Tom Hutton, M.D.’s memoir, Carrying the Black Bag, Among Honorees, Finalists for the Eric Hoffer Book Award

LUBBOCK, Texas – Texas doctor Tom Hutton, M.D.’s memoir, Carrying the Black Bag: A Neurologist’s Bedside Tales has been named among the winners in the Eric Hoffer Book Awards.

A prestigious international award that honors the memory of American philosopher Eric Hoffer, The Eric Hoffer Book Award has become one of the largest and most sought-after awards for small, academic and independently-published titles.  Presented annually, the Eric Hoffer Book Award was designed to highlight salient writing and celebrate the spirit of independent presses.  This year’s award program yielded over 1300 book entries.  

Carrying the Black Bag:  A Neurologist’s Bedside Tales, a memoir of Hutton’s career in medicine, was awarded an Honorable Mention in the Health category. Moreover,  Carrying the Black Bag was named a finalist for the Eric Hoffer Book Award’s Montaigne Medal, which celebrates those books deemed the most thought-provoking.

During his thirty-plus years of practicing in West Texas and Minnesota, physician and neurologist Tom Hutton discovered that a doctor’s best teachers are often his patients. From these (extra)ordinary individuals, Hutton gained a whole-hearted respect for the resourcefulness, courage, and resilience of the human spirit. Hutton’s patients—and the valuable lessons they taught—served as the inspiration for Carrying the Black Bag. Part memoir and part tribute to the patients who faced major illness with grace, grit, and dignity, Carrying the Black Bag invites readers to experience what it is like to be a doctor’s hands, eyes, and heart. Imagine the joy of witnessing a critically ill five-year-old who, against all odds, claws her way back from a coma and near certain death. Meet a lonely Texas widower with Parkinson’s disease who hosts elaborate pinochle parties for a pack of imaginary canines. Step into the surgical booties of the author when he attempts to deliver his own child amid heart-stopping obstetrical complications—during a paralyzing Minnesota blizzard.  Through real-life patient narratives, Hutton shines light on ordinary people facing extraordinary challenges. Moreover, this captivating tale captures the drama of medicine—its mystery, pathos, heroism, sacrifice, and humor.

Tom Hutton, M. D., is an internationally-recognized clinical and research neurologist and educator. The past president of the Texas Neurological Society, Dr. Hutton served as professor and vice chairman of the Department of Medical and Surgical Neurology at the Texas Tech School of Medicine. He now lives on his cattle ranch near Fredericksburg, Texas. Visit Tom Hutton online at:

Published by Texas Tech University Press, Carrying the Black Bag is available in hardcover edition (6 x 9, 257 pages; photographs; ISBN: 978-0-89672-954-4) Carrying the Black Bag was also awarded the Bronze Medal in the “Best Debut Author” category of the Feathered Quill Book Awards.

For additional information on the Eric Hoffer Book Award, visit:

Members of the news media wishing to request additional information about Tom Hutton, M.D. or Carrying the Black Bag are kindly asked to contact Maryglenn McCombs by phone: (615) 297-9875 or email:


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Last day to submit an application is June 30, loan repayment could pay up to two years of current school loans.

Dallas, TX – The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB) Loan Repayment Program for Mental Health Professionals is currently accepting applications for student loan repayment assistance. The funds are available for certain eligible mental health professionals providing care to Texans in underserved areas. The deadline for applications has been extended to June 30.

Created in 2015 by the Texas Legislature, the loan repayment program aims to address the state’s critical mental health provider shortage and improve access to mental health services in Texas. Senator Charles Schwertner, MD (R-Georgetown) and Representative John Zerwas, MD (R-Simonton) championed the initiative, which provides more than $2 million each biennium. Funds are available to qualified psychiatrists, psychologists, licensed professional counselors, psychiatric mental health advanced practice nurses, and clinical social workers who agree to provide direct care in Mental Health Professional Shortage Areas (MHPSAs).

“An overwhelming majority of Texans – one in four – live in the 199 counties with workforce shortages, defined as more than 30,000 Texans per clinician,” said Dr. Andy Keller, president and CEO of the Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute. “The Loan Repayment Program for Mental Health Professionals is an important incentive to help build our mental health workforce in underserved communities and ensure all communities in Texas are served with proper care and professional treatment options.”

There are 185 Texas counties that do not have a psychiatrist. Additionally, 241 counties are fully or partially designated geographic or population-based MHPSAs, or have at least one facility-based MHPSA. Over 80 percent of these counties are rural counties.

THECB is now accepting online applications for the Loan Repayment Program for Mental Health Professionals on their website. All applications must be received by the June 30 deadline.  For more information on the program, please call THECB at 1-800-242-3062or visit:

About the Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute

The Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute provides data-driven, nonpartisan policy research and technical assistance to improve behavioral health services in Texas. For more information, please visit



The Health and Human Services Commission is notifying people about the accidental loss of protected personal information. The breach may affect 1,842 people in the Houston area.

A box of forms containing client information was found beside an unsecured dumpster in Houston at the E. 40th St. complex, an eligibility office.

The lost forms contained confidential information including names, client numbers, dates of birth, case numbers and phone numbers. Other potential information includes mailing addresses, Social Security numbers, health information and bank account numbers.

We are providing one year of free credit monitoring services to individuals who have been affected by this privacy breach. If you believe you may have been affected, you may call 1-855-904-5740 toll-free and speak to an investigator or visit

HHSC is committed to ensuring that our clients’ confidential information is secure. The agency is investigating this event and taking steps to secure confidential information and reduce the chances of this event happening again. HHSC is reviewing its processes and procedures for disposing of and destroying documents that contain private information, and making any changes needed to prevent this type of event in the future.

Fort Bend Children’s Discovery Center expands beyond the limits of your imagination during Sci-Fi Summer

Select “Freak Out Friday” character appearances!

Now through Labor Day

Sponsored by Baird


 The Fort Bend Children’s Discovery Center’s “Sci-Fi Summer” will take you to infinity and beyond!  Happening now through Labor Day weekend, you’re invited to take off on an out-of-this world adventure where imagination and reality collide. Come and explore the endless possibilities of time, space and mind-boggling discoveries where there are no limits to where you’re going, even if it means doing it all over again.  The future is what you make of it now!  Teleport to your own “Sci-Fi Summer” adventure and imagine what you’ll know tomorrow!  It’s a “Sci-Fi Summer” at the Fort Bend Children’s Discovery Center – A Very Special Project of the Children’s Museum of Houston!


  • Be in for a shock as you steer robots in the Robotics Lab at Mercedes-Benz Precision Center.
  • Go in search of E.O. (extraordinary) characters with Sci-Fi character meet-and-greets.
  • Get stoked during select “Freak Out Friday” character appearances.



Stop by to see some of your favorite Sci-Fi characters on select Fridays all summer long!



Friday, June 23, from 1 to 4 p.m.

You’re invited to go bananas during an epic meet-and-greet of despicable fun and indecipherable nonsense.  Head to the Discovery Center for a one-in-a-Minion chance to meet your favorite goggle-wearing henchmen, Lucy and the not-so-evil Gru from “Despicable Me” during a fan celebration.



Friday, July 14, from 1 to 4 p.m.

Sail across the “open ocean” on an action-packed voyage, encountering extraordinary characters and impossible odds!  Make waves while you meet Moana and immerse yourself in island life and culture during a fan celebration.



Friday, July 28, from 1 to 4 p.m.

Our spidey senses are tingling! The Fort Bend Children’s Discovery Center will get tangled in a web of excitement during a Spider-Man Day fan celebration.  Your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man will spin into gear for a special appearance with Black Widow.  Plus, rising artist and illustrator Christian Navarrete will show you how to illustrate popular characters from the Spider-Man universe, including Spider-Man, Venom, Green Goblin, Doctor Octavius, Vulture, and more! (Workshop signup onsite)



Friday, Aug. 11, from 1 to 4 p.m.

Calling all Star Trek and Star Wars fans!  It’s highly illogical but the Fort Bend Children’s Discovery Center is boldly going where no man has gone before.  Galaxies will collide when Star Trek and Star Wars fans face off at the ultimate throw down.  You’re invited to dress up, team up with your favorite side and become part of this intergalactic saga during a fan celebration.  Resistance is futile.  Live long and prosper and may the force be with you!  Plus, rising artist and illustrator Christian Navarrete will show you how to illustrate popular characters from Star Trek or Star Wars.  (Workshop signup onsite)



Friday, Aug. 18, from 1 to 4 p.m.

Ever had a bad hair day?  It’s time to own it and let the good times roll.  The Trolls are on a roll in on their quest to show you that happiness comes within yourself.  You’re invited to sing, dance and hug all day long.  Caution and optimism do go hand in hand.  Hang out with the Trolls and don’t forget to bring your camera during this fan celebration.





Now through June 22

Have you ever wanted to have super powers? Explore how you can develop mutant super powers by transforming into a Sci-Fi mutant or join the amazon fight for truth and justice.  Create the illusion of movement in a one-of-a-kind dynamic drawing at Art Academy or explore the probability involved in genetic inheritance as you create Sci-Fi organisms with super-powers at Science Station. 



June 23 through July 6

All of our favorite Sci-Fi superheroes occasionally have to battle the bad guys to test their strength and ability to overcome conflicts.  Join the battle of The Dark Side with an artsy project inspired by the Nōtan art of Japan at Art Academy or design your own Dalek, the villainous droids from Dr. Who at Junktion. 



July 7 to 20

Come join us as we take on a whirlwind adventure through different galaxies, realities, and timelines.  Hold on tight as you prepare yourself to be Twisting Time with an out of this world tie-dye art at Art Academy. Decorate a paper armband “time travelling watch” to help you travel back in time and make your own Sonic Screwdriver just like in “Doctor Who” at Junktion.




July 20 through Aug. 2

Ever wondered what was behind some of the best special effects in film and television?  Explore the real science of how technology can be used to alter reality.  Experiment with surrealism in a collage that is sure to feel like it’s from another planet at Art Academy. Become an out of this world alien and design

your own galaxy-inspired amagraph to learn about optical illusions at Junktion.


***Activities, events, and times subject to change. 



Ranked as one of the “Top 10 Things to Do in Sugar Land” on TripAdvisor, The Fort Bend Children’s Discovery Center is a Playground for Your Mind™.  It is dedicated to transforming communities through innovative, child-centered learning with a vision to spark a passion for lifelong learning in all children.  Located at 198 Kempner St., Sugar Land, TX 77498 in the Historic Imperial Market, the Discovery Center offers a multitude of innovative exhibits and bilingual learning programs for kids ages birth to 12 years.  Admission is $12 per person and $11 for seniors 65 years and older and for members of the military.  HOURS are Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.  For more information, please visit or call (832) 742-2800.  Also, “like” the Museum on Facebook,   Can your mind come out to play?™



Baird is an employee-owned, international wealth management, capital markets, private equity and asset management firm with offices in the United States, Europe and Asia. Established in 1919, Baird has more than 3,400 associates serving the needs of individual, corporate, institutional and municipal clients. Baird has $171 billion in client assets. Committed to being a great place to work, Baird ranked No. 4 on FORTUNE’s 100 Best Companies to Work For in 2017 – its 14th consecutive year on the list. Baird is the marketing name of Baird Financial Group. Baird’s principal operating subsidiaries are Robert W. Baird & Co. in the United States and Robert W. Baird Group Ltd. in Europe. Baird also has an operating subsidiary in Asia supporting Baird’s investment banking and private equity operations. For more information, please visit Baird’s Web site at



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The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo™ has elected not to renew the contract of Chief Operating Officer Dan Cheney. Combined with recent hires and a restructuring of the organization, including the elimination of the general manager position, this decision is part of an overall strategy to better position the Show for the future.

Cheney joined the Show in 2014 after serving as the CEO of Cheyenne Frontier Days starting in 2010. Prior to that role, he was the founder, CEO, and president of Forbes Capital Business Group, Inc.; director of global marketing and business development for Pro Equine Group; and general manager of The Show Place Arena in Memphis, Tennessee, a 6,250-seat indoor arena and outdoor events facility.

Last week, the Show eliminated the position of general manager, held by Joe Bruce Hancock. Hancock was a nine-year employee and remains a Lifetime Vice President.

“Dan offered a fresh perspective to our operations, and Joe Bruce, as a volunteer for 20-plus years, brought a unique background that fostered productive volunteer-staff relations,” said Joel Cowley, president and CEO. “We thank them both and wish them well in their future endeavors.”


What is the danger?

Tropical Storm Cindy in the Gulf of Mexico is stationary, but is expected to move toward the Texas coast in the next few days. The National Hurricane Center and other forecasters anticipate landfall on the Texas coast as early as Wednesday evening.

This storm is expected to bring 3-6 inches of rain on the east side of the storm track, but less on the west side. Flooding and rain will be the primary concerns though high winds are possible.

Coastal residents should expect slightly higher tides and be prepared for possible street flooding.


What you need to do:

While the primary threat will be flooding, residents are strongly advised to prepare your family and property for potential storm impacts.

Play close attention to local media, the National Hurricane Center and the National Weather Service. Numerous watches and warnings will be issued in the coming days.

Street flooding or deep water ponding may occur during this event. Stay out of the water. The vast majority of severe weather deaths are due to flooding. Driving, walking, or swimming in flooded streets, bayous, and streams can lead to certain death. Stay aware: Turn Around, Don’t Drown!

Where you can learn more:

·         Forecasts: National Weather Service Houston-Galveston

·         Flood Safety: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

·         Local Road Conditions:Houston Transtar

·         State Road Conditions:


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Did you know that as many as 35,700 of Katy residents are uninsured or underinsured? Christ Clinic strives to fill the gap between Medicaid and private insurance. Offering quality medical care to the underserved in our community is in everyone’s best interest because a healthier population makes for a healthier community.
Through our patient-centered primary care, mental health services, strong provider/patient networks and diversified funding, Christ Clinic provides reliable, accessible, high quality medical services to the uninsured.
Join Christ Clinic on Friday, September 22, 2017 for the 6th Annual Breakfast for A Blessing at Omni Houston Hotel at Westside 13210 Katy Freeway, Houston, Texas 77079 from 7:30 – 9:00 AM. This event will help raise funds to continue to provide quality medical care to the growing number of uninsured in the Katy community.

AUSTIN – The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) Director Steven McCraw today was joined by members of the Texas Public Safety Commission (PSC), including PSC Chairman Steven P. Mach, as the department commissioned 122 men and women as the state’s newest Highway Patrol Troopers. Chairman Mach was the keynote speaker during the recruit graduation ceremony, which was held today in Austin.

“It takes a special kind of person to be willing to sacrifice their safety in order to protect others from danger,” Chairman Mach said. “In joining DPS, you have declared to the world that you intend to live a life of purpose serving and protecting the people of the great State of Texas. We are extremely fortunate for your dedication to duty and are proud of each and every one of you – our newest Texas State Troopers.”

The A-2017 class, which is the department’s 159th training class, included 15 women, 12 former peace officers and 48 military veterans. The oldest graduate is 49-years-old and the youngest is 21-years-old. The class also included a Trooper whose father, a Highway Patrol Sergeant, died in the line of duty in 2015. It was also the first (known) time two sisters graduated in the same class.

“These 122 graduates will join their fellow DPS Troopers as a first line of defense against a wide variety of threats in the communities they serve,” said Director McCraw. “We are counting on you to help make your communities safer, and to uphold the tradition and standards of the Texas Highway Patrol.”

The new Troopers will report to duty stations across Texas in the coming weeks and spend the first six months in on-the-job training.

The Troopers began the 23-week training academy in January of 2017. Instruction covered more than 100 subjects, including counterterrorism, traffic and criminal law, arrest and control procedures, accident reconstruction, first aid and Spanish. They also received training in use of force, communication skills, firearms, driving, criminal interdiction, cultural diversity and physical fitness.

DPS is currently accepting applications for recruit classes scheduled for 2018. The next application deadline is Oct. 1, 2017, for the class beginning July 8, 2018. Are you up to the challenge? To apply or for more information about joining the legion of brave and outstanding officers at the Texas Department of Public Safety, visit

In addition, DPS schedules recruiting events throughout the year. To find an event in your region, visit

Additional photos of the event are posted at:

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator John Cornyn (R-TX), who is an original cosponsor of a Senate Resolution to designate June 19, 2017 as “Juneteenth Independence Day”, released the following open letter to Texans on Juneteenth:

Dear fellow Texans:

This Juneteenth, we celebrate 152 years since long-awaited freedom finally came for so many in the State of Texas.

We celebrate the anniversary of June 19, 1865 when U.S. Major General Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston, Texas to deliver the news that would change lives and alter the course of history: the Civil War had ended and those enslaved were now free.

Celebrations rang out across Texas as the lives of men, women, and children who had known no life outside of slavery were transformed.  And celebrations today continue as we reflect on opportunities afforded to generation after generation because of the events of that day.

We owe so much to General Granger and the news he brought to Galveston on the day we now call Juneteenth.  But June 19, 1865 was just one stop on a long road toward equality.  We must strive every day to honor a telling phrase in the preamble of the U.S. Constitution; we must strive to form ‘a more perfect union.’  By treating each individual with dignity, each community with respect, we can come closer to achieving that goal.

I am happy to join you in celebrating Juneteenth, and I pledge to continue to work each and every day to ensure all Texans can live freer lives for generations to come.

May God bless you, and may He continue to bless the great state of Texas.


John Cornyn

Senator John Cornyn, a Republican from Texas, is a member of the Senate Finance, Intelligence, and Judiciary Committees.

Ken Paxton

AUSTIN – Attorney General Ken Paxton announced that Texas joined a 10-state coalition filing an amicus brief supporting the constitutionality of President Trump’s Executive Order regarding sanctuary cities.

Sanctuary jurisdictions obstruct cooperation between federal and local officials on immigration enforcement and undermine the rule of law. When law enforcement is deliberately impeded, our communities become more dangerous by the day.

“President Trump’s Executive Order is fully constitutional and a large step toward public safety,” Attorney General Paxton said. “If law enforcement authorities have policies of not cooperating with federal immigration authorities, dangerous criminals will unlawfully remain in the country, travel freely between states and continue to evade the justice system. Governments have a duty to protect their citizens – it is imperative that we honor federal laws and cooperate with ICE detainers to keep our communities safe.”

This amicus brief recommends that the court dismiss the Plaintiff’s complaint against the Executive Order.

To view a copy of the brief, click here.