Board Chair; Vice President, Strategy Technology & Markets at Austin Energy
Khalil Shalabi Joined Austin Energy in December of 2013 as Vice President of Strategy, Technology & Markets. On his arrival Khalil worked with myriad stakeholders to develop and update the Austin Energy Generation Resource Plan which was approved by Austin City Council in December 2014. This far reaching plan provides for 950 MWs of solar energy, 1,400 MWs of wind, 1200 MWs of Energy Efficiency programs tied together with an upgrade to the local gas fleet with a new efficient combined cycle plant and the retirement of legacy gas generation.
Additionally, Khalil has taken on the Information Technology group, Cyber Security and the Strategic Planning and technology group for Austin Energy.
Prior to Austin Energy Khalil was the Chief Technology Officer at the New York Power Authority where he worked from 2006 until 2013. He has also had assignments at Consolidated Edison and Entergy Nuclear in operations, maintenance, engineering, finance, risk management and business consulting in all aspects of the electric utility industry including distribution, transmission and generation.
Shalabi has a Mechanical Engineering Degree from the University of Notre Dame, a Master’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering from Columbia University and an MBA in Finance and Management from the Stern School of Business at NYU.
Khalil lives in Austin with his wife Kristy and three children.
President and CEO at Greater Texas Credit Union
Howard joined Greater Texas FCU as President & CEO in January 2016. A 31-year credit union veteran, he previously worked for Security Service FCU in San Antonio for 15 years, 11 years of which as Executive Vice President, Chief of Staff; and worked for the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) in various high-level analyst and examiner positions for over 14 years. He attended Texas A&M University and Texas State University, earning a BBA in Finance & Economics from Texas State in 1986. Active in the community, he has served on the San Antonio Economic Development Foundation Executive Board, and the Greater New Braunfels Economic Development Foundation Executive Board. Howard served as Board Chairman for several entities, including the North San Antonio Chamber of Commerce, LeadSA, Seton Home and New Braunfels Christian Academy. He is currently an active member of the McCoy School of Business Advisory Board at Texas State University, and the National Association of Federal Credit Unions Regulatory Committee.
Vice President and General Manager, JW Marriott Austin
Scott Blalock is Vice President and General Manager of the JW Marriott Austin, a large convention hotel managed by White Lodging Services. He joined White Lodging in 2006 as Regional Vice President after 17 years with Marriott International. Most recently Scott was the opening General Manager of the JW Marriott Indianapolis. He is very proud of the role his hotel played in launching the Indianapolis chapter of Back On My Feet and has served as a BOMF board member for both the Indianapolis and Austin chapters of the organization.
Since moving to Austin in 2014, Scott has also become a board member of the Austin Convention and Visitors Bureau, Austin Hotel and Lodging Association and the Downtown Austin Alliance.
Scott is a native Texan and graduated from Southwest Texas State University with a BBA in Marketing. He is married to his wife Renee and they have a 13-year-old son, Chris, and 14-year-old daughter, Abby.
president of Buie & Co.
Jed brings expertise and extensive experience in public relations, community relations, governmental affairs and issues management. He works for a variety of clients with a focus on transportation and public infrastructure, real estate and economic development. Some of his clients include Capital Metro, the City of Dripping Springs, Austin Convention & Visitors Bureau and the Williamson County Road Bond Program.
Before founding Buie & Co., Jed was a principal at 3 Point Partners, an Austin-based public affairs firm, for seven years. While there, he worked on the Circuit of the Americas/Formula 1 United States Grand Prix, the City of Austin’s Water Treatment Plant #4 and H-E-B.
Prior to joining 3 Point Partners, Jed was vice president of public affairs for TateAustin for nearly six years. There, he led communications campaigns, public education efforts and outreach for Capital Metro’s All Systems Go Commuter Rail initiative, the Austin Independent School District’s 2004 Apple at Work Bond Program, the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority (CTRMA), the Mueller redevelopment (the largest infrastructure project in Austin’s history) and Brackenridge Hospital.
Active in the community, Jed is a past president of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) – Austin Chapter, and was a member of the inaugural class of the Austin Area Research Organization’s Frank McBee Fellowship Program in Civic Entrepreneurship. He has served or is currently serving on the board of directors for the Austin Chamber of Commerce, the Austin Convention and Visitors Bureau, Seton Forum, trail Foundation and the Austin Children’s Museum.
Jed graduated with an honors degree in public relations from the University of Texas at Austin and earned the distinction of Senior Fellow from the College of Communication. He is a graduate of Leadership Austin and the Leadership Austin Academy for Public Service, and served on its board of directors. As part of his continuing education, Jed is also certified in the Systematic Development of Informed Consent (SDIC), a program designed to facilitate public involvement, especially as it relates to large and complex, and sometimes controversial infrastructure projects.
Director - International Strategy at Indeed
Bernhard "Bernie" Deussner arrived in Austin in 2005 to attend the University of Texas at Austin on an athletic tennis scholarship. After spending his early career in Banking, Bernie joined Indeed in 2011 to help accelerate the company's international development. With the ensuing global expansion, Indeed quickly became the world's #1 job site with over 200 million unique monthly visitors from over 60 different countries. As Director of International Strategy, Bernie's team launched new Indeed offices in over 10 countries and continues to broaden its global reach daily.
An Austrian native, Bernie graduated from the McCombs School of Business at UT Austin, with a degree in Finance. In his free time, he enjoys athletic activities including skiing and playing tennis, spending time on the lake, and volunteering for a youth mentoring program.
President, Live Oak
After arriving in Austin to attend the University of Texas in 1995, Scott Flack has been actively engaged in the Austin community in a variety of capacities. Currently serving as President at Live Oak, Scott has enjoyed building relationships with a variety of local and regional businesses as well as with many local and regional public officials. Over the last 15 years, Scott has served on many non-profit’s including Sammy’s House, The Health Alliance for Austin Musicians, The Ronald McDonald House and The Austin Community College Foundation Board. Scott has also served on the board of the Real Estate Council of Austin (2012 President), The Austin Area Research Organization (AARO), The Urban Land Institute, The University of Texas Real Estate Finance & Investment Center (UTREFIC), The Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce, was a member of RECA’s 2003 Leadership Development Council, a member of the 2009 AARO McBee fellowship class, and was an Austin Under 40 winner in 2009. He has served on several City of Austin Working Groups at the request of Mayors’ Leffingwell and Adler and most recently was asked to serve on Mayor Adler’s Task Force on Institutional Racism.
Outside of his real estate and philanthropic work, Scott enjoys cooking, swimming and most of all enjoying his family- wife Kate, daughter Brynn (9), son Hank (6) and daughter Claire (6 months).
REALTOR®, GRI, PSA JP & Associates REALTORS
Abby Husbands has been involved in real estate for 19+ years initially building and remodeling homes of her own during her career as a flight attendant for Delta Airlines. When Delta closed the Dallas base, Abby took a 5-year leave & fell into a successful career in residential remodeling. Currently, Abby is a Realtor® with JP & Associates and works as a design & construction consultant for clients and investors.
Abby has served as Treasurer for the Sons of Hermann Friendship, Love and Loyalty Scholarship Committee in Dallas, Texas and also volunteers with Meals on Wheels Austin. She is an avid long distance runner, an active member of the Austin Runners Club & is fortunate to train with the best running group in Austin, Al & Sandy Cummings’ Ship of Fools.
Abby is married to Harley, a touring musician and the best guitar player in Texas. They love hanging out with their two dogs, Merle and Stan, and with their family & friends in Kansas, Texas and New Mexico.
Vice President, Payment Fraud Disruption, Visa Inc.
Penny Lane heads Visa’s Payment Fraud Disruption program. She and her team of experts defend against attacks targeting the global payment ecosystem as it spans merchants, financial institutions, and new technologies. These defenses include sophisticated payments intelligence for early warning and detection, breach identification and mitigation, as well as law enforcement liaison regarding criminal investigations.
Penny also has deep experience in corporate information security, cybercrime investigations, digital forensics, reverse engineering and ethical hacking.
Prior to joining Visa, Penny served 13 years as a Senior Cryptologic Mathematician with the Department of Defense / National Security Agency. She has an MS in Applied Mathematics from John Hopkins University and is an avid trail runner.
Partner, Health & Public Service Team
Jamie Wills is a Managing Director in Accenture’s Health & Public Service operating group. He oversees Accenture’s business and community activities in Texas and Accenture’s Data Analytics practice for North America State & Local Government. He focuses on client account delivery and satisfaction, business development, and sustaining relationships from the government to citizen levels.
Before being named to his current position, Mr. Wills was global client service delivery lead for Accenture Customer Contact Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) services. In this role, he was responsible for Accenture’s global customer contact BPO business, which provides an integrated suite of scalable front-office, marketing, sales and customer contact outsourcing services to help leading companies transform their customer contact operations, improve the customer experience and enhance customer loyalty, retention and satisfaction while lowering the cost to serve.
Mr. Wills was previously with Accenture from 1987 to 1999 where his roles included associate partner in technology integration services for Accenture’s government practice. His responsibilities included project management, quality assurance and the implementation of custom applications, networks, databases and architectures.
From 1999 to 2007, Mr. Wills worked at Dell, Inc. in Austin, Texas where he served in several roles, including vice president of information technology, global sales. While there, he managed dell.com in 98 countries and 24 languages, supporting 3.2 billion online page requests, 427 million visits and 15 million orders quarterly.
Mr. Wills has served on the Board of Directors for the West Austin Youth Association, in multiple capacities with the University of Texas Ex Students Association, and on numerous committees with Casis Elementary, O.Henry Middle School, and Austin High School. Mr. Wills is currently serving on the IM Advisory Council for the UT McCombs School of Business, on the Board of Directors for the Austin Metro YMCA, and on the Austin Advisory Board for Back on My Feet.
Mr. Wills earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin.