Ron Watterson

From staff reports

The board of directors of the North Texas GLBT Chamber of Commerce has elected Ron Watterson to serve as its chairman.

Watterson replaces Lorie Burch, who has served since January 2011. Burch stepped down as board chair to focus on her law practice and her duties on the national board of the American Business Women’s Association. She will continue to serve on the chamber board as immediate past chair.

“It has been an honor to be part of this great organization; we’ve enjoyed so much success and have made such a difference in our community,” Burch said in announcing her resignation.

During Burch’s term the chamber received its third award from the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber, and began work on the GLBT Leadership Institute and the Women’s Success Forum. The Women’s Success Forum launched April 25, with a luncheon featuring basketball legend Nancy Lieberman.

Watterson becomes the chamber’s fifth chairman in eight years. He is a branch manager and senior loan officer for PrimeLending, A PlainsCapital Company. Since joining PrimeLending in January 2009, Watterson opened the PrimeLending branch at 3500 Oak Lawn Ave., at the corner of Lemmon.

Watterson is a member of the Metrotex Association of Realtors and the Human Rights Campaign’s DFW Federal Club. He served as the 2011 chairman of the chamber’s Business Exchange Network group.

“I’ve been a member of the North Texas GLBT Chamber since 2006; over these past six years I’ve seen how important it is for the GLBT community to have this dynamic organization working to support business growth and equality,” Watterson said. “Lorie and the previous board chairs have each worked to move the chamber from an idea to being the largest and most recognized GLBT chamber in Texas. I’m very excited to work with the board, staff and members to bring the chamber to new levels of success.”

The chamber board also approved the appointment of two new members, Betty Young of American Airlines and Tim DeWitt of OBOX Solutions.

Young began her career with American Airlines in 1989 as a reservations agent. In her current role, she helps conceive and plan the company’s diverse marketing strategies, focusing on enhancing services, support and outreach to American’s loyal LGBT, African-American, Hispanic and women customers, as well as other diverse populations. Young’s previous work with the chamber includes serving on the first board of directors from 2005-07, and as chair of the Programs Committee.

Tim DeWitt and his husband, Thom DeWitt, co-founded OBOX Solutions in 2005. OBOX Solutions, a certified LGBT Business Enterprise, is an information technology solutions and staffing firm. It has achieved Tier 1 status for Fortune 500 companies, as well as servicing small to mid-size firms.

Tim and Thom purchased the Paris Wise House in Paris, Texas, in 2007 and began restoration on the 1887 red brick, Queen Anne Style estate. In early 2012, the home was opened to the public for special occasions and weddings.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition May 25, 2012.