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Neighborhood News Center

The City of Garland Welcomes New Leadership & Staff

The City of Garland is excited to welcome Nicole Foster, Neighborhood Vitality Specialist, Rick Vasquez, Managing Director of Development Services and Emily Goodrum, Senior Neighborhood Planner. 

 Nicole Foster, Neighborhood Vitality Specialist

Nicole Foster started with the City of Garland on August 1. She is in the process of completing her PhD in Urban Planning and Public Policy at the University of Texas at Arlington, where she has focused on community development, neighborhood revitalization and civic engagement. For the past four years, Nicole has worked directly with neighborhoods on implementing grassroots placemaking strategies and facilitating creative public engagement techniques. Her research on neighborhood revitalization has been published in the Journal of Planning Education and Research, the Journal of Urban Affairs, the Journal of the American Planning Association and Urban Studies.

Nicole also has a BFA from New York University and a Master of Arts degree from the University of Texas at Arlington. She began her professional career in the New York City theater scene where she worked as a Teaching Artist in New York City public schools and as the Managing Director of an off-Broadway theater company. She then spent seven years in the nonprofit sector providing financial management, strategic planning, communications, and volunteer development. She is excited to join the Office of Neighborhood Vitality and is committed to improving the quality of life for all Garland residents through creative and collaborative planning efforts.

Rick Vasquez, Managing Director of Development Services

Rick Vasquez recently joined the City of Garland as the Managing Director of Development Services which includes Planning, Building Inspection, Housing & Community Services, Convention & Visitors Bureau, and the Garland Housing Agency. 

Rick comes to us from the City of Galveston and is a professional public administrator with more than 30 years of municipal land development experience. He has worked with large and small municipalities throughout Texas facilitating the implementation of community revitalization, economic development, and transportation and housing programs. Rick Vasquez recently led the development of a sustainable and business-friendly development code for the City of Galveston. He guided the development of a commercial corridor and entertainment district form-based code and transportation plan to transform the City of South Padre Island into a walkable, pedestrian-oriented tourist destination.

Rick earned a Master's of Urban and Regional Planning from Texas A&M University and is a Certified Public Manager.   
"We look forward to having Rick on board and bringing his strong skill set to work in Garland," said City Manager Bryan Bradford.

Welcome to the City of Garland family, Rick!

Emily Goodrum, Senior Neighborhood Planner


Emily Goodrum recently joined the City of Garland as the Senior Neighborhood Planner. She is dedicated to helping residents achieve and maintain a high quality of life through the management of programs that preserve and improve the aesthetic and physical experience of neighborhoods as well as promote a sense of community.

Prior to joining the City of Garland, Emily held positions as Project Coordinator with JLL Investment Sales Group, as Graduate Associate with the City of Garland Economic Development Department, and as Planning Assistant and Marketing Coordinator with Pegasus Planning and Development, LLC.
 
Emily received her Master of Science degree in Community and Regional where she helped lead neighborhood revitalization projects and was a part of the University Honors programs. In her free time, Emily enjoys creating art, reading, spending time with family and friends and is an avid Dallas Cowboys fan. 

 

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