2015 Writers' League of Texas Board of Directors Slate of Candidates
(Voting will take place in November. Check back soon for more information.)
Olga Campos Benz
Olga Campos Benz is one of the most honored anchor/reporters ever to grace the Texas airwaves. A University of Texas graduate, Olga spent more than 30 years covering the biggest news stories in Houston, Corpus Christi and Austin. Following her retirement as a broadcast journalist, Olga enjoyed a smooth transition into an arena she knows well thanks to her active role as a volunteer and community supporter. She is now the Community Relations Director for businessman and philanthropist, Milton Verret. She also serves on several non-profit boards including The Health Alliance for Austin Musicians (HAAM), the Austin Film Festival, the Development Committee of the Austin Film Society, the Advisory Council of the University of Texas Division of Diversity and Community Engagement and the Luncheon Committee of Austin Gives. Olga is a 2014 inductee into the City of Austin Commission for Women Hall of Fame. In 2013, the Austin Business Journal named her one of the “Profiles in Power: Women of Influence”. Olga recently completed her first novel, “It’s News to Me” which takes readers behind the scenes of the often funny and unbelievable world of television news. She and her husband, Kevin Benz, are proud parents of 23 year old twin daughters, Corazon and Allegra. Olga can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Until his recent retirement, David Furlow was a senior partner of Thompson & Knight LLP in Houston, employing his experience as a prosecutor and civil attorney litigator to represent clients in trial and appellate matters. His practice included insurance defense and coverage, oil and gas, professional liability, restrictive covenant/homeowner associations, and general commercial litigation. David has particular expertise in First Amendment cases involving the rights of individuals and business owners to engage in political and commercial free speech including signage, elections, and entertainment, in state, federal, and U.S. Supreme Court cases.
David serves on the Texas Supreme Court Historical Society Board of Trustees and served as Chair of the A.B.A. Tort, Trial & Insurance Practice Section's Media, Defamation, and Privacy Law Committee and as Vice-Chair of the Section's Intellectual Property Committee. He presents programs about American history, constitutional law, Native American issues, and early American archaeology in Texas, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and New York, and served as a script consultant and interviewee on the History Channel's 2005 documentary “Warrior Queen Boudica.”
Michael Hurd is a historian, author, and freelance writer who was born in Texarkana, Texas and grew up in Houston, where he graduated from Evan E. Worthing High School in 1967. He is managing editor for the Texas Black History Preservation Project which is documenting almost 500 years of African American presence in Texas as an online encyclopedia. However, his career includes an eight-year stint in the U.S. Air Force as a medic, serving one year (1971) at Phu Cat Air Base, Vietnam. He was honorably discharged in May 1976 with the Air Force Commendation Medal. He is a graduate in Journalism from the University of Texas at Austin and has worked as a sports writer at the Houston Post, the Austin American-Statesman, USA Today, and Yahoo Sports. He has authored two books, including “Black College Football, 1892-1992,” the only book that comprehensively documents the legacies of football programs at historically Black colleges. For more than a decade, he served as a member of the National Football Foundation’s Honors Court for Divisional Players, the group that selects small college players to the College Football Hall of Fame, and he currently serves on the selection committee for the Black College Football Hall of Fame. He recently began working on a book, "Thursday Night Lights," for UT Press about the history of football programs at black high schools in Texas before integration, 1920-1970.