Q&A: Meet the candidates running for Grapevine City Council Place 2

Get to know the candidates in the race for Grapevine City Council Place 2. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)
Get to know the candidates in the race for Grapevine City Council Place 2. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)

Get to know the candidates in the race for Grapevine City Council Place 2. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)



DFW



Grapevine City Council Place 2


*Incumbent








Sharron Rogers*



Occupation: retired


Experience: Served on the Planning & Zoning Commission for 6 years, chaired for 4 years. Re-wrote the Grapevine Zoning Ordinance. Worked for American Airlines for 21 years, former Vice-President at Spencer Engineering, Inc. Served on City Council for 36 years. Served as City Council Liaison to Heritage Foundation Board, Library Board, Housing Authority Board, Open Space Committee, Grapevine Lake Committee, Main Street Committee, Personnel Committee, Building Board of Appeals, Planning & Zoning Commission, Board of Zoning Adjustment, Convention & Visitors Bureau Board, Grapevine Sister City Committees. Member with the Grapevine Heritage Foundation; Grapevine Historical Society, Grapevine Chamber of Commerce, Women’s Division-Chamber of Commerce, Grapevine Garden Club, Bay View Club Treasurer, Daughters of the Republic of Texas; Charter Member-Capt. Molly Corbin Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution; Studebaker Family National Association-Board of Trustees.






Why are you rerunning for office?



SR: To continue serving the citizens and businesses of Grapevine. I prepared myself for service on the city council. My extensive experience and depth of knowledge provide an understanding of city business which someone with no experience nor personal city involvement simply does not have. As a dedicated and proven leader, I have been actively involved in guiding our city, protecting our neighborhoods, preserving our city’s heritage, and helping create the high quality of life we enjoy today – all while continuing to reduce our tax rate to now having the 2nd lowest tax rate in the State of Texas for a full-service city our size. This was accomplished through the hard work of many people: visionaries, a dedicated mayor and city council members, our professional city staff, all working together to create and now striving to maintain the city that our citizens love and where many others want to be. We are SO fortunate to live in Grapevine!



If elected, what will be your top three priorities?



SR: 1. We are at a crossroads in this city with the battle over short-term rentals, party houses and mini-hotels invading our neighborhoods. They have been on the news all across the country, and we have heard horror stories from our citizens: 3 and 4 bedroom homes gutted and filled with beds for a constant stream of 15, 20, 25 strangers and their vehicles of all sizes; lights shining into nearby homes; beer and liquor bottles strewn throughout neighborhoods. Grapevine has a covenant with all residential developments via our zoning ordinance. Never, at any time since our first zoning ordinance was adopted in 1955, has any type of transient housing, short-term rentals, etc., been allowed in neighborhoods. I will continue opposing STRs to assure safe, peaceful neighborhoods and our high quality of life. 2. Continue attracting first-class businesses to Grapevine. We have very little vacant land remaining, and we must choose wisely and select developments that will contribute substantially to our tax base and provide employment opportunities for our citizens. 3. Continue conservative spending of taxpayer dollars and providing exceptional amenities and services for our citizens and businesses.



What do you see as the city’s role in addressing the coronavirus pandemic?



SR: The city of Grapevine must adhere to executive orders issued by Governor Greg Abbott and Tarrant County Judge Glen Whitley. We must continue providing personal protective equipment, supplies and appropriate support for all of our city employees. We will all have to learn how to live with the new coronavirus. Citizens need their jobs. Businesses need to remain open, and we all need to support them.









Theresa Lopez Strayer



Occupation: Retired


Experience: Supporting member of both Heritage Foundation and Historical Society. Active volunteer in Nash Farm events. Active participate in the Veterans Parade (Hans my husband, is a Veteran) and Christmas parades. Active participant in the National Night Out neighborhood gatherings. Active donor to GRACE. Bronze Gala Sponsor and past Spanish translator for the Community Clinic. Past member of AMBUCS and the Chamber of Commerce in the Women’s Division. Past President of the Homeowners Association at Park Place. Owned a Space at the Grapevine Antique Market for 8 years, until 2019. Member of the Grapevine Republican Party. Delegate to the 2016 Texas Republican Convention. Alternate delegate to the 2016 National Republican Convention.






Why are you running for office?



TS: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, I was forced into retirement on May 1, 2020, after being a flight attendant for 47 years. I was not ready to retire. Originally, I was hired, as a Spanish speaker, with American Airlines in April 1973. After spending over half my life serving the public in the airline industry I decided to look for an opportunity where I could continue to serve. A flight attendant is more than just cabin service. As a domestic flight attendant and later an International-Purser I was required to deal with medical emergencies, mechanical delays and make critical decisions that would keep my passengers and fellow crew members safe. Having lived in Grapevine for 40 years, owning two residential properties, having had a small business for 8 years, participating in the community, with a history of leadership and still wanting to serve; I decided to run for City Council Place 2.



If elected, what will be your top three priorities?



TS: For the residents: I know that one of the most important things that you can do for someone who is expressing concerns, is to listen. Current concerns that I have heard discussed would be the lack of sidewalks, lack of grocery stores, children’s safety and speed limits in certain areas are just a few. I believe that these issues have been ignored and need to be addressed. I have been asked about my position on short-term rentals and my position is that it remains an issue for the courts to decide. For Local Business: First and foremost, not all of Grapevine’s businesses are located on Main Street. While I absolutely love Main Street and love spending time there, we need to do a better job of promoting all the businesses in our community. When I had my small business, hardly anyone knew about its location because it was not near downtown. I would like to suggest a printed map or categorized list of all businesses and restaurants be made available to both the residents and visitors. That way everyone can be made aware of all that our City has to offer. If these were made available at public locations, then our visitors can explore beyond just Main Street. Our Historic Town: Since my move to Grapevine, in 1980, I have seen pastures turn into sub-divisions, open fields turn into highways and a new runway at DFW that nobody wanted. Growth comes with an uncomfortable element of change. We need a plan in order to prepare for future growth and remain flexible to change.



What do you see as the city’s role in addressing the coronavirus pandemic?



TS: This pandemic is truly an unprecedented crisis. It has destabilized local businesses and cost many residents their income which has affected their livelihood. It has stopped us from enjoying our great city, as we knew it. In the pandemic’s early stages there was panic due to lack of communication along with inaccurate information. Now that we are more familiar with the virus and the distribution of the vaccine has begun, things are becoming a little more clear. The city’s role is massive. We have to reassure all that we are safely reopening and that full recovery is our top priority. Sharing accurate information will always ease tensions and allow us to move forward into what we once knew as normal. Communication is always the best avenue for success.









Breann Burke



Occupation: Human Resources


Experience: Defense contractor for the federal government. Over 14 years in business including human resources, compliance, ethics, safety and finances.






Why are you running for office?



BB: I am running for office because I love the city of Grapevine. It is my home and I want to participate in the next steps in continuing to make our city a better place to live. I will engage with the residents of Grapevine as we look towards the future to enhance our historic district as well as the city outside of downtown. City Council representatives should be speaking on behalf of our residents and acting within the best interest of the people of Grapevine. I will make myself available to our residents to hear their suggestions and concerns as we move into the next phase of the city.



If elected, what will be your top three priorities?



BB: 1. Treat our business owners with respect and take time to listen and evaluate their proposals. These business owners are creating more jobs and providing services throughout our city. We need to ensure they are provided with resources to help all of us grow economically. 2. I would work with the Mayor and City Council leaders to come up with a strategic vision and branding plan for the city. If the city residents and businesses want to be known for tourism, it’s important to have a strategic vision for that mission. If tourism is not where residents and businesses want to expand, we should have a strategy for the current goal. We need to operate as a business if we want to reach the vision of our city for our residents and businesses. 3. I will listen to our residents and businesses and respond to their needs from now until election day, and after, if I am fortunate enough to be elected to this position.



What do you see as the city's role in addressing the coronavirus pandemic?



BB: I think it is the city's responsibility to educate and find other avenues to communicate resources with our residents on the COVID illness, available treatments and vaccines. We are also responsible for informing our residents where they can get tested, get treatment and get the vaccine should they choose. As a city, we should listen to medical experts but also look at making responsible decisions for our residents, while sustaining our economic progress, and provide resources to help our residents return to normal ways of life.


By Sandra Sadek
Sandra Sadek covers the cities of Grapevine, Southlake and Roanoke as well as Carroll ISD for Community Impact. She graduated from Texas State University where she majored in journalism and international relations. She has experience working for several local papers including the University Star, the Katy Times, and the Fort Stockton Pioneer. When she's not on the ground reporting, she enjoys a good book and a hot drink. Follow her on social media @ssadek19.