Monday, May 2, 2011

Question for the Candidates

Critical questions are often overlooked.

If you recall, this was the same question I have been asking from the previous meetings. Because it is my drive and am going on a nation wide speaking tour to build a cohesive America, I want to start it at my home.
  1. What are your plans to bring Carrollton together?
  2. What have you done in the city to build bridges?
  3. What have you done elsewhere to bring diverse people together?
Please share your notes at the end of the notes at:
I hope to send this link to my lists in Carrollton and also work on sending it as a press release to the media, unless Dallas Morning News or Carrollton Leader chooses to post, both of them I have copied here.
Please keep  your postings to under 300 words, a great guideline set by most news papers based on the reader responses.
Let the public perceive you in the positive light.
Show us your goodness!
Thank you.
Mike Ghouse


Bonnie Kaplan said...

I am running for City Council, Place 2. I know about budgets and economic development from having served before on the Carrollton City Council. This time, if I am fortunate enough to be elected, my emphasis will be on building community, real community.

Let me tell you two stories to illustrate. Back in the year 2000, I was serving on city council and was running for mayor. In the middle of the campaign, on Easter Sunday which was also Passover, my very large double white front doors were spray painted with a huge black swastika. My husband is a Jew, and in a Jewish household there is not a symbol that is more disgusting. We were shocked and horrified, as were many in our community. This cruel event hurt us for a very long time, for it caused us to wonder who would do something so terrible to us. Through this event, I learned what it felt like to be an outsider, ostrasized for no reason except religion and heritage.

I always had a heart and a soul for community and diversity. This event only strengthened it.

In 2009, the A.W. Perry Museum Society decided to make a quilt to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the rebuilt A.W. Perry home. I was named project leader for a fundraising event. We decided to sell squares and strips that people would purchase and sign. The signed squares and strips would be incorporated into the design of the quilt. I realized that Carrollton today looked very different than the Carrollton of 1909. One of the most obvious differences was in the demographics. Today Carrollton is a very diverse city, ethnically, religiously and socially.

I decided to seek out those who would represent the many kinds of diversity. Therefore, we reached out to everyone. No one was excluded. People who participated in the project ranged from in ages from eight to ninety-one. Many different races were included in the quilt. Some people signed because of their occupations, such as firefighters and boy scouts, others signed because of their countries of origin, such as Lebanon, Pakistan, India, Mexico, China, Vietnam and Egypt. There were patches for various churches, including Christians, Baptists, Hindu, Orthodox Armenians, Jewish and Muslims. Descendants of the original settlers of Carrollton also signed the quilt.

The signed squares and strips were sent to a quilter with no instructions on how to place them. She did not know the participants and so randomly placed the patches throughout the design. The finished quilt became of tapestry of Carrollton’s diversity and community. It represents an ideal to which we can all aspire, with all the differences stitched into one beautiful whole!

Terry Wright said...

What are your plans to bring Carrollton together? Look at the different activities the community can open up so other people can learn about the different cultures.

What have you done in the city to build bridges? I have done projects with Hispanics, people from India, Korea, Vietnam and other backgrounds. I teach at my church where I see kids from different backgrounds that come to our church with their friends or thru the bus ministries and being open and visiting with people and listen to them tell about themselves is very important. My family friends are very diverse my son speaks English and Spanish with friends that are Hispanic and Indian etc... My daughter has been to Japan, speaks Japanese and some words in other languages with her friends being Asian and my kids have been to their homes and they are in and out of our home. In college the field of Architecture was opening us to many cultures from our studies and the diverse students in our professional school where we were required to work together from studies and social activities in the school of architecture and to embrace the experiences of others and what they may teach you and we have continued that with our kids to enjoy the differences that what makes life fun.

Or what have you done elsewhere to bring diverse people together? After College my wife and I moved to Boston, MA where we lived there for almost 6 years. That city is a culture mixed group that is all over the place. We learned to shop and live in the different areas, which made it a great experience. We still have many friends there and with diverse background from us. This difference in our background has kept our friendship open and fun for our families today.

Bob Garza said...

My name is Bob Garza candidate for Carrollton City Council Place 4. My wife Emily and I have lived in Carrollton for 22 years. We have 2 grown children and 4 grandchildren.

I served in the US Air Force and I am a Viet Nam Veteran, graduated from The University of North Texas with a BBA degree using the G. I. Bill.

I was appointed by City Council to the Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone (TIRZ) Committee and have served for about 3 years. This past year I was also appointed to the city Charter Review Committee.

I am Chairman of the Senior Adult Services board an organization that serves seniors ages 60 and over with meals, transportation, home repairs and Medicare and Medicaid filing assistance. I also serve on the Dallas Telco Federal Credit Union Board.
I have been involved in the community for over 10 years having served on numerous boards of chambers and non-profit organizations. These include Bea's Kids, which provides after school tutoring for minority kids and served on both the Metrocrest and Farmers Branch chambers. Several years ago I help sponsor a trip to Austin for a group of CFB-ISD high school students and coordinated a meeting with several legislators.
I served on the Trinity Medical Center hospital board and served as Chairman of the Board of Directors at Brookhaven Country Club.

I recently retired with 35 years of business experience in Finance, Auditing, Technology, International and Governmental Relations.
My Governmental Relations job allowed me the opportunity to work with all levels of government elected officials and staff. I am familiar with issues cities are facing today and feel I can be an effective contributor.

One of several campaign goals is to represent all Carrollton residents fairly and equally. I would like to help resurrect the Diversity Committee once in place a few years ago. Carrollton is a great place to live and raise a family and includes a variety of different cultures I think we can embrace and celebrate together.

Mike Ghouse said...

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