Ryan J. Rusak is Opinion Editor of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
Rusak grew up in Benbrook and is a TCU graduate. He spent more than 15 years as a political journalist, overseeing coverage of four presidential elections and several sessions of the Texas Legislature.
For a decade, he led political coverage at Texas’ largest news outlets. He managed reporters in Dallas, Washington and Austin during three presidential campaigns, three midterm elections and six Texas legislative sessions. He crafted coverage strategies for key moments focused on analytical writing and investigative reporting.
Rusak led efforts to shift focus to digital platforms, launching the first Texas campaign news blog, developing social media strategies and creating new digital products for traditional newspapers.
Rusak lives in east Fort Worth.
EFWBA Friends and Members,
September has arrived, which means we’re one month closer to our annual scholarship and awards banquet. For those of you that missed last month we had a really busy meeting and heard from a number of guests. We hosted the commander of the East Division for the Fort Worth Police Department Commander Monica Martin.
We also heard from Will Northern of Northern Crain Realty and his staff regarding some of the upcoming commercial properties in our area of interest.
Kat has put the NorthernCrain presentation here.
We concluded the meeting with an update about the security efforts in Public Improvement District #20.
Robin Willits with First Residential Commercial, Scott Westmoreland and Detective Eric Levigne gave us an update on security as well as the use of the Flock cameras along the East Lancaster Corridor to help reduce crime and act as a force multiplier for the Fort Worth Police department. Flock cameras use computer programming for license plate recognition and help the Police department quickly track and locate criminals within our city.
In September we will be hearing from Jared Sloane the CEO of Accelerate Fort Worth Foundation. Accelerate Fort Worth Foundation fosters connections to subject matter experts, fellow entrepreneurs, and other startup gurus to help you reach your objectives as quickly as possible. Jared will provide us details about some of Accelerate Foundations success stories as well as their new Small Business Accessibility Grants. The AFWF SBA Grant supports minority, women, and veteran-owned small business owners, and their employees, with funds to offset or cover fees associated with accessibility, connectivity, and mobility; in advancing the business owner’s professional capacity, business awareness, regulatory compliance, or revenue potential.
For October we have Ryan Rusak, Opinion Editor for the Star-Telegram and resident of East Fort Worth, coming in to speak with us about local politics. Ryan will give us insight into the upcoming District Attorney’s race, the upcoming County Judge race, and might even delve into the governor’s race. If we’re lucky we may also know who the new superintendent is for the Fort Worth Independent School District, and have some discussion on that as well. Behind the scenes, your Board has been working tirelessly to shore up all of the details for the annual Scholarship and Community Awards Banquet which is scheduled for November 10th at Texas Wesleyan University Martin Center again this year.
Charles Hodges, our scholarship committee director, pointed out that the rising cost of text books calls for a larger award.
These scholarships will now offer $1,500 per student – an increase of $500 over last year!
We have selected Eric Love, with Cars for Kids, as our Master of Ceremonies for the banquet.
Cars for Kids has sponsored at the highest level that we have. Eric will help keep our guests engaged and entertained as we gather to honor these students, their families and other community award recipients. We are still looking for a keynote speaker but haven’t had a firm commitment. I’m certain we’ll have that locked down in the coming days. We hope to fill the banquet hall with Sponsored tables for Eight. Individual tickets will go on sale in October.
I hope to see you all October 6th, at the Meadowbrook-Poly United Methodist Church, located at 3900 Meadowbrook Drive.
BANQUET REMINDER: Mark your calendars, because November 10th will be here in a blink!
Mike Shedd, President, 2022
Bivens, who represents Council District 5 in Fort Worth, has served on the Regional Transportation Council since August 2021. This new position will help her lead the 44-member transportation policymaking body for the next year.
Collin County Commissioner Duncan Webb was elected chair. Webb takes over for Commissioner Theresa Daniel of Dallas County, who has chaired the RTC through its transition from virtual meetings to in-person gatherings during the COVID-19 pandemic. Webb will steer the RTC through the 88th Texas Legislature, which begins in January.
Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins will be the next secretary. The new officers will serve in their positions through June 2023.
The Regional Transportation Council includes local elected or appointed officials from the Dallas-Fort Worth area and representatives from the area's transportation providers. As the transportation policymaking body for the 12-county Dallas-Fort Worth area, the RTC oversees transportation planning for the fourth-largest metropolitan area in the country, which has a population of approximately 8 million.
The RTC guides the development of roadway, rail and bicycle-pedestrian plans and programs; allocates transportation funds; and recommends projects to the Texas Transportation Commission for other programs. The policymaking body also ensures transportation services are coordinated throughout the region and the metropolitan area complies with federal air quality standards.
One of the RTC’s core functions is the development of the Metropolitan Transportation Plan, a blueprint for the transportation system over a period of 20-25 years. An update to the current plan, Mobility 2045, was approved by the RTC last week. Mobility 2045: 2022 Update must now receive a transportation conformity determination by the U.S. Department of Transportation certifying that it complies with federal air quality regulations.
The region's long- and short-range transportation plans must comply with federal air quality regulations as 10 Dallas-Fort Worth area counties – Collin, Dallas, Denton, Ellis, Johnson, Kaufman, Parker, Rockwall, Tarrant and Wise – are in nonattainment for ozone pollution.
The RTC has historically taken an innovative approach to meeting the region’s transportation and air quality challenges, allowing the policymakers to enhance the quality of life throughout the Dallas-Fort Worth area.
Wanda Conlin and her husband, Don Boren, stand outside their home in East Fort Worth.
In the latest installment of the Fort Worth Report's occasional conversations with Fort Worth newsmakers, Don Boren, chairman of the City Plan Commission, discusses the role of the commission and how it helps the city shape its development.
In a separate interview, Wanda Conlin, vice chairwoman of the Zoning Commission, discusses the role of the commission and how residents can participate in the process.
This dynamic duo is who keeps Fort Worth moving in the right direction!