Vikki Martin, the president of Ferguson Road Initiative

Vikki Martin, the president of Ferguson Road Initiative (photo by Brittany Nunn)

A neighborhood organization was recently honored for its community service. During the Dallas Historical Society’s annual Awards for Excellence in Community Service Luncheon, the East Dallas group Ferguson Road Initiative and the organization’s president Vikki Martin, were honored for “excellence in volunteer community leadership.”
In the 90s, Far East Dallas was in a bad way. There were increasing crime rates, jobs were vanishing, the education system was shoddy, and the housing options were poor at best. The Ferguson Road Initiative (FRI) was founded in 1998 to combat the continuing degradation of the area by partnering with local law enforcement agencies and training communities, and there have been significantly reduced crime rates in the area because of its efforts. Also, programs initiated in conjunction with local schools have increased involvement by parents and volunteers, which has attracted more funding to the education system in the area. (For more, check out our story from 2014 about FRI’s efforts and progress.)
As a result, the area has received more than $225 million in investment in the form of affordable middle and high income housing and retail.
“Although there is still more work to do, the Ferguson Road Initiative has made great strides toward increasing the quality of life of those living in Far East Dallas,” says Jason Hunt with the Dallas Historical Society, which is why the initiative and Martin were selected, he says. “These distinguished awards recognize those among the Dallas populace who make significant contributions to the growth and success of the city.”

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