TJ Gilmore has long been a community volunteer, and he took the next step in serving the residents of Lewisville in May when he was elected mayor. He believes the city has a lot to offer, and he looks forward to leading Lewisville as it continues to grow and evolve. Below Gilmore talks about his history with volunteering, his vision for the city and a list of hobbies that continues to keep him busy.
Where did you grow up and go to school?
I grew up in Arizona – my folks moved a bit so it’s a list. I spent my high school years in Yuma, Arizona and graduated college at the University of Arizona in Tucson.
What do you do for a living?
My company, Isogent, is an IT company. We help businesses of all sizes with their IT security, help desk, custom software, network and cloud services. Just like public service, I love solving problems for people.
How long have you lived in Lewisville?
We moved to Lewisville in early 2001 and have lived in the same house since then. Much different from my youth.
How did you initially become involved with serving in Lewisville?
One of my favorite quotes is from Cicero: “Non nobis solum nati sumus.” (Not for ourselves alone are we born). It is important to me to give back, not just complain about things I can be involved with.
I started attending council meetings to better understand my city. Eventually I asked another resident who often came to meetings, “How do I get more involved?” The man I asked was former Mayor Wayne Ferguson, who introduced me to then-Mayor Gene Carey, who gave me the process and I was soon thereafter appointed by the City Council to serve on the Community Development Block Grant Committee.
How has your role as mayor been different than being a councilman?
A little. People don’t reach out to their council member as often as they reach out to the mayor. There are more demands on my calendar, and I have to break out my fireproof pants a bit more when reading social media. I get to make a lot more connections between people, businesses, not-for-profit agencies, faith communities and government, which I think is key to the position. I help solve problems and get the right folks together.
What’s your vision for Lewisville in the next five years?
North Texas is extremely competitive, and that means cities are competing too. We have a great location, and a diverse mix of housing options, for new graduates to retirees and everyone in-between. My goal is we continue to provide a city that gives citizens a great return on their tax dollar, is safe and fun.
The annexation of Castle Hills, our Ten-Minute Walk to a park program and more opportunities for residents to lead healthy lifestyles will be key to a growing Lewisville. My vision aligns closely with our 2025 plan, which is a touchstone for me since I started working on it with the community in 2009-2010.
Where is your favorite place in Lewisville to spend time?
I love the Prairie Creek greenbelt. It’s got a huge diversity of activities in LL Woods park, links into our hike and bike trail on Garden Ridge, and has great, quiet spaces to people watch and keep an eye open for all sorts of native creatures who live there.
What are some of your hobbies/talents?
My wife says my hobby is “collecting hobbies.” I build all sorts of things and I learned leather crafting from my father. Currently I’ve got a model I’m building, a couple of painting projects, learning how to program an Arduino, and still dealing with the ‘honey do’ list around the house.
What’s something most people would be surprised to know about you?
I get up at 4:40 in the morning to work out with my friends at Camp Gladiator. I’m hoping to bring some hikes and bikes with the mayor this fall.
Favorite TV show?
If it says “Star Trek” somewhere in the title; make it so.
I love cover bands, Ska, and still believe the 90s was the greatest musical era ever. But if I had to pick one: Danny Elfman.