THE EVENT: It was truly “Farouk Day” in Houston recently, when leading government officials—including Texas Governor Rick Perry and Houston Mayor Bill White—gathered to cut the ribbon at CHI USA, a brand new 500,000 square-foot facility.
THE DETAILS: According to Farouk Systems Founder and Executive Chairman Farouk Shami, the new operation replaces existing facilities in Asia and will bring an initial 1,200 jobs to the Houston area, with up to 5,000 additional jobs expected to be created over the next three to four years. At the same time, across town, thousands of hopefuls lined up to apply for those jobs at a special job fair, where Farouk personnel were looking for engineers, plant and administrative workers and more. Media coverage for both events was extensive, as helicopters buzzed the job fair and major TV and newspaper outlets were on hand to document the day-long Grand Opening event. Shami challenged other businesspeople to follow his lead and create the jobs that will restore vigor to the economy. “How are we going to pay for health care, education, national security,” he asked, “unless we bring jobs back to America?” There was also plenty of fun and glamor in the mix. Guests walked the red carpet before settling into their seats at the new facility, stopping for photos along the way. The current Miss Texas—who appears in the Farouk Systems commercial that’s currently airing in the state—and Miss USA were on hand to help the company celebrate. (Farouk Systems is the official beauty sponsor of the Miss USA, Miss Universe and Miss Teen USA pageants.) The Houston Texas Cheerleaders made an appearance, and the popular Farouk artistic teams of Leonel and Ozzie and Joe Anthony and Rocky dazzled with their hairstyling presentations. Joining Shami were company Vice Chairman John McCall, company President Shauky Gulamani, CEO Rami Shami and Senior Vice President of Technology and former NASA Senior Scientist Dennis Morrison. In an especially moving moment, Shami’s granddaughter took the stage and thanked her grandfather for “creating jobs in America.” There was Texas barbecue for all, and the day ended with a rollicking party for special guests at Shami’s expansive new home.
KUDOS: In his remarks, Governor Perry noted, “When companies look at Texas, they’re discovering that we’ve fostered an environment that encourages people to pursue their dreams, build businesses and create jobs. Here in Houston, where Farouk Systems already employs hundreds of Texans, the company is now adding more than 1,200 manufacturing jobs that were previously located in Asia. These jobs represent paychecks going to hardworking Texas families.” Also on hand were several Texas representatives and city council members. Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, who recently presented Shami with the Entrepreneur of the Year Award, and Texas Senator Kay Bailey Hutchinson sent their congratulations via pre-recorded video messages. And Congressman Ted Poe presented Farouk with a flag that was flown over the Texas capitol and a certificate of appreciation for bringing jobs to Texas.
THE LAST WORD: As the day came to an end, a proud Shami noted, “We are all equal before God and we all have an equal opportunity to succeed. At Farouk Systems, we believe in human rights, liberty and the future of America. Today I’m surrounded by my friends and my family and this is the happiest day of my life.”
Texas Governor Rick Perry (center) cuts the ribbon with Farouk Shami and Farouk Vice Chairman John McCall.
Farouk President Shauky Gulamani spoke to the crowd.
The governor takes questions from the press.
Houston mayor Mayor Bill White participates in a ribbon cutting with Farouk.
Farouk Shami addresses the crowd.
Miss USA speaks to attendees.
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