Texas has long been a place that attracts people who want to make a difference. It doesn't matter who your parents are or how little money you have, if you possess a great idea and want to achieve great things, the Lone Star state welcomes you with no questions asked.
Each of the state's major cities has a large number of Influentials — those Texans who are shaping the places where they live with new — and often bold — ideas.
Some are powerful household names who are well-known beyond Houston, Dallas or Austin; others fly under the radar and work tirelessly behind the scenes without recognition.
With sheer force of persuasion and determination to make things happen, they are molding the economy, enhancing the culture and creating a blueprint for the 21st century — making a better place to live.
With sheer force of persuasion and determination to make things happen, they are molding the economy, enhancing the culture and creating a blueprint for the 21st century — making their hometown a better place to live.
In a new editorial series, the Influentials, CultureMap highlights those individuals who are impacting their city in such a strong way.
In Houston, we have kicked off the series by spending time with Scott McClelland, the president of H-E-B Houston, who has become a TV star by appearing in commercials for the rapidly growing supermarket chain and a philanthropic leader who has spearheaded a number of fundraising campaigns for charitable organizations.
McClelland is the first of a host of Houstonians we will shine a spotlight on, asking them to answer Proust-like questions that give us some insight into who they are and what motivates them.
Our sister sites in Austin and Dallas are highlighting Influentials in their respective cities as well.
Melba Whatley, who is spearheading the redevelopment of Waller Creek as a nationally renowned urban park, is the first CultureMap Austin Influential while Dallas Museum of Art director Maxwell L. Anderson kicks off the CultureMap Dallas series.
In the coming weeks and months, the list of Houston Influentials will include artists and CEOs, elected officials and opinion-makers, fundraisers and chefs. They vary in age, financial clout, life experiences and special talents.
But they all have one thing in common: They make things happen.