Saturday, September 25, 2021

Meet World Class Employee Kevin Ferrer

When it comes to City plans and project management Kevin Ferrer is your go to person.

He serves as the deputy city engineer for the Public Works Department where he leads and guides the engineering team on Capital Improvement Projects (CIPs).

The CIP is a five-year plan that the City has in place for construction of new or investing in the replacement of the City’s physical assets or infrastructure.

These projects ensure that the City will meet the demands for sewer, drainage, water, roadways and parks as Southlake continues to build-out.

To help the City accomplish this goal, Ferrer works with various departments, team members and consultants to address plans and concerns for projects and as well as other engineering related items.

He also analyzes, reviews and discuss studies, reports and plans with the team.

Although implementation and execution play a big part in his day-to-day activities, Ferrer understands that customer service is a high priority.

He is hands on when it comes to communicating and addressing concerns from citizens, contractors and external parties.

His role and dedication to Southlake Mobility Projects earned him the Southlake Values Award for Integrity during Employee Appreciation Week 2021.

When asked what makes Southlake a world class organization to work for, Ferrer said, “Collaboration with the Southlake team and seeing a project completed from the planning/design stage to completion of construction.”

Our Park and Recreation Story: The Story Behind the Southlake Parks Facebook Page

Every once in a while, a Facebook page pops up that captures the heart and soul of a community. A large part of our Park and Recreation Story is told through the lens of the Southlake Parks Facebook page.

The Southlake Parks Facebook page exemplifies the success that comes when innovative employees showcase the unique joys of their daily lives with our community. With over 4,000 followers, the Southlake Parks page is the brainchild of a few Parks employees, who wanted to document their experience and share their passion for the job with the Southlake community.

It’s no secret that we take our parks seriously in Southlake. With 36 public parks covering a total of 1,139 acres of public space, keeping our parks in tip-top shape is not for the light-hearted. Not only is it an immensely physical job, requiring copious amounts of endurance and muscle-power, but it is also a surprising job. You never know when you might run into a critter that calls a Southlake public park home.

Scrolling through the Southlake Parks Newsfeed, Southlake residents and fans from all over are treated with up-close shots of unconventional neighbors such as frogs, worms, and snakes. Our dedicated Parks employees love to show off the majestic creatures they meet on the job. The page also serves as a warm-hearted outlet to uplift and showcase fellow Parks employees. By sharing their story every day, Southlake Parks employees provide a behind-the-scenes look at the labor it takes to maintain our parks to world-class standards. The followers and likes the page has amassed demonstrates that the Southlake community appreciates this type of personalized storytelling.

We asked the face behind the Parks Facebook Page, Landscape Technician Jose Guzman, to tell us more about running the page.

My Park and Recreation Story: Jose Guzman

What’s your job, and how long have you been with the City?
I’m a Landscape Technician and a Playground Safety Inspector. I’ve been working with the City for seven years.

Why did you decide to start the Parks Facebook Page?
My work partner and I decided to share some of our daily work life on Facebook. I had just started working for the City, and I was amazed at how beautiful the parks were in Southlake.

What type of content do you try to share?
I like highlighting some of the daily work that we do. I also enjoy sharing the different parks and their amenities. My favorite is sharing our Southlake nature, “Neature.”

What do you hope to accomplish with this page?
I hope people see the great parks that we have, and it gets them out and about to enjoy them. There are so many hidden gems around town that many people don’t know about, and I hope they will take the time to explore them.

What’s it like interacting with the community and the large following you have amassed?
I like getting messages from people that see a certain playground, park, or trail, and are curious about their location. I love giving them suggestions and perhaps sending them to their new favorite park.

We love keeping up with the Parks Department’s adventures, and you can too by following the Southlake Parks Facebook Page. Thank you to our Parks team for helping us tell Our Park and Recreation Story every day!

Q&A with Jeff Paul, Who’s Celebrating 38 Years of Service

Meet Cpl. Jeff Paul. He has served on the police force for the City of Southlake for 38 years. We had to ask, what’s the secret to his success?

 

1.What have you learned about yourself professionally during your time at Southlake?

I’ve learned that I have the ability to be a true professional with the opportunities that Southlake has given me for career development and other training on ethics in the workplace. I’ve learned that I am quite capable of owning my mistakes and I can move on, learning from the mistakes. None of us are perfect, but I know the end game.

 

2. What have you learned about the City during your tenure here?

The City has a lot more history to it than most people realize. The City was incorporated in 1956 but the area’s history, what now is Southlake, started decades before that. The City has grown from a rural, farming and ranching community of 2,800 when I started, to this modern city that has attracted large, major corporations to its portfolio of businesses with a population of over 32,000 – having started out as a “General Law” city and eventually becoming a “Home Rule” city with a city charter. Southlake has high standards for development which has contributed to it being the crown jewel among cities in Tarrant County.

 

3. Why do you like working for Southlake?

The City is run as a well-oiled machine. This makes it a great place to work. With over 500 employees, it still feels like family. Employees work together well with the common goal of taking care of the citizens by providing professional services that are expected in this community. I can say from personal experience, that the Police Department and Human Resources has supported me during very personal times in my life as an employee.

 

4. If you had advice for new employees what would that be?

Know the City’s core values and understand why they exist. Understand that you work for the citizens of Southlake and it is a privilege to work here. You should come to work each day with that in mind in order for you to be successful. Take advantage of training opportunities, as the City provides ample opportunity for career development at the City’s expense.

 

Interested in joining our world class team? Visit www.CityofSouthlakeJobs.com.

Public Works Employee Spotlight: Alex Stroud

Every team has a great leader, and in the Public Works Department, one of those leaders is Alex Stroud.

In February, Stroud received the Director’s Award for Public Works as part of Employee Appreciation Week.

Stroud has served as a drainage crew leader in Public Works for over two years.

He maintains the public flow of stormwater throughout the City’s creeks, ditches and commercial structures, which helps protect residents and businesses from property damage caused by obstructed or damaged infrastructure and flooding.

He also investigates and manages customers concerns and drainage requests, as well as schedules and oversees in-house, routine and emergency maintenance projects.

Although his role is predominantly behind the scenes, Stroud keeps an ear out in the community with his outreach efforts.

He works with the Public Works Drainage Committee to gather data to find and craft solutions to resolve the most complex drainage issues the City faces.

“I frequently work with HOAs, residents, contractors, developers and engineers to find solutions that work for all parties fiscally and ethically in a way that best represents the values of our organization,” Stroud said.

Not only is Stroud dedicated to providing the community with world-class customer service, but he is also committed to his team.

“I’m always working to promote a positive and productive work atmosphere for our teams,” Stroud said. “I work to secure continuity of operation in our department by developing our operators and maintenance techs by making sure they receive adequate training opportunities on machinery and with administrative tasks and responsibilities.”

Stroud also revisits the crew’s job sites during the day to help move projects forward.

“If we’re shorthanded, I jump in to help,” he said. Apart from serving the community and leading the team, Stroud is proud to serve our community.

“There are so many factors and challenges involved in solving and rectifying stormwater drainage issues, and it’s personally very gratifying to meet the challenges along the journey. It’s rewarding for me when we leave residents thankful and happy with our service,” he said.