President’s Desk: May 2022

Howdy WHA Members!  

I am pleased to report that we recently completed two successful collaborations with Rice University’s Social Science Consulting Practicum. The first project, presented to WHA members on April 27th, further explored what makes an area “cool” or attractive regarding entertainment, cultural, and social factors. The students focused on diversity and ratings of dining and entertainment options as well as the availability and quality of parks. The second project was a collaboration with the City of Hempstead, where students focused on exploring uses for a 14-acre tract of land currently owned by the EDC. This team presented their findings on April 28th to the Hempstead Commerce and Civic Association.  

We have two events for WHA members in May. On May 20th, Howard Hughes Corporation is hosting a panel discussion with the author of The Nature Fix, Florence Williams, and a panel of parks and outdoor experts to discuss the restorative benefits of nature. Then on May 26th, WHA Rising Leaders are hosting the Who’s Your Caddy Topgolf Tournament. Sponsorships and teams are SOLD OUT, thanks to a wonderful job by Class 5 & 6 Rising Leaders and WHA staff! Additionally, Houston Stronger is holding a free community event on May 6th featuring State Representatives Dade Phelan and Armando Walle as well as WHA members Alia Vinson (ABHR) who serves as Vice Chair of our Water Resources committee and Tim Buscha (IDS Engineering) who chairs our Flood Control and Drainage committee. 

There are also a few committee meetings this month: Government Affairs on May 9th, Sustainable Infrastructure on May 10th, Water Resources on May 19th, and Membership on May 20th. If you would like to be added to the email list or calendar invites for any committees, please let us know. Speaking of committees, WHA Sustainable Infrastructure committee member Michael Bloom worked with WHA intern Alan Roman over the last few weeks to create an Introduction to Sustainable Infrastructure video featured at the bottom of this month’s newsletter.

Last month I mentioned that the City of Houston is starting its redistricting process. There are a series of town hall meetings taking place to provide an opportunity to provide input to the city on the process; currently there are no draft maps available. A draft of the redistricting plan is expected to be presented to City Council in June or July with public hearings set for mid-late July.  

Quick reminder about the run-off elections for county and state elections. Early voting is May 16-20 and election day is May 24th.  Two particularly interesting races for West Houston include the Republican primary runoff between Shelley Barineau and Mano DeAyala for HD 133, considered a “safe” Republican seat. As well as the Democratic primary runoff between Lesley Briones and Ben Chou for the redistricted Harris County Precinct 4, where the winner will face incumbent Jack Cagle. 

Thank you for your support of the West Houston Association and working to improve quality of life for the 2,000,000+ people who live, work, and play across the Greater West Houston region!