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Dallas Park and Recreation joined city officials and community leaders to break ground for a new green space in east Oak Cliff that will bring diverse recreational options to Cadillac Heights communities. Although the project is still in the design phase, it already has a name: Roland G. Parrish Park. Construction on the $6 million recreational area is expected to begin summer 2024.
Amenities at the 25-acre park will include an athletic field, running track, playground, basketball pavilion, lighted loop trail, disc golf, and picnic areas. Parrish - CEO of Parrish Restaurants, Ltd. - is recognized worldwide for his business insight and philanthropy.
Offering remarks at the groundbreaking were Dallas Mayor Pro Tem Carolyn King Arnold, Harrison Blair, Dallas Park and Recreation Board District 4; Helen Giddings, former state representative; and John D. Jenkins, director, Dallas Park and Recreation Department. Others included Dallas businessman Hiawatha Williams, CEO and founder of Williams Chicken, and Dallas City Manager T.C. Broadnax.
Parrish owns operates 27 restaurants in Dallas and surrounding areas. The Dallas Business Journal ranks his company as the second Largest Minority Owned Firm in North Texas. Parrish Restaurants, Ltd consistently makes the Black Enterprise BE 100 as one of the Top 100 Black Owned Businesses in the United States. As the second largest investor in the Reimagining Red Bird Project, he helped bring new medical facilities, a Marriott Hotel, and hundreds of jobs to the southern sector. He has donated to numerous charities and causes, especially in support of youth education and welfare. After donating $2 million to support the library renovation at Purdue University, Roland became the first African American to have a campus facility named in his honor. His philanthropy built a medical clinic in Uganda that provides more than 6,000 orphans with care each year. He serves on Advisory Councils for the Salvation Army, the Dallas Mavericks, and the Texas Rangers. He has received numerous awards including Man Enough to Be a Girl Scout by the Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas. He is a graduate of Purdue University.