Darren L. James, President and COO of KAI Texas, AIA, was recently named a 2014 Minority Business Leader by the Dallas Business Journal (DBJ). James was honored for his advocacy and support of minority business endeavors at an awards luncheon held at the Omni Dallas Hotel on February 6, 2014.

James and his staff at KAI Texas, an affiliate office of KAI Design & Build founded in 1999 and located in Dallas, collaborate on projects within a wide array of industries, including education, mixed-income housing, and transportation. James is a noted architect, author, and speaker, and he is a firm believer that minority business professionals significantly benefit the growth and expansion of the building design industry.

“I am humbled and honored to be recognized as one of the 2014 Dallas Business Journals Minority Business Leaders. It is an unexpected acknowledgement to be recognized along with the other leaders for our positive influence in Dallas and beyond,” said James.

Nominations for this year’s award were reviewed by a panel of judges, which selected 22 business owners and corporate executives to be distinguished as Minority Business Leaders. Honorees will be featured in the February 7, 2014 issue of the DBJ, and will be formally recognized at the 7th Annual Minority Business Leader Awards Luncheon, which is sponsored by Texas Christian University’s Neeley School of Business.

The DBJ initiated its Minority Business Leaders Program in 2008 to celebrate Dallas-Fort Forth metropolitan area professionals in fast-growing, successful, or innovative companies who demonstrate strong leadership within their communities. Past honorees have included college presidents, retail executives, lawyers, IT company founders, health care executives, and educators. Those eligible to receive a Minority Business Leader distinction include ethnic minorities who are corporate executives with high levels of responsibility at their companies, and corporate advocates of any ethnicity who are highly effective at and deserving recognition for supporting minority business owners and executives. For minority business owner nominees, their businesses must be at least 51% ethnic-minority owned, have been in business at least 24 months, and be based in the Dallas-Fort Worth metropolitan area.