History

Chronology

2009: Kurt Meckfessel held a Board meeting on 1/21/09 to unveil plans on his watch for his second year as President of HTPA. During the February meeting new Vice President, Shawn Gleason and new Secretary Cynthia Lusk along with Kurt Meckfessel (President), Dennis Tam (Treasurer) and Donavon smith, Media director, were officially installed as officers for 2009.

Once again under the leadership of co-chairs Dan Corley and Jerry Sagehorn and Golf Committee members Scott Moore, Carol Metzger, Lori Hughes and Dennis Tam, the HTPA Spring Scholarship Golf Tournament was a huge success. Along with the 2008 Fall Scholarship Tournament a total of $33,000.00 was awarded to 11 HTPA Scholarship recipients. The recipients were Lauren Aamodt, Libby Lusk, Jillian Hays, Audry Fox, Jennifer Darland, Leslie Remlinger, Ryan Eichelberger, Trevor O’Meara, Ariana Broadus, Brittany London and Jonathan Leopold.

Thanks to tireless effort from Lory Tauber, HTPA was able to participate in a Houston Habitat for Humanity “wall-build” in the H for H warehouse during the summer. Roughly 35 volunteers (mostly HTPA members) participated. Later HTPA inked a deal to proceed with a house build which is to be funded over the next three years.

The annual HTPA Holiday Luncheon was held Friday, December 11th at the Omni Hotel. During the Luncheon Dennis Tam presented 1st place awards to the combined clubs efforts in the annual TCI NTW competition to SDTC, HACA, HTPA, TCH, ETA, NDTA and WTC. This was the second year in a row the combined clubs’ effort from Houston won first place.

2008: In his first year as President, Kurt Meckfessel held a Board meeting in early January to set the agenda for the year. New Board member Vice-President Shawn Gleason was introduced. Others in attendance were Board Chairman, Lory Tauber, Treasurer, Dennis Tam and Media Director Donavon Smith. During the February HTPA meeting, officers were officially installed by TCI Executive Vice President and former HTPA President and Board Chairman, Lynn Donovick.

HTPA funded $35,000.00 to ten scholarship winners during 2008. Scholarship recipients were Katherine Ruiz, Jana Barker, Jillian Hays, Jessica Bone, Kristen Gleghorn, Jonathan Leopold, Molly Henneke, Alyssa Fox, Lauren Aamodt and Libby Lusk. HTPA also sent $2000.00 to the TCI Scholarship Fund.

The 2008 Annual TCI Educational Symposium was held in Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada while Houston, Texas was dealing with Hurricane Ike. Dennis Tam represented HTPA as the only one being able to get out of Houston prior to the hurricane. Kurt Meckfessel and Donavon Smith were also scheduled to represent HTPA.

HTPA once again named the Be An Angel Foundation as their 2008 Charity. At the annual Holiday Luncheon held Friday, December 12th a check was presented to Dan Patrick, Board Director of the Be An Angel Foundation in the amount of $5,080.00.

Cynthia Salinas was named HTPA Person of the Year for 2008.

2007: In her second year as president, Lory Tauber set the stage for another exciting year for HTPA. The Spring Scholarship Golf Tournament was a smashing success, thanks to the HTPA Golf Committee consisting of co-chairs Dan Corley and Jerry Sagehorn, committee volunteer supervisor Carol Metzger, committee registration supervisor Lori Hughes, committee publicity director Scott Moore, and committee finance director Dennis Tam.

The installation of 2007 officers was again performed by past president Betty Vernon.

HTPA funded $30,000 to the 2007 HTPA scholarship recipients – the largest funding commitment in the modern history of HTPA. The Scholarship Committee – staffed by member-volunteers Greg Rehders, Craig Newlun, Cameron McCluney, Mark Wilczewski, Ed Schinnie and Diana Hill – reviewed applications and assigned award recommendations to the board of directors.

2007 scholarship recipients included Christopher Peopping, Taylor Hirschey, Matthew Okeson, Staci Jessen, Taylor Robinson, Ariana Broadus, Kelley Pyle, Molly Henneke, Francesca Joe, Jessica Bone, Fei Yao, Morgan Trenfy, Briana Mendel, Bonnie Uresti,

Kristina Craig, Libby Lusk, Emily Lyness, Jillian Hays, Christina Palomo and Angela Harris.

For the second consecutive year and under the leadership of Lory Tauber, HTPA hosted a charity event at the Ronald McDonald House of Houston on June 19th. “It’s Everyone’s Birthday!” was a big success largely as a result of the efforts of all the HTPA volunteers that worked the event.

The 2007 Annual TCI Educational Symposium was held in Seattle, Washington, in September. HTPA board members Dennis Tam and Donavon Smith represented HTPA. HTPA donated $1,000 to the TCI scholarship fund.

Officers for 2008 were elected and subsequently introduced to members and guests attending the annual holiday luncheon: Lory Tauber (chairman), Kurt Meckfessel (president), Stephen Foster (vice president), Judy Herrington (secretary), and Dennis Tam (treasurer).

Dennis Tam was awarded the prestigious TCI Distinguished Leadership Award in recognition of outstanding contributions to TCI that are simply too numerous to cite here. Dennis served a 3-year term as president of Transportation Clubs International (2004-2007). Dennis also was awarded the coveted HTPA Lifetime Membership Award.

2006: HTPA member Lory Tauber was elected president and proceeded to organize the club annual event schedule without delay. As a result of Lory’s planning and efficient organizational talent, HTPA sponsored a charity fundraiser for Ronald McDonald House of Houston. In addition to staging an entertaining “Hawaiian Holiday” theme event for the kids, HTPA donated more than $5,000 to Ronald McDonald House.

In 2006, HTPA funded $19,000 toward college scholarships. The HTPA Scholarship Committee – staffed by member-volunteers Greg Rehders, Craig Newlun, Cameron McCluney, Mark Wilczewski and Ed Schinnie – performed the thankless task of reviewing applications and assigning award recommendations to the board of directors.

2006 scholarship recipients included Melanie Ann Kubiak, Kearby Brown, Daniel Hollek, Jessica Bone, Jenny Musgrove, Natalie Leopold, Jillian Hayes, Ashley Ratcliff, Liz Keenan, Libby Lusk, Arianna Broadus, Stephanie Jessen, Codi Sue Bittner, Judson Brown, Jr., Molly Henneke, Lauren Gleghorn, Brian Smith, Jarret Barker and Hillary Mendel.

Betty Vernon – HTPA past president, HTPA supporter and professional Texan by any set of standards – performed the installation of 2006 HTPA officers at the February luncheon.

Lory Tauber received the 2006 Member of the Year Award.

2005: Under the executive leadership of HTPA president Lynn Donovick, the HTPA scholarship qualifications and application process was completely realigned. With new qualifications and a first-time “blind” application review committee, Lynn organized and implemented an exciting new scholarship program yielding impressive results.

The Be An Angel Foundation was designated as the annual HTPA charity in 2005. HTPA donated $5,600 to the Foundation.

HTPA officers Lynn Donovick, Lori Tauber and Dennis Tam represented HTPA at the 2006 TCI Educational Symposium held in League City, where HTPA won 1st Place awards in “best” website, 2nd Place in “newsletters” and received recognition for their continued longstanding donation to the TCI scholarship fund.

HTPA donated $1,500 to the TCI scholarship fund. HTPA awarded ten scholarships totaling $15,000.

Dan Corley and Jerry Sagehorn – co-chairs of the HTPA Golf Committee – jointly received the 2005 Member of the Year Award.

Dennis Tam received the Lifetime Achievement Award.

2004: Lynn Donovick was elected president. Alex Gorinsky volunteered to take over as newsletter editor for Judy Herrington who did an extraordinary job for two years. “You wouldn’t believe how much work is involved in producing that thing!” exclaimed Gorinsky several months into the new job.

Donavon Smith re-tooled the HTPA Web into one that is functional, informative and fun to visit.

The Be An Angel Foundation was designated as the annual HTPA charity in 2004. HTPA donated over $5,000 to the foundation.

The 2004 TCI Educational Symposium was held in Anaheim, California and HTPA officers Lynn Donovick, Lori Tauber, Dennis Tam and Donavon Smith represented HTPA. HTPA won 1st Place awards in “printed” newsletters and “best” website and received recognition for their continued longstanding donation to the TCI scholarship fund. HTPA donated $1,500.00 to the TCI scholarship fund.

HTPA awarded sixteen scholarships totaling $15,000 in 2004.

Dennis Tam received the 2004 Member of the Year Award.

2003: Cathy Strimple began her second term as president. Lynn Donovick was elected Member of the Year. Lynn Donovick stepped in as vice president replacing Jeff Burge who resigned for personal reasons. In 2003 Maggianno’s became the new “home” for HTPA business meetings.

The 2003 TCI conference was held in Jacksonville, Florida, at the famed Sawgrass. HTPA attendees included Cathy Strimple, president, Lynn Donovick, vice president, and Dan Corley who headed a discussion group on “how to manage a successful golf tournament. Treasurer Dennis Tam was also present. At the TCI board of directors meeting a restructuring of directors and regional vice presidents was approved and Cathy Strimple was appointed Texas Regional Vice President and Dennis Tam was appointed 1st Vice President. Also HTPA won 1st Place awards in “printed” newsletters and “best” website and received recognition for their continued longstanding donation to the TCI scholarship fund.

The Be An Angel Foundation was designated as the annual HTPA charity in 2003.

HTPA donated $1,000 to the TCI scholarship fund and HTPA awarded seven scholarships totaling $12,000. The scholarship recipients were Katie Palmer, Hilary Mendel, Codi Bittner, Karen Cox, Kelly Ewing, Clay Bittner and Scott Pasket.

2002: Cathy Strimple was elected president. Judy Herrington was voted Member of the Year. In 2002 HTPA Treasurer Dennis Tam was appointed to serve as vice president of Club & Public Relations for TCI and Cathy Strimple was appointed as Club Publications chairman at the 2002 annual TCI conference held in Chicago, Illinois. Also attending with Dennis Tam was President Cathy Strimple and vice president Jeff Burge. HTPA donated $1,000 to the TCI scholarship fund while distributing $12,400 to eight HTPA scholarship winners.

Scholarship recipients were Diane Forshee, Melissa Floyd, Nathan Keith, Kristian Bell, Scott Pasket, Alysia Herrington, Travis Palmer and Bryan Martinez. 2002 marked the first ever HTPA online newsletter. La Rosa was HTPA’s 20002 holiday charity support recipient.

2001: Suzanne Bell was elected president. Cathy Strimple was voted Member of the Year. In 2001 HTPA published its first web site, HTPA.net. The 2001 TCI conference was held in St. Louis, Missouri. It was attended by President Suzanne Bell, vice president Jeff Burge and Treasurer Dennis Tam. September 11th, 2001, was an infamous day in U.S. history with the terrorist attack on the famed “Twin Towers” in New York City. Thousands of civilians, medical professionals, police and firemen were killed in the attacks.

HTPA donated $600 to the TCI scholorship fund. Locally, HTPA awarded four scholarships to Brandi Homeyer, Bryan Martinez, Kathryn Cornell and Alysia Herrington in the amount of $7,000. HTPA’s holiday charity support in 2001 once again went to M.D.Anderson’s children’ cancer unit. Judy Herrington became the “Whistle Stop” editor as Scott Stinnet was relocated back to New Waverly, Tennessee.

2000: Tony Cornell started his second term as president. Dennis Tam was named Member of the Year. The 2000 TCI conference was held in Reno, Nevada, and was attended by President Tony Cornell and Treasurer Dennis Tam. In 2000 a contest was held to re-name the HTPA newsletter. Suzanne Bell’s entry “Whistle Stop” was the winner. Three HTPA scholarships were awarded to Erie Sechelski, Brian Martinez, and Kathryn Cornell in the amount of $6,000.00. HTPA’s holiday charity support was given for a second year to M.D. Anderson’s children’s cancer unit. A$500 donation was given to the TCI scholarship fund.

1999: Tony Cornell was elected president. Cherie Barker was named Member of the Year. Jim Dahlberg began his third year as editor. Christopher Nine became the first HTPA scholarship recipient. The TCI conference was held in Chicago, Illinois. Tony Cornell attended. HTPA’s holiday support of cash and toys went to M.D. Anderson’s children’s cancer unit.

1998: Ed Rugh became president. Dennis Tam was Member of the Year. The TCI conference was held in Denver, Colorado, and was attended by vice president Suzanne Bell. HTPA membership exceeded 100 members for the first time in several years. HTPA placed second in the TCI national transportation newsletter competition. 1998 was the first year a “welcome” letter was sent to new members. Toys for Tots was the recipient of holiday donations of cash and toys.

1996-1997: Donna Farmer served a second term as president and continued on for a third year as editor. Suzanne Bell was named Member of the Year. The entire board and nine additional members attended the annual NTW luncheon at Brady’s Landing. The TCI convention was held in Orlando, Flordia. Jim Dahlberg took over as editor in August 1996 and the new-and-improved HTPA newsletter was produced by…computer.

1995-1996: Donna Farmer was elected president, and also assisted as editor. Jane London was Member of the Year. The TCI convention in 1995 was held in Scottsdale, Arizona, and attended by Donna Farmer and Gary Wood.

1994-1995: Paul Dickerson was president. Donna Farmer was Member of the Year, and editor. The 1995 TCI convention was held in Las Vegas, Nevada, and attended by President Paul Dickerson. Larry Nelling was NTW chairperson. Gary Woods, former HTPA president, was designated TCI Director of Texas.

1993-1994: Gary Woods was elected president. Paul Dickerson was Member of the Year. Jeanne Hooke was NTW chairperson and Stacy Rivera was editor. The 1994 TCI convention was held in Atlanta, Georgia, and president Gary Woods attended. NTW was chaired by Jeanne Hooke. HTPA won 1st place in “Most Exotic Chili” at the annual tci chili cook-off.

1992-1993: Bonnie Hicks was elected president and also received Member of the Year honors. Judy McCoy was named editor. In January of 1993, HTPA moved luncheons to the Crown Plaza. Bob Clark chaired NTW. Members attended a special luncheon, then went to root for the Astros on May 11th. The 1993 TCI convention was held in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

1991-1992: George Jelly was president. Dave Nearing was elected Member of the Year. Bonnie Hicks was editor of the Traffic Light. The TCI convention in 1992 was held in Mexico City, Mexico.

1990-1991: Nancy McWaters chaired the NTW program. President George Jelly attended the TCI convention in 1991 held right here in Houston, Texas. Rosie Fernandez filled in as president for the remainder of the year. Victoria Allmaras was Member of the Year and also was editor of Traffic Light. In 1992 at the Delta Nu Alpha convention, ASt&L and TCI created the first transportation education symposium to be held in Chicago, Illinois in 1992.

1989-1990 saw Bill Dorgeloh receive the Member of the Year award. Jeanne Hooke chaired NTW and had help from George Adams. Richmond, Virginia, hosted the TCI Convention and our new president Brian Parsons along with Betty Vernon. Pat Lentz, Editor of the “Traffic Light” picked up some more awards this year.

In January 1989 HTCA voted to change its name to Houston Transportation Professionals Association. Vice president George Adams was NTW Poster Chairperson and she won Ms. Transportation and Member of the Year in 1989. The 1989 TCI Convention was held in Orlando, Florida, and our new president, Jeanne Hooke, along with Betty Vernon and Bernice Vann attended. “Traffic Light” won First Place for “Promoting and Reporting Special Events” and “Graphics” and Second Place for “Club News” thanks to Editor George Adams. Houston won First Place in the NTW Scrapbook competition and HTPA shared in that as one of the affiliated clubs.

1987-1988: HTCA donated $100 to the TCI Gene Landis Scholarship Fund, $150 to National Transportation Week and $50 to Houston Public Library to assist in the establishment of a new addition to the Business and Technology section, Transportation, Distribution and Logistics. Membership also voted to establish a scholarship fund for the Houston community College in the name of Saundra “Sandy” Shipley in the amount of $250.

In 1988 the TCI Convention was held in Anaheim, California, and our new president, Norm Damien, along with Betty Vernon and Bernice Vann, attended. HTCA’s “Traffic Light” won several awards this year including Second Place in “Best of Show”, Second Place in “Promotion of Meetings”, Second Place for Promotion and Reporting of Special Club Events and First Place for “Participation in NTW” thanks to George Adams. Betty Vernon was installed as Regional Vice President for TCI.

1986-1987 saw our members even more involved in promoting our industry. Larry Hopper was named NTW Chairman for Houston and we had a record-breaking attendance at Trans-Expo. Our own Betty Vernon was NTW Chairman for the entire United States. Another one of our members, George Adams was a contestant in the Ms. Transportation Contest representing HTCA. HTCA received a nice recognition from TCI. It was presented to our club by Barney Cardwell. It read: “Transportation Club’s International Certificate of Merit honoring HTCA who has made significant contribution through active participation and continuing support”. The TCI Convention was held in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and our new president, Bill Dorgeloh, Larry Hopper and Betty Vernon attended. HTCA received First Place in the TCI Publication contest for club news. For the sixth consecutive year, Houston won first place in NTW Activities.

1985 was yet another good year for HTCA. Betty Vernon, HTCA past president was the 1985 NTW Chairman. Sandi Horne chaired the NTW Poster Contest and Vicki Buckelew was Scrapbook Chairman. The TCI Convention was held in Savannah, Georgia with several of our members in attendance. Our newsletter “Traffic Light” won a Second Place award, thanks to editors Lori Larick and Dale Thompson. In 1985-1986 our members really got involved with promoting transportation. NTW Chairman Vern Scherer and Vice Chairman Larry Hopper had a very successful “Sesquicentennial” year. The Ms. Transportation Contest was chaired by Bernice Vann, past president. HTCA had two member-contestants who walked away with titles. Congratulations to Jeanne Hooke, first runner-up as “Ms. Land” and Vicki Buckelew, second runner-up as “Ms. Sea”. Ina Stringfellow chaired the Poster Contest and Betty Vernon chaired the Transportation Man/Woman of the Year. NTW also held its first softball tournament chaired by Larry Hopper and was a great success. Past president Bernice Vann was named “Transportation Person of the Year”. The TCI Convention was held in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, and our new president, Sandy Shipley, along with Bernice Vann and Betty Vernon, attended. HTCA received a Third Place in the TCI Publication Contest for graphics. The Texas “Sesquicentennial” celebration for Houston paid off with another First Place award in NTW Activities at the convention.

1984 brought another first for HTCA. The NTW Poster contest was chaired by HTCA with Larry Hopper as Chairman. One of our past presidents, Betty Vernon, was Vice Chairman of NTW in 1984 and Bernice Vann won another First Place for her NTW scrapbook.

In January 1974, the membership voted to join Traffic Clubs International and our monthly newsletter “The Traffic Light” won awards two years in a row at TCI conventions in 1974-1975 and again in 1975-1976. In an effort to keep our club name in line with the changing role of our membership in the transportation industry, the membership voted in favor of renaming the organization HOUSTON TRANSPORTATION CLERKS’ ASSOCIATION in April 1979. February 1980 witnessed additional changes in HTCA. The membership voted in favor of expanding the organization by allowing clerks of all modes of transportation to join.

At the TCI convention in September 1982, our very own president Betty Vernon won a first place award for the “Traffic Light” and also a first place for the NTW scrapbook. In May 1983 during National Transportation Week, Betty Vernon was named “Transportation Woman of the Year”. September 1983 gave us another first place award at the TCI convention. The NTW Scrapbook put together by president Bernice Vann won a First Place Activities Award. Also at this convention, the organization voted to change the name to Transportation Clubs International.

During the 1968-1969 administration the membership was broadened to include all railroad clerks and the organization was appropriately renamed HOUSTON RAILWAY CLERKS’ ASSOCIATION. Our first newsletter was published in February 1968.

Another expansion in membership was made in January 1970 when industry traffic clerks joined the association and the name was once again changed to HOUSTON TRAFFIC CLERKS’ ASSOCIATION, and also known as HTCA.

In September 1966, fifteen railroad chief clerks met during their lunch hour in a vacant office in the Bankers Mortgage Building to organize what became known as the HOUSTON CHIEF CLERKS’ ASSOCIATION.