Challenges will continue to face our neighborhood in the near and long term as development continues to change the character of properties within our boundaries and in our surrounding area. At our May general membership meeting you heard our member’s displeasure with the proposed installation of generic VIA bus stops within our association’s boundaries. The proposed bus stops have no historical identity with our neighborhood and degrade the integrity of our preservation efforts. The City has also planned for installation of pedestrian lights that many of our members questioned. Changes such as these are recommended for approval through the Office of Historical Preservation (OHP), then reviewed and approved by the Historical Design & Review Committee (HDRC) and then perhaps the Board of Adjustments (BoA). Unfortunately these plans were approved even after the KWA Architectural Advisory Committee raised valid issues why these installations should not be allowed. The KWA position, as echoed in our membership input meetings, is to keep our neighborhood historic by following simple historic preservation concepts. Allowing non-historically based modifications and installations means that the character of this valued asset in the City of San Antonio is rapidly being depreciated.

Another King William Fair has put many smiles on youngsters’ faces and brought much enjoyment to many of our friends and neighbors. As you know, our Fair is our principle fundraiser. And while most of us experience the Fair for only one day, there are countless volunteers and volunteer hours required to bring it together. I take this opportunity to thank Fair Chair Jeremy Nelson and the rest of the staff and many volunteers who made this event a reality. And, when we talk about the Fair, we need to recognize that without the support of our many sponsors this fun-filled event would not be possible.

Wow! What a ride this has been. From wanting to take my turn at helping the Association continue being an exemplary charitable organization to representing the Association’s views in some of the most polarizing issues in recent memory was an unpredictable surprise. Current issues seem to be winding down after a whirlwind of activity. As I write this message the Univision building is being razed, and we hope that the Main Avenue closure has an outcome acceptable to all stakeholders. But don’t start relaxing – it’s not over. Remember the Member Input meeting in which we said we are a residential community.

The holidays are behind us, but we wish the spirit of peace will be with you throughout the year. Last year ended in a whirlwind of activity and it looks like the trend will continue. There are several KWA committees doing some very important work for the organization. And yes, committee members are all volunteers. These folks donate their time and talents to do the work of the Association. Many find it a gratifying experience to be able to work with other neighbors to shape the community in which we live.

It is fundamentally important that we remember. The freedoms that make our country what it is have not come easily. Countless women and men have served our country throughout its history to uphold the values that make the United States what it is today. From the sands of Iwo Jima to the beaches of Normandy, to the jungles in the Philippines and Vietnam, and most recently in the desserts of the Middle East, members of our armed forces have gone above and beyond the call of duty.