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Only two days left to early vote in the HPISD bond election!

See what current and past members of the HPISD Board of Trustees are saying about the bond:  

"Our discussions related to the 7 schools in our district spanned several years.   We listened to the educators and experts in areas of demographics, school design and finance.  We engaged our parents, community leaders and just about anyone who would listen or talk about the issues at hand.  It was clear the right thing to present to the community was a long term plan that not only managed the continued growth of our district, but equally important, was comprehensive in its scope to improve the educational capability and functionality of all our schools; not just for our kids, but for our teachers and staff, as well.  Our community has proven many times over the past century its willingness to look to the future and make decisions that are right for those that will follow.  This is again one of those opportunities.  We firmly believe the bond proposal will allow coming generations of HPISD students to enjoy the same high quality experiences and opportunities.   We can and must think forward for them.  From your school trustees, thank you to everyone who has taken the time to learn about the bond, to those who have already voted and to those who will vote between now and election day.  We unanimously support this bond.  It is the right plan at the right time!"

Joe Taylor, Current President, on behalf of the entire HPISD Board of Trustees 


"For one hundred years, HPISD has provided unqualified educational excellence for our children.  We have an unprecedented opportunity to maintain the highest caliber of academic accomplishment for our second centennial era."

Leslie Melson, Trustee 2006-2015, past President 


 "What a privilege it is for all of us to be part of the Highland Park School District.  I hope that our community realizes that we need to take care of that privilege."

Jeff Barnes, Trustee 2001-2010, past President 


"The undeniable growth in HP student enrollment demonstrates that the quality of our schools remains strong. This bond issue gives our community the opportunity to make a long-term investment in maintaining that quality for generations to our predecessors did for us!"

Guy Kerr, Trustee 1995-2001 


"I am supporting the Bond Proposal for three primary reasons: it will protect and enhance (1) the value of our homes, (2) the quality of our schools and (3) the strength and vibrancy of the Park Cities.  To embrace the smaller, band-aid approach that has been advocated by opponents of the Bond Proposal would only compound our facilities problems and cost the taxpayers a whole lot more in the end.  We cannot take the passage of the Bond Proposal for granted.  To do so would put our schools and in turn, our whole community at great risk.  Instead, we must all stand up and fight for the passage of the Bond Proposal by going to the polls with our friends and neighbors to VOTE YES!"

Michael Boone, Trustee 1989-1996, past President 


"The facility needs of the district have been clearly identified; a bold plan for addressing these issues has been proposed.  It is now up to the citizens of the Highland Park Independent School District to determine whether they choose to pursue a path of excellence for the school children of this district or have chosen to continue in overcrowded, under-equipped houses of learning.   My desire is to provide a space for our educators and our students that will enhance their work and eliminate conditions that now stand in their way.  I believe this bond proposal will accomplish that.  After listening intently to the Facilities Committee presentation, reading the materials and having my questions answered, I fully support this recommendation."

Judy Gibbs, Trustee 1986-1995, Past President


As Early Voting continues through Friday, and Election Day comes this Tuesday, please join with these leaders and so many across our community in voting YES!  Our Kids Are Worth It!


Foundations for the Future PAC, 3419 Westminster #351G, Dallas, TX 75205

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Dennis Aaron has had some big life events happen since the fall of 2014. He started a new career when he was hired at Walmart in August through the company’s Veterans Welcome Home Commitment, he purchased his first home in Little Elm in April, and he also will be graduating college on May 30 with his Bachelors Degree.

Dennis is a retired Sergeant First Class with the U.S. Army. After being in the military for 20 years and being deployed around the world, he came home to Tennessee to find himself without a job. He applied with Walmart in Tennessee but soon decided he’d be moving his family to Frisco. The company worked to place him in his current store located in Frisco at Eldorado and FM 423.

“The opportunity for promotion really attracted me to Walmart. I’ve let everyone know I’m interested in moving up as far as I can go in the company,” said Dennis.

This Memorial Day, Walmart will announce it has hired more than 11,800 U.S. Veterans in Texas since launching its Veterans Welcome Home Commitment on Memorial Day 2013, the most of any state. The company is also creating even more job opportunities for transitioning U.S. veterans in Texas by guaranteeing a job offer to any eligible U.S. veteran honorably discharged from active duty since the original launch of the Welcome Home Commitment. The previous commitment was for veterans within 12 months off active duty. In addition, Walmart is expanding its 2013 projection of hiring 100,000 veterans nationwide by 2018, increasing the projection to 250,000 veterans by the end of 2020.

“When I started doing interviews and putting my resume out there, I quickly got discouraged. I heard about Walmart’s program through the military so I decided to pursue it. A lot of companies like to talk about supporting the troops but they don’t act on it. I saw Walmart backing up and acting on its promises,” said Dennis.

Since starting his career with Walmart, he’s been promoted twice already in just about 8 months. He started as an overnight stocker and later was promoted to Second Shift Lead where he supervised unloading the shipments received at the store. After just 6 weeks, he found out his boss was getting promoted so he decided to apply for his position. After interviewing, he found out he got the job. His current position is the Back Room Zone Merchandise Supervisor.

“I feel like my leadership in the military has naturally led me to a leadership role here at Walmart. I want to master my current position and then move into the assistant manager program,” Dennis said.

“If I could give advice to any Veteran looking for a job I would say to give Walmart a chance. Trust your judgment and don’t go on a preconceived notion. In my first two weeks here, I went around to all of the associates and asked if they were happy and the majority were. There is a core group of people that have been here 5, 10, 15 years. It appealed to me that people were happy and liked their jobs. Everyone here has been patient in training me and I want to pay that back to the people that have been so kind to me,” Dennis added.

To learn more about Walmart’s Veterans Welcome Home Commitment and how you can apply, visit


Although alcohol and drug abuse is most commonly related to young adults, older adults are at high risk as well. According to a recent National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), an estimated 4.8 million adults age 50 and over had used an illicit drug in the past year. Furthermore, a national survey by the Center for Disease Control (CDC), reported the highest frequency of binge drinking occurred among adults age 65 and older – 5 to 6 times per month.

Marc Turner, CEO at Greenhouse, a leading provider of substance abuse treatment services for individuals with drug and/or alcohol addiction, offers these warning signs that your elderly loved one may be abusing drugs or alcohol:

  • Rapid increase in the amount medication needed. If you notice your loved one is using more medicine than usual and needs to fill their prescription earlier than normal, or at an increased frequency, this may be a warning sign they are abusing their medication.
  • Use of more than one pharmacy. Many people who abuse prescription drugs will fill their prescriptions at different pharmacies in order to avoid detection. If you suspect this is taking place, talk with the pharmacist.
  • Visiting more than one doctor. In order to get their fix, many addicts will visit different doctors in an effort to get multiple prescriptions for whatever medicine they are addicted to. Try offering to attend doctor appointments with your elderly family members if you suspect this is happening.
  • Unexplained personality or behavior changes. Oftentimes those suffering from drug or alcohol addiction will exhibit noticeable changes like a loss of interest in hobbies, decreased motivation, withdrawn behavior or sudden changes in relationships.  
  • Uncharacteristic behavior including depression, irritability or mood swings. What once was a loving, bubbly family member may now have sudden mood changes, irritability or angry outbursts and may appear fearful, withdrawn, anxious or paranoid with no apparent reason.


If you suspect your loved one is abusing drugs or alcohol, the best way you can help them is by letting them know you are concerned about them and want to help. Educate them about the dangers and consequences of drug abuse and help them identify the reasons that led them to start abusing drugs. If you believe your loved one has gone past abuse to addiction, seek help from an in-patient or out-patient addiction treatment facility. 

About Greenhouse. As part of American Addiction Centers, Greenhouse treats individuals with substance abuse and behavioral health issues in the serene setting of a former luxury spa. Located in Dallas, Texas, Greenhouse supports recovery with an advanced research–based curriculum and robust alumni program. In addition to traditional treatment modalities, this CARF-accredited facility offers restorative activities such as therapeutic massage, personal training, and yoga. For more information, visit

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The S.M. Wright Foundation today held its 16th Annual Christmas in the Park event at the Automobile Building at Fair Park. An estimated 30,000 Southern Dallas residents including parents, kids and grandchildren participated in this year’s event.

Families who attended received a hot meal, groceries and household items including furniture and clothing. New this year was a “Coats for Kids” section, where brand new winter coats were handed out to children in need. 13,000 underprivileged kids went home with new bikes and thousands more went home with new toys and books. As part of the Foundation’s Beds for Kids program, 500 children also received new twin bed sets thanks to a donation by Dallas-based Sleep Experts.

“Christmas in the Park is Dallas’ largest holiday charity event,” said S.M. Wright II, President & CEO of the S.M. Wright Foundation. “With the help of over 1,200 volunteers and donations from dozens of caring companies and individuals, we spread joy and hope to thousands of deserving families this holiday season.”     

Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings was on hand to see excited children giving their new bikes a test ride, families sitting down to a hot meal and parents loading up groceries to take home.

“Through Christmas in the Park and other programs and resources like Beds for Kids and the South Dallas Resource Center, the S.M. Wright Foundation is enhancing the quality of life for the Southern Dallas community,” said Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings. “This event embodies the true spirit of the holiday season – helping out others.”

Volunteers included Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings, NFL Hall of Fame Running Back Emmitt Smith, nationally known health and fitness expert Larry North and Dallas civic and business leaders like Ray Washburne, CEO of Charter Holdings and Co-founder of M Crowd Restaurant Group, Doug Deason, President and CEO of Deason Capital Company, and Amy McDaniel, Senior Vice President of Remington Hotels.


In the next few weeks millions of college kids will return home for the holiday break. Excited families will embrace them after their absence and encourage them to share their college experiences – everything from academics to athletics to new friendships. But for many students returning home, they will do their best to keep one part of their college life private – their alcohol and drug use.

According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), in 2012, 60.3 percent of college student’s ages 18–22 drank alcohol in the past month. The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse reports that since the early 1990s, the number of students using marijuana daily has more than doubled and use of drugs like cocaine and heroin is up 52%.

Pat Owens, a lead therapist at the Greenhouse, a leading provider of substance abuse treatment services for individuals with drug and/or alcohol addiction, offers these warning signs that your college-aged child may be abusing drugs or alcohol: 

  • Changes in sleeping patterns or significant weight gain or loss
  • Acting withdrawn or secretive
  • Significant change in academic performance
  • Unexplained personality or behavior changes
  • Uncharacteristic behavior including depression, irritability of mood swings 

If you suspect your student is abusing drugs or alcohol, the best way you can help them is by letting them know you are concerned about them and want to help them. Educate them about the dangers and consequences of drug abuse and help them identify reasons like peer pressure or academic pressure that have led them to start using drugs. If you believe your student has gone past abuse to addiction, seek help from an in-patient or outpatient addiction treatment facility.

Author Bio:

Ms. Owens is currently a lead therapist with the Greenhouse. Prior to joining the Greenhouse, Ms. Owens’ experience with addictions includes working with adolescents, young adults, and adults in residential, hospital, intensive outpatient and community based programs in New York, Los Angeles and Chicago. She has developed and directed numerous specialized and innovative programs that have been featured on NBC News, Good Morning America and the Oprah Winfrey show to name a few. 



The holiday season is upon us. The five weeks from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day are filled with holiday parties, shopping and family time, but for many people this time of year is the most stressful.


Stress from family conflicts, stress from maxing out the credit card on gifts, stress from feeling guilty for over-eating, stress from over commitments. Holiday stress can be especially rough on the millions of people in recovery for drug or alcohol addiction.


Audrey Crouch, an Intake Supervisor at the Greenhouse, a leading provider of substance abuse treatment services for individuals with drug and/or alcohol addiction, offers these three tips for staying clean and sober this holiday season. 


Have a Support System in Place. Look at the calendar and see what events might cause you stress; for example, a holiday party at your boss’ house or Thanksgiving with your mother-in-law. Consider going to a Twelve Step meeting or calling your sponsor or a friend in recovery before the event. Make sure you can leave at any time and are not reliant on someone else for transportation. That way, if temptation hits, you can make a beeline for the door.


Avoid Stressful Situations. If you know your friend Fred is going to bring drugs to a party, avoid him. If you know your sister is going to get crazy drunk at Thanksgiving dinner, sit at the other end of the table. If you know going to the mall on Black Friday will push all your buttons, stay home and shop online. If you can’t avoid a stressful situation then always have an exit plan so you can hightail it out of there before you risk falling back into the spiral of addiction.


Be on Offense, Not Defense. For most of us, the holidays are an emotional roller coaster. There is pressure and expectations every way you turn. Instead of feeling continuous joy, we are on a cycle of joy followed by stress, frustration, exhaustion or even depression. At the beginning of each holiday season, sit down with your sponsor, a friend or a counselor and discuss your expectations for the holidays. Identify people, events and situations that might push you back into addiction and create an action plan for how to ensure they don’t derail your recovery.  


By following the tips above, you can help yourself or someone you know in recovery start 2015 clean and sober.


Author Bio:

Audrey Crouch is an Intake Supervisor at the Greenhouse Treatment Center. She has a degree in Chemical Dependency Counseling from the University of North Texas and is a Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor. Along with her education in the field of addiction she has sustained 10 years of personal recovery in Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous. 

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Coleman Brown, Mark Plunkett, Blake Rowling and Jeff Staubach host breakfast
at Old Parkland for Morgan Meyer, candidate for House District 108.

November 25, 2013 (Dallas, TX) Business leaders, real estate executives and civic leaders turned out on Friday morning to support Morgan Meyer in his campaign to replace Dan Branch.

"We are here to support Morgan because he is about three things, family values, conservative values and a strong work ethic." said Jeff Staubach as he introduced Morgan to the attendees.

Morgan highlighted his life experiences and his commitment to the district, and the families and businesses in it, as he spoke to the crowd.

"As a husband and father of three small children, I am committed to protecting our schools and our economy" said Morgan. "I will be an honest, hardworking representative that will spend taxpayer dollars wisely and put families first."

In addition to the hosts, notable Dallas names including Jon Altschuler, Travis Goff, Marshall Hunt, Kathryn Lake, Fred Perpall, Hill Perot, Michael Prentiss and Robert Rowling, Jr. were among those attending the breakfast.

For more information, please visit