After about 10 years of service to the Aldine community, as members of the Board of Directors of the District, Maria Espinoza and Ray Shotwell have announced their intentions to retire this year, when their terms expire.
Maria has served as the secretary of the board, and originally was picked to run for the board after serving for 40 years as secretary of the High Meadows North Civic Club. The district was originally known as the Aldine Community Improvement District, a result of an initiative in the Texas Legislature by Kevin Bailey, who helped found the District, getting the original bill to create the sales tax supported district through the legislature in 2001. In addition to retiring from the board, Maria intends to move to the country with her husband. In her parting remarks to the board and guests that had assembled in her honor at a retirement party last Tuesday night at the District’s offices, she said “It has been an honor” to serve the district on the board. Her friends shared her feelings and thanked her deeply for her service and devotion.
Ray Shotwell was also honored for the years he had spent on the board, most recently as Vice-Chairman. Ray told the story of originally being asked to join the board and the district by Clyde Bailey and Leland Jauer in the parking lot of Jed’s Hardware store, talking about the prospects of the new district. At the time, Ray was a manager at Brookside Funeral Home, one of the well established businesses in the district and a leader in community affairs. Ray took that leadership role, and his interest in bettering the community, into his role as board member. He presided over the District at a time when its income went from almost nothing, to an average of $3.5 million per year. This money has allowed the district to achieve many of its original goals of providing water and sewer lines, increased police security, street lighting and sidewalks, and other amenities. He saw the district change names from ACID to East Aldine Management District, and now known as East Aldine District.
Ray is now retired from the funeral business, although he occasionally helps his wife in some similar business ventures. Ray said that his ten years on the board have been quite an adventure, one that was good for the community and that he was glad to be part of.
Executive Director David Hawes and Chairman Clyde Bailey led the remarks of congratulations to the two retirees, joined by others including State Rep. Armando Walle, who recalled and thanked Rep. Kevin Bailey for his work in founding the district and helping it progress over the years. Hawes told the board at its business meeting later, that four positions were open on the board, but that directors Bob Beasley and Gerald Overturff had indicated a willingness to continue another 4 year term. Anyone wanting to serve on the board for the other two terms, was encouraged to contact Director of Services Richard Cantu at 713-595-1220.