Agents Help Prepare CitySquare Cottages for New Residents


Ask any real estate agent — preferably one from Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate — what they enjoy most about their job, and they’ll tell you: it’s helping people find a place to call home.  A place to retreat after a long day, to regroup and relax, to dream big dreams for themselves and their family, to offer security and safety, to lay their head at night.

No matter who we are or what we do, we all need the stability that comes with having a home base to keep getting up every day and giving life another shot. Ask any homeless person what happens when that is taken away from you, and they’ll tell you it starts a downward spiral that’s difficult to recover from. At least on your own.

No one understands this hard truth better than CitySquare. This compassionate community neighbor, headquartered in the shadows of the I-30/I-45 interchange along Malcolm X Blvd, has been a lifelong friend to Dallas’ homeless. They started 29 years ago as Central Dallas Ministries, with the mission to fight the causes and effects of poverty through service, advocacy and friendship.  On January 3, twenty-six Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate agents showed up to their highly anticipated new Cottages at Hickory Crossing, ready to join that fight.

Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate agents started off the new year by extending a helping hand to some fellow citizens trying to get back on their feet. Photography by Jason Riley Hoss Photography
Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate agents started off the new year by extending a helping hand to some fellow citizens trying to get back on their feet. Photography by Jason Riley Hoss Photography

The Cottages comprise 50 homes, each 400 square feet, with enough room for a bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, living area and a front porch. A public registry at Target provided furnishings and basics to stock each cottage, and the agents assisted in setting up and staging 12 of the new homes.

The Cottages at Hickory Crossing are made up of fifty 400 square foot "mini homes" like those pictured here.
The Cottages at Hickory Crossing are made up of fifty 400 square foot “mini homes” like those pictured here.
A resident of The Cottages at Hickory Crossing returns to her new permanent home.
A resident of The Cottages at Hickory Crossing returns to her new permanent home.
The Cottages at Hickory Crossing are just southeast of Downtown.
The Cottages at Hickory Crossing are just southeast of Downtown.
In the spring, residents of The Cottages at Hickory Crossing will be able to plant and grow their own food and herbs in these troughs.
In the spring, residents of The Cottages at Hickory Crossing will be able to plant and grow their own food and herbs in these troughs.

In addition to lending a hand, agents got a first-hand look at CitySquare’s pioneering approach to easing chronic homelessness, one based on a concept called “Housing First.” The model prioritizes providing the homeless with permanent housing as quickly as possible – and then providing voluntary supportive services as needed, such as mental health and medical services, job training and more. Studies show that when potential loss of housing is taken out of the equation, recovery and rehabilitation is more likely to be successful.

Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate agents joined CitySquare in their fight to alleviate poverty and homelessness by setting up and staging 12 of the new Cottages at Hickory Crossing.
Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate agents joined CitySquare in their fight to alleviate poverty and homelessness by setting up and staging 12 of the new Cottages at Hickory Crossing.
Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate agents joined CitySquare in their fight to alleviate poverty and homelessness by setting up and staging 12 of the new Cottages at Hickory Crossing.
Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate agents joined CitySquare in their fight to alleviate poverty and homelessness by setting up and staging 12 of the new Cottages at Hickory Crossing.

Scott Kaserman had this to say about his experience at CitySquare: “I learned something new. That it costs the city $40,000 annually for each of their most susceptible homeless persons, while it only costs them $15,000 to build one of these beautiful homes! The cottages have really taken a serious problem and come up with a serious solution. I think this community would help anyone to be better and to do more good in life.”

“What a wonderful project our city has invested in to help people down on their luck,” said Frada Sandler. “The houses are darling and will give them such a sense of pride, in addition to being part of a community that understands and helps their situation. Very rewarding!”

Ged Dipprey summed up the afternoon nicely when he said: “It was an amazing opportunity to finally see that as a city we aren’t apathetic to helping the “least of these.”  CitySquare’s development restores the dignity, hopes and dreams of those fortunate to call one of these cottages “home.”  It was a sweet reminder of the value associated with having a home to call our own and the special privilege it is to help others achieve their own dream of home ownership!”

To see more images from this event, please visit our Facebook page.

The finished product!
The finished product!
Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate agents joined CitySquare in their fight to alleviate poverty and homelessness by setting up and staging 12 of the new Cottages at Hickory Crossing.
Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate agents joined CitySquare in their fight to alleviate poverty and homelessness by setting up and staging 12 of the new Cottages at Hickory Crossing.

PHOTOGRAPHY CREDITS: JASON RILEY HOSS PHOTOGRAPHY, FORT WORTH, TX  817-676-5778

Attention, Dallas Cowboys Fans: Home Built for Coach Tom Landry is For Sale


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The four-bedroom home at 4510 Hallmark Drive has a special place in Dallas history. Custom built in 1962 for longtime Cowboys head coach Tom Landry and his wife, Alicia, the property has changed hands only once. You could be the third owner, because Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate’s Kathy Myers and Lacy Schultz are offering this rare opportunity at $795,000.

Such stability in ownership is appropriate given the home’s connection to Landry, who was the Cowboys’ only head coach for their first 29 seasons. In the subsequent 26 seasons, the team has been led by no fewer than seven coaches.

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Built to the Landrys’ specifications, the 4,000-square-foot home was where they raised their children as Tom turned the Cowboys into America’s Team. The Landrys’ ownership of 4510 Hallmark overlapped with the franchise’s first three Super Bowl appearances, including the team’s victory over the Miami Dolphins in Super Bowl VI.

The beautifully designed transitional home has an open floor plan that creates space for entertaining and everyday living. The expansive family room and formal living room both feature tile floors and vaulted ceilings. An abundance of large windows overlook the lush backyard and the rear patio with a skylight.

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Remodeled by The Ed Jarrett Company, the kitchen has stainless-steel appliances, granite counters on the island and the perimeter, hardwood floors, and custom cabinetry.

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The master suite features a sitting area where you can enjoy ample natural light. The master bath has a barrel vault ceiling, a separate shower and tub, double vanities, and three closets.

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The property is conveniently located just blocks from the Hockaday School and the Town North YMCA. Its new owners will enjoy easy access to both LBJ Freeway and the Dallas North Tollway.

To schedule a showing of this historic home, contact Lacy Schultz at 214-455-0476 or lacy.schultz@sbcglobal.net.

Photos by Shoot2Sell

Several of Our Firm’s ‘Agents For Life’ Have Been Mentored by Their Mothers


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Clockwise from top left: Becky Gruber and Diane Gruber, McKamy Tiner and Martha Tiner, Margaret Ponder and Evelyn Ponder, Jennifer Haddock and Patricia Massey, Kristin Smith and Leslie Rouda Smith, Lacy Schultz and Kathy Myers, Taylor Gromatzky and Kimberlee Gromatzky

At Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate, we pride ourselves on being “agents for life,” meaning our clients will rely on the same professionals to represent them in multiple transactions through the decades.

But for a few members of the Dave Perry-Miller family, that phrase has another meaning. They have been “agents for life” because they literally grew up in the real estate business. Their mothers were Realtors before them, and they work alongside their mothers today.

With this being Mother’s Day weekend, we asked some of these legacy agents to share lessons they learned from their moms/mentors.

Taylor Gromatzky, daughter of Kimberlee Gromatzky: “She always told me when going through a tough time ‘this too shall pass,’ and it’s a phrase I always repeat if I need that little reminder during a hard time.”

Becky Gruber, daughter of Diane Gruber: “My mom has taught me many valuable lessons and given me so much great advice over the years, but the greatest thing she’s done is lead by example. She didn’t tell me and my brothers how to be good people; she showed us in her everyday actions and interactions with the people around her. She has shown us how good it feels to help others, how to pick our battles, how to be respectful and appreciative — the list is endless. The thing I am most appreciative of is her supportive, nonjudgmental attitude toward us. She allowed us the freedom to be ourselves, to make mistakes, to embrace our quirks. Thank you, Mom, for always being my biggest cheerleader, no matter what crazy paths I decide to take in life. I am a better person because of you.”

Jennifer Haddock, daughter of Patricia Massey: “My mom has taught me so much that is used in my everyday life. To name a few: respect, honesty, forgiving others, forgiving myself for my own mistakes, living life to its fullest, making each day count as it were the last. After working by her side for 16 years in real estate, she is not only my mom, she is my mentor. She has taught me about working and taught me that success is not because of money; success is helping clients’ dreams come true.”

Alex Simpson Johnson, daughter of Nancy Johnson: “Her hard work and drive to be the best has been inspiring. Her amount of knowledge is just incredible, and she has allowed me to see and learn more in five years than most agents see and learn in a lifetime. She puts every client’s needs before herself and is so passionate about helping them find the homes of their dreams.”

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Nancy Johnson and Alex Simpson Johnson

James Martin, son of Eloise Eriksson Martin: “What can I say about her energy and the example she has set? She taught me the importance of giving 100 percent to every client, and that selling a home is more than just paperwork and details; it’s about realizing your goals and dreams.  I continue to see how giving, always give more in return from your lessons. Mom, thank you for all you have done for Ellen and I, and happy Mother’s Day to all the moms this weekend.”

Margaret Ponder, daughter of Evelyn Ponder: “One of the most important lessons my mom taught me was to count your blessings and to always be thankful for what God has given you. I have found through the years that this seemingly simple lesson can produce big results in a person’s life. When practicing the art of thankfulness, you are able to see every potential struggle in a more positive light, no matter how bleak the circumstances may seem at the time. Thankfulness breeds compassion, and compassion leads to giving and caring for others. When you embody these traits, as she has done, a person is able to give and keep on giving without expecting anything in return. Mom has lead me to believe that being thankful is one of the key ingredients to successfully achieving true peace and happiness in life.”

Lacy Schultz, daughter of Kathy Myers: “I have learned so much from my mom — haven’t we all? However, the work ethic she instilled in me is a most valuable skill that carries over into everything I do. Since we work together now, I get to see her persistence, diligence, and determination on a daily basis! I’m sure when I was growing up I bemoaned the tasks and expectations of such a work ethic. Now, it is something I am proud of in myself and thankful to her for building in me.”

Kristin Smith, daughter of Leslie Rouda Smith: “I couldn’t dream of a better mother. I never had an issue respecting my mother, because she was not a ‘do as I say’ person; she was a ‘do as I do’ person. She set an incredible example. I tell her all the time that if/when I am ever a parent, I have huge shoes to fill. My passion for the homeless started with my mother taking me to Paint The Town in the ’90s. I’ll never forget how grateful this woman was after we had repainted her entire home. I was raised in a home where we were taught to count our blessings, not our problems, and to always give back. If I do anything in life, I owe it all to her. My mom is the most positive, driven, independent woman I’ve ever known: ‘If you believe it, you can achieve it!’ It’s been incredibly inspiring to watch my mom chase her dreams. What she doesn’t realize is how much it inspires me to chase mine. She’s my rock, my best friend, and the person I look up to most! I wouldn’t be half of the person that I am if I wasn’t blessed with having her as my mother. Happy Mother’s Day to all of the incredible moms out there! You have the toughest job on the planet.”

McKamy Tiner, daughter of Martha Tiner: “Over the past 31 years, my mom gave me invaluable advice and taught me to be a confident woman. She always wanted to work, so watching her be a successful businesswoman as I was growing up really shaped my views on what I could achieve. On top of working, she always made my events — from soccer games to volleyball tournaments — around the country; she somehow balanced working and being my mom with grace. Another important lesson she taught me was how to care for and treat other people. She is a dependable friend, wife, and mom, and I hope that rubbed off on me. When I was growing up, she always reminded me that she was my mom and not my best friend; 31 years later, that has changed. Today, she is my best friend, and I value our time together more than anything. I could not be more thankful to work with my mom every day.”

Highland Park High School Students Earn Valuable Experience as Interns


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Lacy Schultz shows intern Kristen Graham how to apply a “pending” magnet to a yard sign.

When Kristen Graham signed up for an internship with Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate, she knew she’d be placing yard signs and delivering contracts. But she never imagined her duties would also include baking brownies and animating turkeys.

Kristen, a senior at Highland Park High School, is interning with Kathy Myers and Lacy Schultz, a mother-daughter team with a history of success as top producers at our Park Cities office. That success is related to how often they make contact with their clients — or, as Kristen has learned, how often they “touch” them.

So when Schultz invited several clients over to her house to watch the Texas-OU game, Kristen helped her prepare by making the treats. And when Myers wanted to send out an email featuring an animated Thanksgiving greeting, Kristen logged into jacquielawson.com and input the list of recipients for the “turkey cards.”

“I liked them, but it was just so funny, because I didn’t even know they existed,” Kristen said of the e-cards.

As Schultz explained, “This is not ‘real estate’ per se, but it all revolves around being in front of, and working on relationships with, the people you do business with.”

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Kristen is one of two Highland Park seniors interning with Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate this semester. Tanner Little is working with listing coordinators Joe Segura and Jo Schellenberg — affectionately kept straight as “Joe Daddy” and “Jo Mama” by the agents in our Park Cities office. He helps get new listings into the MLS system and performs other administrative tasks common to most internships.

This is the seventh year Highland Park seniors have had the option of receiving course credit for such work. Edna Phythian, who coordinates the internship program, said 120 of the school’s 500 seniors are participating, gaining experience in industries such as law, education, construction, and engineering.

“There is no field that’s off limits,” Phythian said.

Interns have to fill out online time sheets that must be confirmed by their employers. They also regularly meet with Phythian or teacher Jon Hinton in small groups to discuss what they’re learning. Meanwhile, each of them is required to create a portfolio documenting their work, as well as a profile on LinkedIn.

“Many of our kids don’t have much work experience,” Phythian said, “so it gives them an opportunity to begin to build their professional persona.”

Schultz got involved with the internship program after overhearing a conversation about it at the YMCA. A Highland Park High School graduate herself, she was thrilled to hear that her alma mater was providing such opportunities to students.

“I went to talk to the administrator and said, ‘This is so exciting,’” Schultz said. “I went to Highland Park years ago, and we did not have anything like this.”

Before long, she and Myers were on the program’s list of potential employers. And just as Schultz’s career choice was influenced by her mother’s line of work, Kristen and Tanner were each steered toward their internships by a parent.

“My dad is big on business,” Kristen said. “So he’s always wanted me to look at commercial real estate. But I thought it would be fun to do residential.”

Tanner, meanwhile, got some good advice from his stepmother.

“She told me, ‘Everyone is going to have to eventually buy a house, so you need to know a little about real estate,’” he said.