Men of Memorial

I have been wanting to do a cover story for a long time on simply some men in Memorial.   I get ribbed all the time that the magazine is geared toward women so I decided a few months ago to make the June issue our mens issue, I mean,  Fathers Day also falls in this month!    So now Id like to introduce you to our  inaugural “Men of Memorial”.


J Carter Breed

AM:  How long have you lived in Memorial? Nearly all my life.  I lived in Memorial Bend then in Nottingham Country as a kid.  I bought our first home in Memorial back in 1996.

AM:  How did you get involved with your career in Real Estate? Growing up, my mother was a realtor in this area so I have always been exposed to real estate.  Late on, my father joined her.  I believe in the early 90’s I took my mom’s advise to try real estate.  I haven’t looked back.  Real Estate has been very good to me.

AM:  You sit on the SBISD School board- that is a big commitment and self sacrifice to serve.  Why do you do it?  Schools define a community.  Their quality is essential and influential to a student’s success in life.  I grew up in this district and believe whole heartedly in it’s quality.  I want to contribute back to this community in an impactful way.  This is also how I was raised.  My parents were active in the community and taught me to give back.

AM:  You are involved with other charities too- care to  share? Montrose Street Reach – This is a very active and hands on approach to getting children and young adults off the street life of Montrose.  They literally change lives and rescue babies born into this environment.  It is a fabulous organization run by Godly people, putting their faith into action.

Also the Spring Branch Education Foundation.  Helping teachers and students through additional grants and scholarships.  The foundation is doing amazing work getting community involvement which results in more financial support, thus enabling our teachers to offer more to the students and for the students to receive funds in the form of grants and scholarships.  With our  State’s recapture programs / Robin Hood costing the district millions of dollars each year, this Foundation plays an instrumental role in providing for our district.

AM:   Fathers Day is right around the corner- What are you going to be enjoying?  A day off with a great steak, a great cigar and my family and friends to share it with.

For more information on J Carter Breed visit-  www.jcarterbreed.com


Russell Masraff

AM:   Russell- you grew up in Memorial – What is it like raising your own children here? I had great experiences and fantastic memories of my childhood growing up in Memorial and I have always wanted the same thing for my kids.  Although the scenery has changed quite a bit the people and community are still the same. I have had the pleasure of coaching all 3 of my kids over the years in their respective sports.

AM:  You and your dad run the popular restaurant Masraffs- do you cook too or are you a restaurateur? I AM NOT A CHEF! …..But I enjoy dabbling at home from time to time.  My career has always been in operations.  We have been very blessed with great chefs on our team at Masraff’s, which has allowed my dad and I to run the business. We do our best to speak to every guest that visits our restaurant. We give our chefs creative freedom, but we do critique our chef’s creations. We trust our palates so to answer your question:  I am a restaurateur.  My wife, however, makes a mean Sloppy Joe Casserole!

AM:    So it looks like you just opened your second restaurant.  What made you want to do another restaurant and is it similar to Masraffs? Actually, this is our 3rd venture. We have Masraff’s Restaurant and The Wynden, which is our Events Venue, located in our original location on S. Post Oak Lane.  We just opened Maclane’s Café which is completely opposite from our original restaurant, Masraff’s.  Maclane’s Café, named after my daughter is a quick service,  casual concept  serving high quality comfort food, otherwise known as ‘things you crave’!  I had been contemplating opening this style of restaurant for over 5 years.  I decided to pull the trigger upon the realization that over the past 2 years, the Houston market has been flooded with way too many new high end restaurants. I spent a tremendous amount time polling businesses and families in an attempt to determine what the ‘hole’ in the market was at it relates to restaurants. Conclusion: Maclane’s Café! Of course, we will have great selection of wines by the glass for adults and the best chocolate shake in Houston for the kids…..and adults!

AM:  Russell- I know you are active in charities- tell us about one I’m sure is top of your list in honor of your dad Tony. The founding of Tony’s Prostate Cancer Research foundation, (TPCR) in 2002 by me and  my dad Tony was prompted by my dads devastating diagnosis with the disease.  The mission was simple: “To raise awareness and fund research for a non-invasive cure of prostate cancer.”

The research supported by TPCR has led to unprecedented discoveries in the identification, research and development of the GLIPR1 protein therapy for the cure and subsequent FDA approval for its use in humans in Phase 1B testing.

GLIPR1 is the natural cancer-suppressing protein in our bodies. It has proven to be 100% effective in eliminating prostate cancer tumors in a lab setting as well as protecting against the new growth of cancer cells in exposed animals, and with no side effects.

The research and development of this therapy for the cure continues at the University of Texas, MD Anderson Cancer Center with the FDA required safety testing and development for clinical trials.

Cancer is NOT a death sentence. It is a wake-up call! Embrace cancer education and make a decision that is regret free.”

AM:   Fathers Day is this month- what is your perfect day?  Don’t all men say the same thing? Quality time with my wife and kids: go to the grocery store and fulfill the list of honey-do’s. Or….. How about golf, followed by steaks on the grill with a great bottle(s) of wine!

Sounds like a great fathers OR mothers Day!   For more information visit www.masraffs.com or www.thewynden.com or to learnmore about Tonys prostate cancer research visit  www.tpcr.com 


J.D Joyce

AM:   How long how have you lived in Memorial? In Houston since 1993.  In Memorial for about a decade.

AM:   I know your wife Robyn from church- how did you all meet?  Tell us about your family! Robyn loves to travel.  One year, for Christmas, Robyn’s parents gave her a trip to Washington, D.C. where I was living at the time.  She was in college and I had just wrapped up my MBA.  Although we are both from Bryan – College Station, we are five years apart in age.  We had known of one another, but we had never truly met.  It was love at first sight.  In fact, within four hours of being together I told Robyn I was falling in love!  Two years later, after Robyn graduated from college, we were married.

Now, after some 22 years of marriage, we have two girls – who will turn 17 and 14, this summer.  They are the love of our lives.  We enjoy spending time together and watching them participate in sports and performing arts.  They are a lot of fun and keep us laughing!  If it weren’t for our dog Buddy, I’d really feel outnumbered with three ladies in my life!

AM:  You have your own Investment Management Group.  How did you get involved in that?    When did you know that is what you wanted to do? I started investing in my early teens.  It was in high school when I opened my first business.

After grad school, I joined an investment firm, managing clients’ assets as a Financial Advisor.  I was fortunate to partner with my mentor, and longtime former Memorial resident Bill Hobson.  Bill was a legend in the business.  I learned so much from him.  Bill remains a good friend, trusted advisor, and a father-like figure to me.

For nearly 20 years, I remained at the same firm.  There have been many changes in the investment business over the last two plus decades. But, the core tenants of trust, honesty, strong relationships, hard work, and the fundamentals of investing have remained critical to success.  I was happy, and fortunately successful, at the prior firm.  But my entrepreneurial spirit lead me to explore alternatives to business-as-usual.  This is when the idea of establishing my own investment management firm came to life.  I was looking for more autonomy while offering investors personalized solutions that best fit their goals and objectives. And today it is a reality!

Our clients seem pleased with our investment management group.  We offer a unique personalized upscale investment approach with the strength and backing of Wells Fargo which offers compliance oversight, custody of assets, an investment platform, and back office support.

It was a risk leaving the big firm but one I felt worth taking.  Fortunately, thank God, the change resonated with our clients.  The vast majority stayed with us by moving their life savings to our new company.  Thanks to our loyal clients – many of whom are close friends and family, we’ve continued to grow; especially due to their introductions and referrals.  Each day I am thankful for the opportunity to assist our investors fulfill their goals and objectives.

AM:  You are also an author – tell me about your book. The Story of Rich, A Financial Fable of Wealth and Reason during Uncertain Times is a novel that teaches about finance and investment planning through a story.   The protagonist is Rich Viva, as in the rich life.  He and his wife live in Memorial.  The book will likely resonate with Absolutely! Memorial readers.   Hopefully readers find the book relatable, thought provoking, and entertaining.   Wiley published the book and it has received good feedback and high ratings.  It was even translated into Chinese!

AM:    I know you are very involved in the community and church – Care to share  with our readers what you are passionate about? My family and I are passionate about helping the working poor.  This is why we support Westside Homeless Prevention, and Gracewood.  Both groups help people in need.  They teach their participants how to make ends meet in the short term and how to become self-sufficient for the remainder of their lives.  We proudly support the Chapelwood Foundation, which in turn backs numerous non-profits and also offers scholarships.  We are involved with Chapelwood United Methodist Church and Hope City.  It is an honor to serve as President of the Greater Houston Pachyderm Club and on the national board of Pachyderms.  Our group promotes active citizens to become educated and informed on policy issues at the local, state, and national level.

AM:   Last question then well let you go back to work- Fathers Day is coming up- what is your dream day? I am most fulfilled when spending time with my family and when being productive.  My dream day is being with the family, either at the beach or along a running river in the mountains.  While on vacation, I like working in the mornings.  This allows me to keep up with the markets and everything back at the office.  Then Robyn, the girls and I normally have lunch around 2:00.  This remainder of the dream day is just being together as a family.  Add in hiking, biking, reading, and writing and I feel as if I’m in paradise.

For more information on where to get J.D.’s book please visit Amazon or your favorite bookstore and be sure and catch The Hometown Hero column in Absolutely! Memorial Magazine every month – Thanks to JD Joyce sponsorship where we highlight a different community leaders making a difference in the lives of people and the communities we serve!