Dallas County Judge Clay Lewis Jenkins, Dallas City Councilmembers Jaynie Schultz, Cara Mendelsohn and Gay Donnell Willis, Texas Workforce Commission’s Commissioner Aaron Demerson and Executive Director Ed Serna, U.S. Department of Labor, Regional Administrator Nick Lalpuis, Workforce Solutions Greater Dallas (WFSDallas), Board Chair, Carter Holston, WFSDallas board directors, and members of the international community just concluded a press event and ribbon cutting ceremony to open Workforce Solutions Greater Dallas’ newest workforce center in North Dallas in the Dallas International District.
According to Carter Holston, Chair, WFSDallas, “The Dallas International District Workforce Center is first-of-its-kind and is another significant moment in the formation of the Dallas International District (formerly Valley-View Galleria area). Although cities like Seattle now have International Districts, Dallas is the first to have a dedicated American Job Center led by Workforce Solutions Greater Dallas.”
The Dallas International District was created to reimagine a former mall and underdeveloped area as a place for residents and visitors from all over the world to live, work, and play. New developments will include residences, hotels, and planned 20-acre park, a PreK-12 International STEAM Academy, offices, and vibrant retail connected by pedestrian, bike, and public transportation.
Clay Lewis Jenkins, County Judge, Dallas County, did the honor of officially cutting the ribbon: “Our thanks to the City of Dallas for the vision to establish the International District, and the many businesses and citizens who brought this about. We are experiencing a healthy economy in Dallas County. We are a workforce destination – for domestic and foreign-born residents. This American Job Center is strategically located in the International District and is accessible to all north Dallas County.”
As Councilmember Jaynie Schultz, who represents District 11 where the new American Job Center is located noted, “Dallas is powered by our residents and we are leading the nation in the growth of foreign-born residents who are coming to Dallas to build businesses, start families, and help Dallas grow into a global city. I’m thrilled to be adding an American Job Center to help our larger North Dallas community and focus resources on our growing international community in the Dallas International District.”
Liz Brailford, the CEO of the World Affairs Council of Dallas/Fort Worth, share why this focus was important to the international community: “We believe this is just the beginning of the important role the Dallas International District will play not only in the economy of our city, but in real life improvements for its citizens and their careers in the global marketplace.”
Top state and federal officials joined the ribbon-cutting event, including Texas Workforce Commission’s Commissioner Aaron Demerson and Executive Director Ed Serna and U.S. Department of Labor Regional Administrator Nick Lalpuis.
Aaron Demerson, TWC Commissioner for Employers applauded Dallas for its forward-thinking vision: “The fact that you are celebrating and embracing the international businesses within Dallas, and the residents who come from many nations, is visionary.”
Nicholas Lalpuis, Regional Administration, U.S. Department of Labor, Region 4 was also in attendance and discussed how the Center works: “The American Job Center (AJC) system is a collaboration of state, regional, and local organizations helping prepare and train workers and offering services that help business and industry find talent. There are approximately 2300 of these nationwide. As many of you know, the Texas Model for these centers is something only a few states have embraced. Texas realized the vision, and Centers like this one show that there is still more to add.”
Both neighboring Councilmembers, Gay Donnell Willis and Cara Mendelsohn are also excited about this boom to the entire North Dallas County area.
Councilmember Willis complemented the Workforce Solutions team stating: “This workforce center is a lifeline for those in need of extra support. It will help us work cooperatively with our schools and local nonprofits to ensure that Dallas businesses have the talent they need. It will also help upskill residents who need access to a job coach, GED support, and additional job training.”
Councilmember Cara Mendelsohn shared that: “This American Job Center is part of Mayor Eric Johnson’s vision to ensure that Dallas is a “city of dreams” with the goal of providing genuine opportunity for all.”
Major Johnson could not attend the function, but sent fond wishes: “Workforce development has for years been one of my top priorities because of its potential to unlock opportunities for Dallas residents to enhance the quality of their lives,” Mayor Eric L. Johnson said.
“The new Workforce Development Center will complement efforts underway led by our city’s first ever Workforce Czar, and its strategic location in the heart of the Dallas International District will support Dallas’ growing population of foreign-born residents. Through our city’s renewed commitment to workforce development, we will create opportunities for Dallas residents to dream bigger; we will attract and grow businesses; we will sustain our city’s remarkable economic growth; and we will win the future.”