September Membership Meeting

Program – Neighborhood Air Quality Monitoring

At the September 7, 2017 membership meeting of the FWLNA, we were pleased to have a reprise of an event held in June that was very well received. On June 26, FWLNA partnered with Downwinders at Risk and the University of North Texas Health Sciences Center (UNTHSC) to spend an evening discussing air quality sensors in neighborhoods and how they might be used by individuals, especially those with respiratory problems, to plan their day. We asked the same speakers to present the information again at our league quarterly meeting.

Currently air quality is monitored by very few, very accurate sensors that are few because they are very expensive. In the last few years, small and inexpensive sensors have been developed that might be used in monitors that are more densely located. It might be possible to have one or more in a neighborhood with everyone having real-time internet access to their local conditions.

Dr. David Sterling, UNTHSC

The role that air quality plays in our day-to-day well-being, the potential uses of actual, real-time local air quality, and the participation of Fort Worth neighborhoods was discussed by Dr. David Sterling of the UNTHSC, Mr. Jim Schermbeck of Downwinders at Risk, and by Libby Willis, past-president of the League of Neighborhoods.

Jim Schermbeck, Downwinders at Risk

Jim also introduced Kari Northeim, a doctoral candidate in Environmental Sciences at the University of North Texas, who brought a very small, very portable ozone monitor for us to see.

The program was very interesting to all in attendance. Many thoughtful questions were posed to these experts and their answers helped us have a better idea of what we might do now and what we can expect in the future.

Libby Willis, FWLNA

The League is grateful to these excellent speakers for providing such a memorable experience. Their command of the subject was awesome and their passion was contagious.

Tomorrow’s Air Today

The Fort Worth League of Neighborhood Associations joined with Downwinders at Risk to present an evening of science and socializing on Monday, June 26, at The Ginger Man, 3716 Camp Bowie. The evening introduced an exciting collaboration between area universities and citizen groups to bring air quality monitoring to the grass roots. Some of the area’s leading researchers were on hand to field questions.

June 2017 General Membership Meeting

The Fort Worth League of Neighborhood Associations was happy to have Matt Zavadsky of MedStar as our speaker for the quarterly membership meeting on June 1 at University Christian Church.

Matt Zavadsky, Chief Strategic Integration Officer, MedStar Mobile Healthcare

Mr. Zavadsky explained the structure and governance of this public agency, why it was created in 1986, the unique economic model for MedStar, how ambulances are deployed in the community, how 9-1-1 calls are processed, and the numerous innovations that have made MedStar one of the most recognized EMS agencies in the country. Matt’s presentation was  informative and entertaining. You may view it at this link. There were lots of good questions and Matt had all the answers. There was considerable interest in the membership plan, MedStar Saver. The League is very grateful to Matt for an excellent program.

March General Membership Meeting

The Fort Worth League of Neighborhood Associations held its March General Membership Meeting on Thursday, March 2, 2017 at University Christian Church. The intent of this meeting was to learn more about getting ready for the upcoming election of city leaders on May 6, 2017.

Our guest speaker was Jeane Grisham from the League of Women Voters of Tarrant County. Her topic was about practical planning to increase neighborhood awareness of local elections. She told us about herself and her passion for electorate education and about the League of Women Voters and its history. She covered voter registration, voter education, and sponsoring a candidate forum, and about resources available from the League of Women Voters. She concluded with a list of important election-related dates between now and May 6.

Jeane answered quite a few questions from the group. She was a delightful speaker. The League of Neighborhoods is grateful to Jeane, and to Sharon Austry for the St. Patrick’s Day themed table settings and Melissa Hunter for the cookies.

The candidates that have filed for the May 6 election are listed on the City’s website. More information about and from the LWV of Tarrant County can be found on their website.

Alyce Boyd Named Neighbor of the Year

 

The Fort Worth League of Neighborhoods gave its most prestigious award posthumously to Alyce Boyd of Ryanwood Neighborhood Association on Jan. 7, 2017, at the City’s annual Neighborhood Awards luncheon.  Alyce’s long-time friend and neighbor, Charlene Lawrence, accepted a certificate in her behalf and a check for $100 to the Ryanwood Neighborhood Association.

The League’s award is called the 2016 Ben Ann Tomayko Neighbor of the Year award.  It recognizes an individual who demonstrates a high level of support to an individual neighborhood, a group of neighborhoods, or neighbors throughout Fort Worth.  Their spirit of volunteerism may be recognized for work on a single, significant project, a single year, or long-term service to neighborhood(s).  The award is given in memory of the late Ben Ann Tomayko, a co-founder of the League in 1986 and longtime Fort Worth neighborhood advocate.

Eva Bonilla, a past recipient of this award, chaired the awards committee that made the selections and presented the award at the luncheon.  The other finalists were Linda Denison of Heritage Homeowners Association and Fred and Phyllis Anglin of Oakhurst Neighborhood Association.

Alyce Boyd met all—not just one—of those criteria of community engagement.  She devoted the last 22 years of her life to neighborhood advocacy, never slowing down until her health became an issue in the last 2 years.  She and her husband, Obie, moved to Ryanwood neighborhood in 1961. They had been married 54 years at the time of his death in 2008.  She died July 20, 2016.

 

Neighborhood Support:

In 1994 Alyce became very involved in Ryanwood Neighborhood Association and served as President for 16 years from 1996 to 2012.  In 1998 it received the “Organization of the Year” award from the East Fort Worth Business Association.

In 1997 Alyce joined Ryanwood’s Citizens on Patrol (COPs) team patrolled for many years.  She was a graduate of the Fort Worth Citizens Police Academy.

 

Eastside Advocacy:

In 1998 and 1999 Alyce served on the Steering Committee/Nominating Committee of the Community Advisory Committee of the Neighborhood Patrol District No. 5 (CAC NPD5.)

In 1999 Alyce and four other presidents of CAC NPD5 met to form a neighborhood alliance they named the Neighborhoods of East Fort Worth.  Soon, they expanded it to include the neighborhood associations north of I-30 in CAC NPD4.  Alyce was a co-sponsor of this group and worked to keep it going for the next 15 years.

Councilmember Danny Scarth appointed Alyce to represent his Eastside District 4 on the City’s Sustainability Committee and on the Parks Board.

Alyce served for 9 years as Executive Secretary of East Fort Worth Business Association, advocating quality business development.

Alyce served as a volunteer for Meals on Wheels.

 

Citywide Engagement:

In addition to serving on the City’s Sustainability and on the Parks Board, Alyce also served on the board of the Fort Worth League of Neighborhood Associations, completing several terms as Secretary in the early 2000’s.

First and foremost, Alyce was a long-term, dedicated leader and tireless advocate for neighborhood issues at all levels. She fostered a sense of community and belonging with events like National Night Out and with preparation of newsletters and conducting the regular meetings and business of the Ryanwood Neighborhood Association.  She fought for a neighborhood post office and for demolition of substandard apartments. She galvanized support for passage of crucial Multifamily Dwelling and Landscape Ordinances.  For the past 22 years she influenced the direction of residential development, quality business development, stronger zoning and code enforcement, landscaping and beautification, crime prevention and safety.

The Fort Worth League of Neighborhood Associations is proud to recognize Alyce Boyd’s achievements with its Ben Ann Tomayko Neighbor of the Year Award.

Rita M. Vinson
2016 President FWLNA

 

[See the City of Fort Worth news article for other neighborhood awards.]

December Membership Meeting

The Fort Worth League of Neighborhood Associations held its December General Membership Meeting on Thursday, December 1, 2016 at 6:30 pm at University Christian Church, 2720 South University Drive.

Our guest speaker was Mr. Jeff Law, Chief Appraiser, Tarrant Appraisal District. Mr. Law gave a very informative overview of the appraisal and property tax systems and helped us understand the demarcation between the appraisal process and the tax rate and collection activity.

Jeff Law, TAD Executive Director and Chief Appraiser
Jeff Law, TAD Executive Director and Chief Appraiser

In addition, we elected the board of directors and officers for 2017.

We are very grateful to Olivella’s for providing a huge and tasty selection of pizza for our meeting. It was super! Olivella’s Neo Pizza Napoletana is located at 6333 Camp Bowie Boulevard.

Fall General Membership Meeting

The Fort Worth League of Neighborhood Associations held its Fall General Membership Meeting on Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016 at University Christian Church. The focus of the program for the Sept. 1, 2016, meeting was: “How can neighborhood leaders use their communications network to let people know the needs of the 22 FWISD schools that were rated in August as ‘Improvement Required’?”

Our distinguished guest speaker was Dr. Kent Scribner, Superintendent of the FWISD.

DrScribnerDr. Scribner’s presentation gave facts and figures about the district as a whole and then demographics of the students in the district.  Dr. Scribner’s motto is that “students are not a problem to be solved, they are an asset to be invested in”. Our future depends on these students and they must be provided with an education that increasingly extends beyond a high school diploma.

Twenty-two schools needing improvement is down from twenty-eight a few years ago, but with creative community support, the number could go down faster. The role of the League is to establish communication between the ISD and the neighborhood organizations where the targeted schools are located. To start this collaboration, the league invited the Trustees, the City Council, and representatives of all neighborhood organizations where the 22 schools are located. We were pleased to have two trustees, one Councilman, several FWISD personnel, a city staff member, and many neighborhood representatives attend the meeting.

DrScribner_and_room

Most neighborhood leaders work with their respective Council Members.  We hope they will also establish a working relationship with their FWISD Trustees, if they have not already done so.

This is not the sort of initiative the Fort Worth League of Neighborhoods has undertaken in the past; however, it makes sense in that “education and community success are inextricably linked,” in the words of Superintendent Kent Scribner.  The League will serve as a catalyst.

 

 

June General Meeting

The second quarter General Membership Meeting was held on Thursday, June 2, 2016, at University Christian Church. The guest speakers were Melissa Opheim and Jeff Salavarria of Leadership Fort Worth Class of 2016. They presented the details of their project to install the city’s first micro-park. The Magnolia Micro Park was dedicated on May 18th. This is a great idea and learning about the process was very informative.

micropark1

May Board Meeting

The Board of Directors met on Monday, May 9, with ten members present. We had five guests with a presentation on Micro Parks. It is a project of Leadership FW 2016, Near Southside, Inc, and TSG Designs. The installation of the first Micro Park, the culmination of this project, can be seen at Henderson and Magnolia.

We discussed ZC-16-096, a zoning case to allow a concrete recycling facility on the east side, near E. 1st and Oakland. We decided to take a position against this for many reasons.