ELC Members Gather in Houston for the 2017 Winter Meeting


March 8th, 2017


Nearly 200 members of The Executive Leadership Council (ELC) and their guests arrived in Houston, TX to welcome new members, reconnect and engage on the issues of the day during the 2017 Winter Meeting at the Four Seasons Hotel Houston. With the theme “People and Power . . . a Spectrum of Possibilities,” members heard from local and national leaders about business initiatives in Houston and the evolving public affairs landscape in Washington.

Thursday, March 2nd:

ELC leaders, board directors and Founding Member Jim Kaiser were on hand to welcome more than 30 new ELC members during a new member orientation and induction ceremony. The Winter Meeting opened with “An Executive Conversation with The ELC” at Minute Maid Park, home of the Houston Astros baseball team. ELC President and CEO Ronald C. Parker and ELC Board Chair Orlando Ashford, president of Holland America Line, kicked off the event introducing The ELC’s new slate of board officers and directors. Winter Meeting Planning Committee Co-Chairs retired BP executive Crystal Ashby, J. Harold Hatchett III of OCTCET Inc., and ELC Board Secretary Jeffrey G. Webster of Exxon Mobil Corporation joined Twila Carter, Executive Director of the Astros Foundation and Community Relations, to welcome ELC members and VIP guests.

Crystal Ashby and Houston television news and weather personality Khambrel Marshall of KPRC-TV moderated a panel on business leadership and personal paths to success with Houston business leaders including: Regina Bynote Jones, General Counsel of Schlumberger Land Rigs; Thomas Jones, Jr., a partner with the accounting and consulting firm McConnell & Jones LLP; and, Shawn A. Taylor, President and CEO of Zaxby’s Houston, LLC. Houston’s Mayor Sylvester Turner delivered a warm welcome and presented a proclamation honoring The ELC.

Friday, March 3rd:

During the opening Business Session, members were briefed by The ELC’s CEO, Chairman and several committee chairs about the state of The ELC and plans for the year ahead. Members also heard about plans for the 2017 London Convening Summer Meeting in June and plans for the 2017 Annual Recognition Gala at the Gaylord National in National Harbor, MD in October.

The Executive Session featured a conversation between two Washington thought leaders, National Press Club President Jeff Ballou, News Editor with Al Jazeera Media, and MSNBC Commentator and former RNC Chair Michael S. Steele. With the evolving state of play in the nation’s capital, they were able to provide valuable insight on what is unfolding and the impact it has on black business leaders, their companies and communities.

Dr. Marilyn Parker and Dr. Nat Irvin held a session with ELC members to help facilitate a conversation about issues of mutual concern, which had been conducted by Dr. Cobbs for many years. Members also participated in a Corporate Board Initiative (CBI) session hosted by EY, while others visited the Museum of Fine Arts Houston and The River Oaks District for shopping.

A reception and dinner concluded the 2017 Winter Meeting in Houston. Check out the Photo Gallery on The ELC’s website for coverage of the meeting.

The ELC's 2017 Class of New Members with Founding Member James Kaiser (center).

Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner (4th from right) delivered remarks during the opening session and presented a proclamation honoring The ELC.

Members listen to MSNBC Commentator Michael S. Steele, the former Lt. Governor of Maryland and former chair of the Republican National Committee.

ELC Leadership with National Press Club President Jeffrey Ballou of Al Jazeera Media (4th from left) and MSNBC Commentator Michael S. Steele (4th from right).



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