Bishop Timothy Hickman, M.D., and his counselors L. E. Simmons, and Brady K. Long, the ecclesiastical leaders of the newly formed Memorial Park Second Ward in the Houston Texas South Stake of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS), are widely esteemed in their respective fields. And that is half of the story.
An internationally known expert in the fields of in vitro fertilization (IVF), infertility and reproductive health, Dr. Hickman has been named a “Top Doctor in Reproductive Endocrinology” by U.S. News and World Report, and a “Texas Super Doc” by Texas Monthly Magazine. Dr. Hickman is Clinical Associate Professor at both University of Texas Medical School – Houston and Baylor College of Medicine and served as medical director of the Air Force’s IVF program at Wilford Hall Medical Center in San Antonio before co-founding Houston IVF.
L.E. Simmons is Chairman of SCF Partners which he founded in 1989. Focusing on energy service and equipment companies, SCF has created 13 public companies listed on the U.S. and Canadian stock exchanges, a number of which are among the largest companies in the oil service industry today. Simmons’ board service and association with corporate and non-profit organizations include United Airlines, Zions Bancorporation, Houston Endowment, Rice University, Harvard Business School, Texas Children’s Hospital, and The London School of Economics.
According to Forbes Magazine, Brady K. Long joined ENSCO in 2011 as Vice President – General Counsel and Secretary in connection with the acquisition of Pride International. Prior to joining ENSCO, Long served as Vice President – General Counsel and Secretary with Pride from 2009-2011. ENSCO, a publically traded corporation (NYSE symbol ESV), is the second largest off-shore drilling firm with over 7,000 employees world-wide and annual revenues of $2.3 billion. In 2007, Long was appointed as Chairman of the Ethics & Corporate Compliance Committee of the International Association of Drilling Contractors, and in 2009 he was named by Ethisphere Institute as one of the 100 Most Influential People in Business Ethics.
With their combined backgrounds, you would be hard pressed to find a more capable trio of administrators. But their purpose is more about ministering than administering. The rest of the story is found in the hours these men will spend in the next 5 to 6 years providing spiritual leadership for the congregation. Far from their national business duties, they will be focusing on the “one”, as did Jesus Christ in the Bible. The impetus is that they love the Savior and want to serve and bless the lives of the people within the boundaries of the ward. “Serving others is one of the most valuable things I can do with my time. It is an honor and privilege to serve in this way,” said Hickman.
The ward takes in a long narrow slice of Houston, basically from Minute Maid Park on the east to Beltway 8 on the west, and from Bellaire Blvd on the south to just below I 10 on the north. “This is a very diverse, very heterogeneous group,” said Bishop Hickman, even noting the rich international heritage found within the confines of the new ward, which was formed from 2 existing wards to keep the congregations small enough for members to be able to serve and know each other.
“We have been as a Bishopric extremely impressed with the can do attitude we have been seeing – the spirit of the ward. Our goal is to be the friendliest ward in the stake – to wrap our arms collectively around all the people in the ward,” Hickman added.
In that spirit of diversity and cooperation, Brady Long’s son, Parker, will be the first missionary to leave from Memorial Park 2. He just received his mission call to Auckland, New Zealand and will leave in the fall to offer service and messages about the Savior Jesus Christ to the people there. Coincidentally, former Houston Oiler quarterback and KHOU-TV Sports Anchor Gifford Nielsen, a leader with the LDS church, has been assigned to the Australia/New Zealand area.
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