Log in

  • 13 Aug 2022 11:37 PM | Anonymous

    CITY NEWS auditor-david medrano.pngAfter a national search, David Medrano has been named Fort Worth’s next city auditor. City Council will appoint him at its next meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 9.

    “David is joining the City with a wealth of leadership experience and strategic mindset that will serve our Internal Audit Department, and the entire City, well,” Mayor Mattie Parker said.  The role of the city auditor position is vital to good governance, and his ability to work collaboratively to find and implement innovative solutions will help ensure the City operates with efficiency and accountability.”

    Medrano has recently served as chief financial officer for SunLine Transit Agency in Thousand Palms, Calilf.; chief internal auditor for the Imperial Irrigation District in Imperial, Calif.; and internal audit chief for the County of Santa Barbara, Calif. He also has experience in audit and finance with several major energy companies in Texas.

    Medrano has a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Southern Methodist University, a master of accounting degree from the University of St. Thomas in Houston, and an executive-accelerated development certification from Rice University.

    John Riggs has been serving as interim city auditor since December 2021, replacing Patrice Randle, who retired.

  • 7 Aug 2022 9:49 PM | Anonymous

    Researchers from Texas and the United Kingdom will untangle the classification conundrums of the “ironweed” tribe (Vernonieae) in the sunflower family  to advance biodiversity research and conservation 

    FORT WORTH, Texas (Aug. 8, 2022) — The National Science Foundation (NSF) and Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) have awarded botanists at the Fort Worth Botanic Garden | Botanical Research Institute of Texas (FWBG | BRIT) and Royal Botanical Gardens, Kew $1.2 million (nearly $850,000 from NSF and nearly £300,000 from NERC) to classify and understand plants in a hyper-diverse group referred to as “ironweeds” in the sunflower family, Compositae. This is the first grant of its kind awarded to FWBG | BRIT and Kew through a special international collaborative program between NSF and NERC. 

    This group of plants forms what plant taxonomists refer to as the Vernonieae tribe and includes approximately 1,500 species of herbs, shrubs, trees and vines worldwide. The “ironweeds” have confounded botanists attempting to understand patterns shared by species in this group, which has led experts to describe tribe Vernonieae by a notorious nickname: the “evil tribe.” 

    “Vernonieae is incredibly confusing. The characteristics among many species overlap and vary to a degree that it’s hard to differentiate them as distinct genera,” said FWBG | BRIT Research Botanist and Principal Investigator (PI), Morgan Gostel. “At the same time, other plants in the tribe are highly distinctive with little in common and are quite easy to recognize and distinguish at the taxonomic level of genus.”

    “For most of the history of Vernonieae, more than one thousand species were classified in the same genus (Vernonia), but Vernonia has been reduced to just 20 species. This has left the remaining species of this once vast genus in a state of limbo or ‘purgatory’ until taxonomists determine their correct placement,” Gostel said.  

    Recently, considerable research in the Americas has begun to unravel the mysteries of the tribe and species formerly placed in the genus Vernonia; however, nearly half of the species of Vernonieae are restricted to the Eastern Hemisphere and have been long neglected by botanists, said Gostel. Funding from this NSF-NERC award will allow Dr. Gostel and his collaborators at Kew to reclassify diversity in Vernonieae from the Eastern Hemisphere and develop tools to help others identify and understand this enigmatic group of plants. Members of the team at Kew include Drs. Isabel Larridon, Benoit Loeuille and Ana Rita Simões. 

    Taxonomic knowledge like this is essential to conserving the diversity of plant life on the planet, said Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew Research Leader and co-PI for the grant, Dr. Isabel Larridon. “Understanding the diversity of the nearly half-a-million plant species on Earth is a strategic priority for Kew Science,” Larridon said. “Yet there are too many plant species and not enough trained taxonomists to study, describe and distribute information about them.” 

    While resolving questions about Vernonieae, Gostel and Larridon will also advance the distribution of scientific information and the training of the next generation of scientists.  

    The results of their work will be added to the newly established Global Compositae Database (GCD), a public online taxonomic resource for the Compositae family. The GCD, coordinated by the International Compositae Alliance (TICA) is part of a global effort to develop an online database of all plant life and recognized as a Taxonomic Expert Network by the World Flora Online.  

    At the same time, the team will train the next generation of plant taxonomists by working with at least three graduate students and four undergraduate students. Further international training will be provided through workshops with students, botanists and herbarium and university staff and via environmental education programs offered by FWBG | BRIT and Kew. 

    During the four-year project, Gostel, Larridon and their team will conduct field work in five countries critical to sampling for this work (the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Madagascar, Mozambique, South Africa and Thailand) and study plant specimens in numerous herbaria around the world, most notably at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew (K); Fort Worth Botanic Garden|Botanical Research Institute of Texas (BRIT), Missouri Botanical Garden (MO), Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle in Paris (P), and Botanic Garden Meise (BR). They will analyze the DNA of Vernonieae and the morphological features such as small hairs, pollen and flowers from these plant species to identify patterns that can help them classify diversity in the group. 

    “By better understanding Vernonieae, we will be making great strides in understanding the complexity of this group and making important discoveries that will help botanists understand and communicate about plant diversity in other groups,” Gostel said. “We expect the ‘evil tribe’ won’t be so evil when we’re done.” 

    Editors: Images may be downloaded here

  • 23 Jul 2022 11:41 AM | Anonymous

    CITY NEWS mayor-state of the city 2.jpg

    Mayor Mattie Parker will be the keynote speaker at Fort Worth Chamber’s annual State of the City event on Thursday, Sept. 29, at Dickies Arena.

    The luncheon-style event will include an update on City accomplishments; a special interview segment with Margaret Hoover, host of PBS’ Firing Line; and the presentation of the 2022 Small Business of the Year Awards and Best Place for Working Parents Awards.

    The recording of Parker’s State of the City address will be available on the City of Fort Worth YouTube channel in English, Spanish and ASL starting at noon Friday, Sept. 30.

    Luncheon registration is open on the Fort Worth Chamber website.

    The Fort Worth Chamber’s State of the City event is presented by Simmons Bank.


    Get articles like this in your inbox. Subscribe to City News.

  • 10 Jul 2022 5:01 PM | Anonymous

    Back to School Roundup logo Preregistration for Tarrant County’s annual Back to School Roundup is open through July 15.

    Families may preregister for school supplies or during one of the in-person events. School supplies will be distributed at the Back to School Roundup Aug. 5 at the Tarrant County College South campus, 5301 Campus Drive.

    Preregistered families will receive a voucher admitting them into the roundup event and guaranteeing free school supplies.

    The annual Back to School Roundup is a one-stop event that offers approximately 10,000 underserved Tarrant County school-aged children, ages 3-18, free school supplies, backpacks, haircuts, health, dental and vision screenings, immunizations, health and social resources, activities and games. The roundup is a collaborative effort of the county, 20 area public school districts, the City of Fort Worth, public health department, state agencies, nonprofit organizations, corporations and volunteers.

  • 1 Jul 2022 5:05 PM | Anonymous

    CITY NEWS unthsc-simulation lab opens.jpg

    The University of North Texas Health Science Center at Fort Worth has made history with the opening of the first immersive virtual reality simulation center in Texas.

    The Regional Simulation Center uses cutting-edge immersive virtual reality technology, in addition to lifelike simulation mannequins, multi-functional spaces and more traditional virtual reality. The center’s technology can replicate virtually any health care scenario across multiple disciplines and has uses for both medical students needing to learn new procedures in a low-risk environment and seasoned health care providers looking to hone their skills or acquire new ones.

    “The opening of HSC’s new Regional Simulation Center is truly exciting as it is the first immersive virtual reality simulation center in the State of Texas,” said Dr. Michael R. Williams, chancellor of the UNT System and HSC president. “The cutting-edge technology will allow our students and health care providers to practice and learn new skills in the most realistic of environments. This will ultimately benefit patients and increase patient safety.”

    The $6.75 million facility is in renovated space on the first floor of HSC’s Gibson D. Lewis Health Science Library, 955 Montgomery St. The new center is also open for training for hospital residency programs, emergency medical service providers, hospital personnel, nursing home staffers, clinical teams, first responders and more.

    “This is an incredibly exciting day for the Health Science Center and Fort Worth,” said Michael Crain, Fort Worth City Council member representing District 3. “The impressive technology here will allow both the current and future generations of health care workers to learn and practice the skills they need to improve the overall quality of care in Fort Worth. This is a win for our city.”

    The center is set to deliver comprehensive health care simulation with techniques drawn from multiple disciplines and customized to the level and background of each learner. The lab’s fully immersive virtual reality projection component uses cutting-edge 360-degree cameras that allow staff to transport students into on-the-job scenarios.

    “HSC’s Regional Simulation Center will not only improve health care outcomes and patient safety, but this state-of-the-art facility will also act as a beacon to potential medical school students, tech companies and other entrepreneurs,” said Leonard Firestone, City Council representative for District 7, which includes HSC’s campus. “The center will let business owners know that Fort Worth embraces new ideas, emerging technologies and is a leader in life sciences entrepreneurship. The economic impact of this center could be a game changer for our city as HSC strengthens its position as a premier health care institute.”



    Photo: City Councilmembers Alan Blaylock and Michael Crain were among the dignitaries attending the ribbon cutting at the lab.

  • 1 Jul 2022 5:03 PM | Anonymous

    The City Council will take its traditional summer break in July, and the next meetings will be held on Tuesday, Aug. 2. All city services will continue to be available as usual.

    During the break, city staff will continue preparing the proposed city budget for fiscal year 2023. Watch City News for a list of community engagement meetings this summer to learn more about the budget process.

  • 1 Jul 2022 5:03 PM | Anonymous

    Fort Worth residents now have more time to share their thoughts on the direction of the 2023 city budget. The deadline to submit feedback has been extended through Friday, July 15.

    There have already been many valuable and thoughtful ideas that have been shared, but there’s always room for more.

    Everyone is encouraged to take a photo of Molly, the city mascot, where you think investments are needed. It can be at a park that needs revitalizing or a street that’s due to be repaved. Download a picture of Molly from the city website. Copies are also available at city community centers and libraries.

    You can even join Molly in the photo!

    Upload your photo to one of these sites by July 15:

    Learn more online.

  • 30 Jun 2022 5:06 PM | Anonymous

    Fort Worth residents and visitors have a quick and easy way to report issues to the city.

    After downloading the MyFW app, users can provide a brief description, photos and use a map-based location feature to submit issues like graffiti, potholes or high grass. Once submitted, the request will go directly to the appropriate city work team for a quick response. The user can view the status of the request in the app and receive a notification when the work is complete.

    MyFW also saves time and money by automating many employee tasks. It saves gas and eliminates travel by enabling city staff to instantly upload reports and photo documentation from the worksite. Employees can initiate work orders from their office or in the field.

    Download MyFW on the App Store or Google Play.

  • 17 Jun 2022 5:07 PM | Anonymous

    Mayor-Mattie-Parker-_-2021.jpgOne year ago today, I stood on a stage alongside my colleagues on the Fort Worth City Council as one of six new faces transforming its makeup, and made an oath to serve this city and its residents as Mayor.

    A two-thirds turnover of the governing body and loss of decades of City Council experience in a single election could have been destabilizing, especially in the midst of Fort Worth’s explosive growth, the aftershocks of a global pandemic, and national political and cultural reckonings.

    But it is with immense pride that I look back on the last 365 days seeing what we, as a community and as a Council, have been able to accomplish by truly leading with a focus on what unites us rather than what divides us.

    And what unites us, above all else, is a focus on the highest quality of life for Fort Worth residents. We understand what we are responsible for as a municipal government: those most basic services that mean the most, simple things like trash and recycling picked up each week, clean water flowing from every faucet, beautiful parks and greenspaces, enriching libraries and community center services, continually updated and expanded roadways, and safe neighborhoods for every resident and family, regardless of ZIP code.

    Fort Worth has long been a city of excellence, built by the pioneering spirit of the policymakers who came before us and the everyday leaders who thrive in communities across Fort Worth: visionaries in business, education, philanthropy, and community advocacy. I believe we have only added and expanded on that foundation of civility and compassion, and Fort Worth is better today than it was a year ago.

    Despite the turmoil at all levels of government across the United States, Fort Worthians can be proud that their leadership is committed to embracing positive policies and consensus building, perhaps best illustrated by the unanimous, 9-0 vote to adopt a new redistricting map following months of intense, and at times contentious, discussions.

    Additionally, voters showed their confidence by approving a $560 million bond program that will nurture our growing city by expanding streets and mobility infrastructure, building or improving numerous park and recreation sites, public libraries, police and fire safety facilities, and acquiring open spaces.

    We have implemented exciting, innovative economic development initiatives that will launch dynamic new businesses, like the Techstars Physical Health Fort Worth Accelerator. We’ve connected Fort Worth’s underserved communities to financing to help businesses reach their full potential with CDFI Friendly Fort Worth. We’re showing the world that we are open to technologies transforming the financial landscape by launching the City of Fort Worth Bitcoin Mining Pilot Program.

    There are so many projects vital to our future which we can be proud of. The Central City Flood Control Project made tremendous moves and the Texas A&M University System downtown urban research campus took its first steps. In addition, to serve our most vulnerable, soon 165 units of permanent supportive housing will allow us to address chronic homelessness in our city.

    We’re aggressively investing in the next generation, with efforts to fund early educators, expand childcare infrastructure and bring together the best and brightest thought leaders to direct our future funding with the Blue Ribbon Action Committee on Child Care.

     Even as we celebrate the triumphs of the last 12 months, there are still so many challenges ahead.

    We are battling a rise in violent crime and the devastating effects of gun violence, with 45 homicides so far this year following 2021 where there were 118 homicide victims, a 27-year record high in Fort Worth. This is unacceptable. Solving these issues will require a multifaceted approach that I shared following the tragedy in Uvalde: leaders advocating for commonsense policies, expanding and funding programs that work, and leading with a simultaneously pro-police and pro-community mindset. I am proud that Fort Worth stands apart from other large cities by having a City Council dedicated to supporting the needs of its police officers. We will not balk on funding, and we will support Chief Noakes’ dedication to implementing best practices that ensure his tenets of safety, wellness and resiliency for both the Police Department and the community it serves.

    Our students are struggling to overcome a steep academic slide. In 2021, only 28% of third- to eighth-grade students met grade level on their math and reading exams. Our kids and our teachers deserve more of our attention, and it will take the efforts of school systems, city leadership, and nonprofits pulling together to get students back on track. At the end of the day, regardless of if your child is in a public school, private school, charter school, or homeschool, every student in every ZIP code deserves a high-quality education. Our classrooms must also be setting students up for success in life, which is why I have established the Mayor’s Council on Education & Workforce Development to help enhance educational programs and career pathways in Fort Worth public schools to help prepare students for their future careers, even the ones yet to be invented.

    In the coming months, there will continue to be issues coming to City Council that matter deeply to our residents. There will be debate on what is next for growth-related economic development issues and a focus on how to keep taxes low in the face of rising property valuations. Residents continuing to face cost of living increases caused by inflation will need robust, compassionate city services more than ever.

    Both one year ago and today, I am confident that we are prepared to address these opportunities and more, coming out stronger.

    This time next year, your City Council will be made up of 11 members rather than nine. It will be another shakeup, but it is certainly one we can look to with excitement for what we will be able to do for our growing community.

    I want to sincerely thank Fort Worth for the care and support shown to me, my family and my husband over the last year, and for embracing having a mom of young children balancing life and public service. Thank you.

    In one year, I look forward to looking back on the Fort Worth that has become even a better version of itself. Our greatest is still yet to come.

  • 17 Jun 2022 3:10 PM | Anonymous

    The Fort Worth Botanic Garden | Botanical Research Institute of Texas invites guests to visit the Garden with free admission on Sunday, June 19, in honor of the Juneteenth holiday, thanks to R Bank, which made the opportunity accessible for all.

    FWBG|BRIT CEO and President Patrick Newman says the opportunity to cultivate community engagement is a priority for the organization.

    “Juneteenth is an incredibly important holiday honoring African American history and representing strength, unity and progress,” Newman said. “This day of free admission is dedicated to both reflecting on the past and planning for future growth. The Garden is a place of peace, and during its early summer prime we want to welcome guests to celebrate Juneteenth with loved ones.”

    The Garden offers a 120-acre campus filled with 23 specialty gardens, including the popular Japanese Garden with koi-filled pools and dramatic waterfalls, and the iconic Rose Garden, with a terraced ramp featuring paths that wind past colorful flower beds.

    R Bank opened its first banking center in the Fort Worth market in March of 2020 and its University Drive branch in December 2021. “We are thankful for this new partnership with R Bank,” Newman said. “Their support and generosity to this organization is extremely helpful to us, and to our great local community.”

    The Garden’s summer hours are in effect – 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., with the last admission accepted at 5 p.m.


Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software