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Newsmakers 7-04-16


Kurt Schaal joined the middle market commercial banking team at Capital One Bank in Fort Worth as a senior vice president. Schaal will be responsible for building relationships with large and middle-market companies headquartered in Tarrant County and surrounding areas, and help to lead and grow the bank’s operations there. Schaal has nearly 15 years of banking experience. He joins Capital One from BBVA Compass, where he spent 10 years as a middle-market commercial banker, most recently as a vice president. He had previous positions with Bank of America and Southwest Bank. He serves on the development committee of the Ronald McDonald House of Fort Worth and will start a board term in 2017. He was chairman of the Red Shoe Society of Fort Worth, the young leadership community of the Ronald McDonald House, in 2015 and 2016.

Origin Bank named Chris Hamilton a senior vice president of commercial lending with the Fort Worth banking team. Hamilton has more than a decade of banking experience in middle-market corporate lending with extensive knowledge in asset-based lending, auto dealer finance, real estate, and mergers and acquisitions. At Origin Bank his primary focus will be developing business relationships in Tarrant County, targeting middle-market companies with an emphasis on commercial and industrial lending. Hamilton served in the U.S. Army from 1993-2004, achieving the rank of staff sergeant and deploying to South Korea, Kuwait, Bosnia and Iraq. Active in community endeavors benefiting children, Hamilton is a member of the North Texas chapter of the After-School All- Stars program and the Communities in Schools program.


Jill (J.R.) Labbe is one of three new members of the Carter BloodCare board. Labbe is vice president of communications and community affairs for JPS Health Network, where she also oversees volunteer services and community outreach. Labbe joined JPS in 2012, after 20 years at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram and other editions of that newspaper group.

New board members at Gill Children’s Services are Ellen Broom and Reagan Casey. Broom is a professor of professional practice in the Department of Psychology at Texas Christian University. Since joining TCU in 2007, Broom has served on various committees, including Frogs for the Cure and the Oncology Center Committee. Casey is president of Liberty Bank. He previously served on the board for The Women’s Center of Tarrant County and Junior Achievement. He is a member of the Texas Bankers Association.


Pacheco Koch, an engineering firm based in Dallas, promoted four in its Fort Worth office. Nicholas G. Nelson, a registered landscape architect who joined the firm in 2014, was promoted to associate principal. Nelson has practiced and taught landscape architecture for more than 12 years. His expertise is in areas of public recreation. Ryan J. Koch, Greg Gerbig and Mark R. Colby were promoted to senior project manager. Koch joined Pacheco Koch in 2010 and has more than five years of civil engineering experience in design on public and private sector projects. Recent project experience includes the new Parkland Hospital, Scott & White Professional Offices and the Texas A&M Killeen campus. Gerbig also joined Pacheco Koch in 2010 and has more than five years of civil engineering experience in design on public-private sector projects. Colby is a landscape project manager with more than 25 years of design and project management experience, including parks, transportation, education, mixed-use, health care and commercial.


Katherine Hopkins, an associate at Kelly Hart & Hallman LLP, is the 2016 recipient of the Romina L. Mulloy-Bossio Achievement Award. Hopkins was honored during the State Bar of Texas annual meeting June 16-17 at the Fort Worth Convention Center.

Three University of Texas at Arlington faculty members are among University of Texas System educators honored with 2016 Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Awards. The Arlington honorees are Ashley Griffith, assistant professor of earth and environmental sciences; Christopher Kribs, professor of mathematics and curriculum and instruction; and James Campbell Quick, who holds the John and Judy Goolsby-Jacqualyn A. Fouse Endowed Chair in the College of Business’ Department of Management.

The Southlake Chamber of Commerce recognized citizens for their accomplishments in community, service and business at its 2016 Awards Banquet on June 23. The Citizen of the Year Award was presented to Mike Farhat, founding president of United States Global Partners Ltd. and president and CEO of Farhat Industries Inc. Farhat has served as finance co-chairman for the Republican Party of Texas and as a Texas municipal judge; he is on the board at Riverbend Bank. He has also served on the Southlake Chamber board, Summer Santa Inc., Harris Hospital Health Exchange and Southlake Youth Advisory Commission. Other 2016 Southlake Community MVP Award recipients are: Chairman’s Award, Mike Tesoriero; President’s Award, Bill Buffington; Civic Group of the Year, Miracle League of Southlake; Director of the Year, Cheryl Fairbanks; Corporate Business of the Year, Sabre; Small Business of the Year, Iron Tribe Fitness; Volunteer of the Year, Chris and Stacey Archer; Ambassador of the Year, Scott Baker; and Youth of the Year, Kendall Costello.

Will Lourcey, an eighth grader at Trinity Valley School, is featured in the June edition of Sports Illustrated for Kids. Lourcey is dedicated to fighting hunger in and near his community of Fort Worth through his organization, Friends Reaching Our Goals (FROGS). Over the last seven years the organization has provided more than 250,000 meals for families in need.

Plaza Medical Center of Fort Worth has been recertified as a comprehensive stroke center (CSC). Plaza first earned the CSC designation in 2013, making it the first certified CSC in North Texas. The hospital remains the only CSC in Tarrant County and the only Fort Worth hospital that is part of the Texas Stroke Institute stroke care network. The recent recertification lasts for three years and is based on standards set by the Brain Attack Coalition and the American Stroke Association.

Bite My Biscuit, a Fort Worth-based gourmet food truck, won the grand champion title at the second annual Food Truck Championship of Texas. In addition to the grand prize of $10,000, Bite My Biscuit also took home the “Best American Cuisine” award.


Melissa Harrison joined Mike Rogers and Scott Sams as co-anchor of the KRLD Morning News. Harrison is a veteran journalist who has worked as a television news reporter in New York and Dallas-Fort Worth as well as Birmingham, Alabama; Jackson, Mississippi; Waco and Abilene. She was most recently a freelance reporter for KXAS-TV in Dallas-Fort Worth. She has also served an assistant professor and broadcast journalism consultant at Biola University near Los Angeles. KRLD-AM is owned and operated by CBS Radio.


New residential Realtors at Northern Realty Group are Jake Jones, Mary Kypreos, R. Fachon Reed and Walker Turney . The company has also hired Whitney Rodriguez as office administrator. With previous experience in sales, Jones also has worked in the railroad industry. Kypreos has a background in customer service and political consulting and has worked in real estate for seven years. She is a certified urban expert. Reed has been a licensed real estate professional since May 2005. She is certified by the Texas Real Estate Commission to teach pre-licensing and continuing education courses. Turney has an extensive background in customer service and has worked on real estate listings in Tarrant, Dallas, Parker and Johnson counties. Rodriguez has several years of experience in the real estate field, previously working for an investor and in new construction. She will oversee Northern Realty Group’s Magnolia Avenue office operations and is studying to obtain her Texas real estate license.

Fort Worth Housing Solutions appointed Matthew Corcoran as vice president of development and asset management. His experience includes investment analysis; financial administration; asset management for large-scale property assets; office, retail, and multifamily property acquisitions; planning, and new construction developments.

Nate Galata joined Stewart Title Commercial Services Dallas-Fort Worth in the Fort Worth office as a commercial business development officer. His main responsibilities include developing relationships and sourcing commercial real estate deals on a national and local level. He will focus on the Fort Worth market. After serving in the U.S. Army Reserve for eight years, including one tour in Iraq, Galata worked in the financial services and banking industries before joining the Stewart Title Co. North Texas Division in early 2015. He is a member of the Real Estate Council, Urban Land Institute and Society of Commercial Realtors, and serves on the boards for SteerFW, the Veterans Association of Real Estate Professionals and Habitat for Humanity.


Tom Klein, president and CEO of Sabre Corp., announced June 20 he will step down from his position and from the board effective Dec. 31. He will continue as chief executive while the board searches for his successor.

Klein started with Sabre when it was a unit of AMR Corp. He originally worked in sales and marketing with American Airlines and then joined Sabre, leading a joint venture in Mexico. He was group president of both Sabre Travel Network and Sabre Airline Solutions. He was named president of Sabre in 2010 and CEO in 2013.

Send newsmakers to Betty Dillard at

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