent wine selection with both Old and New World

that Battalion’s success is due to two talented ladies, general man-

wines plus a variety of craft cocktails. My wife and I shared a bottle

ager Vicki Kiang and chef Elena D’Agostino.

of the 2012 Massolino Barolo. This full-bodied red wine made from the nebbiolo grape from the historic Barolo region is well struc-

For all the great food in the river city, there are only a few places

tured with silky tannins, bright acidity and a hint of chilies on the

that know how to construct an Italian menu properly and present

back of your palate. It’s only one of the fantastic selections Bat-

a masterfully cooked plate of pasta; I am adding Battalion’s name

talion has to offer.

to that list. They divide the menu into five sections, organized by traditional Italian courses. I would encourage you to choose one

108 |

As you prepare to put in your dinner order, let me offer you some

Battalion is located in a renovated 1920s fire station, complete with a fireman’s pole surrounded by glass flooring peering down into the bar. Pictured on this page (clockwise): veal scaloppine served with wild mushrooms and a white wine sauce, spinach manicotti with ricotta and pomodoro sauce, and finally, Battalion’s gorgeous tiramisu.

advice. Trust your server and the chef. The servers are well

bites with a few friends. Great pasta is no easy feat; it takes skill,

trained, so let them do their jobs. What is a server’s job? you

patience and years of experience. Chef D’Agostino has all of those.

might ask. I imagine the answer varies, but Battalion’s service

Don’t miss the trenne Bombay pasta dish with gin tomato cream

is exceptional, so when the restaurant is on point, you want to

sauce with pancetta. Yep, you read that correctly. Chef uses gin

place your whole order all at once. Choose two to there items

instead of the more traditional vodka sauce to boost the herbal

off each section and then let the kitchen and server orchestrate

notes in the sauce that has a slight spicy kick. The trenne pasta

your meal. The dishes will magically appear in the order that

is what makes this dish so exceptional. Trenne is a tubular, trian-

makes the most sense for your dining experience.

gular pasta. The shape allows for the sauce to cover and fill the pasta, giving you maximum sauce infusion.

There are a few items you will not want to miss. Try the Three Cheese Beef and Pork “Meatballs” served with roasted garlic

Battalion’s principale menu is strong, featuring a T-bone steak

tomato sauce and Parmesan. The combination of proteins keeps

grilled with fresh rosemary and finished with lemon; veal scalop-

this meatball on the light side, and the chef’s preparation is almost

pine served with wild mushrooms and a white wine sauce, and

burger like — the meatball is pressed down and caramelized on

grilled Berkshire pork loin, plus other great items.

both sides. It’s a delicious combination of textures with slightly charred broiled edges and a rich interior. The garlic tomato sauce

Finish your meal off with the tiramisu; you will want to share this

is a real standout, especially in contrast to the meatballs. You will

delicious dessert. Battalion has struck a perfect balance of ele-

want to save a few slices of the focaccia bread to take care of the

gance and comfort. Stop in for a special occasion or just to get a

remaining sauce; it would be an insult not to clean this plate!

trenne Bombay pasta fix. They are open for dinner Monday-Saturday from 5-11 p.m. Tell them SAN ANTONIO WOMAN sent you!

The pasta courses are smaller in size, perfect for sharing a few

november/december 2017 | 109



November 3-12 WURSTFEST Wurstfest Grounds in Landa Park, New Braunfels Annual celebration rich in German culture and full of Texas fun! You’ll find a variety of entertainment options including a polka contest, games, rides, food (much of it on a stick) and drinks.

Boerne Market Days is a fabulous place to either start or finish your holiday shopping! Main Plaza comes alive with great shopping in an outdoor setting.

November 4 STEVEN TYLER Tobin Center 8pm Together with The Loving Mary Band, Steven Tyler will play all your favorite Aerosmith and solo songs in this unforgettable evening.

November 10 SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE SEASON 14 TOUR Majestic Theatre 8pm Fall’s hottest ticket will feature this season’s most popular routines, as well as original pieces created specifically for the nationwide tour, with the theme “All the Right Moves.”

November 4 DIWALI SAN ANTONIO – FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS La Villita 5–11pm Diwali is a festive tradition of India that symbolizes the victory of good over evil. Experience this colorful event filled with Indian music, dance, food and more.

Arts & Entertainment

November 10-11 LUMINARIA Downtown SA at Hemisfair and Southtown Districts The featured artists showcase their innovative, edgy and ever inspiring art. The festival is a cultural connector between all of the arts and between regional, national and international artists and audiences.

November 11 LET IT SNOW Alamo Quarry Market 6–8pm — What's the forecast at Alamo Quarry Market? Snow and joy at this year's Festival of Lights event, benefiting the Family Service Association’s “Adopt-A-Family” outreach program. It's an evening filled with kids' activities and holiday fun. But it's also a party with a purpose. Bring a book, pajamas, new children's socks or toys to donate to the program, which provides needed items to local families.

November 11 HOLIDAY GIFT MARKET DAYS Main Plaza, Boerne 10am – 5pm

November 16 THE TEMPTATIONS AND THE FOUR TOPS Majestic Theatre 7:30pm — Motown legends The Temptations and The Four Tops are bringing an electric evening of elegant harmonies and smooth-stepping moves to San Antonio!

November 14 LINDSEY BUCKINGHAM AND CHRISTINE MCVIE Majestic Theatre 8pm — On the heels of a soldout critically acclaimed summer tour, longtime Fleetwood Mac members Lindsey Buckingham and

Christine McVie will be performing in San Antonio for one night!

November 18 REGINA BELLE Carver Community Cultural Center 8pm — Belle has a long tradition of producing amazing duets, she teamed up with Peabo Bryson for the songs I Can’t Imagine, Without You and A Whole New World, which was the featured pop single from the soundtrack to the 1992 Disney movie “Aladdin.”

November 24 – December 3 BALLET SAN ANTONIO’S THE NUTCRACKER Tobin Center The Nutcracker is a magical adventure for the whole family. Come see why Ballet San Antonio’s The Nutcracker has become an annual tradition for so many!


TRANS-SIBERIAN ORCHESTRA THE GHOSTS OF CHRISTMAS EVE December 23 Performances at 3:30pm and 8pm The Ghosts of Christmas Eve, the rock opera features such enduring fan-favorites as Christmas Eve/ Sarajevo 12/24, O’ Come All Ye Faithful, Good King Joy, Christmas Canon, Music Box Blues, Promises To Keep, and This Christmas Day. 110 |

Photo courtesy of, Darren Abate photographer


2017 several historic missions and wraps up at the Alamodome. Take a running tour through San Antonio with live entertainment along the course.

November 24 FORD HOLIDAY RIVER PARADE AND LIGHTING CEREMONY Arneson River Theatre 6 – 9pm The 35th annual Ford Holiday River Parade is a San Antonio tradition, drawing over 40,000 people annually. It offers a spectacular parade along the San Antonio River Walk featuring 26 illuminated floats decorated for 2017 theme. Parade participants include celebrities, bands and lavishly costumed people. 100,000 lights are illuminated to kick off the parade.

November 25 CHRISTMAS IN COMFORT High St., Comfort The event, which started with a handful of local residents manning a few booths in the historic district, now offers more than 125 art and craft vendors and a full day of holiday activities from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.

November 25 SMALL BUSINESS SATURDAY La Villita Forget Black Friday and kick off your holiday shopping by exploring local artisan craft shops throughout the La Villita Historic Arts Village. Come find unique handcrafted jewelry, clothing and specialty items for everyone on your list.

November 26December 3 MARIACHI VARGAS EXTRAVAGANZA Lila Cockrell Theatre Experience the best of mariachi music during the holiday season with the world renowned Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlán.

December 2-3 SAN ANTONIO ROCK & ROLL MARATHON This one-ofa-kind marathon features live music along each mile of the course that passes

December 12-17 IRVING BERLIN’S WHITE CHRISTMAS Majestic Theatre Irving Berlin’s White Christmas opens with performances at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday; 8 p.m. on Friday; 2 and 8 p.m., Saturday and at 2 and 7:30 p.m. on Sunday. It tells the story of two showbiz buddies putting on a show in a picturesque Vermont inn, and finding their perfect mates in the bargain. It is full of dancing, romance, laughter and some of the greatest songs ever written.

lar tale of the Pumpkin King, the Oogie Boogie and Sandy Claws comes to life on the big screen with the San Antonio Symphony orchestra playing Danny Elfman’s frightfully original score live.

December 28

VALERO ALAMO BOWL Alamodome 8pm — For the fourth straight year, the Valero Alamo Bowl will again feature the #1 teams from the Big 12 and Pac-12 conferences after the College Football Playoff.



December 22-23 DISNEY IN CONCERT: TIM BURTON’S THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS SAN ANTONIO SYMPHONY Majestic Theatre See one of Tim Burton’s most celebrated films like never before! The spooky spectacu-

Experience the biggest FREE New Year's Eve celebration and fireworks extravaganza in Texas Celebrate San Antonio! With live music on three stages, carnival games and rides and delicious festival food, this downtown fiesta is the place to celebrate the New Year. The party begins at 5pm and continues through the midnight Valero Fireworks Extravaganza. Admission is FREE and open to the public. A Travel & Leisure magazine poll ranks San Antonio as the 7th best city to spend New Year's Eve, above the likes of Miami, Austin, Los Angeles and even New York City.

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Weddings W

Mr. & Mrs. Chad Tucker Jerrica Box June 3, 2017

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Shy Laurel Photography

Mr. & Mrs.. Alex Tipps Erin West October 14, 2017

Shelly Beck Photography

Mr. & Mrs. Duane Johnson Linda Wallis June 16, 2017

Shy Laurel Photography

Sho Boudreau Photography

Mr. & Mrs. Chris Mace Alexandra Whitehead September 2, 2017

Straughan Photography

Mr. & Mrs. Trae Howard Anna Meyers June 8, 2017

Jessica Matheny/Jessica Chloe Photography

Mr. & Mrs. Tyler King Victoria Moreno April 8, 2017


1958 Playland Park, formerly located at 2222 North Alamo, was a favorite destination for generations of San Antonio children from 1943 to 1980.

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San Antonio Woman November/December 2017 issu  

San Antonio Woman November/December 2017

San Antonio Woman November/December 2017 issu  

San Antonio Woman November/December 2017