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Shelby's Social Diary

Men of Distinction flex their fundraising muscle: City's most powerful players gather in one room

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Men of Distinction luncheon Houston May 2013 Jesse Tutor, Harry Mach, Jim Crownover, Jack Kendall
Jesse Tutor, from left, Harry Mach, Jim Crownover and Jack Kendall at the Men of Distinction luncheon. Photo by Kim Coffman
Men of Distinction luncheon Houston May 2013 Bob McNair and Janice McNair
Bob and Janice McNair at the Men of Distinction luncheon. Photo by Kim Coffman
Men of Distinction luncheon Houston May 2013 Steve Mach, Mike Hall, Charlie Thomas, Tony Gracely
Steve Mach, from left, Mike Hall, Charlie Thomas and Tony Gracely at the Men of Distinction luncheon. Photo by Kim Coffman
Men of Distinction luncheon Houston May 2013 Jeanie Kilroy, Jim Willerson, Pat Breen
Jeanie Kilroy, from left, Jim Willerson and Pat Breen at the Men of Distinction luncheon. Photo by Kim Coffman
Men of Distinction luncheon Houston May 2013 Barbara Jordan and Don Jordan
Barbara and Don Jordan at the Men of Distinction luncheon. Photo by Kim Coffman
Houston Men of Distinction May 2013 Ed McMahon, Leslie Bowlin
Ed McMahon and Leslie Bowlin Photo by Kim Coffman
Men of Distinction luncheon Houston May 2013 Pat Burk, Philip Bahr, Michael Mithoff
Pat Burk, from left, Philip Bahr and Michael Mithoff  at the Men of Distinction luncheon. Photo by Kim Coffman
Men of Distinction luncheon Houston May 2013 Ed McMahon, Ed Emmett
Ed McMahon, left, and Ed Emmett at the Men of Distinction luncheon. Photo by Kim Coffman
Men of Distinction luncheon Houston May 2013 Dr. Paul Klotman, Corby Robertson
Dr. Paul Klotman, left, and Corby Robertson at the Men of Distinction luncheon. Photo by Kim Coffman
Houston Men of Distinction May 2013 Luke Wuthrich and David Wuthrich, Don Jordan and Scott Evans
Luke Wuthrich, from left, David Wuthrich, Don Jordan and Scott Evans Photo by Kim Coffman
Men of Distinction luncheon Houston May 2013 Paul Somerville, Kristina Hornberger
Paul Somerville and Kristina Hornberger at the Men of Distinction luncheon. Photo by Kim Coffman
Houston Men of Distinction May 2013 Ted Reynolds and Nancy Reynolds, Jim Crownover and Louis Skidmore
Ted and Nancy Reynolds, from left, Jim Crownover and Louis Skidmore Photo by Kim Coffman
Houston Men of Distinction May 2013 Jody Jiles, Ben Hall and Paul Murphy
Jody Jiles, from left, Ben Hall and Paul Murphy Photo by Kim Coffman
Houston Men of Distinction May 2013 Denis Debakey, Lavonne Cox, Danielle Ellis, Barbara Jordan and Don Jordan
Denis Debakey, from left, Lavonne Cox, Danielle Ellis and Barbara and Don Jordan Photo by Kim Coffman
Men of Distinction luncheon Houston May 2013 Jesse Tutor, Harry Mach, Jim Crownover, Jack Kendall
Men of Distinction luncheon Houston May 2013 Bob McNair and Janice McNair
Men of Distinction luncheon Houston May 2013 Steve Mach, Mike Hall, Charlie Thomas, Tony Gracely
Men of Distinction luncheon Houston May 2013 Jeanie Kilroy, Jim Willerson, Pat Breen
Men of Distinction luncheon Houston May 2013 Barbara Jordan and Don Jordan
Houston Men of Distinction May 2013 Ed McMahon, Leslie Bowlin
Men of Distinction luncheon Houston May 2013 Pat Burk, Philip Bahr, Michael Mithoff
Men of Distinction luncheon Houston May 2013 Ed McMahon, Ed Emmett
Men of Distinction luncheon Houston May 2013 Dr. Paul Klotman, Corby Robertson
Houston Men of Distinction May 2013 Luke Wuthrich and David Wuthrich, Don Jordan and Scott Evans
Men of Distinction luncheon Houston May 2013 Paul Somerville, Kristina Hornberger
Houston Men of Distinction May 2013 Ted Reynolds and Nancy Reynolds, Jim Crownover and Louis Skidmore
Houston Men of Distinction May 2013 Jody Jiles, Ben Hall and Paul Murphy
Houston Men of Distinction May 2013 Denis Debakey, Lavonne Cox, Danielle Ellis, Barbara Jordan and Don Jordan

We would venture to say that not a lot of serious business transpired in Houston at midday last Wednesday as the majority of men who make things happen in this city seemed to all be gathered in the ballroom of River Oaks Country Club. It was after all the seventh annual Men of Distinction luncheon and the honorees were, let's just say, awesome.

Taking bows for their leadership both professionally and civically were Rice University board chair Jim Crownover, Houston Texans owner Bob McNair, automobile dealer and former Houston Rockets owner Charlie Thomas and Texas Heart Institute president and medical director Jim Willerson. Introducing these power players to the packed ballroom crowd was KTRK Channel 13 news anchor Tom Koch.

With Don Jordan, former Reliant Energy CEO, as Men of Distinction chairman and a heavy-hitter steering committee, the non-profit sailed through the luncheon. Total proceeds raised by the annual event since its founding reached the $7 million mark with funds directed to the Texas Medical Center. Expenses for the luncheon were underwritten by J.D. Fields and Co., represented on this day by Pat Burk. Houston Area Lexus Dealers served as presenting sponsor.

Consider just a few of the major players in the room — Harris County Judge Ed Emmett, Baylor College of Medicine president and CEO Paul Klotman, Houston Symphony CEO Mark Hanson, Rice University president David Leebron, mayoral candidate Ben Hall, John Daugherty Realtors' John Daugherty and GP Natural Resource Partners CEO Corby Robertson.

Most of the 16-member steering committee members were there including Steve Mach and Harry Mach (the Mach family a key luncheon underwriter), Michael Mithoff, Tony Gracely, Ed McMahon, John Eads, Jesse Tutor, Paul Sommerville, Scott Evans and Leslie Bowlin Bennett.

And, yes, there were plenty of women in the gathering though clearly fewer than men, a rarity on the fundraising luncheon circuit. The ladies included Molly Crownover, Jeanie Kilroy, Pat Breen, Cora Sue Mach, Joella Mach, Patsy Fourticq, Janice McNair, Nancy Reynolds, Y. Ping Sun, Brenda Koch and Kittsie Thomas.

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