Dear Voters

This letter is to urge you in joining me to vote for Dick Haayen for Place 7 in the North Central Texas College Board Election.

In 1964, I signed up for my first class at the college. With the assistance of strong staff, visionary administrators and wise, forward thinking board members our family has seen over six decades of progress, transforming the one room building where I began.

Significant collaborations, including a degree path with Midwestern State University, The Red River Promise project serving first generation students, many options for career paths, the Medal of Honor Museum and other opportunities provided for our community, are only a few of the reasons I am choosing to cast my vote for Dick. He has served 12 years on this board and has spearheaded many improvements.

A vote for Dick is a vote for continued progress.

Karen Budlong Simpson

Gainesville High School Class of 1964

Promote STEM in Cooke County

It is always the perfect time to celebrate not only the successes of the Black community but also to consider what the future holds for Black Americans.

While the STEM fields continue to grow exponentially, the rate at which Black graduates received STEM degrees flatlined between 2001 and 2016.

The renewable energy industry and companies like EDP Renewables North America (EDPR NA), based in Houston, Texas, provide the innovative support needed to create change through renewable energy and in the Black community.

Through EDPR NA’s support of the Black Girls Do Engineer Corporation (BGDE), which advocates for Black American girls from ages 6 to 21 to pursue STEM careers, and its establishment of an internal resource group—the Black SynERGy Group—EDPR NA is committed to educating, creating awareness, and identifying opportunities for the Black community.

Renewable energy projects, like the six-operating utility-scale wind farms we have in Texas, and Black Americans in STEM are our future. One Texas renewable project, Wildcat Creek Wind Farm right here in Cooke County, is creating a brighter future for our state.

With an installed capacity of 180 megawatts (MW), the wind farm generates the equivalent to the consumption of more than 39,000 average Texas homes while bringing millions of dollars to the local economy surrounding the installation.

There is no innovation without the employees behind the concept, and we need to encourage more Black Americans to join the movement for clean energy.

David Jones

EDP Renewables North America

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