Katy Business January 2016

| January 1, 2016

Volunteer firefighter Lt. Simon VanDyk.

Volunteer firefighter Lt. Simon VanDyk.


In recognition of outstanding service throughout the West Houston-Katy area, Harris County Emergency Services District No. 48 (ESD 48) congratulates Lt. Simon VanDyk (ESD 48) and Battalion Chief Dana Massey (Katy Fire Department) as winners of the First Annual “Chief Gary Tilton Firefighter of the Year Award.” ESD 48’s Fire Chief Jeff Hevey said, “I am very proud of these two recipients and feel both awards are well-deserved!”

VanDyk has been a volunteer firefighter for six years. He is currently with the Harris County ESD 48 and recently became its public information officer. Massey, of the Katy Fire Department, also has a record of stellar service.

“A firefighter’s job requires a lot of dedication, courage and commitment to the community you serve, and both Lt. VanDyk and Battalion Chief Massey have set excellent examples of what it takes to be a great firefighter,” ESD 48 President and Commissioner Marshall Kramer noted.

American Legion Post 164 of Katy presented the awards during a ceremony on Dec. 23 at the Katy Elks Lodge.


Peter Huntsman

Peter Huntsman


Peter R. Huntsman, president and CEO of Huntsman Corporation, has been named to the Memorial Hermann Health System Board of Directors, effective Jan. 1.

“Memorial Hermann is a nationally recognized healthcare provider that has served the Houston region for more than 100 years,” Huntsman said. “I look forward to serving with an organization that has provided such a vital service to our community. The challenges and opportunities of the healthcare industry will be an important base of our quality of life as the Houston region continues to be a global leader in so many areas.”

Huntsman Corporation is a global manufacturer and marketer of differentiated chemicals. Its operating companies manufacture products for a variety of global industries, including automotive, aviation, textiles, footwear, paints and coatings, construction, technology, agriculture, healthcare, detergent, personal care and appliances.

“Peter is a tremendous businessman, civic leader and humanitarian,” said Will Williams, chair of the Memorial Hermann Health System board. “We are thrilled to have someone of his caliber on our board. We will welcome his insights and perspective about how Memorial Hermann can continue to provide the highest quality, safest and best patient care in this region.”

Huntsman also serves on other executive boards and councils including those of the Wharton School of Business, the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion in The Woodlands, Montgomery County Women’s Center and the Interfaith of The Woodlands. He also helps to direct a number of domestic and international humanitarian projects funded by the Huntsman family and Huntsman companies.   Huntsman also serves as CEO of the Huntsman Cancer Foundation and the Huntsman Family Foundation.




Harris County ESD 48 Fire Department has announced that its training program has been certified as a Texas Commission on Fire Protection (TCFP) training facility for both classroom and online study in certain disciplines.

“Whether a veteran firefighter or a recent fire academy graduate, members of the fire service often struggle to find cost-effective training opportunities close to their department,” said Division Chief Glen Trahan. “We are pleased to now offer another option for the men and women in the fire service to gain the advanced training and certifications they need to not only be a safer fire fighter, but also to pursue career development and advancement opportunities.”

HCESD 48 will offer the following TCFP level classes in both classroom and online formats: Driver/Operator-Pumper, Instructor I & II, Fire Officer I & II and Incident Safety Officer. Instructor III and Wildland to be offered soon.

“This designation makes HCESD 48 FD the only fire department-based training facility in the Katy area and the fourth largest in Houston to offer both classroom and online programs for the most in-demand disciplines that TCFP offers,” said Captain Vince Moreno.

For more information, or to inquire about future classes, visit esd48fire.org.


Smart Financial Centre at Sugar Land, courtesy ACE Theatrical Group


ACE SL, LLC (ACE) and the City of Sugar Land have partnered to develop the Smart Financial Centre at Sugar Land, the region’s first state-of-the-art, indoor performance venue. The $84 million project will further position the city as a destination location for culture and entertainment.

Located off of U.S. Highway 59 and University Boulevard, Smart Financial Centre at Sugar Land is situated on a portion of 38.5 acres of City property. It will set a new standard for live performance venues and will be equipped to host a wide array of programming including national music and comedy artists, children and family entertainment, theatrically-staged productions and cultural and performing arts attractions. It will also be open to the community for local graduations and community theater performances.

“This is a project unlike any other in the Houston-region, one that supports tourism and economic goals that have been identified throughout more than a decade of discussion––including support from a citizen-led Visioning Task Force and a public vote in 2008,” said Mayor James Thompson. “Along with a new 50-acre business site for Fluor, the Texas Instruments campus, the future expansion of Class A office space, and plans for a hotel/conference center and other amenities, the Smart Financial Centre at Sugar Land is the cornerstone of an exciting development that will increase tourism, provide unique destination activities for local and regional visitors, promote capital investment and create new jobs.”

Designed for flexibility, the 200,000-square-foot venue incorporates innovative moveable walls that can expand and contract to create four different seating capacities that range from an intimate setting of 3,400 seats to a maximum of 6,400. It also features 14 luxury suites, corporate hospitality areas, and the latest sound, light and video technology. Other offerings include space to house up to 18 trucks and buses, as well as 2,500 guest parking spaces.

“We are excited to provide the greater Houston area with a multi-functional, state-of-the-art performance venue located in Sugar Land, Texas,” said Gary Becker, ACE SL. “Its customizable features and flexible design allow us to easily transition from one performance to the next.”

In addition to its upscale design, ACE SL partnered with prestigious companies for sponsorships. In February 2015, Smart Financial Credit Union was awarded the naming rights of the performance venue, agreeing to a five-year term with a five-year option to extend. Mercedes-Benz of Sugar Land is another notable sponsor as the official automotive sponsor. The luxury partnership includes a VIP lounge for suite and premium seat holders, the Mercedes-Benz of Sugar Land concert series, automotive displays, audience engagement opportunities such as interactive kiosks and test drive events, and exclusive reveal events to showcase new Mercedes-Benz models. Other sponsors for the facility include Silver Eagle, Think Energy and PepsiCo.

“Smart Financial is proud to support Sugar Land as it develops into an entertainment hub for tourists and locals alike. We are a locally based Texas institution and we believe in giving back to the growing communities we serve,” said Gary Tuma, President and CEO of Smart Financial Credit Union. “We cannot wait to open the doors and welcome the community into this beautiful, state-of-the-art venue.”

The Smart Financial Centre will attract large-scale, national performances and position Sugar Land as a destination location for culture and entertainment. It follows the installation of Constellation Field, home to the Sugar Land Skeeters. ACE SL, LLC and the City of Sugar Land broke ground on the Smart Financial Centre in December 2014. Linbeck Group, LLC is serving as the construction manager for the facility, which was designed by Martinez + Johnson Architecture. It is projected for completion in fall 2016.


Katy Business January 2016

Category: Business

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