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Kickoff Party 5th Annual Visionary Women Luncheon Natalie Morin, Ashton Bennett, Ashley Brown, Mike Morin

Senator Hutchison will be honored at the 5th Annual Visionary Women Luncheon along with

TCU Student Madeline Johnston White and the Christian Churches (Disciples of Christ) for visionary leadership

 Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (75230) has been named the 2017 Visionary Woman by Juliette Fowler Communities and will be honored at the 5th Annual Visionary Women Luncheon, Friday, May 12, 2017, at the Omni Dallas Hotel, 555 S. Lamar Street, from 12 – 1:15 p.m.  Madeline Johnston White, a Texas Christian University graduate social work major, and the Christian Churches (Disciples of Christ) will also be recognized.  This luncheon celebrates the 125th anniversary of the founding of Juliette Fowler Communities, named for Juliette Peak Fowler, Dallas’ first female philanthropist, and honors individuals who embody her compassionate spirit and who use their visionary leadership and gifts to make a difference in the lives of others in the community. Luncheon chair is Carol Maxwell, (75218) and honorary chairs are former Fowler president and CEO, Kay Crosby Ellis (75225) and Cynthia Dowell, (75231) widow of Edward Dowell who was president 1981-2005.

“It is a wonderful honor to be named the 2017 Visionary Woman by Juliette Fowler Communities,” said Senator Hutchison. “I can relate to Ms. Fowler, her dreams and her steadfast perseverance.  Her hard work, determination, and vision led to the establishment of a community of care for widows and orphaned children and, ultimately, the intergenerational community she envisioned.”

Kay Bailey Hutchison’s commitment to the service of others is evident in everything she does not only locally and statewide but for the nation.  For 20 years she served Texas in the United States Senate and made history by being the first woman senator from Texas.  While in office she helped secure billions of federal dollars for the state and played a key role in the Dart light rail system and the Love Field Modernization Program.  She worked with the administrations of Presidents Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama. 

Prior to her Senate service, Senator Hutchison was elected Texas State Treasurer in 1990 and to the Texas House of Representatives in 1972. She was the first Republican woman elected to the Texas House and served until 1976.  In 1976 she was appointed by President Gerald Ford to serve as vice-chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board.

She has had numerous leadership roles in the Senate, including Vice-Chairman of the Republican Conference, Chairman of the Republican Policy Committee (the fourth-highest ranking Republican Senator), and as the Ranking Member on the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation and the Appropriations Subcommittee for Commerce, Justice and Science. She was also the Chairman for Military Construction Appropriations Sub-Committee.    

In addition to her work as a public servant, she has business experience as senior vice president and general counsel of Republic Bank Corporation, co-founder of Fidelity national Bank of Dallas, and as the owner of a candy manufacturing company.  She currently serves as senior counsel at Bracewell LLP.

In 2013, the Dallas City Council voted to name its Convention Center the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center Dallas, and the University of Texas established the Kay Baily Hutchison Center for Energy, Law & Business. She was one of only five women in a UT School of Law class of 269 law students.  In July 2013, President Barak Obama signed into law H.R. 2289, renaming section 219(c) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 as the Kay Bailey Hutchison Spousal IRA.  Senator Hutchison authored the original bill, co-sponsored by Senator Barbara Mikulski, to establish Spousal IRAs.       

Hutchison has won numerous state and national awards, including the Woodrow Wilson Award for Public Service and the History Making Texan Award in 2016. She is an acclaimed author, and her most recent book, Unflinching Courage: Pioneering Women Who Shaped Texas, was released in 2013.

“We are thrilled to honor Kay Bailey Hutchison as our 2017 Visionary Woman,” said Sabrina Porter, president and chief executive officer, Juliette Fowler Communities.  “Like Juliette Fowler, Senator Hutchison has persevered throughout her career.  Through economic booms or busts, changing administrations, the tragedy of 9/11, and more, she persisted, exercising decorum and restraint regardless of circumstances.  Her commitment to the needs of others on all levels shows her dedication to the people and our country.  An advocate for women and individuals, she serves as an inspiration to others to stand up and do what you can to make positive changes in our society.”

Additionally, the luncheon will present the Juliette Fowler Faith and Service Award to Madeline Johnston White, a recent Texas Christian University graduate.  This annual award is given to a TCU student who has demonstrated leadership, excellence, and a humanitarian spirit, reflecting the spirit of Juliette Peak Fowler.  A member of the Dean’s List for five semesters, White graduated Magna Cum Laude in 2016 with a bachelor’s degree in Social Work and Sociology Minor. She was an active member of the Alpha Phi Omega National Service Fraternity at TCU, volunteering with many organizations. Currently, as Deputy Communication Director for the Office of State Representative Ryan Guillen, she assists with constituent case management and analyzes bills for potential legislation.  White has also been a victim advocate with DRC Solutions, where she provided services and resources to homeless victims of crime and violence.  In her summers she worked with Reach Beyond Mission for youth (grades 6-12) facilitating service activities and leading discussions on poverty, hunger and homelessness.  In 2015, she volunteered with Institut Mediterraneen des Langues et Services in Montpellier, France, where she worked with nonprofit organizations serving refugees and people with disabilities.  White plans to pursue her master’s degree in Social Work in the fall and is considering a law degree in the future.

Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) congregations and memberswill receive the Erika McKenzie Volunteer award. The award’s namesake, the late Erika McKenzie, was a beloved volunteer manager, board member and volunteer.  The award will be accepted by The Rev. Dr. Sharon Watkins who serves as the General Minister and President of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada.  Fowler’s relationship with the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) was formed in 1903 when founder Sarah Harwood  created the nonprofit’s formal association with the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) – a valued relationship that has remained strong over the years.  Since 1903, Disciple congregations and members, especially throughout Texas, Louisiana, and Oklahoma, have provided countless hours of service and support to Fowler residents and staff.

Past Visionary Women award recipients are 2013-Ebby Halliday Acers; 2014-Vivian Anderson Castleberry; 2015-Marca Lee Bircher and Patricia Hardman; and 2016-Virginia Chandler Dykes.  All luncheon proceeds benefit One Heart, Juliette Fowler Communities’ annual fund, which supports areas of greatest need for Fowler residents. Founded in 1892, the intergenerational community has cared for thousands of elders, children, youth and families and continues to do so today with services including independent and assisted living, memory care, and affordable senior housing, as well as a five-star quality nursing and rehabilitation center. Children are served through a collaborative foster care program within the 25-acre community and throughout the greater Dallas area. The Ebby House, named for Ebby Halliday Acers, prevents homelessness and offers hope to young women who have experienced or aged-out foster care.

Luncheon tickets are $150.  Sponsorships are available. Contact Coleman Rabourn,, 214-515-1342.

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