Support the Texas State Guard


After Hurricane Harvey struck Houston and southeast Texas, the men and women of the Texas State Guard hurried down to offer support and aid. These soldiers worked around the clock helping displaced families, clearing debris and even spending time playing games with some of the children in the shelters.

Former NTC Chairman Colonel Robert Hastings led his regiment during the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey and shared during the September Board of Directors meeting a first-hand account of the devastation after the storm, as well as the strong outpouring of support from not only across Texas, but also from across the country.

The Texas State Guard is a volunteer service that provides mission-ready military forces to assist state and local authorities in times of state emergencies.

Donations to support morale and welfare for soldiers of the Texas State Guard can be made to the Texas State Guard Nonprofit Association, a 401c3 registered in the State of Texas.

Mail checks to:
Texas State Guard Nonprofit Association
P.O. Box 9584
Austin, TX 78766
They will send a tax receipt if requested.
Please indicate on the check “for use by 4th Regiment.”

Thank you to Col. Hastings and his Regiment for all they did for our neighbors in South Texas.

How to help Hurricane Harvey Victims

Our friends and colleagues in south Texas are in need of our help in the wake of Hurricane Harvey, which devastated the coast this weekend.

Texans have heart as big as our state, and that’s on full display when tragedy strikes. There are so many ways to help, and no gift is too small. Below, you can learn about ways you can assist:


Financial Donations

Austin Pets Alive! (Also seeking homes for rescued pets)

American Red Cross


Catholic Charities (Galveston/Houston)

Salvation Army

SPCA of Texas

Texas Diaper Bank

United Way

Go Fund Me has also created a landing page of Hurricane Harvey related fundraisers.

Harmony Public Schools

Supply Donations


  • new underwear
  • new socks
  • new warmups for men, women, children and infants
  • pillows, pillow cases and blankets
  • flip flops for showers
  • towels and wash cloths
  • toiletries/hygiene products
  • baby formula and baby wipes, bottles, diapers
  • Graco Pack n’ Plays for babies to sleep in

SPCA of Texas is looking for the following supplies: cat litter, litter boxes, towels, blankets, large wire crates, toys, treats, pet beds, newspaper and gas gift cards. In-kind donations can be brought to the SPCA of Texas’ Jan Rees-Jones Animal Care Center in Dallas or the SPCA of Texas’ Russell H. Perry Animal Care Center in McKinney

Texas Diaper Bank

Trusted World; 3-8 p.m.; 15660 N. Dallas Parkway, Dallas, TX 75248


Food Donations

While food banks in the area will be affected by an influx of people, financial donations, rather than food donations, are more beneficial to these charitable groups, as food banks can purchase food at better prices. Please consider a financial donation to a food bank below rather than a food donation.

Feeding Texas

Tarrant Area Food Bank

North Texas Food Bank

Houston Food Bank

Galveston Food Bank

Food Bank of the Golden Crescent (Victoria)

Corpus Christi Food Bank

Southeast Texas Food Bank (Beaumont)

Food Bank of the Rio Grande Valley (Pharr)

Brazos Valley Food Bank (Bryan)

Central Texas Food Bank (Austin)

San Antonio Food Bank


Blood Donations

American Red Cross

Carter Blood Care



The Salvation Army has yet to take official volunteers for the Mega-Shelter at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center, but if you would like to sign up, please visit this link


The Dallas Observer has also created a master list of restaurants making financial donations to the cause, which you can find here.

“The Shock” Announces Move to North Texas

Photo courtesy of

The Shock point guard Temeka Johnson. Photo courtesy of

Late last week, the WNBA announced their plans to move The Shock from their home in Tulsa to North Texas in the 2016 season.

It’s no surprise owners unanimously approved the relocation with North Texas already serving as the home to 13 professional athletic teams, including the Dallas Cowboys, Texas Rangers, Dallas Mavericks and Dallas Stars.

The Shock won three WNBA championships while based in Detroit, but have not had much success since their move to Tulsa in 2010. Stakeholders hope that enthusiastic North Texas sports fans will welcome the new team with open arms.

Pending approval from the University of Texas System, The Shock will play at UT Arlington’s College Park Center starting in the 2016 season. The center seats about 7,000 people, which will be just right for The Shock’s growing average attendance, which reached 5,566 in 2014.

Screenshot 2015-07-29 10.16.09

North Texas Skies

While DFW International Airport and Love Field may hold the eyes of consumers when it comes to air travel, there are 13 airports throughout North Texas that keep our region’s reputation as a business-friendly, logistics and manufacturing hub soaring above other U.S. metro areas. It’s no surprise that the largest global airline, American Airlines, and the largest domestic airline, Southwest Airlines, both call North Texas home with their Fortune 500 headquarters here.


As the region’s largest airport, DFW International Airport serves more than just the flight demands of corporate and leisure travelers. More than 647,000 tons of air cargo go through the airport each year on top of the more than 63 million passengers, making it one of the world’s busiest airports. With seven runways – the most in the world – and  five terminals, more than 165 and an average customs time under 12 minutes, DFW has become a global logistics force.


Designed for cargo, corporate and military aviation, Fort Worth Alliance Airport sits on nearly 1,200 acres and has its own U.S. customs clearance and first-class services for any cargo handling needs. Named the nation’s fastest growing industrial complex, Alliance Airport’s success has brought a boom to retail and infrastructure in north Fort Worth with new companies, shops and housing going up daily.


McKinney National Airport started with a 7,002-foot runway in the middle of open ground and never looked back. With ample amounts of  acreage that allow for years of expansion, McKinney National Airport has 24 hour monitored access, their own FAA tower and nearby golfing, restaurants and wineries. Located in Collin County, one of the fastest-growing counties in the state, this airport sits just 30 miles north of downtown Dallas.


Addison Airport lies in the middle of the “Platinum Corridor,” 35 million square feet of office space, gourmet restaurants and upscale shopping. It also boasts an FAA tower, a customs clearance and their own aircraft maintenance crew Home to the base flight operations of various government entities, flight schools and agricultural entities, Addison Airport helps support local business ventures and overall growth.

To read more on the expansion of these and other airports in North Texas, check out Volume 4 of NTX Magazine.

Facebook Data Center comes to North Texas

Source: Facebook Newsroom

The friendly approach to business in North Texas has brought many familiar face to the region. And now, we’re adding a well-known friend to the North Texas profile. Facebook announced yesterday their plans to build a $1 billion data center in north Fort Worth in Hillwood’s Alliance development. The company already broke ground on what will be a 440,103-square-foot data hall and a 69,755-square-foot administrative building. This comes following a May announcement from the City of Fort Worth, detailing a tax incentive package that hinted to a fairly large company coming to the area.

Why North Texas? Facebook, a global pioneer for technology and social connection, knew that the region not only provided a central location with easy access to fiber and renewable energy, but we also offer space. Despite the exponential growth of North Texas, there is still plenty of land for the region’s continued sprawl. As global internet access skyrockets, this facility can grow along with the number of Facebook users.

With sustainability on the mind, Facebook wants to use the power of wind to keep their servers active. To power the data center, General Electric has agreed to supply 119 wind turbines for a newly built wind farm in Clay County. When completed, the farm will generate more than 200 megawatts of energy, which could power 10,000 homes for a year. The goal, Facebook reps say, is for the new Fort Worth location to be powered by 100 percent renewable energy.

Facebook already has data centers in Oregon, Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina and Sweden, each bringing hundreds of jobs to the community. The new data center in Fort Worth will bring 40-100 direct jobs through Facebook but will end up creating thousands of new jobs for North Texans as they build and manage this facility and the new wind farm. The newest location will consist of three 250,000-square-foot buildings on a 110-acre plot, is set to be in operation by summer 2016. Facebook plans on hiring at least 40 full-time employees for the Fort Worth site, earning an average of $70,000 annually, with expectations to add more than 100 jobs in the future.

Mabrie Jackson Named Dallas Business Journal 2015 Women in Business Honoree

The Dallas Business Journal unveiled its list of the 2015 Women in Business honorees and NTC President & CEO Mabrie Jackson is listed among the 25 dynamic female business leaders. Mabrie is in good company with North Texas Commission Board Member Michelle Miller of Verizon, basketball legend Nancy Lieberman, Southlake Mayor Laura Hill and Mary Frances Burleson, President and CEO of Ebby Halliday Companies. Choosing this year’s honorees was anything but simple; a selection committee made up of previous winners sifted through more than 250 nominations looking at the overall impact each woman makes on the region’s business community. Read the Dallas Business Journal’s full article HERE, and view Mabrie’s full bio along with the list of all honorees below.

To celebrate the achieves of these women, the Dallas Business Journal is hosting a luncheon at the Irving Convention Center on August 25, 2015. Purchase tickets for the event HERE.

The Dallas Business Journal’s 2015 Women in Business Honorees

Suzy Bátiz, Founder and CEO, Poo~Pourri

Mary Frances Burleson, President and CEO, Ebby Halliday Companies

Delta Emerson, President, Global Shared Services, Ryan LLC

Ruth Farrar, Chief Administrative Officer and Partner, Sendero

Cathy Fraser, Senior Vice President Human Resources, Tenet Healthcare

Julie Hamrick, Founder and Chief Analyst, Ignite Sales Inc.

Laura Hill, Co-Owner of Downey Publishing and Mayor of Southlake

Susan Hoff, Chief Strategy and Operations Officer, United Way of Metropolitan Dallas

Mabrie Jackson, President and CEO, North Texas Commission

Keri Kaiser, Vice President of Marketing and Communications, Children’s Health System of Texas

Ashlee Kleinert, Owner/Managing Director of Ruthie’s Rolling Cafe and Co-Founder/Managing Director of Executives in Action

Nancy Lieberman, Founder and Chairwoman, Nancy Lieberman Charities

Laura MacNeil, Executive Vice President, Wells Fargo Regional Commercial Banking

Beatriz “Betty” Manetta, CEO, Associar LLC and Argent Associates

Joyce Mazero, Partner, Perkins Coie LLP

Carol Meyer, Vice President, Merrill Lynch; The Meyer Fontana Group

Michelle R. Miller, Central Texas Region President, Verizon Wireless

Amy Power, President and CEO, The Power Group

Tracy Preston, Senior Vice President, General Counsel, The Neiman Marcus Group

Melissa Reiff, President and Chief Operating Officer, The Container Store

Deborah Ryan, Partner, Squire Patton Boggs (US) LLP

Rachel Sanchez, CEO, Prestige Maintenance USA

Elizabeth Solender, President, Solender/Hall Inc.

Tiffany Tippins, CEO, Impactful Wealth Solutions

Gauthami Vemula, Founder, Color Me Safe

North Texas Commission President & CEO Mabrie Jackson

2015_JACKSONMabrie Jackson joined the North Texas Commission as President and CEO in July 2010 and is the 40-year-old organization’s first female leader. Jackson comes to the NTC with a varied background that includes public service through a seat on the Plano City Council, roles with Fortune 500 companies and, most recently, serving as the interim President and CEO of the Plano Chamber of Commerce.

Jackson’s background in the public sector includes serving on the Plano City Council in 2008 and 2009. After stepping down from the Plano City Council in 2009, Jackson ran for the Texas Legislature as the Republican primary and run-off election candidate for the Texas House District 66 seat. Jackson briefly served as interim president and CEO of the Plano Chamber of Commerce.

Accompanying her civic and political background, Jackson brings an extensive history of corporate experience. She worked at Microsoft Corporation for 13 years incubating award-winning, revenue-producing relationships with international, national and local technology companies. Prior to Microsoft, Jackson spent 10 years in financial services marketing for EDS. She worked in virtually every aspect of public relations, including media relations, marketing collateral, advertisements, promotions and special events.

Jackson currently serves as Chair of the Advisory Council for the School of Economic, Political and Policy Sciences at the University of Texas at Dallas, a Governor’s Appointee to the Statewide Health Coordinating Council, a member of the Energy Future Holdings Sustainable Energy Advisory Board, Prison Entrepreneur Program (PEP) Advisory Board, Texas Association of Business Board, Vision North Texas Management Committee, the North Central Texas Council of Governments Clean Air Steering Committee, and the AT&T Performing Arts Center Communications Committee.  She is a Rotary International Paul Harris Fellow. Jackson previously served as President of the Collin County Child Protective Services Board, on the University of North Texas President Search Committee, on the North Texas Super Bowl XLV Host Committee, H. Wayne Hendrick Scholarship Board, the Assistance Center of Collin County Board, and as a member of several National League of Cities and Texas Municipal League committees.

Jackson is currently pursuing a Master’s degree at SMU in Global Studies and is a graduate of Plano Senior High School and The University of Texas at Austin. While attending the university, she served as a legislative assistant in the Texas House of Representatives. Mabrie is married to Marshall Jackson, and they have two sons.


You Did It: High-Speed Rail Moves Forward

The power of the North Texas Commission’s membership was evident in the days leading up to budget discussions that would have killed the high-speed rail connecting North Texas and Houston. Our members mobilized and quickly reached out to Sen. Jane Nelson and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, and the language that would have barred the Texas Department of Transportation from spending any state funds toward “subsidizing or assisting in the construction of high-speed passenger rail.” Texas Central Rail has said on numerous occasions that this $12 billion project will be entirely privately funded.

The project is still underway with an anticipated launch date in 2021. Thank you to all of you who showed your support by reaching out to our state’s leaders. And, thank you Sen. Nelson and Lt. Gov. Patrick for your leadership on this very important matter.




For information on the actions NTC members are supporters took to help make this possible, please read a previously posted blog HERE.

Bringing High-speed Rail to Texas: We need your help!

Texas is slated to get a high-speed rail connecting North Texas to Houston. This private commuter rail line would be the first of its kind in the United States and would further cement Texas as a national leader. However some Texas Senators seek to halt progress by adding a rider to the state budget that would prohibit this railway.

Texas high speed rail texas central rail time to act

It’s time to act, and the North Texas Commission urges you as a regional representative of your company or organization to


Join the Texas Central Railway’s letter campaign to voice your support for the future of transportation.

This button connects to a simple form that will enable you to share your voice with the your state lawmakers at the click of a button.

Why is it so important to REMOVE Rider 48 from article 7 of the Senate appropriations bill 48?

Rider 48 is bad public policy that places government in the role of picking business winners and losers in the state’s transportation industry.

 If enacted, Rider 48 will likely kill this important and necessary infrastructure project. It will prohibit TxDOT from working with Texas Central Railway to:

– Design and develop the proposed Dallas station adjacent to or over I-30

– Coordinate on design for overpass when the line crosses a state or federal highway

– Find connectivity and land access solutions for landowners

– Prevent TxDOT for participating in the entire EIS process (which Texas Central Railway is already paying for)

let your voice be heard. help keep high-speed rail in texas.



Image courtesy of 

Congratulations Leadership North Texas Class 6!

For the past nine months, a group of 29 leaders have gone to school, explored the world of sports, dissected our economy, learned about the region’s healthcare and even did hard time in Huntsville. Today they complete their Leadership North Texas Class 6 journey, but their path to regional leadership is just beginning.

Leadership North Texas presented by Oncor is a graduate-level, regional leadership program that recruits, develops and supports leaders who have a commitment to civic engagement and the North Texas region.

The graduates of Leadership North Texas Class 6 are the following:


Shannon Bettis Color
Shannon Bettis, Senior Vice President, Southside Bank
Ellen Buck
Ellen Buck, Senior Director, Oncor Electric Delivery
Fred Busche 2
Fred Busche, Councilmember, Town of Highland Village
Linda Caram
Linda Caram, Regional Director, External Affairs, AT&T
Allen Corry_2014-1
Allen Corry, Assistant Vice President, DFW International Airport
Amanda DeGan 2013b
Amanda DeGan, Assistant Town Manager, Town of Westlake
LaToyia Dennis
LaToyia Dennis, Director of Development, T.D. Jakes Ministries
Ariane Einecker
Ariane Einecker, Regional Chief Development Officer, American Red Cross, North Texas Region
Mark Felts, Principal Consultant, Slalom
Joy Goodrum
Joy Goodrum, Executive Director, La Buena Vida Youth Leadership Foundation
Sheila Haley
Dr. Sheila Haley, Assistant Clinical Professor, Texas Woman’s University
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Susan Harris, Manager, Public Affairs, Atmos Energy
Hatley, Trish
Tricia Hatley, Vice President, Freese and Nichols
Victoria Huynh
Victoria Huyhn, Deputy City Attorney, City of Plano
Dena 2012 Shot 1
Dena Jackson, Ph.D., Vice President of Grants and Research, Dallas Women’s Foundation 
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Mark Jacobs, Team Leader, Regions Bank
Lori McMahon - headshot
Lori McMahon, Deputy Chief of Staff for U.S. Congressman Sam Johnson
Steve Mitchell Headshot
Steve Mitchell, Project Manager, Thomson Reuters and Richardson City Councilmember
Jonathan Morrison Paths Forward
Jonathan Morrison, Operations Manager, Morrison & Company
Greg Porter
Greg Porter, City Manager, City of Cedar Hill
Eddie Reyes
Eddie Reyes, Veteran, Women & Minority Business Consultant
Michelle Headshot 061314
Michelle Riddell, Vice President of Strategic Communications and Community Investment, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas
Ron Ruthven 
Ron Ruthven, Founder, R3F Consulting

LNT Photo Slobodin 

Howard Slobodin, General Counsel and Secretary, Board of Directors, Trinity River Authority of Texas
Amy Stelter Photo 
Amy Stelter, Manager of Governmental Relations, Trinity River Authority of Texas
SueTejml-professional photo
Sue Tejml, Mayor, Town of Copper Canyon
Rebecca Tucker high res pic 
Becky Tucker, Vice President, Integrated Health Campuses for Texas Health Resources
Mitch Whitten 
Mitch Whitten, Vice President of Marketing and Communications, Fort Worth Convention and Visitors Bureau
Karen Zahaluk Headshot 3 20130822  
Karen Zahaluk, Program Manager, Hope for the Brave

Recruitment is underway for Leadership North Texas Class 7. Since the program’s inception, nearly 200 leaders from across North Texas have participated, including a state representative, numerous mayors and city council members, city managers and economic development professionals, business leaders, higher education executives and nonprofit leaders.

Over a nine-month period, the class addresses and discusses topics such as the history of North Texas, regionalism, our economy, workforce and education, sustainable development, the impact of incarceration and a plan for civic engagement. They learn best practices in regional stewardship from experts and other regions, and explore how to collaborate to best address current regional issues.

The application deadline for Leadership North Texas Class 7 is noon, June 12, 2015. Applications are available online or through the North Texas Commission office at 972-621-0400. Tuition for the program is $3,000.

Apply Today on Blue tile-banner size-01


Oncor is the Presenting Sponsor for Leadership North Texas.

North Texas Universities Make the Grade

TCU_GraduationAs graduation ceremonies commence across North Texas and millions of recent grads enter the workforce, the U.S. News and World Report has released its annual ranking of graduate programs and many of the schools in North Texas made the grade.

In addition to this annual report, online job website Glassdoor listed their top 10 in-demand jobs in North Texas. Between these two sources, we’re seeing trends emerging within a few careers, specifically nursing and engineering.

For nursing programs, said the US News ranking, several North Texas universities made the top 100 graduate programs, including Texas Woman’s University, Texas Christian University, Baylor University and the University of Texas at Arlington. And, it’s no surprise that nursing ranks fourth on Glassdoor’s list of in-demand jobs in North Texas. With a one of the fastest growing populations in the U.S., North Texas has a steadily increasing demand for healthcare professionals.  There are currently more than 630 open nursing jobs in the region according to Glassdoor.

Engineering also made it on both lists, with U.S. News listing University of Texas at Dallas and University of Texas at Arlington in the top 100 graduate programs. Glassdoor aggregated online data to determine there are nearly 300 job openings for Systems Engineer landing them seventh on the list of top 10 in-demand jobs in North Texas. This growing demand for engineers can be partially  attributed to the retirement of Baby Boomers in the workforce. The average age of engineers at many international companies based in North Texas, like Lockheed Martin and Texas Instruments, is more than 40 years old.

The U.S. News and World Report ranking also had North Texas schools listed in various other categories including law, primary medical care, medical research and counseling.