Business speaker series comes to Victoria for lecture on health care

Since 2011, the University of Houston-Victoria School of Business Administration Distinguished Speaker Series has brought in executives to discuss contemporary business issues.

The popular lectures took place at UH Sugar Land, where UHV offers a number of degree programs. While the Sugar Land lectures will continue, the series is shifting to Victoria for the first time on Oct. 21.

Heber Lacerda

Heber Lacerda, president and CEO of Regency Post-Acute Healthcare System Inc., will speak at 7 p.m. in the Kay and Ron Walker Auditorium at UHV University North in Victoria. The speech is free and open to the public.

“We are continuing to see an increase in the number of business students taking face-to-face courses in Victoria,” said Farhang Niroomand, dean of the UHV School of Business Administration. “The timing made sense to extend the series to Victoria, so Crossroads students and community members can take part in these educational and entertaining events.”

Lacerda is a longtime supporter of the university and a member of the UHV School of Business Administration Dean’s Advisory Council. In 2014, Regency donated $150,000 to the UHV School of Business Administration to set up the Regency Endowed Professorship.

Regency provides a wide range of long-term health care services at 32 facilities across Central and South Texas. Lacerda reached out to university leaders when the company first moved its corporate headquarters to Victoria in 1994. The company employs more than 50 UHV graduates.

Lacerda has been with Regency since 1988. He worked in entry-level operations, accounting and financing before being appointed president and CEO in 1996. The company received UHV’s Community Partnership Award during the 2012-2013 President’s Annual Report & Excellence Awards dinner. The award is presented annually to a person, business or organization that has helped advance the quality of life in the region and at the university.

Farhang Niroomand

“Since this is the inaugural Distinguished Speaker Series in Victoria, I asked Heber Lacerda to give the first lecture because he’s been such a good friend to the school,” Niroomand said. “His support to the school – including the endowed professorship, service on my advisory council and hiring 56 of our graduates – has been invaluable.”

Lacerda will be the first speaker to appear twice in the Distinguished Speaker Series. He gave an address in 2012 at UH Sugar Land. His speech on Oct. 21 will cover the current state of health care and what the future will hold.

“Mr. Lacerda’s experiences and insights will be of great interest to our students and anyone who is interested in the future of health care in this country,” Niroomand said.

The evening will begin with a free reception and Business Information Fair, held in conjunction with the UHV Business Student Association, from 6-7 p.m. in the UHV University North Multi-Purpose Room. At the fair, students can learn about business degree programs and concentrations and meet with other students, faculty members and local community members.

The fair and speech all will be held in University North, UHV’s new academic and regional economic development building. The UHV School of Business Administration and SBDC moved into the 63,000 square-foot building in August.

Among the many new features of the building is a 200-seat auditorium on the first floor. Lacerda’s speech will be the first public lecture held in the Kay and Ron Walker Auditorium.

The University of Houston-Victoria, located in the heart of the Coastal Bend region since 1973 in Victoria, Texas, offers courses leading to more than 80 academic programs in the schools of Arts & Sciences; Business Administration; and Education, Health Professions & Human Development. UHV provides face-to-face classes at its Victoria campus, as well as an instructional site in Katy, Texas, and online classes that students can take from anywhere. UHV supports the American Association of State Colleges and Universities Opportunities for All initiative to increase awareness about state colleges and universities and the important role they have in providing a high-quality and accessible education to an increasingly diverse student population, as well as contributing to regional and state economic development.

Jeremy Shapiro