Category Archives: Letters to the Editor

Letter to the Editor

Photo: Maria da Gloria Seppy reflects on becoming a U.S. citizen and on her recent acceptance to the Irving Park Board, and gives thanks for her support. /Courtesy Photo


All my accomplishments in the City of Irving are due to all my dear friends that support me to be what I am today.

May 18 was a very special day, because I was accepted to Irving Park Board. When I swore in front of the present Board members my devotion to serve and my acceptance, it brought back memories of when I became American citizen. My heart was pounding with pride. The judge’s words are still with me to today. He said… ‘We Americans take for granted to be born here… But you are invited and choose. Be a great American!’ Yes I will.

Thank you to all my friends who accept me and help me to be a good citizen of this Great Country. I solemnly promise to serve and protect the country that gave the opportunity to be a Good American.

All my 4th July in Irving, I walk beside floats with my dear Rudy saluting my new Country. I like to share with all my dear friends my picture of riding the Irving Park Board with emotional pride and gratitude. My smile and enthusiasm are the same as when I left Brazil to follow my Destiny to be here to Salute all of you with gratitude . Viva America the Land of Opportunity!

Pray for me to be an Good American.

Maria da Gloria Seppy

Letter to the Editor

TO: The Rambler

RE: Mike Gregory Epistle

Regarding Mike Gregory’s revisionist fable, it would be best if her had actually depended on factual items before submitting his drivel: 1) He has never gotten over that the fact the CCR did not support or endorse his last effort when running for the ISD school board; 2) Fact: An ISF board member originally approached Ringtail —my company — to have the foundation buy all the books in question, as the individual liked the book and believed it would be good fodder for new teachers; 3) The superintendent squashed the idea, berated the foundation member and then had the board of trustees cancel the purchase; 4) No effort was made on my part to exert, protest or override the superintendent’s decision, as he had already turned the issue into a political football — he didn’t care to have some of the actual happenings of the district exposed; 5) When I retired from my professional career, I also retired from all community activities for a period of time; 6) I was not driven out of the Irving Rotary club as his screed would attempt to infer; 7) Since I was also a past president of the Irving Rotary club, I really don’t require a lecture as to the principles or purposes of the organization; 8) Gregory must be reading the CCR off of the blog, as he was dropped from the mailing list — and e-mail access — over a year ago; 9) One can only stand just so many insipid and wrong thinking remarks on issues penned in the CCR; 10) While his “Ode” apparently took some time to compose — but not enough to be taken seriously — glad to see he has adopted a CCR format utilized over the years for special events or occasions; 11) One day, the glorious light of satire might shine on Gregory and he can then take time to “Pause to Celebrate.”

From my standpoint, it doesn’t matter if this is published in your paper or not. The CCR reports are written under a pen name (since 1984) and no attempt is made to hide or shelter the true writer of the opinions or publication…a trait not followed by all those who do publish items for Irving citizens’ readership.

Mark Holbrook


Letter to the Editor


Mike Howard, aka Mark Holbrook, IISD Superintendent Jack Singley, and I were friends once. It was during my years on the IISD Board of Trustees in the mid ‘90s. We were fellow Rotarians and shared the same table each Thursday noon.

Jack’s and my relationship with Mike soured concerning a matter with the Irving Schools Foundation. He recommended the ISF provide each first-year teacher or new teacher to Irving a book he published which was authored by a retired IISD middle school teacher. The book was highly critical of the District and contained several anecdotes as support for her criticisms. The ISF Board was not familiar with the book and approved the distribution. However, Jack knew the book and its contents, informed the Board of such, and the Board retracted its initial decision. Anyone believing a book spinning a negative fabric would be appropriate for the aforementioned audience would be guilty of poor judgment. My support for that decision resulted in Mike’s terminating his relationship with both Jack and me.

Over the years, I have followed the Controversial Committee Report and have agreed with some of Mike’s positions. I’ve never been comfortable with his sarcasm and crusty, curmudgeonly bitterness (many on Keep Irving Accountable have adopted his style). In recent years, he has obsessively called out our Mayor and other city council members to the exclusion of any other political topic. While I agree with his criticism of our Mayor concerning the HB 562 flap, his March 28 edition entitled “Pause to Celebrate” is his latest exercise in bad judgment. He crossed a line (no pun intended).

Mike Howard left Rotary several years ago. It’s a good thing he did. The club begins all meetings with a recitation of the Rotary 4-way test. First, is it the truth? Second, is it fair to all concerned? Third, will it build good will and better friendships? Fourth, will it be beneficial for all concerned? These are worthwhile standards we ought to strive for, but we all occasionally fall short of. Mike chose long ago to deliberately ignore the third test. It’s time for him to retire from his self-appointed role as the champion of Irving citizens.

Inspired by Alan Jay Lerner, the lyricist of “My Fair Lady” and “Camelot” fame, I wrote what follows. If you are familiar with “Hymn to Him,” you will appreciate the tongue-in-cheek nature of this ditty.


An Ode to Ringtail

Why can’t the council be more like me?

I am so wise, so thoroughly versed,

Most others are hapless, so thoroughly cursed.

I don’t sip the Kool-Aid all others prefer,

I enjoy pure ambrosia, a drink I prefer.

I’m brutally honest, tenacious but fair,

The taxpayers’ hero, no one else can compare.

My motives are pure, no ethical snags,

All others stuff favors in their satchels and bags.

I’m Everyman’s hero; I fight for us all,

No one else has the courage, to make the right call.

Remember, I’m Ringtail, just hear me roar,

When I am done talking, no one else can say more.

My judgment is flawless; I publish great works,

The books I admire expose all the jerks.

Remember one written by a teacher in Irving?

Who berated her school in a manner unswerving?

The aforementioned tome published by me,

I offered new teachers at no cost or fee.

My gift was rejected, who ever could think?

They’d question my judgment; they’d think it could stink.

Why can’t the council be more like me?

“If I’d been made the partner of Eve, we’d be in Eden still!”

Mike Gregory


Art Dulgar, a Concerned Business Owner

To the citizens of Irving,

May I suggest than any individual or contractor, who wishes to submit a proposal for any new construction, re-modeling, or renovation show proof of current registration with the City of Irving Building inspection Department also that you have been in business a minimum of four years prior to submitting a proposal whether it be Commercial or Residential. You also must be able to supply at least three local references that can be verified. In addition should be able to prove they have the financial capabilities to complete the projects. Absolutely no day-workers off the street allowed on any projects.

The above requirements should apply to any and all projects which may be funded by either Local, State or Federal Grant Money. These requirements should also apply to any and all other projects especially considered by the City of Irving in the Heritage District.

Art Dulgar, a Concerned Business Owner

Letter to the Editor: Tim Hauter

Dear Editor:

I am writing to you as a volunteer of the American Heart Association and supporter of the proposed smoke-free ordinance the City of Irving is proposing. I grew up around in an environment filled with secondhand smoke and now that I have learned of its negative effects I am a firm believer that smoke-free workplaces are extremely necessary.
Plain and simple, secondhand smoke is a health hazard. It contains more than 4,000 chemicals and can cause many health problems such as heart disease, cancer, respiratory infections and asthma.
As a Texan, I believe that I have the right to breathe clean air in restaurants, bars and other workplaces. I do not choose to smoke and therefore should not have to be exposed to it when I am in public.

Continue reading Letter to the Editor: Tim Hauter

Letter to the Editor: Immigration


This is a historic moment for our Texas delegates to the U.S. House of Representatives. They have before them the opportunity to support the neighborhoods, congregations, and businesses that make up the greater Dallas area by passing a fair, commonsense immigration reform bill.
To truly strengthen our economy and community, the bill must offer real border security; provide fast access to work permits for those seeking to labor here legally; offer a path to legal residency for those already here (including, if appropriate, a roadmap to citizenship); and grant citizenship to those who were brought here as blameless young children.
Of course, if it were that simple, it wouldn’t have taken all these years to fix our broken immigration system. As pastor of Our Redeemer Lutheran Church in Irving, I’ve observed that part of what’s holding up solutions is that the immigration debate tends to magnify perspectives and judgments at the extremes.

Continue reading Letter to the Editor: Immigration

Letter to the Editor–Michael McPhail

So Irving no longer has a real bookstore because of e-Readers. The two bookstore chains that recently left Irving have dozens of thriving locations in area towns wealthier than Irving. So why is Irving so blessed to be bookstore free?
The truth is Irving’s retail base has collapsed. The S&L collapse’s effect on the region started the decline thirty years ago and poor Irving Chamber of Commerce leadership furthered the problem in the years that followed. In recent years retailers increasingly refused to do business here because the population is no longer middle class. Currently, obstinate elements of the City Council refuse to finish developing the Convention Center area voters decided to build in 2007 or seemingly do anything with old Irving redevelopment or the former stadium site.
But don’t run stories claiming Irving is ‘too technologically advanced’ to have bookstores. Next we’ll be reading stories that Irving is ‘blessed’ to have to drive all over North Texas to buy high quality groceries, clothes, furniture, appliances, electronics, and even swimming pool cleaning supplies!
Michael McPhail

Letter to the Editor–Cooley and Pittman

To Irving Citizens:

Like most everyone, I want an Entertainment Center in Irving. Not for me, but for the good of Irving. However, I don’t think we have to “give away” the choicest location in Irving in order to make a deal. I believe we can make a deal on legitimate and reasonable business terms where Irving has a choice not only about developers but about terms of the deal and return on investment.
While the Supplemental Agenda contained only three items numbered 35, 36 and 37, what actually comprisedthe packets kept changing. It changed as late as 10:00 p.m. on Tuesday night before the Work Session on Wednesday. I ask you how the staff is supposed to digest and recommend any item which it has not held at least a week in advance. Why were these items placed on a “supplemental agenda”? There is an MOU in place with ARK that won’t expire for another month. LCG is pushing and ARK is pushing to settle a lawsuit. LCG stands to lose everything if the judge sets a court date and tosses the case, which is a very real possibility. ARK stands to lose their “hold card” if the case is tossed or settled without them. So they push. Irving stands the most to gain by waiting out the court.
All three legal voices of Irving, the City Attorneys, the outside legal Counsel advising us on LCG matters, and our Bond Counsel all advised us against entering this contract. Yet, staff put it on the supplemental agenda with a recommendation.

Continue reading Letter to the Editor–Cooley and Pittman

Letter to the Editor–Nancy Dillon Block

1952 – 2013 (give or take a few years in between)
This year I am saying goodbye to the Irving School System. From September 1952, when we moved to Irving from Raleigh, NC, and I enrolled in Shultz (then Called East Ward School) Elementary, until my granddaughter recently graduated from MacArthur High School I have spent many years being involved with Irving Schools.
I was lucky enough to be in the first seventh grade class of the brand new Irving Junior High in 1954 – graduating from there in 9th grade (there were 3 grades in Junior High back then). Then it was on to Irving High until graduating in 1959.
My siblings were enrolled then in Paul Keyes Elementary, Crockett Junior High and the new Irving High School on O’Connor Road until my youngest sister graduated in 1979, and I often attended open houses, concerts, etc.

Continue reading Letter to the Editor–Nancy Dillon Block

Readers support candidates for City Council, IISD School Board

Dear Editor:

I am writing to recommend the most qualified, most trustworthy, most accessible person for our Councilman in District 1. That is John Danish. John has served Irving in many positions and helped us get important projects that we needed, such as improved DART service, including the Orange Line to the Airport. And we, the citizens of Irving are all so proud of Veterrans Memorial Park which he worked so hard for us to get? He understands our district and knows we want improvements in our City services. He has proven himself by his selfless involvement in Irving, and by his keen common sense. He understands how to manage public tax money and get the right things accomplished. My family and I are supporting John Danish. I hope you will too. We too believe Irving’s best days are ahead and those good things should start right here in District 1. And who better to lead us than someone who undestands that as well.

Gardy Lopez



Kensley Stewart is the best choice for Place 2 (at large) on the Irving City Council. He is a gentleman of high integrity, a believer in fiscal restraint and careful management of public resources and an extremely hard worker. He will represent all the people of Irving and do it well.

James Embry


I have gotten to know Kensley Stewart II over the years and he has always encouraged me even at times when we were not in agreement. No one can question his commitment to being active and involved in local government. I almost supported him the first time he ran and I support him greatly this time around. Many can question his tactics yet he knows the rules of the game and does not hit below the belt. I recall when I someone came up to me and mentioned someone should call his work and say he is doing wild and crazy things at the city in an effort to get him fired. I have heard personally from folks that he has been on different sides of the issues that when Kensley was at works he put all politics aside and treated people how they wanted to be treated. When people have to go to the hospital for life threatening reasons or to see an ailing love one its great that for nearly 20 years they had Kensley there to lend a hand and give support. We need this on council. He will be able to get past differences and not hold any grudges. He learned this at the hospital. It takes a lot to put yourself out there when you take stances.

I have seen him help out and volunteer on countless and numerous campaigns. I have seen him campaign for this race and greet many Irving Voters. Kensley sets the example and I hope the younger generation can get involved in the city. They will learn a lot from him. He can mentor them he is one of the most accessible persons on the planet. Thank you for letting me share and God Bless.

Respectfully yours,

Emmanuel Lewis Jr


To The Editor:

The only candidate running for Place 2, At Large, for the Irving City Council, who has not wavered from his original platform, who has not hedged his bets, who has stuck by his original goals is Rene Castilla. He has not tried to cover up any outside contributions. He has been forthright about all of his personal business and has honestly answered all questions put to him. He is a fiscal conservative who wants to see that our taxes stay low or are lowered. He wants to trim the budget and stay within a budget once it is approved by the council rather than changing it with the wind. He wants to get rid of million dollar consultants and replace them only if needed. He has the experience needed to do all of this having served in the public arena of the Dallas County Community College as a Dean and an Executive Dean before his recent retirement. He has the time, no job to worry about, and the desire to spend all the time necessary to fulfill the position of Councilman At Large Place 2, whereas I believe that his opponents will only have time to be partially involved due to their personal circumstances.

Go out to vote today and vote for Rene Castilla, Place 2, Irving City Council.

Jacqualea Cooley


Dear Editor,

I am supporting Rene’ Castilla for Irving City Council, Place 2. He is a proven leader with many years experience leading different civic boards. He is prepared and well-qualified to serve on the city council. I am asking all my friends to vote for Rene’ Castilla.

Olga Soto


Dear Editor,

Irving needs a fresh voice on the Irving City Council. That is why I am supporting Rene’ Castilla for Place 2. Rene’ is a leader with experience who will bring a fresh perspective to the issues facing our city. He has been a champion for families and small businesses. He is what Irving needs on the City Council. Please join me and vote for Rene’ Castilla, Place 2 on the Irving City Council.

David Gutierrez




“I would like to pledge my support for Norma C. Gonzales in her pursuit to serve District 6, on the IISD Board of Trustees. Ms. Gonzales, like so many others, is a gracious parent that has volunteered countless hours inside her own community. More importantly, she understands the short-comings of the district’s performance relative to other districts in regards to educational achievement, discipline, English proficiency, and fiscal responsibility. I am confident that she will appropriately represent Irving parents and children by focusing district administration on setting specific performance goals, and executing a common-sense plan to achieve them. Ms. Gonzales has taken the time to tour individual campuses, meeting with both teachers and administrators, to better understand how the board and central administration can support classroom instruction and improve student educational outcomes. She is also familiar with budgetary issues such as, the $550,000,000 indebtedness of the district, and the current expenditure trajectory that has grown 4 times faster than student enrollment, over the past decade. Lastly, Ms. Gonzales will exceed her duties as a Board Trustee, by continuing to be an outspoken leader for state education reform, that will reduce unnecessary state mandates, reward and empower teachers, local administrators and parents, and drive innovation and expand educational opportunities for children all over the state of Texas, in addition to those in Irving ISD.”

Ross Kecseg


To the City of Irving,

Please vote this Saturday, May 11 for RANDY RANDLE, Irving School Board, Place 7.

Randy, and his wife, Lynda, grew up in Irving. Both of them attended and graduated from the Irving Schools, and their children graduated from the Irving Schools. Randy has a vision and heart for this City, and is committed to making our school system a better place to receive an education. I’ve known Randy for over 35 years. He’s approachable, hands on, hardworker, honest, and once again, has a heart for our City and Schools. I support Randy Randle….He will get the job done!

I look forward to seeing you at the polls this Saturday….


Sharon Story


Dear Irving Rambler editor,

My husband and I are supporting Randy Randle for Irving ISD School Board District 7. We have decided to support him for several reasons. One, we have known him since the Fall of 2007 and have found him to be a man of character, integrity and sound judgment. Next, considering these qualities, along with his passion for the City of Irving, its people and the school district, voting for Randy Randle is an easy choice for us. Along with all of these qualities, and strong conservative convictions, Randy Randle will demonstrate strong leadership and help to lead Irving ISD to even greater heights. Randy Randle truly cares for the children of Irving ISD and his passion will lead him to truly put children first as he considers decisions fully before rendering his votes and taking a position. Finally, Irving ISD has many important issues coming before it in the months and years to come, such as potential curriculum changes and continued outfitting of classrooms with technology. I believe that Randy Randle is the man to get these, and other issues, successfully completed.

Carrie Caldwell



When hearing about the late George Jones’ passing a few weeks back, it instantly had me recalling some of the best moments about growing up so close with my Uncle Randy and his boys. Randy made it a point to educate us on the greatness that was George Jones as we’d consistently have’talent shows’ around the campfire in Fun Valley, Colorado. The act that stands out in the memory vault in my head, is Randy pulling his Chevy Silverado up to the campfire area, windows down, and throwing in the cassette tape that we’d all sing to as a karaoke act in our talent show. I still know all the words to “Why Baby Why” to this day.

Its memories like this that make me realize how my uncle would serve as a great member of Irving’s school board. Children first, always have been, always will be.

Kyle French