AUSTIN – Highlighting a distinguished career, Jill Bates Lawless of Texas Highways magazine (and formerly of Beeville) was named the 2014 Lone Star Award recipient from the Texas Department of Transportation.
The award, presented at ceremonies held at South Padre Island, recognizes Lawless’ outstanding tenure and service to the Texas tourism industry.
Lawless is credited as one of the principal driving forces behind Texas Highways magazine, an award-winning flagship travel publication that has 200,000 monthly subscribers. A 20-year veteran writer with TxDOT, Lawless began as an intern with the magazine and has climbed the ranks to its chief editor.
She has influenced and shaped the content of Texas Highways through many of its transitions, including adding a digital online sector, and a complete redesign for its 40th anniversary this past year.
“Jill has been a fixture at Texas Highways magazine for many years and is one of the key reasons that the publication enjoys such popularity and appeal to readers across the country,” said Margo Richards, director of TxDOT’s Travel Information Division. “She is a hard worker, a tireless professional and well deserving of this award.”
Lawless also is known for her genuine and professional management of staff, as well as word content of TxDOT publications. She also represents Texas Highways at numerous events. Over the years, she has been involved as a primary contact for large and small communities from all corners of Texas, working to generate content for the state’s official travel magazine.
The Lone Star Award was presented during the 59th annual Texas Travel Counselors Conference, a meeting of Texas travel professionals and representatives of TxDOT’s Travel Information Division, the Texas Travel Industry Association, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, the American Automobile Association (AAA), and city information centers.