Build Up Houston

Press Release

The City of Houston and Houston Community College Partner on Executive Education Program
Build Up Houston 2017 Class

January 30, 2017 -- Twelve small business owners will participate in the 2017 Class of Build Up Houston. Now in its 3rd year, Build Up Houston is the city’s executive education program that supports construction companies currently operating and doing business in the City of Houston. The program utilizes Interise’s award-winning StreetWise 'MBA'™ curriculum and will cover topics such as business development, strategic planning, access to capital, government contacts, financials, marketing and sales, and human resources. Classes will meet bi-weekly from January 31, 2017 through July 2017 at the Houston Community College’s Central Campus.

The program will be facilitated by Darryl Samuels, Managing Partner at D. Samuels & Associates, LLC. Mr. Samuels brings years of experience in processes for construction, supply chain, and supplier diversity projects. Each participating company is a live-case, using their own experiences as a case study. As business owners learn about each topic, they are able to instantly apply the lessons to their business and implement change. The program provides the time and framework for business owners to work "on" their business instead of "in" it.

 “As the Super Bowl returns to Houston we are reminded of how much our city has changed over the last decade. Our transformation is due in part to the various construction projects that have improved our roadways and infrastructure." said Mayor Sylvester Turner. I commend the 12 small business owners who have decided to take part in the Build Up Houston 2017 Class. As small construction companies you are vital to our continued growth and play an important role in not only our infrastructure but also as employers to many Houstonians.  

“The City of Houston's Office of Business Opportunity is tasked with developing partnerships and programs that will help build capacity and strengthen our local small businesses. Now in our 3rd year, we have seen graduates of Build Up Houston hire additional personnel and enter into larger construction projects. I am excited to meet the 2017 Class and commend them for taking the time to invest in their businesses. "said Director, Carlecia D. Wright, Office of Business Opportunity.

"Interise is thrilled to continue its partnership with the City of Houston’s Office of Business Opportunity. We are so proud to be involved with Houston’s third cohort, now delivered at Houston Community College. We are so happy to see and share in the success of entrepreneurs who already have taken the Build Up Houston program, and look forward to seeing the gains of this set of business owners as they work to scale their companies for economic growth and prosperity." said Jean Hortsman, CEO of Interise.

“We are delighted to partner with the City of Houston and Interise to deliver an outstanding training program for the construction industry! HCC is committed to providing the best training to build a qualified, talented workforce and business community." said Dr. Maya Durnovo, Chief Entrepreneurial Initiatives Officer, Houston Community College.

Congratulations to the following companies who were accepted into the 2017 "Build Up Houston" Class:

Guy Felton, Septh Group LLC dba A.G. Welding 
Stan George, Alamo Ready Mix
Wendy Holley, Pinnacle Sign Company
Johnny Hollins, J.G. Hollins Investment 
Thessalonian LeBlanc, DELMET Services 
J. Frank Lopez, El Dorado Services, Inc. 
Jorge Mancilla, Gutier LLC 
Anthony Ndah, Noble Construction- An Atlantic Petroleum Co.
Terron Numa, Tri-Coastal Concrete Construction
Janet Pena, Coastal Supplies & Services
Clovis Restrepo, EZ Demolitions & Underground 
Wayne Rodick, Coastal Hydraulics

Anyone interested in learning more about the program can visit:

The City of Houston’s Office of Business Opportunity (OBO) is committed to creating a competitive and diverse business environment in the City of Houston by promoting the growth and success of local and small businesses through a wide range of services from startup business assistance to certification for established businesses seeking contract opportunities with the City. Through OBO’s Houston Business Solutions Center, we provide resources that help with the start-up, sustainability, and growth of businesses. For more information about the Office of Business Opportunity and our suite of services, please visit or call 832.393.0600.

Houston Community College (HCC) is composed of 13 Centers of Excellence and numerous satellite centers that serve the diverse communities in the Greater Houston area by preparing individuals to live and work in an increasingly international and technological society. HCC is one of the country’s largest singly-accredited, open-admission, community colleges offering associate degrees, certificates, workforce training, and lifelong learning opportunities. To learn more, visit

Interise is the go-to partner with a proven model for accelerating economic and small business growth in low- to moderate-income communities. Interise’s StreetWise 'MBA'™ provides small business owners with the business knowledge, management know-how and relationships they need to scale using a peer-based, experiential learning method. Alumni historically create new jobs at 5x the rate of the private sector as a whole and have secured over $3 billion in government and institutional contracts. As alumni grow, they contribute to economic development, job creation, and social resilience within their local community. More information can be found at @StreetWiseMBA and at