2022 YTexas VIrtual
The State of Infrastructure
Join YTexas for our 2022 virtual event series. A fast-moving, interactive event including short stories and live chat discussing why executives see a bright future for the Lone Star State.
At this event we will be focusing discussion on a myriad of topics including the statewide broadband plan, Texas ports and transportation infrastructure,
Texas Broadband & Intelligent Infrastructure
Texas Ports & Trade
Closing Remarks & 2022 YTexas Summit Update
Laurie Patton is a Principal in the Government and Public Sector practice of Ernst & Young LLP (EY) based in Austin. She focuses exclusively on supporting public sector clients in the State of Texas. Laurie specializes in overseeing the implementation of new legislative requirements, establishment of programs and offices at agencies, and monitoring legislative changes and compliance.
Laurie relocated to Texas from Washington, DC, where she spent the majority of her career supporting Federal agencies. She is a recognized thought leader on the topic of compliance, risk and internal control programs at government agencies. She supported a workgroup responsible for drafting requirements for the 2016 revision of OMB Circular A-123. She also supported a government-wide workgroup responsible for defining compliance requirements for an Executive Order regarding Reducing Improper Payments and Eliminating Waste in Federal Programs.
Laurie has a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from Louisiana State University and a Certificate in Leadership Coaching from Georgetown University. She is committed to giving back and supporting the next generation of leaders and entrepreneurs by providing executive coaching in her spare time.
Drew is the Sr. Advisor and Reshore Supply Chain Project Manager for the Texas Association of Business and the Executive Director of the National Security Innovation Council. Drew has more than two decades of experience at senior levels in the economic development space, including co-founding the National Security Innovation Council, a 501(c)(6) designed to ensure Texas is the partner of choice to accelerate national security decision making and 15 years as the SVP at the Austin Chamber of Commerce leading efforts to increase transcontinental air service; pass $750M in road mobility bonds; pass multiple community college and school district facility bonds; state legislation to lower property taxes and improve Texas’ economic, human and physical capital competitiveness; conceive and execute initiatives to attract key projects like Army Futures Command, connect veterans to employment and increase regional college attainment rates.
Prior to the Austin Chamber, Drew ran the National Center for State Scholars, an initiative of President George W. Bush, which worked with 12 state Chambers of Commerce, Governors and higher education leaders to ensure state policies supported widespread completion of a well-rounded academic course of study.
Greg Conte was born and raised right outside Boston, Massachusetts, but he came to Texas in 2010 as an active duty US Army soldier. After his service obligations, Greg left Fort Bliss and headed to Austin to enroll in graduate school at the University of Texas, earning a masters degree in Public Affairs and an MBA concurrently. He was employed at the Texas Comptroller’s Office in 2016, where he served in several leadership positions before becoming the director of the Broadband Development Office and continuing his passion for public service by closing the digital divide in Texas. While he enjoys traveling back to New England when he can, Greg now calls Texas his home with his beautiful wife and his newborn daughter.
The Texas Broadband Development Office was established by House Bill 5 (PDF)External Link: undefined, 87th Legislative Session. In accordance with the legislation, the office will:
- Create an accurate broadband map of eligible vs. ineligible areas for financial assistance. The map will have a challenge process to dispute any perceived inaccuracies.
- Establish a long-term, statewide plan that addresses strategies and goals for expanding access to and further adoption of broadband service.
- Award grants or other financial instruments to meet the goals of the plan.
- Set the effective threshold speed for broadband service (25 Mbps download/3 Mbps upload).
- Engage in outreach to communities regarding the expansion.
- Address barriers for future expansion efforts.
In his role as CEO of the Port of Corpus Christi, Sean leads the third largest U.S. port in total revenue tonnage. A veteran of world-class organizations such as the Port of Long Beach, Ports America Group, Oxbow Energy, and Sea-Land Service, Sean has written extensively on the evolving marine terminal and vessel shipping paradigms and has been globally recognized for his industry
knowledge and large network of professional relationships.
Sean is an active member of the South Texas Military Task Force, as well as the USCG Area Maritime Security Committee. He is committed to his community and serves on the Buccaneer Commission, United Corpus Christi Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, USS Lexington Board of Directors, and the Art Museum of South Texas Board of Directors.
Sean holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Accounting from Arizona State University. He has lived abroad and has conducted business in over 40 countries.
Proven and outstanding economic development & public affairs professional with more than 25 years of demonstrated success in government affairs, business & economic development, external & media relations, marketing, research, social media management and leadership.
I’ve accomplished some big things, and I’ve performed well at the highest of levels as an award-winning journalist, public relations professional, government affairs guru and economic development leader such as:
- Economic Development Director at the City of Laredo – the largest inland port in North America
- Editor in Chief of the Brownsville Herald and Senior Editor at the Arizona Republic
- Government Affairs Director for the City of McAllen performing advocacy in Austin and Washington D.C.
- Launched “Social Media Summit” event gathering hundreds digital media pros for annual conference
- Media relations, PR & marketing expert delivering results to clients as a consultant
- Co-chair of Diversity Committee for Gannet Corporation, coordinating with 100+properties and corporate leaders
- Founded the RGV Partnership regional leadership academy
- Laredo EDC Advisor, TAMIU Continuing Education Committee Vice Chair, Texas Lyceum director, CCLI- ASU scholarship committee, South Mountain CC Advisory Committee, UT-Brownsville civic engagement committee.
In Laredo, the City hired me as its first-ever Eco Devo department director, and in the first 2 years attracted half a dozen new firms, $120M in new investment and 450 new jobs, established Chapter 380 and TIRZ guidelines, a trade missions program and brought forward 2 TIRZ agreements worth more than $2 billion.
But I’m not all work and no play. I love to tell stories. I have been a prolific sports writer getting published more than 150 times in 2016-19 in local papers, magazines and websites. Hiking makes me happy, and I’m a book aficionado. Still, the bottom line is important, and I’ve been successful at every stage and stop of my career from leading troops in the USAF to editing journalists on election night or helping pass a bill at the state capitol.
I’ve done a lot of things well – including running a municipal TV station and managing social media platforms – but I grew up on a farm as a migrant kid and then got my first job in town at age 11. That’s where I learned the value of hard work and how to get along with people.
But perhaps, I am most proud of serving my country. I am a 6-year veteran of the US Air Force and served on bases in the US, England & Africa (some of the time during Desert Storm) as an airman and a non-commissioned officer.
Darran Anderson is the Director of Strategy and Innovation for TxDOT. He is responsible for TxDOT’s strategic innovation, emerging technology, and research initiatives; and performance analytics and business process improvements; with the objective of providing a forward-thinking efficient approach for an enhanced future of mobility throughout the state.
Marc founded and leads Gravely P.C., a Tier One Texas law firm advocating for the rights of property owners, boards, and executives responsible for commercial, industrial, and government buildings.
From his Dallas and San Antonio area offices, Marc’s national law practice focuses on high stakes insurance coverage disputes and construction defects on behalf of private and public sector clients throughout the United States.
Marc’s record of multi-million dollar victories and the firm’s unique contingency fee structure make it one of the only law firms of its kind in Texas.
Yana Kolmakova is the Marketing Director of YTexas, leading the statewide organization in strategy & growth initiatives, brand management, and member engagement. Getting introduced to YTexas in 2017, Yana grew passionate about the mission and has evolved with the brand ever since.
Yana has been at the forefront of major marketing initiatives across a wide array of industries including legal, print & digital publications, and high tech. Yana’s work has been featured in D Magazine, Texas CEO Magazine, CIO Insights and across multiple regional and national commercial print and broadcast campaigns.
With over 12 years in multi-media production, corporate marketing and business development, Yana is passionate about helping brands create and communicate their story with strategy, impact, connection and purpose. She’s inspired to design out-of-the-box, engaging and memorable experiences that create community and engagement. Yana strives to approach every experience with her entrepreneurial spirit, a highly creative drive and with a servant leader attitude.
Yana was originally born in Tashkent, Uzbekistan and got to Texas as fast as she could, immigrating straight to Richardson as a young child with her Russian family. She now resides in East Texas with her husband Beau and daughter.