Monday, March 31, 2008
Several people have asked who I am. I sometimes respond "Indian Springs Guy". It seems easier that way. That tells people that I am an Indian Springs resident right away, and it relates to a large part of my life now. So there! This is just to introduce me to you, whoever you are!
Now a Woodlands resident. I am an elected member of the RDRC of Indian Springs. I have served as a representative for many years in the Indian Springs Village Association. I am an author of this blog and a volunteer for umpteen events here in The Woodlands. I am a graduate of the 2006 Woodlands Academy and the 2008 Montgomery Sheriff's Academy for Citizens. I ran for position 4 on The Woodlands Township Board of Directors in 2010 and for a director position on the Woodlands Community Association in 2009.
Born a Texan, I also grew up in Southeast Texas. As a teenager, I was a "bay rat" (doesn't sound very respectable, does it?), a surfer (another image flies by), but a very responsible young man working for everything I needed or had to support my recreation activities while in school - surf board, car, fishing supplies, etc. I worked in a pet shop, totally in charge of it's fish and bird department, because I bred fish and raised birds from eggs at home. Nothing like having a job that is your favorite hobby! I also raised mice and hamsters, selling them to the store. Later, this job turned into being a groomer and sales person, part of a high school program to learn about business. In college, I became a pest control operator, again working for everything except room and board.
Getting a Texas education, I attended Del Mar Junior College in Corpus Christi, Texas, "City by the Sea". Then I came to Houston to earn a Bachelor of Science degree. Soon after arriving, I met the girl of my life. That turned into marriage, work and children. College had to wait. After a couple of youngsters came along, we all decided it was time for me to go finish the education. After having enough hours in Biology and Chemistry for minors, I switched gears and started a major in Math. A breeze! Straight "A"s, and found my niche in this world. The goal was to complete the degree at night before I turned 30, and I did it one week beforehand! Attending the university at night was tough on family life, but I also managed to teach children's sports, including baseball and soccer during those years. I took one advanced youth soccer team to state semifinals.
Working as a Texan, I raised my family in the oil patch. It all started as a Lab Technician, testing oil and chemicals for a testing laboratory. That included refining crude oil in mini stills. In a short time, I moved on to Exxon Oil's Drilling Department. That provided a foundation for me to move to Chevron as a Geophysicist to process seismic data. That in turn led me to be a programmer for processing the data, followed by moving up the ladder quickly in Information Technology and Applications Development. Turning to a management focus, coerced by Chevron management, I began a career in leadership, from leading Computer operators to leading Computer Science Analysts. I supervised professionals with various other educational/experience backgrounds, from high school degrees to PHDs. One organization I managed consisted of 176 personnel. As I was given more and more responsibility for organization budgets, I gradually shifted to strategic and tactical planning in a major international oil company as a loanee from Chevron. I was part of Saudi Arabia's strategic planning team for their national company - Aramco Oil Co. I also had a role in management there, supervising computer analysts in major projects with hundreds of millions of dollars return on investment. That led me to being a project manager and teacher of project management practices. I worked for three years in a 28/28-work schedule and learned in Kazakhstan "how to retire". I also learned a completely new culture, language, alphabet and new technologies. On my return to Texas from that job, the whole thing took another shift away from scientific computer applications to financial systems. I started deploying Oracle Corporation's One World internationally for Chevron, spending a year in Venezuela under very difficult political circumstances. That led to another process arena - oil trading, where I managed projects in SAP and peripheral systems supporting SAP processes. Suddenly one day, the price of oil went up, and I discovered I had sufficient (I emphasize "only sufficient" here) to retire early. That I did and have never looked back.
Retiring in Texas, I had made good decisions in the late 1990's to live in The Woodlands. It was perfect for a 28/28 schedule, because I "retired" in off months right here in our hometown! Now I live here with my loving wife and two teenage children. Yes, you heard right. I remarried after a late life divorce and married a lady and her children from Venezuela. And I forgot to say; I am bilingual and love to talk to people from South America in their native tongue. We speak Spanish in our home. That is yet another story.
My Texas Family is large. I have four grown children, three of which are raising their own family. Three of my children are in Information Technology and two are in the oil patch. You are right 2+2=5. I will let you figure that out. Usually, these days, they are teaching me instead of me teaching them. All are doing well in their lives.
Spiritually under the skies of Texas, I should reveal that I was a student, preacher, counselor and instructor of God's word for 20+ years. I fall back on that time in my life for spiritual strength, because I have an understanding of the subject in exceptional depth. I attend the church of my choice now, not attached to any one place or denomination.
As far as local values go, my love is the Texas forest, because my grandmother lived in the deep woods of East Texas. I am a person close to nature and am digging in to learn more and more as each day passes.
So I started this blog. Now, I find myself involved in politics but only as far as it concerns the well being of this community. That motivates me. I want this place to improve and not erode. You also might be interested in why I have a photo of me running. Well, you are bright enough to figure that one out. Just go to my family athletics blog to see that part of the story.
This is where I have always wanted to live, in the Big Thicket, but with the comfort of nice amenities. I am now living my childhood dream. What more can a person ask for? Liv'n and Lov'n!! Now you know the rest of the story.
Saturday, March 29, 2008
For more than ten years Claude Hunter has been an active volunteer in all aspects of The Woodlands governance and planning for a future fully elected governance for The Woodlands. Claude has served as Vice President of The Woodlands Association since 2000 and President and Vice President of The Woodlands Recreation Center and Secretary of The Community Associations of The Woodlands and of The Woodlands Fire Department Boards of Directors. He has served as a Director of Municipal Utility District No. 67 since 2002 and as a Trustee of The Woodlands Joint Powers Agency. As a full time volunteer, he serves on most of our community’s committees. He has worked with Scouting, YMCA and other youth organizations for most of his life. He was recognized as The Woodlands Association’s Outstanding Volunteer for service with Covenant Administration.
As a primary advocate of resident’s needs, Claude also appreciates the economic importance of maintaining an outstanding business and commercial sector. As The Woodlands Association’s exofficio member of The South Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce for many years Claude brings elected resident perspective and supports Economic Development Partnership work to maintain a high quality business and commercial sector for The Woodlands Township.
Claude is a Mechanical Engineering graduate of The University of Texas and a graduate of Leadership Montgomery County and The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Academy. He and his wife, Peggy, are native Texans with two daughters and four grandchildren. Claude retired from Texaco Research and Development after 30 years service in technical training, product testing, design of computerized information systems and customer technical service assignments. He developed and led a 1-800 technical service operation serving the US, Latin America and West Africa and was technical advisor for Texaco’s Nascar and Indy Car Programs. Claude believes service to community is an honor and a privilege. He works well with others to meet the needs of all The Woodlands residents. He communicates daily and seeks input through a website at www.ClaudeHunter.com and uses resident input and relationships with other officials to achieve community needs. Claude has no affiliation with any company doing business in The Woodlands, except for the non-profit corporations that comprise our governance. Claude seeks the support of The Woodlands Township voters to allow him to continue to provide his proven leadership as we transition to a fully elected governance in 2010. His campaign website is: www.ElectClaude.com