Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership honors George P. Bush

March 4th, 2019

Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush holds the Quasar Award he was presented at the Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership’s 26th annual Quasar Banquet at South Shore Harbour Resort. With him are, from left, BAHEP President Bob Mitchell, 2019 BAHEP Board Chairman Todd Caliva and the 2018 Board Chairman Dr. Brenda Hellyer.

THE BAY AREA’S Movers and Shakers were out in force as the Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership honored Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush with its Quasar Award for all his help on the proposed coastal barrier system to protect coastal communities and businesses from storm surge.

San Jacinto College Chancellor and 2018 BAHEP Board Chairman Dr. Brenda Hellyer introduced him to the black-tie crowd of nearly 600 that filled up South Shore Harbour Resort’s Crystal Ballroom, after which Bush called the coastal barrier system, or Ike Dike, “a project that is long past due” and one that will need the backing of everyone. “I’m committed to this project,” he promised the crowd.

Afterwards, BAHEP President Bob Mitchell joined them on stage to introduce the 2019 BAHEP Board Chairman Todd Caliva, CEO of HCA Houston Healthcare Clear Lake, which started out life as Clear Lake Hospital.

But there was quite a number of missing faces from the Johnson Space Center, which was closed due to the government shutdown. “This is the first time in 25 years,” Mitchell said, “that the JSC center director has not attended this event,” adding that JSC Director Mark Geyer sent his best wishes.

Dozens of elected officials were in the crowd including Congressman Randy Weber, State Sen. Carol Avarado, State Reps. Dr. Greg Bonnen, Ed Thompson, Mayes Middleton and Dennis Paul, Harris County Judge Lina Hildago and Constable Phil Sandlin and Galveston County Commissioner Ken Clark and their mates.

Plus, a number of mayors – Pat Hallisey of League City, Julie Masters of Dickinson, Michel Bechtel of Morgan’s Point, Mark Denman of Nassau Bay, Louis Rigby of La Porte and Jon Kenney of Taylor Lake Village – and mayor pro-tems – Andrea Wilson of Webster, Don Matter of Nassau Bay, Todd Kinsey of League City, Jay Martin of La Porte and Teresa Vazquez Evans of Kemah – and their spouses.

City councilors joining the celebration included Dave Martin, David Robinson and Jack Christi of Houston, William King III, Bruce Henderson and Wally Deats of Dickinson, Steve Rockey and Carl Gustafson of Friendswood, Laura Davis and Jeff Larson of Seabrook, Robin Collins of Kemah, Steve Gillett of La Porte, Greg Gripon, Andy Mann and Larry Millican of League City, Thomas Schoenbein of Pasadena, Jonathan Amdur, Ashley Graves, Bryce Klug, John Mahon and Matt Prior of Nassau Bay, and Martin Graves, Beverly Gaines and Edward Lapear of Webster, along with City Managers John Baumgartner of League City, Wayne Sabo of Webster, Jason Reynolds of Nassau Bay and Gayle Cook of Seabrook.

Others introduced included UH-Clear Lake President Dr. Ira Blake, Texas A&M Galveston Vice President Col. Michael Fossum, San Jac Board Chairman Marie Flickinger, CCISD and DISD Superintendents Dr. Greg Smith and Carla Voelkel, Pasadena ISD Vice President Nelda Sullivan and Port Houston Commissioners John Kennedy and Clyde Fitzgerald.

The aerospace industry was well represented with Lockheed Martin VP and Orion Program Manager Dr. Mike Hawes, Boeing Space Station Program Manager Mark Mulqueen, MEI Technologies CEO David Cazes, Barrios President Robert McAfoos, Jacobs VP and GM Lon Miller, GB Tech President Gale Burkett, Leidos Division Manager Nan Hardin, Cimarron Software CEO Jeannie Crowell and President Darren Crowell, MRI Technologies President and VP Debbie and Tim Kropp, KBRwyle President Vernon McDonald and VP Genie Bopp, Oceaneering VP and GM Mike Bloomfield and astronaut Bonnie Dunbar in the mix.

League City Chamber President Steve Paterson and Chairman Rebecca Lilley were in the crowd as were Clear Lake Chamber President Cindy DeWease and Chairman Brian Freedman, Amoco Credit Union President Shawn Bailey, attorneys Joe Barlow, Craig Saunders, Chris Gregg, Dick Gregg Jr. and Dick Gregg III, Space City Films President Marc Havican, Moody Bank CEO Vic Pierson and VPs Brent Cockerham and Craig Barker, MaximGroup CEO Ron Masters, Norman Frede Chevrolet GM Joan McKinney, San Jac Vice Chancellor Teri Crawford, My Flooring America President Mike Furin, Col. Len Waterworth of Texas A&M Galveston and BayTran President Theresa Rodriguez.

Other well known faces spotted mingling in the crowd were Emmeline Dodd and Gene Hollier, Jack and Marcy Fryday, John Martinec, Carol and Bob Robinson, Harv Hartman, Beth and TJ Aulds, Amy and Paul Dunphey, Lynda Guidry, Karen and Mark Keesler, Jeannie Kranz, Harriet and Jon Pilgrim, Debbie and Dr. Peter Wuenschel, Al Saylor and Gwen Griffin, Jim and Jane Sweeney, and John Wilkins, whose pretty wife, Shari, sang the most beautiful rendition of the National Anthem we have probably ever heard.

Texas official George P. Bush 2019 Quasar Award recipient

January 2nd, 2019

Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush has been named recipient of the 2019 Quasar Award, which will be presented to him at the Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership’s annual Quasar Banquet Friday, Jan. 25 in South Shore Harbour Resort’s Crystal Ballroom.

The prestigious award is presented annually to an outstanding elected official or business leader who has demonstrated a strong and continual effort to support the business foundations of the greater Bay Area Houston communities before a crowd of nearly 700 individuals.

“Commissioner George P. Bush is that outstanding elected official who places the protection of Texas at the forefront of his agenda,” BAHEP President Bob Mitchell said in making the announcement. “Due to his forward vision grounded in basic economics, he has been named the 2019 recipient of Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership’s Quasar Award.”
Commissioner Bush wrote a letter to the current administration urging the president to include in his national infrastructure plans a coastal barrier system for the Houston/Galveston area. He declared, “Building the proposed coastal barrier system is an historic opportunity to safeguard our nation’s economy, our national security, and millions of citizen’s lives and livelihood.”

“Through written support and numerous interviews, Commissioner Bush has become the noteworthy champion of the coastal barrier system whose undiminished advocacy has been instrumental in moving the project forward,” Mitchell said. “He is steadfast in his opinion that the expense of doing nothing far outweighs the investment to protect and enhance the Texas coast.

“For his unique leadership and his willingness to promote what was once called an unrealistic plan to what is today considered a critical project for Texas and the nation, Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush is highly deserving of the 2019 Quasar Award.”

Previous recipients of the Quasar Award are:

1994   Texas Gov. Ann Richards
1995   U.S. Rep. Tom DeLay
1996   U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison
1997   U.S. Rep. Nick Lampson
1998   Johnson Space Center Director George W. S. Abbey
1999   Harris County Judge Robert Eckels and Galveston County Judge Jim Yarbrough
2000   Robert L. Moody Sr.
2001   Houston Mayor Lee P. Brown
2002   Harris County Commissioner Jim Fonteno
2003   U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay
2004   Harris County Commissioner Sylvia R. Garcia
2005   President of UTMB-Galveston Dr. John Stobo
2006   Houston Mayor Bill White
2007   NASA Administrator Dr. Michael Griffin
2008   UHCL President Dr. William A. Staples
2009   Johnson Space Center Director Michael L. Coats
2010   Texas State Rep. Craig Eiland
2011   U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison
2012   U.S. Sen. John Cornyn
2013   Griffin Partners, Inc. owner and Chairman Fred Griffin
2014   Dr. Renu Khator, Chancellor, University of Houston System, President, University of Houston
2015   Dr. Bill Merrell, George P. Mitchell ‘40 Chair in Marine Sciences, Texas A&M University at Galveston
2016   Dr. Greg Smith, Superintendent, Clear Creek Independent School District
2017  Texas State Sen. Larry Taylor
2018 Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner

BAHEP to honor Mayor Sylvester Turner with Silver Anniversary Quasar Award

January 1st, 2018

By Kathryn Paradis

Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership will honor Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner with its esteemed Quasar Award on the Silver Anniversary of this prestigious event, which will be held on Jan. 26 at the South Shore Harbour Resort in League City.

The Quasar Award recognizes an outstanding elected official or business leader who, through his or her actions and leadership, has demonstrated a strong and continual effort to support the business foundations of the greater Bay Area Houston communities.

The recipient’s actions must have gone above and beyond to promote the economic development of the region and the fulfillment of the Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership’s objectives to recruit, retain and expand primary jobs in the region. The award is presented during the organization’s formal Quasar Award banquet, which annually brings together nearly 700 individuals who celebrate and congratulate the honoree.

“Significantly, Mayor Turner has stepped forth to champion the coastal spine system to protect the region from hurricane storm surge,” BAHEP President Bob Mitchell said in announcing the award. “Additionally, his work to ensure a fiscally sound City of Houston will be a lasting testament to his outstanding leadership for decades to come.  Mayor Turner’s foresight has contributed immeasurably to the economic strength of Bay Area Houston.”

Houston City Councilman Dave Martin, whose district includes Bay Area Houston, said, “Mayor Sylvester Turner has been and continues to be a strong proponent for Bay Area Houston. Spearheading the city’s efforts to implement pension reform, addressing our mobility and infrastructure initiatives, and fostering a strong economic development agenda for the Bay Area region, are the cornerstones of Mayor Turner’s first two years in office.

“With the mayor’s strong endorsement of the coastal spine system, our Bay Area homes and business will be protected from future hurricane surge,” he added.

Elected in December 2015, Mayor Turner is serving his first four-year term as Houston’s 62nd mayor. Since taking office, he eliminated a $160 million budget shortfall in record time, led the city’s remarkable rebound from Hurricane Harvey, expanded municipal investments in renewable energy, and led the winning bid to host the World Petroleum Congress in 2020.

As the head of the energy capital of the world and the most diverse city in the nation, Mayor Turner has brought a performance-driven approach to the job, creating more responsive, streamlined and efficient delivery of city services while shoring up Houston’s financial future.

One of the mayor’s signature initiatives is Complete Communities, which aims to improve the quality of life for residents in all neighborhoods. The mayor’s other priorities include filling more than 90,000 potholes on city streets, implementing a six-point holistic plan for addressing homelessness, reducing flooding, and improving drainage.

Mayor Turner’s civic leadership has been nationally recognized through his service as a member of the U.S. Conference of Mayors Transportation and Communications Standing Committee, vice chairman of the National Climate Action Agenda, member of the C40 and Global Covenant for Mayor’s for Climate and Energy, and an advisory board member of the African American Mayors Association.

Prior to his election as mayor, Mayor Turner served for 27 years in the Texas House as the representative for District 139.  He worked on the House Appropriations Committee for 21 years and served as Speaker Pro Tem for three terms.  He was appointed to several Budget Conference committees to help balance the state’s budget and served on the Legislative Budget Board.

Mayor Turner is a life-long resident of Houston and lives in the Acres Homes community where he grew up with eight siblings.  He is a graduate of the University of Houston and earned a law degree from Harvard University. He began his law practice at Fulbright & Jaworski L.L.P. and later founded the Barnes & Turner Law Firm.

Previous recipients of the Quasar Award are:
1994   Texas Gov. Ann Richards
1995   U. S. Rep. Tom DeLay
1996   U. S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison
1997   U. S. Rep. Nick Lampson
1998   JSC Director George W. S. Abbey
1999   Harris County Judge Robert Eckels and Galveston County Judge Jim Yarbrough
2000   Robert L. Moody Sr.
2001   Houston Mayor Lee P. Brown
2002   Harris County Commissioner Jim Fonteno
2003   U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay
2004   Harris County Commissioner Sylvia R. Garcia
2005   President of UTMB-Galveston Dr. John Stobo
2006   Houston Mayor Bill White
2007   NASA Administrator Dr. Michael Griffin
2008   UHCL President Dr. William A. Staples
2009   Johnson Space Center Director Michael L. Coats
2010   Texas State Rep. Craig Eiland
2011   U. S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison
2012   U. S. Sen. John Cornyn
2013   Griffin Partners, Inc. owner and Chairman Fred Griffin
2014   Dr. Renu Khator, Chancellor, University of Houston System, President, University of Houston
2015   Dr. Bill Merrell, George P. Mitchell ‘40 Chair in Marine Sciences, Texas A&M University at Galveston
2016    Dr. Greg Smith, Superintendent, Clear Creek Independent School District
2017    Texas State Sen. Larry Taylor