Katy Business January 2018

| January 1, 2018

Purple Songs Can Fly Founder Anita Kruse (center) and her assistant (right) look on while a child undergoing treatment at Texas Children’s Hospital records his song.

Purple Songs Can Fly Founder Anita Kruse (center) and her assistant (right) look on while a child undergoing treatment at Texas Children’s Hospital records his song.

‹Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus Cuts Ribbon on Purple Songs Can Fly Recording Studio

Families impacted by cancer and blood disorders treated at Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus will benefit from the recently opened Purple Songs Can Fly recording studio at the Katy-area hospital.

A first-of-its kind program, Purple Songs Can Fly, a partner of the Periwinkle Arts In Medicine Program at Texas Children’s Cancer and Hematology Centers, provides a musical outlet for the many children being treated for cancer and blood disorders. Patients and their siblings are afforded the opportunity to work with founder Anita Kruse and other professional composers to write and record their own songs in an in-house studio.

For more than a decade, patient families at Texas Children’s Hospital in the Texas Medical Center have benefited from this creative outlet, with thousands of songs recorded.

The songs created by children through Purple Songs Can Fly really do fly. They have flown on two space shuttle missions, been on the in-flight playlists of both Continental and United Airlines, toured the world with The Rolling Stones, traveled on an undersea NOAA mission and summited Mount Everest.

With this new studio at Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus, even more children will be able to realize their dreams and wishes and strengthen their imaginations through the creative expression of music.



(L-R): Kathy Baker, Lisa Schillaci, Wayne Voss, Gary Kempf, John Walters and Angela Esghouei do the honors with the “All Aboard Katy!” art project.

(L-R): Kathy Baker, Lisa Schillaci, Wayne Voss, Gary Kempf, John Walters and Angela Esghouei do the honors with the “All Aboard Katy!” art project.

Houston Methodist St. Catherine Hospital Supports Katy Heritage Society’s Art Project

Houston Methodist St. Catherine Hospital now proudly displays a nine-foot-long locomotive at the corner of South Fry Road and Brittania Drive. On Tuesday, Dec. 12, the ribbon cutting ceremony unveiled the newly painted train and strengthened the ties between Houston Methodist St. Catherine and Katy Heritage Society’s “All Aboard Katy!” art project.

“This train is much more than just a symbol of Katy, it is a shared identity of Katy’s residents, businesses, artists and philanthropists,” said Houston Methodist St. Catherine Administrator Gary Kempf. “Not only does this train represent an important part of Katy’s history, but it also allows us at Houston Methodist St. Catherine to show our dedication as active members of the Katy community today and for years to come.”

“All Aboard Katy!” is Katy’s first, large scale community public art initiative. After the project launched, CHRISTUS St. Catherine sponsored and commissioned the painting of the train. In February 2014, CHRISTUS St. Catherine joined the Houston Methodist system to become Houston Methodist St. Catherine Hospital, a long-term acute care hospital,  and the train was temporarily removed from the lawn.

Eager to show its Katy pride once more, the Houston Methodist St. Catherine team set out to revamp the old train to tout the Houston Methodist voice and vision. After six months of hard work by the Supply Chain Department at Houston Methodist Hospital, the newly remodeled train is now complete and can be seen on the lawn of Houston Methodist St. Catherine.

“I am grateful to everybody who made this beautiful project come to life,” said Kempf. “This has been an incredible year filled with highs and lows for Katy and the Greater Houston area, but I couldn’t be more proud of how strong our community has proven
to be.”

Several other Katy businesses also proudly display their uniquely painted “All Aboard Katy!” train in front of their building. For seven years, this project has worked to promote community, identity and tourism for Katy.


Katy ISD Assistant Principal Nominated as “Life Changer of the Year”

Lisa Forney

Lisa Forney

Katy Independent School District is proud to announce that Cardiff Junior High (CJH) Assistant Principal Lisa Forney has been nominated by a local business partner as a “Life Changer of the Year” for going above and beyond for her students and community.

After Hurricane Harvey, Forney put pen to paper and outlined a comprehensive plan to meet the immediate needs of the Cardiff faculty and staff who were hardest hit by the storm. Thus was born the “CJH Boots on the Ground Initiative” which consisted of a group of volunteers who cleaned out flooded homes, delivered food to work crews and collected donated items. Forney reached out to nonprofit organizations to sponsor families and support them as they worked to get back on their feet. Because of her detailed planning, communication skills and her dedication to the community, many families received the help they needed after the storm.

Her work didn’t end when the flood waters receded. With the help of many staff members, she organized an essential needs pantry that efficiently served over 200 Cardiff families and community members. Also, as the Thanksgiving season approached, Forney along with help from Tays Junior High volunteers, many local community partners and nonprofit organizations led the coordination of the CJH Thanksgiving Pop-Up Market which provided turkeys and packaged food to over 100 families. Her goal was to provide a stress-free Thanksgiving.

The school community can help her win the National Grand Prize by visiting the Forney Life Changer of the Year profile and leaving a comment. The Life Changer of the Year is a national program that recognizes K-12 educators and school employees for the positive difference they make in the lives of their students by exemplifying excellence, positive influence and leadership.

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