The hiring of Justin Weiss, said Fate City Manager Philip Rodriguez, is perfect timing.
In the last six to eight weeks, Rodriguez said, there’s been a “real flurry of activity.” And Fate, he added, is “poised for great things.”
“Fate is becoming quickly on everybody’s radar and that’s what’s creating this momentum that we’re feeling,” the city manager said. “The timing for Justin being here is perfect.”
The 27-year-old Weiss is assistant to city manager, economic and community development. Weiss, who began his new duties on Jan. 7, will be the city’s point of contact for business people and commercial developers who are interested in doing business in Fate.
Weiss is a graduate of Brigham Young University with a major in Spanish and minor in business administration. In June, he will receive a master’s degree in public administration. He is a former statewide sales executive for Veracity Networks in Provo, Utah.
Growth, Rodriguez said, is taking Fate to a new level.
Rodriguez said many retailers use the 10,000 population figure as “sort of a demarcation for what they will consider a city that’s dependent upon its neighboring cities to a city that is self-sustaining.”
Fate’s population is closing in on 9,800 and could reach the 10,000 mark in the summer or fall.
Weiss, the city manager said, will play an important role in “that next phase in Fate’s growth, if you will, that moves us from just being an exclusively residential community to a community that is truly self-sustaining and that has its own vibrant economy.
“So, that’s where Justin comes in. We went out and did a national search for the right personality, the right skill-set for this type of position. I couldn’t be more thrilled to have him here.”
The city, with Weiss’ leadership in the new position, is “moving from just recruiting those residential developments to now actively looking out and taking care of the businesses we have today, but also recruiting for the future, recruiting those new businesses.”
Fate, Rodriguez said, has “the most fertile ground” for commercial development in the entire Dallas-Fort Worth area because of the city’s frontage on Interstate 30.
“We have just acres, hundreds of acres, of prime real estate that could be used for a whole variety of purposes,” Rodriguez continued. “So, Justin’s role will be largely to match developers and what we call end-users — stores, retail shops, service providers, health care — with our landowners and we can actually start putting some meaningful development to that acreage out on the interstate and (Texas) 66.”
Now, Weiss said, Fate is an untapped area for business developments.
“They’re really entering into a fertile market,” he said. “We’re looking for all types of services — retail, grocery stores, gas stations, you name it. We’re ready for that and the community has expressed that as well. We’re ready to bring businesses in.”
If prospects take a look at the City of Fate, Weiss said, they will see growth and they will see city officials and staff who would provide a “very, very friendly, welcoming environment.”
Rodriguez said they want to see business prospects who will partner with the community, as well as make money.
“There is money to be made, but there’s also a community to enhance,” Rodriguez said.
“If a business can prove to us that they want to enhance the community and make money, then we’re going to have a great relationship. That’s going to be the opportunity we’re going to work with the closest. And we know there are lots of businesses out there we can work well with.
“We know they have the same values, that we know they’re going to look at Fate and not simply see the dollar signs, but they also are going to see the opportunity to partner with us in their community. And those are the folks we’re going to work closely with.”