News 2017-08-11T09:25:04+00:00
16Oct, 2017

Amy Ritter Honored by The Leader

By |

Congratulations to Chamber Board member Amy Ritter who was recently named by The Leader as one of its “30 under 40” business leaders in the community.

Amy “is a Vice President at Allegiance Bank, advancing from an entry level position when the bank opened back in 2007. She takes care of a portfolio of customers, many from this community that

consider her a trusted partner in their business operation. She has also been on the Board of Directors for the Greater Heights Chamber of Commerce and now serves as Treasurer for the Chamber, buther commitment to the Chamber does not stop there. She has served them tirelessly for her entire tenure in the area. She has held volunteer positions with the Business Expo, their annual Gala and Idol of the Heights. She has diligently served on the Crawfish Festival Committee, helping grow that event to what it is today. When called upon, she answers the call with servant leadership. She also inspires others to serve. This community could use more dedicated volunteers like Amy Ritter.”


3Oct, 2017

A Night at the Oscars Sparkled with Fun, Glamour and Excitement!

By |

Following the devastation of Hurricane Harvey, it was good to celebrate. The 2017 Chamber Chairman’s Gala was memorable in many ways, especially for its theme: A Night at the Oscars.  If you had not seen the Houston Show Choir before, you were treated to their enthusiasm, extensive musical repertoire and staging. Additional entertainment included: David Flores Jazz Combo, HITS Theatre, Susan Martin Blues, and the Houston Horizon Reunion Quartet. All of whom brought forth their special talents and contributed greatly to the evening’s enjoyment.

And for the first time, an “after party” was staged at Harold’s rooftop across 19th street.

Award recipients and nominees included:

Rising Star Award recipient was MaryBeth Wegner. Nominees were: Brooke Brown, Paige Cassel-Williams and Darren Tompkins.

Buy Local Award  recipient was Jack Van Pelt. Nominees were: Kathryn and Sybren Van der Pol, Alli Jarrett and Sara Perez.

Business of the Year Award recipient was Houston Highway Credit Union. Nominees were Members Trust of the SW Federal Credit Union, Memorial Hermann Greater Heights Hospital and PrimeWay Federal Credit Union.

Volunteer of the Year Award  recipient was Cindy Reibenstein. Nominees were Bonnie Sheeren, Garden Oaks Montessori School and North Side High School.

President’s Award  recipient was Gene Reynolds.

The Chairman’s Award  was presented by Chair Cindy Reibenstein and the recipients were all the members of the Chamber.

Special Recognition Awards were given to Jan Stephenson, John Frels, Natalie Coyle and Josh Alberto for all their hard work on behalf of the Chamber.

Special appreciation is due for the Gala Committee Chair Teresa Nicolas-Briggs and Vice Chair Josh Alberto of Houston Highway Credit Union. Thanks to Dee Farino for sponsorships/ Debbie Adams and Amy Ritter for decorations/ Craig Atkinson for finance/ Belinda Rossiter and John Frels for silent auction items/ MaryBeth Wegner for the wine auction/ Julia Hayes for artist liaison/ Jessica Leone for swag bags/ and Cheryl Sowder, Salma Estrada and Adams A Team for the crew.

18Sep, 2017

Memorial Hermann Greater Heights Manager Named to Board of Examiners 2016 Malcolm Baldridge National Quality Award

By |

Judy Ho, Lead Project Manager at Memorial Hermann Greater Heights Hospital  was recently named to the Board of Examiners for the 2016 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). The Baldrige Award is the nation’s highest honor for organizational innovation and performance excellence.

Appointed by the NIST Director, examiners are responsible for reviewing and evaluating applications submitted for the Baldrige Award, as well as other assessment-related tasks. The examiner board is composed of more than 350 leading experts competitively selected from industry, professional, trade, education, health care and nonprofit (including government) organizations from across the United States.

“Judy functions as a consultant, educator and change agent in incorporating the Baldrige Performance Excellence framework at Memorial Hermann Greater Heights Hospital,” said Susan Jadlowski, Sr. Vice President and CEO of the hospital.  “She has years of experience in organizational and systems quality improvement and inter-professional collaboration for improving patient health outcomes. Her work, along with others is one of the reasons our hospital was a finalist for the American Hospital Association’s (AHA) McKesson Quest for Quality Prize®.”

Those selected to the Board of Examiners for the 2016 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award meet the highest standards of qualification and peer recognition, demonstrating competencies related to customer focus, communication, ethics, action orientation, team building and analytical skills.

All members of the board must take part in a nationally ranked leadership development course based on the Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence and the scoring/evaluation processes for the Baldrige Award.

Over the past 25 years, Ho has worked in various healthcare organizations as a bedside nurse clinician, quality coordinator, clinical nurse specialist, education specialist, manager of nursing practice, and director of performance improvement. She earned a Doctorate in Nursing (DNP) degree from University of Texas, Health Science Center in Houston.

5Sep, 2017

Getting Disaster Assistance from the Small Business Administration (SBA)

By |

SBA offers federal low-interest disaster loans to businesses of all sizes, most private non-profit organizations, homeowners and renters.

Business Physical Disaster Loans – loans to businesses to repair or replace disaster-damaged property owned by the business, including real estate, inventories, supplies, machinery and equipment.

Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) – working capital loans to help small businesses meet their ordinary and necessary financial obligations that cannot be met as a direct result of the disaster.

Home Disaster Loans – loans to homeowners or renters to repair or replace disaster-damaged real estate and personal property, including automobiles.

Current deadline for application is 10/24/17 for physical damage and 5/25/18 for economic injury.

Three Ways to Apply to SBA

  • Apply online using SBA’s secure website at
  • Apply in person at any Disaster Recover Center and receive personal, one-on-one help from an SBA representative. For additional info, visit, call SBA at 800-659-2955 or email
  • Apply by mail: Send completed paper applications to US Small Business Administration, Processing and Distribution Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155

Additionally, the US Small Business Administration and the Texas Gulf Coast Small Business Development Center Network announced the opening of a business recovery center in Houston to provide a wide range of services to businesses impacted by Hurricane Harvey.  No appointment is necessary.  All services are provided free of charge.

Business Recovery Center

University of Houston

Small Business Development Center Region Office

2302 Fannin St., Ste. 200

Houston, TX  77002

Monday-Friday  8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Saturday-Sunday  9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m


14Aug, 2017

Memorial Hermann Greater Heights Hospital Recognized for Nurses

By |

Susan Jadlowski, Senior Vice President and CEO of Memorial Hermann Greater Heights Hospital announced that Memorial Hermann Greater Heights Hospital earned the Commissioners unanimous vote as a MAGNET recognized American Nurses Credentialing Center. This award is exceptional, as only 8% of U.S. Hospitals have this certification. The Magnet designation is the highest distinction a healthcare organization can receive for nursing excellence. Congratulations to Susan Jadlowski, a Chamber Board Member, and to the entire Memorial Hermann Greater Heights Hospital team.

14Aug, 2017

Allison Jones & Associates Becomes Lockwood & Jones PLLC

By |

Allison Jones, a Gold Patron Member in the Chamber since 2003, has announced that the law firm has changed its name to Lockwood & Jones, PLLC. The firm is located at 1526 Heights Boulevard and specializes in divorce cases utilizing settlement conferences, mediation and traditional divorce to end marriages as amicably as possible. Allison Jones and Owen Lockwood co-authored a popular book titled “How to Survive a Divorce.”

14Aug, 2017

Former Chamber Board Chair Honored

By |

Congratulations to former Chamber Board Member Scott Lester of Allegiance Bank. Scott was recognized by the Rotary Club of Houston and presented with their prestigious Hall of Fame award which dates back to 1988. Only 13 Heights Rotarians have received this award over the year. The award was given for Scott’s “continuous and above and beyond” actions on behalf of the organization.                                                                              

6Mar, 2017

Familiar Faces: Deborah Haynie

By |

No doubt you have seen our familiar face at numerous Chamber events. Deborah Haynie has been involved with the Chamber for many years and has served as host for her employer’s many sponsored events on behalf of the Chamber.  So, where did it all start?

She was born in Dallas but spent her early years in South Texas, namely in Charlotte, Texas. Quick geography lesson here, Charlotte is in southwestern Atascosa County, which is a part of the San Antonio region. Later, as college beckoned, Deborah attended Howard Payne University and the University of Texas at El Paso. She made her way to Houston in 1973.

Professionally, Deborah must have some automotive interests because she joined Tommie Vaughn Ford as the Customer Relations contact, and serves in that role today. In this capacity she says: “I have the pleasure to meet and visit with our customers plus extending thanks for their business.” Makes sense because she is outgoing, generous with her time, and sincere in her efforts to build favorable relationships for the dealership.

Did we say generous with her time? Well, yes, because she is a member of the Houston Heights Rotary Club, where she was awarded the Paul Harris Award for service, and a lifetime member of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. In her leisure time, Deborah enjoys spending time with her father and family in North Texas along with, as she says, “anything artsy!” That includes plays, opera, and musicals in conjunction with cycling and water aerobics. The Chamber appreciates involved members like Deborah Haynie and recognizes the contributions in time and dedication she continually exhibits.  Thank you Deborah.

6Mar, 2017

Spotlight on Non-Profit: Kids’ Meals

By |

This very worthwhile non-profit organization serves a valuable need in our community. Houston has the 2nd highest number of children in the nation living in crippling poverty, more than 88,000 Houston children are unsure of their next meal. Having limited or unreliable access to a sufficient quantity of affordable, nutritious food has a definite negative effect on children. To name a few, there can be poor performance or attendance in school, behavioral issues and a higher risk of suicidal or depressive tendencies.

Their mission is to end hunger by delivering free healthy meals to the doorsteps of Houston’s hungriest preschool-aged children. In addition, and through collaboration they provide families with resources to help end the cycle of poverty.  Kids’ Meals is a first-responder to children ages five-years old and under facing debilitating hunger due to extreme poverty. Every weekday, year-round, from 9 a.m. to noon, volunteers prepare thousands of healthy lunches consisting of a sandwich, nutritious snack and 100% juice or milk.  Our six vans deliver the meals M-F to children enrolled in our program. They currently serve six Houston-area routes that target zip codes all located within Beltway 8, where the need is critical.

Kids’ Meals delivers free, fresh healthy meals directly to the doorsteps of Houston’s hungriest preschool-aged children, every weekday, year-round and through collaboration provides their families with the resources to help end the cycle of poverty.  Since 2006, Kids’ Meals has delivered more than 3.6 million meals to hungry children and is the nation’s only home meal delivery program of its kind.

Every $2 donated delivers not only a meal, but additional fresh fruits and vegetables, pantry staples, hurricane recovery items, holiday meals/gifts, and vital information on resources like GED, ESL, budgeting, literacy, and kindergarten preparedness.  On November 10 the organization will hold its annual Harvest Luncheon and you can get all the information at their website, Thanks you Kids’ Meals for the many outstanding benefits