Presidents Message

COMTO North Texas President’s Message – 4th Quarter

I hope everyone had a successful and eventful summer.

The COMTO North Texas Chapter started the 4th Quarter of 2018 by partnering with DFW International Airport and hosted an aviation forum called “21st Century Transformation of the Aviation Industry.”  This event included a panel made up of industry leaders, including:

  • Ken Buchanan, Executive Vice President, Revenue Management, DFW International Airport
  • Brad Brown, President, Austin Commercial
  • Brad Mims, President & CEO, Conference of Minority Transportation Officials (COMTO)
  • Krystal Brumfield, President & CEO, Airport Minority Advisory Council (AMAC)

The discussion centered around the rapidly changing aviation industry in the areas of design, construction, funding, procurement, diversity, technology and innovation.  Over 150 attendees participated, including the leadership of more than ten local and national advocacy and trade organizations.

Our next major endeavor is our participation in the 10th North American Infrastructure Leadership Forum at the Dallas Omni Hotel on October 23rd to 25th and lead a panel discussion called “Developing an Effective Diversity and Workforce Strategy for Large Projects.” Texas and the Dallas/Fort Worth Region are about to embark on numerous major projects that will forever change how we plan and execute construction and transportation projects moving forward, particularly in the areas of diversity programs and workforce development.   The panel structure is as follows:


  • John Martinez, President, Regional Hispanic Contractors Association (RHCA), Chairman, National Hispanic Construction Association (NHCA)

Discussion Leaders:

  • Stephanie Nellons-Paige, Managing Partner, Economic Opportunities, Texas Central Railroad
  • Carmen Garcia, Assistant Vice President, Office of Diversity, Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART); National Board Member, Conference of Minority Transportation Officials (COMTO)
  • Sherrill Lester, President, QMF Steel Inc.; Advisory Board of Directors, BB&T Bank

This will be a great opportunity to participate on important topics facing our industry. I encourage everyone to attend.

Finally, we are actively preparing for a busy close to 2018 and start to 2019.  This includes planning for the following events:

  • 2018 DART, Trinity Metro and TRE Business Opportunities Event and Reception
  • 2018 Holiday Open House in partnership with the Regional Hispanic Contractors Association (RHCA) and the DFW Chapter of WTS
  • 2019 COMTO North Texas Annual Scholarship Golf Tournament
  • 2019 Two-City High Speed Rail Technologies forum in partnership with the COMTO Houston Chapters and the DFW and Houston Chapters of WTS and the Transportation Advocacy Group (TAG) of the Houston Region

We encourage our members, partners and supporters to get engaged and be a part of an active and forward thinking organization.   Thanks and have a great fall season.

We will look at how the aviation, transit and heavy highway industries are finding innovative ways to fund their major capital projects and create opportunities for diverse professionals, contractors and consultants. We will also host forums to discuss the many innovations and technologies that are shaping the future of the transportation industry, including hyperloop, autonomous vehicles, air taxi technology and many more.