Sharon Saunders, Vice President for University Relations and Chief of Staff to the President at Houston Baptist University, has been named one of “Houston’s 50 Most Influential Women of 2015” by Houston Woman Magazine. The recipients of this award, chosen for their leadership, influence, and dedication to the Houston community, were honored at La Columbe d’or Mansion in front of an audience of 260 guests at an afternoon tea on January 24. Saunders was recognized for her work as HBU as well as her work in other organizations and community endeavors. She serves as executive director of The Guild, a group of civic-minded, dedicated Christian women of many denominations whose mission is to serve the President, Dr. Robert Sloan, Jr., and the University. Under her leadership, The Guild has contributed more than $1.7 million to HBU for graduate scholarships in education, special projects, and The Guild Institute for Family Studies. Saunders was named honoree of The Guild’s 2015 Silver Tea in recognition of her leadership to The Guild and the University and her passion for Christian higher education. The Guild also recognized her efforts with the naming of the Sharon Saunders Endowed Scholarship in Graduate Education. Saunders has also served on a number of professional boards, including leadership positions as president of the Texas Baptist Public Relations Association and president of the Association of Communicators in Baptist Education. She has also served as a member of the board of directors of Fort Bend Christian Academy, and she was a member of the Education Foundation for Fort Bend Independent School District. She has also served as a member on the board of the Women’s Fund, where she is a lifetime member.