When Tarrant County Commissioners voted unanimously this month to donate about 12 acres of land to the state for creation of a new veterans’ home in Fort Worth, it was the culmination of months of collaboration between Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush and the Fort Worth Metropolitan Black Chamber of Commerce.
Bush, who also is president of the Texas Veterans Land Board (VLB), first dropped by the Chamber office last October after attending the organization’s biannual breakfast, and spoke confidentially of plans to build a new veterans’ home in the North Texas area. Immediately Black Chamber officials thought Fort Worth would be the ideal location.
Chamber President and CEO Devoyd Jennings solicited the aid of two Chamber-member companies, the Stoglin Group consulting firm and Trojan Commercial Real Estate (a Fort Worth minority owned company) in helping to develop a proposal for a Fort Worth location. Trojan CRE President Tim Williams identified three potential properties in Fort Worth, including the now-donated acreage at 1100 Circle Drive which is next to the Fort Worth Veterans Administration Clinic and the Tarrant County Resource Connection. Bush and his staff toured the sites during their visit to Fort Worth in February.
The new Texas State Veterans Home will be a 120-bed skilled nursing facility opened to Texas Veterans over 65, their spouses and Gold Star parents. Chaplain Richmond Stoglin of the Stoglin Group, a veteran himself, said the new home will be a national model for veterans’ care centers. “This will be a tremendous economic boost to the southeast sector of our city, an area that has been neglected far too long,” said Jennings, noting that in addition to construction jobs and business opportunities the more than $25-million facility would employ about 100 full- time employees when it becomes operational.
Jennings added that the cooperation between the Chamber, private businesses, the VLB and the county proved that “good things can happen when we’re willing to work together for the good of our area and our entire state.” He also said, “We are extremely grateful to Tarrant County Commissioners Court, especially Commissioner Roy Brooks, in whose precinct the project is located, and Judge Glen Whitley for his foresight in helping this venture come to fruition.”
“Trojan CRE played an integral role in initiating meetings with Tarrant County and VLB that culminated in the unanimous VLB and Tarrant County Commissioners land donation approval,” said Williams.
In a statement released this week, Bush said: “Texans working together to ensure that our nation’s heroes receive the utmost care is what makes Texas great. We are extremely grateful to Tarrant County for their generous donation of 12 acres of property to aid the VLB in expanding services for Veterans in the community. Tarrant County’s thoughtful contribution will impact Veterans in the DFW area for years to come.
“I would like to specially thank Fort Worth Metropolitan Black Chamber of Commerce for their efforts in securing the donation of property. The support provided by the Chamber illustrates their dedication to ensuring Texas Veterans are taken care of in Tarrant County.”