Texas' Largest Technology Accelerator Honors Extraordinary Entrepreneurs

Mr. Raymond Plank, Founding CEO of Apache Corp, was honored, four life-time achievement awardees were presented and over 40 entrepreneurs were celebrated at the Houston Technology Center's annual "A Celebration of Entrepreneurs" gala.

May 16, 2014, 08:00 ET from Houston Technology Center

HOUSTON, May 16, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Houston Technology Center (HTC), Texas' largest technology incubator and accelerator hosted its annual gala, "A Celebration of Entrepreneurs".  The annual black-tie event honors local entrepreneurs who have made a significant impact in the Houston community, the region's economy and in the development of revolutionary, disruptive technologies.

The Houston Technology Center (HTC), honored Mr. Raymond Plank, Founding CEO of Apache Corp, at this year's "A Celebration of Entrepreneurs" gala, held on May 15, 2014 at the Hyatt Regency Houston. Founder and Chairman Raymond Plank, 91, retired January 15, 2009, after five decades of building Apache Corporation into one of the nation's largest and highly respected oil and gas independents. Plank graduated from Yale University in 1944 with a Bachelor of Arts degree. He served with the U.S. Army Air Corps as a bomber pilot in the South Pacific Theater of Operations during World War II. Following his military service, Plank returned to his hometown of Minneapolis and with two partners formed an accounting, tax and small business advisory service. Through this enterprise, he became familiar with the types of investments then being offered in oil and gas exploration and production. Recognizing that investors' interests in this field could be better served through a different concept, Plank formed Apache Corporation. Apache offered its first oil and gas investment program in 1956. Under Plank's leadership, Apache has evolved from a company that raised investor funds for drilling into an international oil and gas exploration and production corporation that funds its drilling with internally generated cash flow. Apache has become one of the nation's largest independent oil and gas exploration and production companies. Today, the company operates in six countries.

"Raymond embodies the vitality and true entrepreneurial spirit which has been the hallmark of Houston's growth and success," said Walter Ulrich, president and CEO of the Houston Technology Center.  "Businessman, innovator, philanthropist, pioneer and true American, we are proud to have recognized him on May 15th and will continue to support entrepreneurs for years to come," commented Ulrich.

In addition, Lifetime Achievement Awards were proudly presented to the following:

AEROSPACE: Dr. Bernard Harris, CEO & Managing Director, Vesalius Ventures
INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY: Mr. Morrie Abramson, President, Morrie K. Abramson Interests, Inc.
LIFE SCIENCES: Dr. James "Red" Duke, Professor of Surgery and the John B. Holmes Professor of Clinical Sciences at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth). Medical Director, Memorial Hermann Life Flight™
NANOTECHNOLOGY: Dr. Robert Curl, Emeritus Professor, Rice University

HTC also celebrated entrepreneurs:

John Allen, G&A Partners
Mike Alsup, Gimmal LLC
Cindy Boyd, CBM Enterprise Solutions, LLC
Gale Burkett, GB Tech, Inc.
Laura Capper, CAP Resources
Russell Capper, The BusinessMakers Show/The EnergyMakers Show
Lucky Chopra, MD, Chopra and Associates Inc
Mike Clark, RedHouse Associates LLC
Lee Cook, Phonoscope
Douglas Erwin, RedHouse Associates LLC
Kim Evans, Centauri Health
Ron Farmer, US LED, Ltd.
Paul M. Frison, Houston Technology Center
Andrew Gardener, Tanglewood Legacy Advisors, LLC
Harry Gee, Harry Gee & Associates, PLLC
Antonio (Tony) Grijalva, G&A Partners
Michael Holthouse, Holthouse Foundation For Kids
Dr. Anouar Jamoussi, itRobotics
Rick Jones, Bluware, Inc.
Ravi Kathuria, Cohegic Corporation
Keith Kreuer, RedHouse Associates LLC
Carlos Lara, Lara & Associates LLC
David Lee, Covelo Group, LLC
Jorge Marra, Cognitas Technologies
Chris Melson, Vendor Safe Technologies
Anne Charles Mendelsohn
John Mendelsohn, MD, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Phil Morabito, Pierpont Communications, Inc.
Dan Parsley, EES Consulting 
Arun Pasrija, Ph.D., CHR Solutions, Inc. 
Steve Pate, Strike, LLC 
Eric Pulaski, SmartVault
David Quackenbush, Gimmal LLC
Hugh Sazegar, Ph.D., Techcess Group
Ed Schipul, Tendenci
Richard M. Scruggs, Salient Pharmaceuticals, Incorporated
Dana Sellers, Encore Health Resources
Jeff Sheldon, CitareTx
William Spitz, Silver Fox Advisors
James A. Taylor, CHR Solutions, Inc.
Jaye Thompson, Ph.D., Repros Therapeutics, Inc.
Umesh Verma, BLUE LANCE, Inc. 
Beth Williams, TechTrans International

Thank you to all of our sponsors and supporters, without them we would not be able to fulfill our mission. Their continued and generous support of the Houston Technology Center provides us the opportunity to assist Houston based companies in commercializing their emerging technologies.

Platinum sponsors were Chevron, Shell and Strike, LLC.

Gold sponsors included Rolaine and Morrie Abramson, Bank of Texas, Barbara & Paul Frison, BoyarMiller, Fund for Teachers, Holthouse Foundation for Kids, Houston Methodist Hospital, ION, Phonoscope Services, Inc., PKF Texas, Raymond Plank, Roger Plank, RedHouse Associates LLC, Lisa & Mike Stewart, Texas Medical Center, Verizon Wireless, Winstead PC.

Silver sponsors included AT&T, Andrews Kurth LLP, Lynne Bentsen, Bluware, Inc., CenterPoint Energy, Comerica Bank, Ernst & Young LLP, Charles Flournoy, Frost Bank, The Harris Foundation, G & A Partners, Harry Gee & Associates, PLLC, John & Jane Kennedy, Memorial Hermann Health Systems, Northern Trust, Oceaneering International, Inc., Oracle, Palmetto Partners, Ltd., Pierpont Communications, Inc., Reliant, an NRG Company, Rice University, Schlumberger, Ginny & L.E. Simmons, Strake Foundation, Ucross Foundation, University of Houston, UT MD Anderson Cancer Center, UT Health, UTMB Health, Vijay & Marie Goradia Charitable Fund, and Winston Strawn LLP.

In-Kind Sponsors: Dr. Lucky Chopra, Houston Business Journal, John Mollison, Lone Star Flight Museum, and Reliant, an NRG Company.

About Houston Technology Center
Named by Forbes' as one of "12 Business Incubators Changing the World" and  "Ten Technology Incubators Changing the World," the Houston Technology Center, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, is a business accelerator and the largest technology business incubator in Texas, advancing the commercialization of emerging technology companies in the greater Houston area. HTC serves as the nexus of new ideas, technological innovation, and entrepreneurship which works closely with entrepreneurs and startup companies to provide in-depth strategic and tactical business guidance, fundraising advice, and connections to opportunities, allies, and capital. HTC's focus is to assist Houston-based entrepreneurs in energy, information technology, life sciences, nanotechnology, and NASA/aerospace. For more information visit www.HoustonTech.org or connect with HTC on Facebook or Twitter @HouTechCenter.

Media Contact:
Antoine Arbuckle
Director, Marketing & Communications
Houston Technology Center
(832) 476-9235

SOURCE Houston Technology Center