Posts Tagged ‘Awards & Honors’

Jacquie Baly (’90)

On March 2nd , Jacquie Baly was inducted into the Texas Women’s Hall of Fame, presented by the
Greater Houston Women Chamber of Commerce (GHWCC). Inductees are recognized for them
significant contributions to women’s advancement and quality of life for future generations of
Texas Women.
Jacquie Baly graduated with her Bachelor of Science in Political Science from the UH-Central
campus in 1990 and is President of Baly Projects, a local consulting firm specializing in planning.
and public affairs. Additionally, she serves as an adviser to Governor Greg Abbott on Higher
Education initiatives; serves as the Harris County Commissioners Court appointee on the newly-
created board dealing with economic development and business opportunities for women; and
teaches as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Houston Downtown, where she has taught.
public policy for over 15 years. Baly has won numerous awards for her industry and philanthropic.
work, including Top Ten Entrepreneurs in the Country by the National Association of Women
Business Owners, Crohn’s and Colitis Woman of Distinction, and St. Jude’s Children Hospital
Philanthropist of the Year. Baly is currently pursuing her Doctorate at the University of Southern
The Greater Houston Women’s Chamber of Commerce is the preeminent voice for advancing.
and empowering businesswomen across Houston, our nation, and beyond. GHWCC is a
nonprofit business organization of highly influential and diverse women and men dedicated to
the advancement and empowerment of women through avenues of leadership, education,
advocacy, and mentoring. GHWCC provides a platform for women to make their voices heard.
while building valuable relationships and enhancing leadership skills.

Quentin Brogdon (M.B.A. ’89, J.D. ’89)

I am a 1989 graduate of the Law Center.  I also obtained my M.B.A. degree from UH in 1989.  I just learned the Texas Bar Foundation awarded the 2023 Dan Rugeley Award to me.  The Award will be bestowed at a black-tie dinner in Austin on June 23rd during the State Bar Annual Meeting.  As part of the recognition for the award, the Texas Bar Foundation will make a $1,000 donation to the Texas law school of my choice.  I chose the University of Houston as my law school to receive the $1,000 donation.

Staci LaToison (’03)

Houston Hospice Appoints Staci LaToison to Board of Directors

HOUSTON, TX (Jan. 23, 2023) – Houston Hospice announced the appointment of Staci LaToison to its Board of Directors. Following this appointment, the Board will comprise of 14 members, four of which are officers and an additional six are advisors.

“We are pleased to welcome Staci LaToison to the Houston Hospice Board of Directors,” said Joyce T. Salhoot, MSW, MHA, board chair of Houston Hospice. “Staci’s wealth of knowledge in the strategy, innovation, and investment industries will be an asset to Houston Hospice’s board of directors as we continue to empower families and underserved communities who are in need of quality hospice care.”

Staci LaToison (’03) is an award-winning entrepreneur and venture capitalist with a passion for supporting women and diverse founders. Named one of Houston Business Journal’s 2022 Women Who Mean Business Honorees, LaToison is the founding partner of Dream Big Ventures, as well as a limited partner of Mendoza Ventures, Portfolio, Urban Capital Network and Soften Venture Fund, where she serves on the advisory board. She is an angel investor of Angeles Investors with additional investments in Agility Bank and Specs AI Optometry. LaToison’s background includes a 22-year career at Chevron, where she served in leadership in China, Angola, and Houston, including innovation and strategy management.

In recognition of her business acumen and entrepreneurial spirit, LaToison was named Entrepreneur in Residence for Divan’s “Women in Tech” accelerator where she mentored women-led startups.

LaToison earned a Bachelor of Science in Information Technology from the University of Houston, where she currently serves on the Dean’s Advisory Board of the College of Liberal Arts & Social Sciences. She also earned an MBA in International Business from the University of St. Thomas. In addition, she completed the Columbia Business School Venture Capital and Private Equity Senior Executive program, where she now serves as a Global Ambassador. In her personal time, she volunteers in the community and is the co-chair of the Discovery Green Gala on the Green.

About Houston Hospice
Houston Hospice is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that provides uncompromising, compassionate, end-of-life care to patients and families across 13 counties Texas, regardless of their ability to pay. Established in 1980, Houston Hospice is the oldest, largest, independent, nonprofit hospice in Greater Houston and a member of the Texas Medical Center. For more information visit

Jennifer Teague M.B.A. ’01

It was because of some fantastic UH faculty that I figured out I wanted to be a professor one day and the field of global business had my heart. I am so grateful for the foundation laid as part of my UH MBA studies!

LinkedIn is:

Dr. Jennifer Teague (UH, MBA ’01) recently received the 2022 Purdue University Global “Organization Builders” Award, which celebrates significant and innovative growth at the university. Purdue Global (PG), part of the esteemed Purdue University system, offers degree and certificate programs to more than 35,000 remote adult learners. On December 15th, a select group of PG faculty and staff received recognition for their impact, innovation, best practices, and measurable outcomes with G.L.O.B.A.L. Distinction Awards.

Dr. Teague, a graduate faculty member and program lead for Global Business in the School of Business and IT, is regarded as a visionary who has demonstrated persistence, consistency, and leadership in the development of an equity-focused Education Abroad program for nontraditional adult learners at a remote institution. This program differentiates PG from other large virtual universities while also fulfilling its land-grant mission by providing an avenue for global and virtual travel that most nontraditional students may not be able to otherwise experience. What started as a concentration in two specific programs (MBA and MS in Management and Leadership) has grown to a graduate concentration, standalone undergraduate and graduate offerings, a Global Business microcredential, and an alternate globalized MBA capstone course. All PG Education Abroad opportunities also provide participants with an opportunity to earn the AFS Global Competence Certificate, which is a distinguished mark of advanced intercultural skills.

“The opportunity to recognize members of our faculty and staff who have been recommended by their peers is one of the highlights of the year,” Purdue Global Chancellor Frank Dooley said. “It is the efforts of individuals and teams like these, and so many more, that have helped Purdue Global continue to prosper. They are symbolic of the passion demonstrated by all our employees, and it is a pleasure to honor them.”

Full release:

Katherine Franco (J.D. ’09)

Katherine Franco Recognized in Houston Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 Class of 2022
Houston Business Journal June 16, 2022
Blank Rome partner Katherine Franco was recognized in the Houston Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 Class of 2022.
The list of honorees recognizes business and community leaders who reside in the 10-county Houston area and are under 40 years of age as of December 31, 2021. While reviewing applications, the Houston Business Journal’s editorial team scored nominees on “leadership, overcoming challenges, and community involvement.” In a special edition of the publication, each honoree has a brief profile that highlights details about their backgrounds and recent successes they’ve achieved in their careers.

Katherine’s honoree profile, as published in the Houston Business Journal, is copied in full below.

Katherine Franco, 38
Partner, Blank Rome LLP
Hometown: Fort Stockton, Texas
College: Massachusetts Institute of Technology, BS; University of Houston Law Center, JD
A long advocate for voter rights, Katherine Franco helped ensure Houstonians wouldn’t have to miss the polls in the 2020 election.
When news of the Covid-19 pandemic started spreading across the globe, Franco and a cohort of volunteer lawyers discussed the virus’s potential impact on the 2020 election just before the city shut down due to the pandemic.
Their goal was to ensure voters could still vote if the Covid-19 pandemic was still raging by election day. And, as we all know, it was. “I was invited to join a brainstorming session with the Harris County Clerk’s Office, who at the time was responsible for administering elections,” Franco said. “One of the ideas that came out of that session was drive-thru voting.”
Given her experience as an election judge and her extensive knowledge in election law, Franco was asked to assist in developing drive-thru voting. “Based on our research and legal position, the program survived two challenges at the Texas Supreme Court, a challenge at the Federal District Court level, and a challenge at the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals,” she said. “Most striking to me was that by the final challenge, amicus briefs were filed from parties on both sides of the political aisle.”
Recent legislation has since put a stop to drive-thru voting, but it remains a standout moment for Franco.
“At a time when many people were hesitant to leave their home, much less stand in line or polling location with strangers, I was proud to be a part of expanding access to the polls in a safe, secure manner,” she said.

Edward Carrizales-Saucedo (’13)

University of Houston Student Edward Carrizales-Saucedo to Serve as UH System Student Regent
By Bryan Luhn 713-743-0954
June 8, 2022

Edward Carrizales-Saucedo, student regent on the University of Houston System Board of Regents
University of Houston graduate student Edward Carrizales-Saucedo is the first person in his family to go to college. Though he acknowledges the hard work of his parents, growing up he never thought a college education would be possible.
Not only was it possible, but Carrizales-Saucedo was appointed today by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott to serve as the student regent on the UH System Board of Regents. He’ll work with the nine other members to make governing decisions for the system and each of its four universities. Although he won’t have a vote on the Board, Carrizales-Saucedo will be the voice of the system’s nearly 75,000 students.
“I am honored to be selected to the Board of Regents and look forward to bridging the gap between students and the administration as we work toward elevating all of the system universities,” said Carrizales-Saucedo, who is pursuing a master’s degree in business administration (MBA) at the C.T. Bauer College of Business at UH. “I really want to help our students get the best college experience they can.”
Carrizales-Saucedo graduated from UH with a degree in business administration in 2013 and started his career as a business analyst. He got involved in alumni groups and was a founding member of the UH Hispanic Alumni Association. It was there he discovered a passion for helping students find their voice. He is also currently a vice-chairman of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo Alumni Council, and an Emerging Leader on the Houston Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.
“I want to congratulate Mr. Carrizales-Saucedo on his appointment to the Board of Regents. He is an exceptional student and leader that will bring a unique and valuable perspective to the Board. I am confident he will be an outstanding representative for all UH System students,” said UH System Chancellor Renu Khator.
Carrizales-Saucedo keeps a busy schedule. When he’s not studying, he works as an assistant vice president at Amegy Bank, a division of Zions Bancorporation, N.A. He felt the timing was perfect to apply for the student regent appointment.
“When I was an undergraduate, I worked full time, went to school and I was involved as much as I could be. But it’s always been my goal to be a student regent,” he said. “I just love the University of Houston and the impact it’s had on me. I hope I can make that same impact on the students of the University of Houston System.”

Stacey Neal Mayfield Combest (’87)

Governor Greg Abbott has appointed Stacey Neal (Mayfield) Combest to the Texas Commission on Special Education Funding for a term at the pleasure of the Governor. The commission studies, discusses, and addresses specific policy issues and develops recommendations to address issues related to special education funding.

Stacey Neal (Mayfield) Combest of Huntsville is an ADR Certified Mediator and a member of the Texas Association of Mediators. She is a parent and guardian of a son with severe IDD. She is legislative director for the Denton State Supported Living Center Family Association, legislative committee member of Parents and Allies for Remarkable Texans, and the former President of Texans for State Supported Living Centers. She is a Texan advocate for Voice of Reason and previously served on the Long-Term Care Subcommittee reporting to the Committee for Children with Special Needs (SB 643), and she continues to educate our state legislators to successfully pass pro-disability legislation. Stacey received a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the University of Houston and a Juris Doctor degree from the University of North Texas Dallas College Of Law.

Daniel O. Wong (’83, M.S.C.E. ’85, Ph.D. ’88)

Daniel O. Wong (’83, M.S.C.E. ’85, Ph.D. ’88) will be honored as the 2022 Engineer of the Year on 2.25.22.

Daniel O. Wong, Ph.D., P.E. is President and CEO of Tolunay-Wong Engineers, Inc., headquartered in Houston with 10 offices in Texas and Louisiana. He is a licensed engineer in Texas and has published a dozen peer-reviewed technical papers.

After arriving from Macau (a former Portuguese colony in China) in 1980, Daniel Wong graduated from the University of Houston with a B.S.C.E. in 1983, an M.S.C.E. in 1985, and a Ph.D. in 1988. He has a Master of Arts in Theology from Fuller Theological Seminary.

Dr. Wong was the recipient of the Distinguished Engineering Alumnus from the University of Houston (2009) and was inducted into the UH Academy of Distinguished Civil & Environmental Engineers (2011).

He is an adjunct professor at the University of Houston Civil and Environmental Engineering Department.

Dr. Wong has been appointed by the Governor to serve on the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board in 2021. He is also a past gubernatorial appointee to the Texas Board of Professional Engineers as a member (2006-2013) and Chairman (2013-2020).

He is a member of Texas Society of Professional Engineers, American Society of Civil Engineers and American Council of Engineering.

He is the receipt of the John B. Hawley award from ASCE Texas Section in 1990, the Young Engineer of the Year by TSPE Houston Chapter in 1993, and the Distinguished Engineer from Texas Engineering Foundation (2016).

Dr. Wong is a former At-Large Councilmember for the City of Sugar Land (2002-2008). He served on the Board of the Houston-Galveston Area Council and the Board of Texas Municipal League. Active in Fort Bend County, he is an officer for the Fort Bend Economic Development Council. He is a former board member of the Fort Bend YMCA and the Fort Bend American Heart Association.

He and his wife, Mei, reside in Missouri City, Texas.

David Keller (’74)

David Keller was awarded the Key to the City of Greenville by Mayor Knox White on April 26, 2021 for his 9 years of service on the Greenville City Planning Commission, including four terms as Chairman.

Taylor Ballard (’14)

Taylor Brione Ballard was honored as the 2021 Distinguished Young Alumni Awardee from the Hilton College Alumni Association. The purpose of this award is to recognize and honor young alumni who have excelled beyond the norm early in their careers, or young alumni who exhibit leadership, involvement, and hold key volunteer positions on campus or within the Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management. Taylor Brione is the owner of Experiences By Taylor Brione, a boutique wedding and event management firm