Top UHV alumni to be recognized at spring alumni banquet
The University of Houston-Victoria will honor a banking president and a chief financial planner with the university’s highest alumni awards during the 2023 UHV Alumni Awards Banquet next month.
Lori Zamora, banking center president of the West Columbia Prosperity Bank, will receive the 2023 Distinguished Alumnus Award. David Faskas, a managing member of KMH Wealth Management LLC in Victoria, will receive the 2023 Young Alumnus of the Year Award. The Distinguished Alumnus Award is presented to a UHV graduate whose accomplishments, character and service are exceptional and represent the ideals and values of his or her alma mater. The Young Alumnus of the Year is presented to a UHV graduate who is younger than 40 and is distinctly accomplished professionally or in service to others.
“David and Lori are great examples of what a UHV education can provide,” said Amber Countis, UHV vice president for advancement and external relations. “Both David and Lori are not only successful in their careers, but they are also invested in their communities. They will soon join a select group of alumni who greatly exemplify what it means to be a Jaguar. We are honored that Lori and David trusted UHV with their education, and we are excited to honor them for their accomplishments.”
The two alumni will be recognized during the banquet, scheduled for 6:30 p.m. on March 31 in the UHV University North Multi-Purpose Room, 3007 N. Ben Wilson St. The banquet is part of the UHV Homecoming Week festivities from March 27 to April 1. Tickets for the event are $25 per person, which includes catered dinner, a beer and wine reception and an awards presentation for Zamora and Faskas. UHV alumni, their friends and families, and community supporters are encouraged to attend the event.
“We are extremely proud of the accomplishments of both Lori and David,” said Kelsey Norgard, UHV director of alumni relations and annual giving. “We are honored that they are eager to come back to their alma mater and help encourage our current and future students to strive for the best in their lives as well.”
Zamora received her Bachelor of Business Administration in general business in 2020 and graduated magna cum laude from UHV. She was born and raised in Victoria and has worked in banking for more than 33 years. Zamora is the banking center president for Prosperity Bank at the West Columbia and Angleton locations in Brazoria County. Previously, she worked at Investar Bank in Victoria, Plains Capital Bank as well as the Victoria branch of Prosperity Bank for 16 years. She has worked as a banking center president for both Investar Bank and Prosperity Bank, and in other various positions throughout her banking career. Additionally, Zamora has been a Rotarian for more than 17 years, where she has served on the board of directors and as the 2011-2012 Northside Rotary president. She also received the Rotarian of the Year Award twice, in both 2010 and in 2012. She is the current president of the Hospice of Victoria Endowment Board of Directors and from 2008 to 2014 served as treasurer on the Victoria Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors. Zamora also has been a member of Faith Family Church for nearly 30 years.
For Zamora, her UHV journey to the commencement stage was a long time coming. She had already been working full time in banking for years after she received her associate degree from Victoria College in 2005 and was raising a family with her husband at the same time. She knew to get to where she wanted to be in her career, she would have to continue her education and receive her BBA from UHV. Throughout her UHV journey, she would take up to a few classes each semester, and would steadily apply the skills and knowledge she was receiving at UHV in her banking career, including strengthening other important skills such as public speaking, critical thinking and collaboration. Throughout her full-time career, raising a family, and volunteer and extracurricular activities, Zamora was driven to receive her degree. She encourages high school students and others going through similar situations to persevere through the challenges, as the educational experience is worth it.
She thanks her parents and husband, James, and her two children, Megan Zamora Gregurek and Brandon Zamora, for their support and encouragement. Her favorite pastime now is to spend as much time as she can with her five-month-old grandson, Atlas.
“It is humbling and such an honor to receive this award,” Zamora said. “I feel like I worked so hard for so long for my degree. I’m such a strong believer in education, and I love that UHV has a strong presence around Victoria and the surrounding communities. I received a quality education without having to leave my hometown. I highly recommend UHV to anyone locally or outside our city.”
David Faskas received his Bachelor of Business Administration in finance in 2012. He is a managing member of KMH Wealth Management LLC and is a lead advisor, chief investment officer and chief financial planning officer for the firm. His practice includes all areas of personal financial planning, including investment and retirement analysis, Medicare and insurance planning and tax planning. In addition to his degree, Faskas’ professional designations include being a Chartered Financial Analyst, Certified Financial Planner professional, and National Association of Personal Financial Advisors Registered Financial Advisor. Faskas is the vice president of the Victoria Bach Festival board of directors and president of the Victoria Fine Arts Association. He also is a member of the Kiwanis and the Welder Center Advisory Board. Additionally, Faskas also has volunteered to teach finance courses at Victoria East and Victoria West high schools, mentored high school students and taught chess. A guitarist, Faskas performs locally as a solo artist and with his jazz band, Take Three jazz combo.
Faskas, also from Victoria, received his associate degree from Victoria College and continued his education at UHV as well. While earning his undergraduate degree, UHV was offering BBA courses online, which was beneficial because Faskas could stay and live in his hometown and work during the day and earn his degree in the evenings. He appreciated the education he received at UHV, especially from business faculty member Olga Chapa. One of the biggest learning opportunities for Faskas was during the capstone course at the end of his undergraduate studies, which applies all the skills business students learn throughout their time at UHV. He also appreciated the help of Amy Hatmaker in what was then called UHV Career Services, now the UHV Career Development Center. People like Chapa and Hatmaker went above and beyond to help students succeed at UHV, Faskas said. He has been able to stay at the same firm since graduating from UHV, where he started on a strong educational foundation from UHV and has been able to build on that ever since.
Faskas would like to thank his mother, his late father, and his wife, Rachel, for their support and encouragement. He also would like to thank Lane and Phyllis Keller, owners of KMH Wealth Management LLC, for giving him the opportunity to be with the firm for more than 10 years and encouraging him in his financial career.
“It’s an incredible honor, and I feel very special for being recognized for my accomplishments,” Faskas said. “This is something I will be able to keep with me for the rest of my life. I am very thankful UHV has decided to give this award to me.”
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 50 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.