Dr. Leslie Ruyle
Scowcroft Institute of International Affairs
George Bush School of Government and Public Service
Dr. Leslie Ruyle is an ecologist working cross-disciplinarily to create innovative solutions for conservation, conflict, and development. She holds a PhD in Ecology from the University of Georgia, served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Ghana, West Africa, and has managed university-based initiatives for NSF and USAID.
Living in four countries and traveling to over 70 countries in her career, she has broad experience in international applied conservation and research including stints at the Savannah River Ecology Laboratory, Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute- Panama, Honduran Coral Reef Foundation, Applied Biodiversity Science Program, Earthwatch, and the Center on Conflict and Development.
Her work has been recognized with the UN’s Equator Prize Initiative and Dean’s Award for Interdisciplinary teams. Currently, she is building a program in DRC focused on supporting entrepreneurship in regions of conflict, conservation concern, and limited connectivity (EC3).
Leah R. Bennett, CFA
Westwood Wealth Management
Ms. Leah Rebecca Bennett, CFA, CIC, has been the President of Westwood Wealth Management, Houston at Westwood Holdings Group Inc. since 2018. Ms. Bennett was the Co-Chief Investment Officer at South Texas Money Management, Ltd. and was previously a Senior Portfolio Manager and Investment Analyst since August 2013. She was responsible for overseeing and coordinating the equity research efforts for the firm's team of research analysts. Prior to joining STMM, Ms. Bennett was a Managing Director, Principal, Chief Investment Officer, Portfolio Manager and Investment Analyst at King Investment Advisors, Inc. She joined the firm in 1995 as member of its investment advisory group.
Previously, Ms. Bennett served as a Product Specialist and Research Analyst at Capital Research and Management Company. She was a Research Assistant at the Texas A&M University Center for Free Enterprise. Ms. Bennett was the President and Director at the Houston Society of Financial Analysts. She was also a Co-founder of the CFA Research Challenge Southwest (Texas, Oklahoma and Louisiana). In addition, Ms. Bennett was elected as a CFA President Council Representative. In this role, she represents her region, which includes the South Central U.S., Mexico, Argentina, Uruguay and Brazil, as a liaison to the CFA's Board of Governors. Ms. Bennett serves on the board of Jesse H. Jones Graduate School of Management at Rice University.
She also sits on the CFA Institute's Growth Funding and President Council Governance committees and holds the role of Research Challenge Liaison. Ms. Bennett has a vast investment experience. She is a C.F.A. charter holder and a Chartered Investment Counselor. Ms. Bennett obtained a B.S. in Economics from Texas A&M University.
Glenda C. Clausell, Esq.
Clausell Law Firm, PLLC
Ms. Clausell is a graduate of Texas A&M University (B.A., History), the University of St. Thomas (M.L.A.) and an honors graduate (cum laude) of Thurgood Marshall School of Law at Texas Southern University (J.D.).
She has legal experience working in small and mid-size law firms where her focus was in general business litigation, including multi-million dollar matters. Following that she spent eight years of her legal career in the corporate legal department of Shell Oil Company where she was nominated and received the Scales of Excellence Award. She served on the Employees Club Board of Directors and later was elected President. Ms. Clausell was nominated for the State Bar of Texas Leadership program and has been appointed as an American Bar Association Young Lawyer Division Ambassador. She is currently serving as the American Bar Association Young Lawyer Division Real Property, Trust and Estate Law Vice-Chair.
She often makes educational presentations on estate planning and probate matters. Ms. Clausell received a Wills & Probate Guardian Ad Litem certification from the State Bar of Texas. She was selected to the inaugural class of the State Bar of Texas Real Estate, Probate and Trust Law Section’s Leadership Academy, where she was voted Ms. Congeniality. In addition to being a member of the Real Estate Probate and Trust Law Section, she is also a member of the Business Law section.
She has served as a volunteer legal counsel for the Houston Volunteer Lawyers Program. For more than a decade, she has been a participant and fundraiser for the American Cancer Society Relay for Life. Ms. Clausell has served in various capacities for Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc. and is its Southwestern Region Legal Advisor. She currently serves as Gubernatorial Appointee (Public Member) on the Texas Physical Therapist Examiners Board.