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Making Dallas Even Better

HP’s Meg Whitman: Companies Seeking Top Women Need to Look Hard, Not Wait

Companies aiming to hire more women for boards and other top positions have to work hard to find and recruit them, instead of waiting for candidates to come through the pipeline. That was the message Saturday from president and CEO Meg Whitman of Palo Alto, California-based Hewlett Packard Enterprise, whose tech industry is notoriously dominated […]

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Leading Off (11/16/15)

Moment of Silence For Paris In Downtown Dallas. A group of 200 gathered outside the Omni Hotel to stand in solidarity two days after 132 were killed in terrorist attacks in Paris, as the Omni, Reunion Tower, and Bank of America building were lit with the French Tricolour. Speaking of Paris …

Armed Group Marches On Katy Trail. Or at. Whatever. They said they were wearing “silly workout gear” so they wouldn’t intimidate people just going for a run. You know what else might help to not intimidate people? Not carrying guns. “Dallas is not going to be Paris,” said one of the demonstrators, Matthew Short, who probably spends a lot of his spare time coming up with anti-Obama memes. “We are not going to have an environment where people can murder 150-plus people because the public is not armed.” I think we all want everyone on the Katy Trail to look like this. Speaking of guns …

Off-Duty Dallas Police Officer Fires at Car Containing Fleeing Shoplifters at NorthPark. A mall security officer tried to stop the three women by standing in front of their Ford Taurus, ultimately having to jump on the hood since they didn’t. I don’t know if that escalates the situation to point where the DPD officer needed to start licking shots in a public parking garage in the middle of the day. Speaking of questionable things that happened early Sunday afternoon …

Cowboys Lose Again. The best part about this tire fire of a game is that it eventually ended. That’s seven in a row now for the Cowboys. Since the rest of the division is mostly a hilarious trash heap, the team is theoretically still somehow theoretically alive in the playoff race, but come on. They are in last place — in the entire league. They are not a good team. Give up. It’s OK.

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Karl Rove, Jim Messina Agree: Donald Trump Won’t Be the GOP Nominee

Political gurus Jim Messina, a Democrat, and Karl Rove, a Republican, concur that next year’s presidential race will be close—and that candidate Donald Trump won’t be the GOP nominee. “Karl and I agree that neither one is going to be president,” Messina said Friday, referring to Trump and Ben Carson, another Republican “outsider” candidate. Messina, […]

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Charles Koch: GOP Presidential Candidates Too Mum on Corporate Welfare

Koch Industries chairman and CEO Charles G. Koch, who told USA Today this week that he’s unlikely to endorse a candidate in the Republican presidential primary, says he hasn’t heard “nearly enough” ideas from those candidates for reforming a political system he considers to be corrupt. “I don’t hear them talking about all this corporate […]

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No, Dallas Doesn’t Lead the Nation in Missed Connections

Yesterday a writer for Vox looked at the number of Craigslist Missed Connections — that glorious corner of the Internet where anyone can anonymously deposit their daydreams about the girl on the train who, swear to God, gave you more than one furtive glance yesterday — for each of the country’s nine biggest cities.

He declares that Dallas put up the most posts (12) per 10,000 residents during his sample period (January 2015), leading one to believe that ours is a city replete with lonely hearts. However, I must question his method, since the population figure he credits to Dallas is for only the city proper while the “Dallas” Craigslist draws posts from throughout North Texas. This matters because while the city of Dallas is only the 9th-largest in terms of population in the U.S., the Dallas-Fort Worth metro is the country’s 4th-largest. So his per capita figures are way off.

If you refigure things based on the latest U.S. Census numbers for metro area population, Dallas is only the fourth-most desperately-seeking-Susan city in the country, with 2.3 posts per 10,000 population. It’s San Diego that most needs to screw up the courage to just go ahead and talk to the cute guy reading Dostoevsky in the coffee shop. Phoenix and San Antonio are also ahead (behind?) Dallas in this department.

What’s more interesting is the writer’s heat map of days of the week and times of day when a Missed Connections post is most likely. Monday is the big winner across the board, but Dallas’ pattern stands out:

Angelenos hardly post, and the few relative spikes in postings occur almost exclusively toward the start of the week. Houstonites, meanwhile, try their hand at romance on early Tuesday afternoons; Dallas, with the highest concentration of missed connections, has an impressive spread from Monday to Friday, with its inhabitants posting throughout the workday and late into the evening.

Props to us for our consistency, I guess.

Millennials, Rapid Technological Change On The Minds of CEOs at Business Forum

For Jennifer Morgan of SAP America, it’s “executing” in the face of rapid change. For Paul Grangaard of Allen Edmonds Corp., it’s the pace of change specifically in online retailing. And for Fedele Bauccio of Bon Appetit Management Co., it’s the “broken model” in agribusiness, which isn’t moving fast enough toward ecological sustainability. These are […]

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Leading Off (11/13/15)

Dez Bryant Blasts the Media. The Dallas Cowboys receiver’s locker-room tirade on Thursday took issue with recent coverage by reporters, which led to a heated exchange with ESPN Dallas’ Jean-Jacques Taylor over a column Taylor had written. During the incident, Bryant claims that Taylor used the n-word in reference to him, while other reporters present say that Taylor didn’t. Cowboys spokesman Rich Dalrymple and head coach Jason Garrett had to step in to calm their player down. Bryant tweeted after the brouhaha:

Denton Voters File Recall Petition. Residents upset with Denton Councilman Joey Hawkins’ vote in June to repeal the city’s fracking ban — a step the city council took after the Texas Legislature nullified the ban — turned in 125 signatures calling for Hawkins’ removal from office. Because Hawkins was re-elected in May with only about 300 votes, petitioners need to certify only 76 signatures to force a recall election. A similar effort is also under way to remove another council member who voted to repeal the ban, Kevin Roden (aka the would-be Savior of Sriracha).

Planes Report Laser Strikes. For the second straight evening, three pilots reported that some jerk southeast of Love Field was pointing a laser at their aircraft. A Dallas Police helicopter was dispatched to try to find the offender, but that effort was unsuccessful.

First-Grader Brings Guns to School. Don’t worry, the Little Elm boy did it accidentally. See, he’d picked up his dad’s backpack in the morning instead of his own. Apparently the kid’s backpack is identical to his dad’s. And his dad’s backpack contained the guns in preparation for a hunting trip. And the dad’s backpack with guns was in a place readily accessible to his son. Yeah, so forget what I just said: You should worry. We all should.

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Akorbi CEO Claudia Mirza Honored as ‘Entrepreneurial Winning’ Woman

CEO Claudia Mirza, who grew up surrounded by violence in Medellin, Colombia, was recognized Thursday by EY for her Dallas-based company Akorbi, the fastest-growing language services provider in the world. Mirza was named one of 12 “EY Entrepreneurial Winning Women” at the EY Strategic Growth Forum in Palm Springs, California. The program helps female entrepreneurs […]

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Lessons From DISD’s New Merit Pay System: Bad Teachers Go Bye-Bye

Nearly a month ago, the Dallas ISD board was given a briefing on the impact of the district’s revolutionary Teacher Excellence Initiative (TEI), the evaluation and scoring system that determines a teacher’s effectiveness and pay. I didn’t write about the briefing then because I was knee-deep in covering the DISD bond. Now that the bond passed, I want to tell you the important takeaways from the TEI data, because the findings and results are pretty amazing.

That’s not to say that there aren’t ongoing bugs and glitches in the system – important ones that need to be addressed. (I wrote about some concerns last year, and these were largely addressed.) I’ll write about those soon. First I want to talk about the big lessons from the TEI data that should change the way we think about public education and could change the way districts operate.

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DMN Again Takes Credit for Others’ Hard Work

A few weeks ago, I called your attention to a Morning News editorial in which the paper took way too much credit for shutting down a crime-ridden motel. The credit really belonged to Dwaine Caraway. Someone brought that fact to the attention of the paper, at which point the editorial was updated in a cynical fashion. Whoever wrote that editorial screwed up. That’s fine. We all screw up. The thing is to correct your screwups in a fair and transparent fashion. (Yes, I know the editorial writer could be a she. Yes, I know I could call the paper and ask who wrote the editorial. I’m choosing to remain ignorant of the authorship so that I don’t make an ad hominem attack here. I don’t trust myself.)

That’s context for an editorial published today that I’d like to point you to.

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Ask John Neely Bryan: There’s No App Superior to a Night Out in Dallas

Question: Camden decided a few months ago to stop accepting all resident parcels. Is it not our god-given right to compulsively shop on Amazon? What if other Dallas business/residential properties follow suit? Where would all of the city’s packages go? Local FedEx and UPS locations certainly don’t have the bandwidth for all incoming items to just stop at their local drops. Right? — Chelsey P.

I am continually astonished, confounded, damn near bewildered to encounter once again a prime example of just how lazy you 21st-century folks have become. You have the high privilege of living, working, and playing in the greatest city God ever gave man, and you’d rather just stay inside ordering footwear from Zappos? Instead of taking advantage of the loveliest of evenings while nestled within the bosom of the fraternity of your fellow man, you prefer the life of an agoraphobic?

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Leading Off (11/12/15)

Five finalists announced for Dallas Foundation’s good works under 40 award. These five finalists were picked from 75 people nominated for their volunteer work. The winner, along with a $10,000 grant for the nonprofit of his or her choosing, will be announced today. The finalists are Stephen Capuyan, a Habitat for Humanity volunteer; OJ DeSouza, who fund-raised for the Wilkinson Center; John Dickey, president of the Hope Cottage board of directors; Yat Yee “Eve” Fong, a volunteer with Equest Therapeutic Horsemanship; and Jenny Reynolds, president of Dallas CASA’s Children’s Council.

Allie Beth Allman & Associates Realtors bought by Warren Buffett. The investor is adding to his real estate empire with Allie Beth Allman & Associates, a top Dallas real estate firm founded in 2003. The firm was acquired by HomeServices of America Inc., an affiliate of Berkshire Hathaway. Allman said it was a “great honor” to be approached by Buffett’s company. The Dallas firm will retain its brand name and current management.

Woman in North richland hills stabbed by son’s girlfriend. 36 times, that is. 59-year-old Kathleen Olson was found dead in her apartment bathtub last week after being stabbed three dozen times by her son’s girlfriend, 37-year-old Julie Marie Peterson. Peterson was arrested and charged with capital murder soon after when detectives found Olson’s belongings in her purse. According to an affidavit, Peterson had moved in with Olson to escape verbal abuse from Olson’s son, James. But Peterson and Kathleen Olson had been arguing for several days. Police traced Peterson to a Haltom City hotel.

IPOs Sputtered in 2015 With Economic Volatility, Abundance of Private Capital

The U.S. market for initial public offerings this year was strong until August, when the market began sputtering over the global economy with the most volatility since 2008. That pushed many IPOs off at least until 2016, when still more “mediocre” economic growth is likely. That’s according to four experts addressing the outlook for IPOs […]

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Texas Instruments, Other Corporations, Habitat Team With United Way to Assist Military Veterans

At first blush, Darren Woodson and Breana Austin wouldn’t seem to have much in common. He’s a former Dallas Cowboys star safety from Phoenix, and she’s a Dallas native who’s served since 2010 as an administrative specialist with the Texas Army National Guard. Today, though, the pair’s paths will cross when the Cowboys’ newest Ring […]

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Leading Off (11/11/15)

Anachronistic Bandit Terrorizes Fort Worth Horse Riders. Fort Worth police are looking for a man who has been hiding along riding paths, then jumping out and sticking up riders at gunpoint. Police say the suspect has struck at least four times in the last two months. Two men have been shot during the robberies. “It sounds like he has no care for anybody,” said one of the victims.

Arlington Says No to New Fracking. The city council there voted last night to deny a new oil and gas lease to Vantage Energy, the company responsible for a spill in April that involved tens of thousands of gallons of fracking water leaked into local creeks and sewers. Council members were apparently most bothered by the fact that it took the company two hours to call 911 after the spill.

Charles Barkley Thinks You Should Give Greg Hardy a Chance. “I believe that there are way too many black men we’ve just thrown away,” the basketball legend wrote for Bleacher Report. “Shouldn’t we get him some help, instead of kicking him out of the NFL? Shouldn’t we do everything possible to prevent it from happening again?”

U.S. Soccer Association Wants to Ban Headers for Kids. Citing concussion risks, the Frisco-based organization wants to ban headers for kids 10 and under, and limit them through age 13. Experts say it’s not the heading, per se, that causes the danger, but rather the risk of two heads colliding. (Disclosure: I had two diagnosed concussions playing soccer as a teenager. I wouldn’t recommend it.)

Stars and Mavericks Both Lose to Terrible Teams. A late third-period goal gave the last-place Toronto Maple Leafs the win over the first-place Stars. The middling Mavericks were never really in the game against the previously winless New Orleans Pelicans. Not a great showing.