Corporate Council

Leverage the Long Center for the Performing Arts in order to Grow Your Business and Community Connections.

The Corporate Council membership helps grow your business through member experiences that offer opportunities to connect, network and entertain business associates. Members have the opportunity to invite other corporate leaders to Council functions. It is a great way to take business relationships to the next level. This year the Long Center will host four event socials that include a reception with open bar and hors d’oeuvres followed by a show. Two speaker meetings are scheduled to support each member in their business development and client appreciation goals.



  • Four seats to four Corporate Council speaker meetings for the year.
  • Four tickets to four Corporate Council reception/show experiences for the year.
  • Box Seat Experience Discounts.
  • Long Center Gallery 701 Membership benefits.
  • Perks at Work program includes 10% discounts when available.
  • Access to VIP Concierge Ticket Service in Long Center Ticketing Office.

For more information about becoming a Corporate Council Member, please contact Amy Carter at (512) 457-5116 or You may also mail your check, made out the Long Center, directly to: Long Center for the Performing Arts, Attn: Development, 701 W. Riverside Drive, Austin, TX 78704 and include “Corporate Council” in the memo line.

Long Center Corporate Council 

Curry_MarkChair Mark J. Curry, President – Wells Fargo Bank

Mark Curry has more than 39 years of financial services experience and currently leads the Wells Fargo Business Banking Team in Austin—an experienced team of professionals, who provide exemplary advice and access to a suite of industry leading products and services which support our business customers.  Mark is committed to Wells Fargo’s vision and values to build long-term relationships with team members, customers and the community. This customer-centric approach by a dedicated team of community-minded bankers provides businesses and individuals the reliability and backing needed to succeed in the marketplace. Mark has held key leadership positions within local independent and regional banks.   Prior to his banking career, Mark spent 12 years in the information system consulting business with a Big Eight accounting firm and maintains his CPA license.  Mark graduated from Texas Tech University in 1973 with degrees in Accounting and Management. Mark has been an active community volunteer for over 20 years. Mark currently serves on the: Greater Austin Economic Development Corporate Board, Chairs Austin Partners in Education, Austin Independent School District Education Foundation, Long Center for the Performing Arts Board and Chair for the Corporate Council, Austin Symphony Orchestra Board, Austin Area Research Organization Chair of the Social Equity Committee. Mark participated in the Year 2000 Leadership Austin Class and he is an active member of  St. Theresa’s Catholic Church in Austin.

Amanda Frye_150Vice Chair, Amanda Frye, Vice President Physicians & Provider Relations, Marketing – St. David’s Healthcare

Amanda Frye is Vice President of Physician & Provider Relations and Marketing for the Central & West Texas Division of Hospital Corporation of America (HCA), the largest hospital company in the world.  The Central & West Texas Division includes six acute-care hospitals in Austin known as St. David’s HealthCare and two acute-care hospitals in El Paso known as Las Palmas Del Sol Healthcare. Both systems are made up of additional healthcare assets and providers such as free-standing emergency departments, rehabilitation facilities, urgent care centers and physician practices. Amanda joined HCA in 2002 as Director of Physician Recruitment for St. David’s HealthCare. Prior to joining HCA, Amanda spent six years in commercial real estate in Houston, Texas focusing on medical office building leasing and development. Amanda is a native of Louisiana and received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Tulane University in New Orleans. She graduated cum laude with Honors in Psychology. Amanda attended the Executive Masters program at Trinity University in San Antonio where she received her Master of Science in Health Care Administration in 2008. Amanda has been on the Board of the Central Texas Chapter of American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE) since 2011 as Director of Membership. She became President of the Central Texas ACHE chapter in July 2015. Amanda has been involved with Meals on Wheels for eight years, distributing meals on a long-standing St. David’s route with a co-worker.

Current Corporate Council Members

Erik Anderson | Corporate Councill | The Long Center for the Performing ArtsErik J. Anderson, Owner – EIP Employee Incentive Plans, Inc.

Erik Anderson is the Vice President of Employee Incentive Plans, Inc., an Austin consulting firm providing retirement services since 1974. EIP has consistently been one of the major benefit consulting firms in the Austin area specializing in the design and administration of Qualified Retirement Plans for Corporations, Partnerships and Self-employed Individuals. EIP services incorporate plan design, document preparation, plan administration, insurance and investment services.

Erik graduated from Baylor University with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Accounting and a Master of Taxation. He began his career at PricewaterhouseCoopers in Dallas, Texas in the Personal Financial and Private Company Services division specializing in tax services for High Net Worth Individuals as well as financial and estate planning. Erik is a Certified Public Accountant and holds the Personal Financial Services and Accredited Independent Fiduciary Analyst designations.

Erik is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the Texas Society of Certified Public Accountants, the Financial Services Institute, as well as an adjunct professor at the University of Texas at Austin where he teaches Retirement Planning and Employee Benefits. Erik serves on the Board of Directors for the University Masonic Charitable Foundation and the Serving Grace Foundation and is involved with The Settlement Home for Children and the Legacy Collective.

Barnes_RobertRobert Barnes, President – IBC Bank – Austin

Robert “Bob” Barnes is an established leader in the Texas banking industry with more than 30 years of experience. As president and CEO of IBC–Austin, Barnes oversees and directs the bank’s activities throughout the entire Austin region. He also serves as president of IBC First Equity, IBC’s mortgage division, which specializes in home equity lending and second lien mortgages. An active member of the Austin community committed to IBC’s “We Do More” philosophy, Barnes serves as a board member of the Texas State History Museum,  the Long Center Corporate Council and Opportunity Austin, an initiative implemented by the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce’s Economic Development Council. Barnes earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from Randolph-Macon College in Ashland, Virginia and a Master’s of Business Administration Degree from the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville He and his wife Laura have been married for 31 years and have three children: Katie, Adrienne and Harrison. He is an avid cyclist and gardener.

barney_headshotErin Barney, Vice President Sales Southwest – BlueCross BlueShield of Texas

Erin Barney is accountable for new business growth and retention of current commercial accounts across the Southwest region for BCBSTX which includes Austin, San Antonio, El Paso, Corpus Christi, Laredo, the Rio Grande Valley, Midland, Odessa, and Waco.   Prior to this role, Erin was the Vice President of Care Solutions and Integration responsible for the development and integration of best-in-class care management programs across Health Care Service Corporation’s markets, medical cost savings opportunities for the enterprise and strategic account leadership on critic
al accounts.  Since joining HCSC in 2005, Erin has provided leadership across HCSC in strategic planning efforts across the five HCSC Plans, network strategy development, human resources, and other critical projects (e.g. claims system modernization, health information technology, process improvements, and workforce planning).  This broad background gives her a unique ability to drive solutions that align with customer priorities.

Before joining HCSC, Erin served in a variety of leadership roles including sales, human resources, project management, and customer service.  Erin has a master’s degree in management from Saint Mary’s University in Minnesota and a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Augsburg College.  Erin served as an executive board member for the Illinois Juvenile Diabetes Research Fund.

Jeremiah Bentley_HeadshotJeremiah Bentley, Senior Manager Corporate Communications – Texas Mutual Insurance Company

Jeremiah Bentley is the senior marketing manager at Texas Mutual Insurance Company. He previously worked in the public affairs department at Texas Mutual. He manages the company’s advertising and public relations programs, online and social media initiatives, and production of company publications. He’s a member of the Board of Directors and Chair of the Marketing Committee of the United Way for Greater Austin. He’s a member of the Leadership Austin Essentials Class of 2015, communications chair of the American Association of State Compensation Insurance Funds, and member of the Public Relations Society of America and the American Marketing Association. He’s active in the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce and Bethany United Methodist Church. He is a graduate of the University of Texas-Arlington. He spends most of his time keeping up with his wife Brandy and two young sons, Jackson and Luke.

Bidstrup, Jeff photoJeffrey L. Bidstrup, Austin Manager – Morgan Stanley Wealth Management

Jeff is a Senior Vice President and Branch Manager for Morgan Stanley since 2007. He began his career 24 years ago with Gruntal & Company where he was recognized for his coaching efforts and development of new trainees. Jeff built his practice with a focus on small business owners. Jeff became a Sales Manager for Gruntal & Company in 1996 and a Branch Manager for A.G. Edwards & Sons in 2000. Jeff holds a B.S. degree in Finance from Northern Illinois University.

Jeff currently manages and leads the growing Austin, Texas Branch with 49 advisers. He holds the NASD series 7, 3, 8, 63 and 65 securities licenses. Jeff enjoys mountain biking and skiing with his wife and three teenage children.

Eric Bonugli, District Manager – Insperity

Bridges_RussRussell Bridges, Manager Government & Community Affairs – 3M

Russell Bridges currently serves as Government and Community Affairs Manager for 3M Austin. In the community, he maintains relationships with local schools and non-profits and manages the local 3M Corporate and 3M Foundation contributions.  He also coordinates employee volunteerism for 3M in Austin and surrounding communities.  His responsibilities include interfacing with the executive and legislative branches of state government as well as related business associations. Russell serves on the boards of the Austin Public Education Foundation and the Texas Civil Justice League.  He is a past chair of the board of Austin Partners in Education and serves on the advisory board of the Settlement Home. A longtime United Way volunteer and former United Way for Greater Austin board member, he currently serves on UWATX’s Community Advisory Board. Russell also serves on the Corporate Council for the Long Center for the Performing Arts. A native of Temple in central Texas, Russell received his BBA from Baylor University in 1977 and his Juris Doctorate from the Baylor Law School in 1979.  He is the former general counsel for the state treasurer’s office and has also served as legislative liaison for the governor’s office.  He began his career with 3M in June, 1984.

Kevin Burns_150Kevin Burns, CEO/Broker – Urbanspace Real Estate + Interiors

Kevin exhibits true passion for what he sells and for what Urbanspace stands for.  As a leading voice in Austin’s urban community, Kevin proudly serves as an Executive Committee member of the Real Estate Council of Austin (RECA), sits on the Board of Advisors for the Austin Museum of Art, and actively participates as a member of the Downtown Austin Alliance, and Downtown Austin Neighborhood Association, where he formerly served as Vice President. He is also very involved with Entrepreneurs Organization Austin (EO) and Urban Land Institute. Kevin was named a Top Producer by the Austin Business Journal and also earned a spot on the Elite 25’s prestigious list of the top 1% of luxury REALTORS® in Austin in 2012, 2013, and 2014. Kevin is passionate about his beautiful wife and darling daughters. When not working, he takes in as much of Austin’s live music, arts, and culture as he possibly can. Kayaking on Lady Bird Lake and running on the hike and bike trail are also Kevin’s favorite past times. He enjoys travel so he can soak in the best ideas from other cities to bring back to Austin.

Butler_LutieLutie Butler, Vice President Private Banking – Frost

Lutie Butler is vice president in private banking at Frost.  The largest home-grown financial institution in Texas, Frost has been helping Texans with their financial needs since 1868.  With more than 115 locations across Texas, including 12 in the Austin region, Frost provides banking, investments and insurance to individuals and businesses. Frost’s holding company, Cullen/Frost Bankers, Inc., is traded on the NYSE under the symbol CFR.  A Frost employee for 36 years, Butler is responsible for private banking business development at the Frost Tarrytown Financial Center. She also serves on the Seton Development Board and The Settlement Club Advisory Board, active associate Helping Hand Home for Children and sustaining member in Junior League.

Lyn Chasteen | Corporate Council | The Long Center for the Performing ArtsLyn Chasteen, VP of Engagement – Austin Chamber

Camille_CipioneCamille Cipione, Partner – Cipione Family Foundation

Eric Copper-150Eric Copper, Broker – Austin Portfolio Real Estate

In 2013, Eric was recognized as the #1 top-selling agent in his company of 575 fellow agents; ranked 7th by the Austin Business Journal, and was welcomed into the prestigious and exclusive Elite 25 and Platinum Top 50, and “Who’s Who In Luxury Real Estate” organizations. With experience ranging from moderately priced condominiums to multi-million dollar single-family homes, Eric applies a level of knowledge, negotiating skills, and sophistication necessary to bring a transaction to the closing table.  His diverse client base includes top-level executives, professional athletes, celebrities, international buyers to first-time homebuyers – all of whom require discretion and dedication.  This discretion is applied to every client. Eric has built a sterling reputation on personalized service and professionally handled transactions. His honesty, integrity, and professionalism coupled with creative and innovative ideas consistently yield exceptional results.

Curtis_HeadshotEd Curtis, President – Bank SNB Austin

Ed Curtis is the market president in Austin, Texas for Bank SNB. He joined the company in 2015 after more than 25 years in banking and private sector business where he held various positions such as Market CEO, Chief Lending Officer and Chief Executive Officer. Ed is actively involved in Texas economic development, serving as a member of Texas One, a public-private partnership of the Texas Economic Development Corporation that markets the state for business relocation and expansion opportunities.  He is also the founder of YTexas, an organization that accelerates CEO connectivity and corporate presence for companies newly relocated to Texas. Ed received his BA from the State University of New York and an MBA in Corporate Finance from the University of Dallas.

Jennifer Davis, Executive Director of Communications – Dell

Davis_ToddTodd Davis, Managing Director – Wortham Insurance & Risk Management

Todd is a Managing Director of the Austin office of Wortham Insurance & Risk Management.   He is also the statewide Technology Practice Group Lead for this industry segment. He joined the firm in 1993 and became a partner in 1999 and has been in the insurance industry for 24 years. He began his career in Houston, Texas as an underwriter for Chubb Insurance.   He spent 6 years as a commercial underwriter and was involved in various insurance placements for all types of businesses.   He also had the opportunity to spend a year in London, England, working as a broker at Lloyd’s of London. Todd holds a BBA in Finance from the University of Texas at Austin.   He has also achieved the CIC (Certified Insurance Counselor) and CRM (Certified Risk Manager) designations from the prestigious National Alliance Organization for Insurance Education.  He is a member of various Non-profit Boards and Community Organizations and thoroughly enjoys living in Austin, Texas.

Doucet_HeadshotJohn Doucet, Owner/President – Doucet & Associates 

John Doucet, P.E., LEED AP, has worked in the engineering consulting business for over 30 years. He began his career at a heavy civil engineering construction company in Houston, TX and moved to Austin in 1983.  Other career moves led John to California and back to Austin where in 1992 he founded Doucet & Associates, Inc.  He currently serves as President and is responsible for the day to day management of the firm. This includes supervising the operations of five offices and the administrative functions of the company.  John also continues to be active in project design and management.  John’s engineering knowledge covers many areas of civil engineering including the design and management of large and small public, private and multi-disciplinary projects. His primary areas of expertise include planning, permitting, site development and improvements, roads and subdivisions, public and private utilities, public awareness and involvement, water quality and storm water drainage design. Over the years, John’s technical expertise coupled with his personable and straightforward style have helped draw top talent to the company, and build an impressive client list.

Kevin Farley, United Heritage Credit Union

Jay Fox_150Jay Fox, President Austin/Round Rock Region – Baylor Scott & White Heath

Jay Fox is President and CEO of Baylor Scott & White Health – Austin/Round Rock Region. Baylor Scott & White Health is the largest not-for-profit health care system in the state of Texas with 49 hospitals and more than 800 access points. Mr. Fox is committed to helping Baylor Scott & White achieve in its mission to serve all people by providing personalized health care and wellness through exemplary care, education and research as a Christian ministry of healing.

Mr. Fox has received degrees and certifications from the following: Baylor University, The University of Oklahoma, Southern Methodist University and The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. Mr. Fox was also selected as one of a few in the U.S. to participate in the Malcolm Baldrige National Executive Fellowship Program.

Mr. Fox has served on the boards of many professional and non-profit organizations. Most notably, he was a nominee for the Young Healthcare Executive of the Year Award, and was included on the Dallas Business Journal’s prestigious “40-under-40” list. Mr. Fox also served on the Dallas Fort Worth Hospital Council Board as chairman, Dallas Summer Musicals Board and Executive Council, the Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) Citizen’s Advisory Board, past-chair of the Leadership Dallas Alumni Board of Directors, the national Malcolm Baldrige Board of Examiners, the Health Industry Council, LaunchAbility and numerous other boards that include recent elections to the Board of the ZACH Theatre, the Long Center of the Performing Arts corporate council in Austin, YMCA of Greater Williamson County Board Member, United Way of Williamson County Board Member and Austin Chamber of Commerce Presidents Council.

Lisa Fox_150Lisa Fox, Austin Representative – South Texas Money Management

Lisa Fox is the Director of Financial Planning and Executive Vice President of South Texas Money Management.  She manages the Austin office, serves as a Senior Investment Advisor to clients, and is responsible for overseeing, developing and executing the firm’s financial planning services offered to individual clients.  In addition, Ms. Fox serves on the firm’s management team.  Ms. Fox has a Master of Science in Banking and Financial Services Management from Boston University and a Bachelor of Science in Business Professional Studies from Western Governors University. She received her CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNERTM certification in 2004. She has completed a specialized educational program in professional divorce analysis and is now a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst™ (CDFA™) allowing her to provide in-depth financial expertise in divorce cases. In addition, she attended the Texas Trust School at Southern Methodist University in Dallas graduating as the top student of the class and Texas Trust School II in San Antonio graduating in the top five of her class. Ms. Fox is a member of the Financial Planning Association and Texas Wall Street Women. She is also actively involved with several charitable organizations within the Austin community.

Nikki Graham_150Nikki Graham, Austin Market President – Bank of America

Nikki Graham serves as Austin Market President, the company’s enterprise leader in Austin. She works with company leaders across the region to help deliver a wide range of global financial services to more individuals and businesses locally, as well as deepen relationships with existing customers. She also oversees corporate social responsibility activities including philanthropic giving, community development lending and investing, environmental initiatives, diversity efforts, arts and culture projects, and employee volunteerism. Nikki joined the bank in 1994. Since then she has held various positions in retail banking, change management, marketing, and local market delivery across the Bank of America franchise. In addition to her job responsibilities, she serves on the boards of the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce, Communities in Schools of Central Texas, Capital Idea, Barton Springs Conservancy, and the Austin Community Design and Development Center. Nikki was recognized in 2010 as the Austin Association of Fundraising Professionals Outstanding Community Affairs Executive of the year. She has also been recognized with the 40 under 40 award by the San Antonio Business Journal. She is an alumna of Leadership San Antonio and an affiliate member of Leadership Austin.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERARobert Greenwood, Austin Region President – American Bank

Prior to joining San Antonio National Bank, Mr. Greenwood was with Guaranty Bank in Austin and Dallas for 17 years, holding several positions including Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer.  Earlier in his career, he held lending positions with various Texas banks in Austin and Houston including Bank One – Texas, Alliance Bank, and First City Bank.  Mr. Greenwood holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from Southern Methodist University, an MBA in finance from Sam Houston State University, and is a graduate of the National Commercial Lending School at the University of Oklahoma. Active in the communities he serves, Mr. Greenwood has been involved with the American Red Cross in a number of roles, including:  Central Texas Board of Directors and Board Chair, Dallas Area Chapter Board of Directors and Executive Committee, and Chairman of the Board of the State Service Council.  He also served as Chairman of the Central Texas March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation, and Chairman of the Austin Area Regional Council of Alumni and Parents for Southern Methodist University.  He is also a former member of the Leadership Austin Board of Directors and has been a board and Executive Committee member of the Texas Bankers Association.

CharlesHarveyCharles Harvey, Chair – Pflugerville Economic Development Foundation

Charles Harvey is a Vice President with Round Rock-based Don Quick & Associates, a full-service commercial real estate firm.  Charles’ specialty and focus is on development land, site selection and investment property sales & leasing.  A Pflugerville native and graduate of Pflugerville High School, Charles earned a BBA in Finance and Real Estate from Angelo State University.  Charles currently serves as Chairman of the Pflugerville Economic Development Foundation, a private organization of business members focused on supporting the economic growth of Pflugerville and Northeast Travis County.   He lives in Round Rock with his wife and young son, Weston and is an avid fly fisherman and outdoorsman.

Craig Hester | Corporate Council | The Long Center for the Performing ArtsCraig Hester, Principal Vice President – Luther King Capital Management

Mr. Hester has been actively involved in professional investment management since 1972. Prior to becoming Principal with Luther King Capital Management in January 2013, he served as CEO and founder of Hester Capital Management, LLC from 1989-2012. Before forming HCM, Mr. Hester served as Director of Regional Asset Management for InterFirst Investment Management (1983-89); Chief Investment Officer of the Texas Municipal Retirement System (1979-1983); Assistant Vice President & Trust Officer at Republic National Bank, Dallas (1977-79); and Senior Analyst for the Teachers Retirement System of Texas (1972-76).

Mr. Hester currently serves on the Board of Trustees of the Employees Retirement System of Texas (past Chair) and the Advisory Committee of the MBA Investment Fund, LLC of the UT Graduate School of Business. Mr. Hester is a former member of the board of Governors of the Investment Adviser Association (IAA), the University of Texas Investment Management Company (UTIMCO), former Investments Committee member of the University of Texas’ Ex-Student’s Association (past Chair) and formerly served on the Investment Advisory Committee of the Employees Retirement System of Texas (past Chair) and as an Investment Advisor to the Teacher Retirement System of Texas. A graduate of the University of Texas at Austin (BBA, 1971; MBA, 1972), Mr. Hester received the Chartered Financial Analyst designation in 1977 and the Chartered Investment Counselor designation in 1992. He is the past president of the Austin Investment Association and a member and past president of the Austin/San Antonio Society of Financial Analysts and the Austin Society of Financial Analysts. He currently serves on the Board of Trustees of the Joe R. and Teresa Lozano Long Center for the Performing Arts (past Chair), and is a former member of the Foundation for SafePlace (past Chair). Mr. Hester is a member of the Executive Committee of the University of Texas Chancellor’s Council, and the Littlefield Society.

Todd Holt_150Todd Holt, President – MassMutual Southwest

Todd Holt’s seemingly bottomless well of energy, his deep knowledge of financial strategies, compassion for clients, and drive to bring out the best in people has led to the doubling of the financial services agency he took it over a little over a decade ago. Todd is the CEO and General Agent of MassMutual Southwest, which has offices in Austin and Lubbock, Texas and Albuquerque, New Mexico. MassMutual Southwest is dedicated to helping clients make good financial decisions and has earned the trust of tens of thousands since its inception in 1957. Todd serves as a role model and a powerful source of inspiration to the fifty-plus professionals on his team. He is known among clients and colleagues for his impeccable integrity, honesty, and passion for helping others achieve their highest potential. Frequently teased by his family for his unquenchable thirst for knowledge, Todd can be found on a lazy Sunday reading up on the latest financial strategies. He has shared his insights on how to help others achieve financial success by teaching and serving as a guest lecturer at Texas Tech University.

Ed Ishmael, Principal – Ishmael Law Firm, P.C.

Jacobi_JeffJeff Jacobi, National Account Sales Director – Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas

Jeff Jacobi is the key sales leadership driver for Midwest Texas. Over his distinguished career, Jeff has received numerous sales awards with Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas (BCBSTX). Jeff is a graduate of West Texas A&M University, where he earned a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in 1980. He has also earned the Managed Healthcare Professional designation from the Health Insurance Association of America. Jeff is an active community volunteer with particular interest in these organizations: KaBoom, Marathon Kids, and the American Heart Association. Jeff is a member of the Austin Chamber of Commerce and the Southwest Benefits Association. Jeff is an active member of Emmaus Catholic Church in Lakeway, Texas.

Jarrett_JimJim Jarrett, Vice President Operations – Texas Gas Service

Jim Jarrett is vice president of operations of Texas Gas Service. Previously, he was director of operations of the Oklahoma City metropolitan area of Oklahoma Natural Gas. Jarrett joined ONEOK in 1993 as a meter reader and has held positions of increasing responsibility. Jarrett serves on the board of the Regional Food Bank Foundation of Oklahoma and is a program committee member of the YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City. He has served on the board of Junior Achievement of Oklahoma City, as a loaned executive for United Way of Tulsa and as a mentor for Youth Leadership Exchange in Oklahoma City. He also is a graduate of Leadership Oklahoma City – Class 29. A native of Oklahoma, Jarrett earned a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration in 1992 from Chapman University in Orange, California, and a Master of Business Administration degree in 1999 from Oklahoma City University.

Kim_PaulPaul Kim, President – ATX Environmental Solutions

Soon after receiving his degree in mechanical engineering from Georgia Tech University, Paul Kim moved to Austin while working as an engineer for the US Department of Defense.  Not long after his arrival in Austin, Mr. Kim followed his entrepreneurial heart and has since been involved in many business ventures from real estate to restaurants and international trading. Currently, Mr. Kim is serving as the Vice President of Network of Asian American Organizations (NAAO) and as Board of Directors of Asian American Resource Center (AARC). As a non-profit organization, NAAO is the leading service and information network that unites and promotes the Asian American community through educational, cultural, social, and business and AARC will increase commerce and showcase the best of Asian culture and educate, congregate, and celebrate the Asian heritage. Mr. Kim currently resides in North Austin with His wife Sarah and 2 daughters.  They also have a son attending Texas A&M University.

Kenebel_StevenSteven Knebel, Managing Partner – Maxwell, Locke & Ritter

Steven began his public accounting career in Houston with Deloitte (formerly Deloitte Haskins & Sells) and transferred to Austin in 1987 shortly after the opening of the Austin office. In 2007, he became the firm’s Leading Partner, playing a key leadership role in the operations and strategic efforts of ML&R and its affiliate, ML&R Wealth Management.

Steven’s approach to his work is especially valuable to businesses benefiting in Austin’s growing economic culture. “ML&R is blessed to be a part of Austin’s growth and have a role in the success of our people, clients and community.”  Steven plays a key role in the design, coordination, and roll-out of new service lines developed specifically for Austin based companies and their executives. “I am fortunate to be surrounded by talent and energy which stimulates creative thinking and imaginative innovations for ML&R and our clients.”

Ed Lick_150Ed Lick, Senior Vice President Corporate Banking – BB&T

Ed Lick is a 35 year banker, serving as the Austin Market President of Branch Banking & Trust (“BB&T”) from April 2010 through November 2014.  Since December of 2014, Ed has furthered BB&T’s presence in the market by building out the Corporate Banking function, serving companies in that large corporate segment.   Ed strives to deliver the BB&T mission by helping clients achieve economic success and financial security; creating a place where employees can learn, grow and be fulfilled in their work; making communities in which we work better places to be; and optimizing long term return to shareholders. Ed began his career his banking career in Houston.  He moved his young family to the Austin area in 1993 and has spent the majority of his time over the ensuing period in Austin’s banking community.  Ed Graduated from Michigan State University in 1981 with a degree in Finance. Ed has been active in community service for the bulk of his career.  His past and present executive board  affiliations Include The Austin Area Urban League, Workforce Solutions, Austin Musical Theatre,  the Business Development Council of St. Edwards University, the Affiliates of St. David’s and the Corporate Council for the Long Center for the Performing Arts. Ed is married to his life Partner, Barbara and has three college-educated and economically-productive children.  Ed enjoys spending time with family and anything outdoors.

Long_JoeJoe R. Long, Owner – Joe R. Long Investments

Joe attended Tarleton State College at Stephenville, Texas for 2 years, when Tarleton was a Junior College. In September, 1949 he went to the University of Texas, where he received his B.A. Degree in 1951, with a Major in Government and a Minor in History and Anthropology.  At the University of Texas he completed his ROTC training, and upon his graduation in 1951, he was called immediately into the service during the Korean war, as a Second Lieutenant.  He graduated from the University of Texas Law School in August, 1958 with a J.D. Degree. In 1968 he was part of a group that organized two banks in Austin, First State Bank and Community National Bank.  Ultimately, he became Chairman of both banks and bought control of both banks.  These banks continued to operate as separate entities until 1989 with Long serving as Chairman of both banks.  In 1988, during a period of economic upheaval in Texas, the two banks in which Long was the principal owner were able to acquire seven banks which failed in the Austin area, and ultimately all were combined in 1989 under the name First State Bank. He and his wife, Terry, became avid travelers thirty years ago, and since that time have traveled to over 125 countries and have traveled to every continent, as well as the arctic region.  They presently make their home in Austin, Texas where they are both heavily involved in community activities and philanthropic endeavors.  In addition to two careers, Mr. Long has invested in real estate, oil, stocks and bonds.

Corporate Council | The Long Center for the Performing ArtsBryan Lorello, Audit Partner – BDO

Bryan is a partner in BDO’s audit department, and has more than 15 years of public accounting experience, serving both public and private companies.

Bryan has experience with accounting and auditing of large and small international companies, ranging from Fortune 100 Companies to start up business operations. Bryan’s main focus in the Austin marketplace is within the technology sector, focusing on software and SaaS companies, but Bryan also has experience with insurance, manufacturing, retail, construction, and broker/dealer services. Bryan has significant experience with publicly traded companies, as well as with private-equity held businesses.

Key clients served by Bryan include Multimedia Gams (NASDAQ: MGAM), Natural Gas Services Group (NYSE: NGS), Alchemy Systems, Astrotech Corporation (NASDAQ: ASTC), Energy Solutions International, Abila, Inc., On Center Software, Inc., Drilling Info, In., Rock Solid Images, Inc., NuTech Energy Alliance LTD, Avectra, Inc., Bankers Toolbox, Inc., Transzap Holdings, Inc., P97 Networks, Inc., DiCentral Corporation, and Davincian Holdings LLC.

Madison_HeadshotAmy Madison, Executive Director – Pflugerville Community Development Corporation

Amy Madison, CEcD, EDFP, was appointed Executive Director of the Pflugerville Community Development Corporation in February 2016.  She first joined the PCDC in January 2014 as assistant executive director and served as interim executive director from July 2015 until her appointment.  During the past six months, she successfully recruited three companies – Medway Plastics, EOS of North America, and FinSpeed – creating 197 new jobs in Pflugerville. Prior to coming to the PCDC, she served six years as CEO of the Greater San Marcos Partnership (GSMP), a quasi-public economic development organization serving Hays-Caldwell counties and seven cities.  Amy received a bachelor’s degree from Phillips University and completed a master’s degree at the University of Oklahoma.  She served as economic development director with the City of Schertz where she helped elected officials garner a 50-year supply of water and established a new industrial park.  She is an OU Economic Development Institute graduate, a Certified Economic Development Professional (CEcD), a Certified Economic Development Finance Professional (EDFP) and a Certified Public Manager (CPM).  She serves on the Awards Committee for the International Economic Development Council and is a member of TeamTexas, Texas One and Texas Economic Development Council.

Christopher Markey, Sales Manager/Internet Director – BMW of Austin

Maxwell_EarlEarl Maxwell, CEO – St. David’s Foundation

Prior to stepping into the St. David’s role, Earl was the leading partner of Maxwell Locke & Ritter LLP, Austin’s largest locally owned and managed accounting and consulting firm.  He grew up in Houston and attended the University of Houston where he received his Bachelor of Business in Accounting in 1976. Earl is the author of Service Prosperity and Sanity — Positioning the Professional Service Firm for the Future.  His experience includes 31 years in public accounting, including 14 years with Deloitte & Touche and its predecessor Deloitte Haskins & Sells. Earl’s innovative, non-traditional experience grew out of the process he and the partners of Maxwell Locke & Ritter followed as they established and built a different type of firm…..a firm dedicated to serving people.  His work at the St. David’s Foundation is a logical extension of his previous experience. Earl has spent most of his time in three areas; family, community and business.  He has been able to merge these interests by helping to establish a family-friendly workplace and working in the community to support various educational and health and human services programs.  He is proudest of his partnership with his wife in raising their two sons.  He strives to provide a work environment that is committed to balancing work, life and the community.

Kara McGregort_150Kara Bliss McGregor, Senior Vice President Business Development – Independence Title

Kara McGregor is a native Austinite of several generations, a successful businesswoman, and has contributed mightily to Austin’s cultural community. As Independence Title’s Senior Vice President of Business Development, she has been part of an effort that took the company from a fledgling startup in 2005 to the largest independent title agent in the State of Texas.  Independence completed a successful merger in 2015 with the TRG family of title services providers, and Kara continues at the helm as part of the top leadership team. Kara has worked through the ranks in the title insurance business for almost 20 years, with other career experience in broadcast journalism, and the arts.  She’s an award-winning singer and actor, photographer, violinist, carpenter, and Native Texas gardener, and has donated her time and resources to various non-profit projects benefiting the environment, the homeless, children, seniors, literacy efforts and the arts. Her diverse range of interests translates in her business life into vision, fresh perspectives and an ability to foster the talents of others.

Nikelle Meade_150Nikelle Meade, Partner – Husch Blackwell

Nikelle represents clients in all aspects of real estate with an emphasis in land use and real estate development, public-private partnerships, procurement, and governmental affairs. Her work includes zoning, permitting, land use planning, development application processing and representation before local city councils, zoning boards of adjustment, planning commissions, local governing bodies and state and local agencies. In short, she helps clients navigate real estate development projects through governmental approvals. She also has vast experience in commercial transactions including purchases and sales, leases, public financing and general contracts. Before joining Husch Blackwell, Nikelle was a partner at Brown McCarroll.

Leticia Mendoza, Public Affairs Manager – H-E-B

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAEmily Moreland, Owner – Moreland Properties

Emily Moreland plays an integral role in the day-to-day operations of the real estate company she started in 1986. Her top priority is supporting her agents and their clients, but she still finds the time and energy to be very involved in many organizations that create the quality of life that we all enjoy in Austin. Emily was privileged to serve on the Board of Directors of the Long Center for the Performing Arts from its inception until 2008. At the present time, she serves on the Advisory Committee for the Center. For many years she maintained that a performing arts hall was an absolute necessity for a city the size of Austin. She believes the Long Center benefits economic development in Austin as much as it benefits the performing arts. As past President and Chairman of the Board for Ballet Austin, Emily continues to serve on the Board of Directors for the ballet. As a member of the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce, Emily serves on the Economic Development committee for the chamber. She has also been active in RECA – Real Estate Council of Austin. She looks forward to continuing her involvement in the important issues facing the Austin real estate community.


Pat Mulligan, CEO Mentor and Strategist – Vistage International Chair

Pat Mulligan is a former CEO and Business Owner who moved from California to the Hill Country in 2004. He now leads a successful Vistage practice, with three high-performing groups based in Austin. Additionally he is the President (pro-bono) of WOWSC a water supply corporation that supplies water services to approximately 250 homes and businesses in the Hill Country. He also developed and manages a Rehearsal and Recording Studio in South Austin. His hobbies include Boating and Writing.

Chris Nguyen, Regional Marketing Director – Wells Fargo Bank

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Kay Oder, Advisor – Insperity

Kay Oder has owned six companies, has been a resource to thousands to businesses and brought business solutions to help business owners navigate today’s highly regulated and complex “business of being an employer”. She has helped clients through every employee issue under the sun – from the “regular stuff” such as hiring the right person, training and development of employees for their success as well as the companies for which they work – to the “stuff that happens” such as executives embezzling money or firing the boss’ daughter to receptionists dancing naked in the office and knife fights at company parties – all the while keeping a cool head and a sense of humor. Today, Kay uses the insights gained over her 35-year career as a speaker, business owner and business advisor. Audiences enjoy her candid, informed perspective on HR related topics as well as her razor-sharp southern wit. Kay is also a Certified Business Performance Advisor with Insperity, the $2.2 billion business performance solutions provider she has called home since 1993. Kay has been among the company’s top of producers her 20 years with the organization, earning Insperity’s highest honors, including the Circle of Excellence and the Chairman’s Club awards.

Perrine_MikeMike Perrine, Austin Market President – Capital One Bank

Mike Perrine is Capital One Bank’s Market President for Austin, San Antonio and the Rio Grande Valley. As Market President, he is responsible for leading the bank’s community focus and philanthropic commitment to meet the unique needs of the communities that Capital One Bank serves in the Austin and the South Central Texas area. Mr. Perrine also is responsible for meeting the financial needs of large corporate and middle-market companies headquartered in Austin and surrounding areas. Mr. Perrine has more than 25 years of banking and corporate finance experience and has served the past seven years as the Commercial Banking Executive for Capital One Bank in Austin. A longtime Austin resident, Mr. Perrine received a bachelor’s degree in finance from the University of Texas. Mr. Perrine is active in non-profit and educational activities in the local community. Michelle Piperi, Gracy Title Company Michelle Piperi is the Senior Vice President of Sales at Gracy Title, where she leads a nationally recognized sales team. She began her career in secondary lending at First Franklin before leaving the workforce to raise her family, then later joined the sales team at Gracy Title as a sales executive for six years. Michelle was then promoted and has been directing the sales team as Senior Vice President for the last seven years. Michelle is heavily involved in the Central Texas community, and she and her sales team are instrumental in Gracy Title’s community outreach. Michelle has led efforts to raise funds, awareness, and volunteers for many Austin nonprofits. Michelle holds a degree in Management and Marketing from Texas State. Michelle’s greatest accomplishments are her three children; her son Tres, employed with Casa Mechanical,  her daughter Ashton, now a senior at Texas Tech, and her son James, a freshman at Westlake High School.

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Charles A. Phillips, Deloitte, LLP

Charles is a Director in Deloitte Human Capital’s Organization and Talent Practice.  With over fourteen years of consulting experience, Charles’ primary focus has been to provide strategic advisory services in the areas of Mergers and Acquisitions (Due Diligence through Post Merger Integration). Charlie is an eminent leader in organizational design, global learning program design and execution, shared service design and software implementations.  He has particular expertise in project management, global communications, organizational change, HR strategy and process improvement to solve all manner of human capital-related challenges. His project experience has been assessment through implementation phases, individual contributor to program lead.  Charlie is currently serving as the global change management leader, supporting two large-scale transformations. Prior to joining Deloitte, Charles worked as a benefits consultant at Hewitt Associates, Towers Perrin and PricewaterhouseCoopers. Charles holds a BA, with Honors, from the University of the Arts, Philadelphia, PA and a learning certificate from Columbia University, New York, New York.

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Michelle Piperi, Senior Vice President Sales – Gracy Title Company

Michelle Piperi is the Senior Vice President of Sales at Gracy Title, where she leads a nationally recognized sales team. She began her career in secondary lending at First Franklin before leaving the workforce to raise her family, then later joined the sales team at Gracy Title as a sales executive for six years. Michelle was then promoted and has been directing the sales team as Senior Vice President for the last seven years. Under Michelle’s leadership, the sales team at Gracy has garnered many awards for production and excellence. She and her team bring incredible value, experience, and innovation to the Central Texas real estate market, making them instrumental in the success of Gracy’s clients and partners. In large part due to the success of the sales team, Gracy Title has seen outstanding growth in market share and can now boast that Gracy closes one of out of every four real estate transactions in the Austin metro area.

Purslow_BrockBrock Purslow, Market Vice President – Humana Insurance Corporation

Brock has worked in the Central Texas market of Humana for over 11 years in various sales and leadership roles. Most recently, he has served as the Small Business Market Practice Leader for both Central and South Texas.  He is active in the Austin community, currently serving on the Board of Directors for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Texas, Junior Achievement of Central Texas, and also serves on several committees for local non-profit organizations in the greater Austin area.  He is a member in the Austin Association of Health Underwriters. Brock is married to Paula Purslow and has three children, Devon, Keenon and Owen.  Brock received his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Newman University in Wichita, Kansas.

John Ramos, Public Relations Southwest Region – BlueCross and BlueShield of Texas

Christina Randle_150Christina Randle, CEO – Effective Edge

As a Senior Performance Catalyst for Effective Edge, Christina’s role is to be an advocate for the leadership with a commitment to the successful delivery for large-scale projects; whether a mega/giga project, merger or acquisition, or major organizational change initiative. Her personal approach and business sense, combined with a balance of practical process (head) and effective action practices (art), solidify the Project strategy and vision, remove roadblocks and ensure fit-for-purpose, project processes. These drive personal engagements to complete the project on time, on budget, and on performance.  Her client list includes Chevron, Cardinal Health, EnLink Midstream, Dell, Emerson, Gore and Pepsi. As CEO and Founder of Effective Edge – a 20 year old consulting, coaching and training firm – Christina is proud of a company that continues to grow and deliver value to the world of business. Christina holds masters degrees in philosophy and psychology, along with numerous certifications and credentials from executive coaching and facilitation programs. A life-long learner and avid business book reader, she lives in Austin, TX with her family and enjoys cycling.

Corporate Council | The Long Center for the Performing ArtsNancy Schreiber, Ph.D., Dean & Professor of Management – The Bill Munday School of Business, St. Edward’s University

Dr. Nancy Schreiber is the Dean of The Bill Munday School of Business at St. Edward’s University in Austin, Texas. In that capacity, she is driving change to transform business education at St. Edward’s so as to fully integrate the Munday School of Business with the rich and robust business ecosystem of Austin. To that end, she is leading the effort to create new academic programs and educational experiences in order to produce graduates, who have an entrepreneurial mindset, value the social enterprise, understand the process of innovation, utilize business analytics, and know how to engage in global business practice.

Dr. Schreiber is also an experienced business psychologist providing executive coaching, management selection and leadership development to organizations large and small. Over the past 20 years, she has worked with a broad range of industries and has consulted with several Fortune-500 companies and government agencies.

Dr. Schreiber received her B.A. in Sociology from Oberlin College 1985 and her Doctorate in Clinical Psychology from the University of Detroit Mercy in 1991. She serves on the Board of Directors of the Texas Association of Business, is active in the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB, International. She is a licensed psychologist in the state of Texas, a member of the American Psychological Association (APA) and a member of the Society for Human Resource Professionals (SHRM).

Christina Schrimpf, United Heritage Credit Union

Sellers_TomTom Sellers, Manager State Government Affairs Southwest Region – ConocoPhillips Company

Tom Sellers is Manager, Government Affairs, Southwest Region for ConocoPhillips in Austin, Texas. He is responsible for supervising the company’s state government relations program, in addition to personally representing the company in Texas and New Mexico. Tom joined Conoco in 1980 in the Oil and Gas Exploration Department in Ventura, California. He was promoted to increasingly responsible roles during assignments in California, Texas and Louisiana. From 1990 to 1996, Tom worked as a Washington Representative for Conoco and then parent company, DuPont, in Washington, D.C. His areas of expertise include energy issues, tax, environment, tort reform and general business. A recipient of the Minerals Management Service Corporation Leadership Award, Tom is also an appointee by Texas Governor Rick Perry to the Interstate Oil & Gas Compact Commission. He is a member of the Austin Symphony Orchestra Board of Directors and is responsible for forming the BATS, the young patrons committee for the Symphony. He is a graduate of Leadership Austin and is a member of the Austin Public Library Foundation Board. Born in Wichita Falls, Texas, he received his BBA degree from the University of Texas at Austin and his Juris Doctorate from South Texas College of Law. He is licensed to practice law in Texas.

Jeff Thomas | Corporate Council | The Long Center for the Performing ArtsJeff Thomas, Senior Vice President and General Manager – H-E-B

Jeff Thomas is Sr. Vice President and General Manager of the Central Texas Region of H-E-B, which includes 75 stores throughout Central Texas. Jeff’s umbrella of leadership also includes other important areas of the business such as Real Estate, Marketing, Public Affairs, Loss Prevention, Human Resources, and Facilities. Jeff began his career in 1975 as a courtesy clerk while attending high school.  During his 38 years with H-E-B he has held a variety of leadership positions throughout Texas in operational and administrative roles and lived in several Texas cities. In January 2005 Jeff returned to Austin where he has embraced the Austin lifestyle and enjoys all of the amenities that Austin has to offer.  In addition to supporting UWATX, Jeff is a board member of the Hill Country Conservancy Stewardship Council, Texas State Aquarium, Texas C-5 Foundation, Texas PTA Advisory Council and the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce. Jeff graduated with a BBA in marketing and management from the University of Texas – San Antonio and the University of Southern California with an MBA.  He continued his education with the Harvard Business School in the General Manager program.

Valdez GaryGary Valdez, CEO – Focus Strategies Investment Banking

Gary Valdez is the President of Focus Strategies Investment Banking, a privately owned Texas based investment banking firm.  The company provides private equity advisory and investment services, serving middle market and later stage growth companies. Mr. Valdez founded Focus Strategies LLC in 1999 after a 25 year commercial banking career.  He began his banking career with Texas Commerce Bank (formerly Capital National Bank) in 1975. Mr. Valdez chairs the Board of Managers for Ascension Ventures.  Mr. Valdez also serves on the Board of Directors for BorTunCo, Displays Unlimited, Berry Aviation, Inc., and American Bank. Mr. Valdez is an active city leader and serves on the boards of St. Edward’s University, Seton Healthcare Network, Texas Lutheran University Corporation, and RGK Foundation.  He also is a member of the Austin Area Research Organization.  Mr. Valdez was recognized by the Greater Austin Chamber as the 2004 “Austinite of the Year.” Gary Valdez is a graduate and a Distinguished Alumnus of Texas Lutheran College (B.B.A) and St. Edward’s University (M.B.A.).  He also is the recipient of Distinguished Athletic Alumni at Texas Lutheran University, and the recipient of The First Tee of Greater Austin 9 Core Values Award. Mr. Valdez, a native Texan and Austinite, is married to Cynthia Valdez.  Cindy and Gary have two children, Matthew Valdez and Lauren Valdez Greenwood, and a grandson Jackson Valdez.

Shannon Vale_150Shannon Vale, Member – Pirkey Barber

For more than 25 years, Shannon Vale has specialized in trademark and copyright law, intellectual property transactions and due diligence, and right of publicity law. Prior to joining Pirkey Barber, Shannon was a Trademark partner in the Austin office of Fulbright & Jaworski and a shareholder in Arnold, White & Durkee. Shannon also spent five years as the head of personal management firms that directed the careers of major label and major independent label recording artists based in the United States and the United Kingdom. Best Lawyers in America® named Shannon the Austin 2014 Lawyer of the Year for Copyright Law, and also recognized him in the field of trademark law. World Trademark Review’s WTR 1000 places Shannon in the Silver Tier in its national rankings for the category of “Individuals: Prosecution & Strategy,” and in the Gold Tier for Texas (WTR 1000 2014). In addition, Shannon is recognized in the current editions of the following publications: Managing Intellectual Property’s IP STARS; Chambers USA Guide (Intellectual Property: Trade Mark & Copyright – Texas (Band Two)); Legal Media Group’s Guide to the World’s Leading Trademark Practitioners; International Who’s Who of Trademark Lawyers; and Texas Super Lawyers (in the category of Intellectual Property Law).

Vice_JeffJeff Vice, Government Issues Director – Austin Energy

Jeff Vice is Director of Local Government Relations at Austin Energy, the City-owned electric utility with approximately 1,700 employees and a $1.3 billion annual budget. Since 2000, he has served the utility as a governmental relations, economic development and community liaison, providing support to city councils, chambers of commerce and community sponsored organizations.  Jeff currently sits on the Austin Chamber of Commerce’s Clean Energy Council and Economic Development Committee, the CleanTX Foundation Board, and the Long Center Corporate Council. Jeff has diverse and extensive work experience in local, state and federal government, as well as the private and non-profit sectors.  Prior to Austin Energy, Jeff worked as a management consultant at the Texas State Office of Court Administration and at Coopers & Lybrand, a premiere accounting and consulting firm.  He began his career at the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce providing economic development services. Jeff is a graduate of: Texas A&M University (BA History, minor Math); The University of Texas in Austin (Masters, LBJ School of Public Affairs); Leadership Austin; and the University of Idaho Utility Executive Course.

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Leslie Ward, Senior Vice President External Affairs – AT&T Corporation

Leslie Ward, Vice President-Legislative and External Affairs, AT&T Texas, is responsible for developing and executing strategies impacting AT&T’s participation in the Texas political process.  Her responsibilities include state legislative policy and initiatives for Texas, development of legislative and political strategy, as well as the management of the AT&T Texas PAC. Ms. Ward was appointed to her current position in 2012 having previously served in numerous legislative and regulatory positions within AT&T. She has been ranked as one of the top corporate lobbyist in Texas since the inception of the ranking system by Capitol Inside. Ms. Ward holds a BA in Political Science having attended Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas and St. Edward’s University in Austin, Texas.   In addition, Ms. Ward completed work in Corporate Community Relations at Boston College. Ms. Ward currently serves on the Boards of the Texas Taxpayers Association, the Texas Conservative Coalition Research Institute Board, the Long Center for the Performing Arts, the Texas Cultural Trust, Keep Texas Working, Texas Civil Justice League, and the Texas Book Festival.  She is on the Selection Committee of the Texas Medal of Arts and is a sustaining member of the Austin Junior League.  Ms. Ward previously served on the Board of the National Foundation for Women Legislators. Ms. Ward resides in Austin, Texas with her husband Don. They have three children.

Corporate Council | the Long Center for the Performing ArtsStefan Whitwell, Financial Advisor

Stefan Whitwell is a highly sought-after financial advisor and business equipment funding expert serving business owners and difference makers

Stefan graduated from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania and subsequently earned the Chartered Financial Analyst designation and Certificate in Investment Performance Measurement, both from the CFA Institute, where he actively volunteers.

Stefan is the proud father of three children with whom he enjoys playing and spending time. In addition, Stefan actively trains in Brazilian Jujutsu and is a black-belt in Hakko-Ryu Jujutsu. Stefan is a long-time patron of the arts and comes from a family of classical musicians and has been playing violin himself for over 30 years.

Stefan can be reached at 747-225-1971 or

Kurt Wilkin_150Kurt Wilkin, Managing Partner – HireBetter

Kurt is Chief Executive Officer at HireBetter, a national recruiting firm that works directly with leaders of high-growth companies to build their dream teams. HireBetter’s unique business-first approach to recruiting has changed the talent conversation from the transaction of quickly filling a seat…to making talent planning a core competency. They encourage clients to take a step back and be proactive, not reactive, in order to build the team they need to scale. In addition to recruiting, business development and developing HireBetter’s strategic direction, Kurt’s main priorities include providing clients in Central Texas and beyond with strategic talent planning tools. Kurt’s previous track-record as a successful entrepreneur allows him to serve as an experienced guide to C-level executives of middle market companies. He knows first-hand what it takes to build a high-growth company because he has started and scaled dynamic companies himself. He’s navigated similar challenges and can provide an objective opinion in order to help leaders think three moves ahead to build their game-changing teams.

van de Zaunde_ReneRene van de Zande, President & CEO – Emergo Group, Inc.

René is responsible for all operations of Emergo Group, which he founded in 1997 and as its CEO & President, and he has a consistent record of delivering results in growth, revenue, operational performance, and profitability. Today, he spearheads the international expansion of Emergo Group’s operations and service offerings, and provides guidance and support to Emergo Group offices in 27 countries to date.

(updated July 2016)