Here are 10 notable men and women who have helped make DFW a remarkable place to visit.
1. ROGER STAUBACH
The Dallas Cowboys continue to captivate sports fans here and abroad. The team’s massive following owes much to former quarterback Roger Staubach. After graduating from the U.S. Naval Academy and serving a tour of duty in Vietnam, Staubach went on to join the Cowboys in 1969. During his 11-year career, he brought Dallas two Super Bowl victories. A 2010 poll conducted by the Dallas Morning News named him the “No. 1 Dallas Cowboy of all time.”
2. MARK CUBAN
Dallas-based entrepreneur, television personality and philanthropist Mark Cuban is best known (at least locally) as the owner of the Dallas Mavericks. He has a personality as big as his bank account and his Dallas roots run deep. Cuban moved to the Big D in 1982 where his financial climb started with bartending. In 2011, Cuban gave his adopted home a long sought prize when the Mavericks became NBA Champions for the first time in franchise history.
3. MICHAEL PETICOLAS
DFW is officially awash in craft beer. One of the most recognizable figures within that movement has been Michael Peticolas, founder of Peticolas Brewing Company. Coming from a background in law has helped Peticolas advocate for expanding craft brewery rights across Texas.
4. KRYS BOYD
KERA’s Krys Boyd has become a familiar voice to North Texans. The TCU grad hosts Think, where she interviews a slew of authors, intellectuals, and personalities. The show is always insightful, civil and entertaining. Her award-winning program recently went statewide, meaning more of our fellow Texans will share in what we’ve been enjoying for years.
5. RON KIRK
Most of us remember Ron Kirk as the longtime and affable mayor of Dallas (1995 to 2002). His major achievements as mayor include pushing for construction of the American Airlines Center and the Trinity River Project. In 2009, Kirk gained national stature as President Barack Obama’s pick for U.S. Trade Representative, a position he held for four years.
6. ALAN BAYLOCK
UNT’s Grammy-nominated One O’Clock Lab Band continues to set the bar for jazz ensemble excellence. Now led by composer/arranger Alan Baylock, the big band performs original compositions and modern arrangements of jazz standards with all the precision of a Swiss timepiece.
7. GARY PATTERSON
For the past 17 years, the one constant for TCU’s Horned Frogs has been head coach Gary Patterson. Patterson has given his modestly-sized private university broad national recognition while launching professional NFL careers, and his most notable achievement was a perfect season and Rose Bowl Championship in 2010. Go Frogs!
8. KAY AND VELMA KIMBELL
The Kimbell Art Museum now stands, both architecturally and with regards to its permanent collection, as one of the most lauded art museums in the United States, if not the world. The legacy began when the Kimbell Art Foundation was founded in 1936 by Kay and Velma Kimbell in an effort “to encourage art in Fort Worth and Texas.” Now, with over 350 works of art including a collection of masterpieces such as Michelangelo’s The Torment of St. Anthony—they accomplished just that.
9. STEVE MURRIN
Cowboy Steve Murrin, the Stockyard’s unofficial mayor, owns several properties in the historic district, including the event space River Ranch Stockyards. The former city councilmember is something of a spokesperson for the area. When he talks, people listen. Steve, along with his son Phillip, have recently become historic preservation advocates.
10. CAROL KLOCEK
You don’t have to be a big name to define your community. Each day, Carol Klocek commutes from her home in Waxahachie to Fort Worth where she oversees the nonprofit Center for Transforming Lives. Klocek, who grew up in poverty, now helps homeless men and women find hope and opportunities amid dire circumstances. As a freelance news reporter, I’ve seen the work this charity does firsthand, and every dollar donated toward her cause couldn’t be better spent.