Houston Airports Partnerships July 2016

This section of the newsletter highlights Houston Airports' partnerships and organizational achievements.

July 7, 2016

Hire Houston Youth Takes Flight at Houston Airports
Mayor Sylvester Turner recently kicked off a new initiative to provide summer internships and jobs to Houston’s young people.

The Houston Airport System supported Hire Houston Youth by hiring 49 students for a summer internship at the airports that will develop their job skills in a variety of areas from airport operations and management to information technology and security.

The internship program began June 13 and runs through August 5. At the end of the program, the interns will present a final project that will build their presentation skills and can also be used to showcase their readiness for future job and educational opportunities. 

For more information on Hire Houston Youth, please visit http://www.houstontx.gov/hirehoustonyouth/.

Airports’ Chief Operating Officer Advises Industry on Critical Factors to Success in a Global Economy
Houston Airport System Chief Operating Officer Bheodari Balram recently served as panelist at the Smart Airports Conference.

The session focused on airports increasingly being viewed as catalysts for local economic development and tools of urban renewal as business markets become national and international in scale.  Bheodari addressed the critical success factors, framework and capabilities needed from airports to effectively serve their regions and become competitive in the global economy including stakeholder alignment, serving the community, regulatory framework, governance and securing investments.

The airport system has a strong leadership team that is focusing on establishing Houston as a five-star global air service gateway where the magic of flight is celebrated. Most recently, Hobby Airport was rated a 4-Star airport by Skytrax, the leading global air transport rating organization.

Chief Development Officer of Infrastructure for Houston Airports Speaks at National Conference for American Society of Civil Engineers
Robert Barker, Houston Airport System Chief Development Officer of Infrastructure, recently spoke at the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) 2016 International Conference held in Houston last month, focusing on Transportation and Development. The conference is organized to facilitate exchange of information, knowledge and best practices among transportation and development practitioners and researchers, public infrastructure owners, policy makers, government engineers and planners, operations managers and leading academics from around the world.

Barker gave attendees an update on the Houston Airport System and infrastructure projects that will accommodate the record-setting passenger growth in Houston.

Houston Airports Preparing to Welcome Airport Minority Advisory Council National Conference in 2017
The Airport Minority Advisory Council (AMAC) is the only national, non-profit trade association dedicated to promoting the full participation of minority-owned, women-owned and disadvantaged business enterprises (M/W/DBEs) in airport contracting and the inclusion of minorities and women in employment.

AMAC has selected the Houston Airport System to host its annual national conference in 2017. To preview the event, the airport system will host a reception in Cleveland—the location of this year’s national conference. The reception will announce Houston as the 2017 host city and serve as a kick-off for what is sure to be a successful Annual Business Diversity Conference at the brand-new Marriott Marquis Houston.  

In preparation, the Houston Airport System’s Chief Municipal & Community Affairs Officer Rhonda Arnold and Municipal & Community Affairs Manager Jerry Peruchini attended a site visit and planning meeting last month. Arnold serves as Southwest Regional Director for the Airport Minority Advisory Council and in that role, oversees five states: Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Arkansas, and New Mexico.

To learn more about AMAC, please visit AMAC.org.

Civic and Chamber of Commerce Outreach
Immigrant Business Magazine hosted its first conference, “The Immigrant’s Guide to Success in the US” on Saturday, June 18, 2016, in Houston at the Westin Galleria Hotel. The day-long event brought together seasoned entrepreneurs, corporations, lenders and government agencies, as well as emerging immigrant-owned firms, and provided information, tools and resources to help immigrant entrepreneurs grow and develop their business. Chief Municipal & Community Affairs Officer Rhonda Arnold conducted a presentation to the group on the importance of business relationships. Arnold also moderated a panel alongside Priscilla Burroughs of the Port Authority of Houston, and Bob Warren from the University of Houston’s Procurement Technical Assistance Center. The discussion focused on “How to Win Government Contracts” including the bid process for municipal, state and federal governments.

The Greater Houston Women’s Chamber of Commerce held an event titled “Challenge Yourself to be a Courageous Leader” which featured The Honorable Former Houston Mayor Annise Parker as the opening speaker, with leadership guidance provided by Bambi McCullough, CEO of Chrysalis Partners. Arnold served as a facilitator during this event and led discussions on topics that impact leadership like how to become a more effective and confident leader and balancing work and life among other professional development points of interest.

The Houston Airport System Salutes Women in Transportation
The Houston Airport System congratulates Women in Transportation (WTS) International, which recently hosted its annual conference in Austin, Texas. The organization is dedicated to the professional advancement of women in transportation and the airport system is heavily involved with the local Houston chapter help to improve leadership issues women currently face and build critical skills. During the interactive, three-day session, transportation leaders exchanged ideas and learned about the latest developments in transportation. More than 600 corporate and governmental industry leaders worldwide were in attendance at this year's conference. Discussions included autonomous technologies, transportation funding, shared mobility solutions, innovative data collection methods, professional development, and more. The Houston Airport System salutes Houston Chapter President Jeanne Bassetti Jullien and her team for their work toward the success of the conference.

EVA becomes latest 5-star carrier at Bush Intercontinental
Skytrax, a leading global air transport rating organization that recently awarded Hobby Airport with a 4-star rating for 2016, recently named EVA Air a 5-star airline for the first time. EVA Air is one of eight airlines certified as 5-star quality, and now four of those airlines provide service out of Bush Intercontinental.

Along with EVA, carriers at Bush Intercontinental with 5 stars from Skytrax include All Nippon Airways, Qatar Airways and Singapore Airlines.

Famous for its Hello Kitty-themed aircraft, EVA began operations at Bush Intercontinental in June 2015, and recently expanded its non-stop service to Taoyuan International Airport (TPE) in Taipei to six days a week. In October 2016, it plans to expand service to seven days a week.