Alexander E. Briseño & R. Douglas Leonhard – 4/26/08

Alexander E. Briseño & R. Douglas Leonhard – 4/26/08

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Alexander E. Briseño, Former San Antonio City Manager and Chairman, SAWS Board

Alexander E. Briseño retired as City Manager of San Antonio in March 2001 after serving almost 11 years in office. As Chief Executive Officer, he managed the administration of a full-service municipal government as directed by City Council while overseeing an annual budget of $1.2 billion.

Briseño supervised the activities of all City departments with 12,000 employees. During his tenure as City Manager of San Antonio, Briseño worked under four different mayors and 39 council members.

After a national search, Briseño was appointed City Manager in April 1990. He began his career with the City in 1977 as Assistant to the City Manager and in 1980 became Assistant City Manager. Prior to joining City government, he earned the rank of captain while serving in the U.S. Army. He has a bachelor’s degree in economics and a master’s in urban studies from Trinity University.

Since his retirement, Briseño has been appointed Professor of Public Service in Residence at St. Mary’s University. In addition, he frequently addresses participants in public and private sector professional development seminars.

Recently, he served short-term appointments as Interim President of the San Antonio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, as the Interim President/Chief Executive Officer of San Antonio Water System, as Interim President/CEO of the San Antonio Technology Accelerator Initiative (SATAI) Network, and as Interim Executive Director of the Brooks Development Authority.

He was elected in 1996 as a Fellow in the National Academy of Public Administration. He also received the National Public Service Award from NAPA and American Society for Public Administration.

Mr. Briseño is a native San Antonian. He and his wife, Mary, have two adult children: Veronica and Brad.

R. Douglas Leonhard, Vice Chariman of SAWS Board

Doug Leonhard is a real estate/business consultant with his own firm, Leonhard Real Estate Services, Inc.

Mr. Leonhard, a native of New Jersey, has spent more than half of his life in South Texas, in Houston and San Antonio. He received his Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from Rutgers University, and his Masters in Business Administration from Fairleigh Dickinson University, both in New Jersey.

He worked for many years for Exxon Company USA, first in petroleum marketing, and then as Vice President and Houston Projects Manager for Friendswood Development Co., an Exxon subsidiary. He also held senior executive positions with the Woodlands Corp., in the new town of The Woodlands, north of Houston, and with the Mission Viejo Corp. in the new towns of Mission Viejo, Calif. and Highlands Ranch, Colo. He retired several years ago from the La Cantera Development Company, a subsidiary of USAA, where he was Senior Vice President and the original developer of the La Cantera project in northwest San Antonio.

Mr. Leonhard has a long record of civic and community involvement in Houston and San Antonio. He was a member, Vice President and President of the Board of Trustees of the Humble Independent School District (in the Houston area) during a 7-year stint on that board. More recently, he has been Chairman of the North San Antonio Chamber of Commerce, Chairman of the Advisory Committee of the San Antonio Convention & Visitor’s Bureau, and President of the Real Estate Council of San Antonio. Mr. Leonhard was the initial Chairman of the Countywide Citizen’s Watershed Masterplan Committee from 2000-2002, a member of the Open Space Advisory Committee from 1996-1999, and has served on numerous other civic and community committees and associations.

Mr. Leonhard and his wife Patricia have three children, eleven grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

Alex Briseno and Doug Leonhard will be honored for their contributions to San Antonio’s economy as well as their leadership of the San Antonio Water System’s supply and conservation initiatives.

Bjorn Dybdahl of Bjorn’s
John Thurman of Heart of Texas Realty

About the author:

I took early retirement in 1995 from Kodak and I have been in the real estate business since then. During my Kodak career my family lived in six states and we owned thirteen homes. I held positions as Food Trade Manager, Attractions Manager for Florida, Director of Sales Promotion, National Account Manager to HEB Grocery Company and National Sales Manager – US Military – Worldwide. In the twelve years since I retired from Kodak, I’ve been in the real estate business. My entry into the business was through two major agencies; one a local upscale boutique company and the other a very large local operation of a national franchise. I found both (plus most others in the business) to be more oriented towards gross sales and less towards taking care of the needs of the consumer. As a result, I formed my own company. I have three agents besides myself in the company and two staff personnel. Approximately ninety percent of our business comes from direct referrals plus we represent all of the relocating employees for three corporations. Each week I host the area real estate show, Real Estate Focus, on NewsTalk 930 KLUP, Saturdays at 11:00am. The show also streams live on my web site , and on In addition, Bjorn Dybdahl, owner of Bjorn’s Home Entertainment, and I host the San Antonio Movers and Shakers Show that airs at 10:00 am each Saturday from the same station and web sites. The real estate show deals with area real estate information and the SA Movers and Shakers show honors the education, business, civic, and public leaders who keep the entrepreneurial spirit alive in our city.

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