Since my wife and I purchased Plano Profile in August 2015, we have been passionate about sharing content that is both universally powerful and uniquely local. Moreover, we have looked long and hard at what being part of this community means, and it’s so much more than a single—albeit incredible—city. Thus, on March 1, 2019, Plano Profile became Local Profile.
We’ve always believed in connecting communities and felt that regardless of where you live, if the brisket or burger you’re craving is in another city, you’ll enjoy it just the same. We continue to distribute across Collin County and our editorial remains universally relevant, uniquely powerful and long-lasting.
While shedding our Plano name came with a lot of careful thought and consideration, and a big scoop of nostalgia, the act of doing it has made us more inclusive. What was once a passing affinity, a neighborly wave, has become a connection with every other city in Collin County, and a few in Dallas and Denton counties, too.
We ask powerful questions, we start production conversions and we inspire positive change. As Local Profile of Collin County, this is our mission and we’re passionate about doing it for everyone, no matter if you live in Plano, Frisco or Celina.
This passion for connecting communities and inspiring positive change began long before we were in the picture. It began with Jean Newman, founder of Plano Profile.
The following is an excerpt from Plano Profile’s 20th anniversary edition, published on October 1, 2002, and written by then-Assistant Editor Cindy Boykin.
It was the early 1980s. After nearly ten years building a career in graphic arts, advertising, publishing and sales, Jean Newman’s managerial position with a quarterly publication, all but vanished. Gone was the guaranteed basic salary, gone was the company car, gone was the opportunity to contribute artistically to the printed product. Her only opportunity was to sell advertising, full time and on straight commission.
For a single mom with a son in high school and college tuition in the near future, this offer was not appealing. Jean had to weigh her options and make a decision. It didn’t take her long to decide that she would publish her own magazine. Many of her friends advised against the idea and advised her to get a real job. But as she says, “The worst that could happen if it didn’t work out, was that I’d have to get a real job.”
Along with her friends’ advice, (... “they truly had been looking out for my interest.”) came her friends’ help. One of the first to step up to the plate was Mike Newman. A former colleague and dear friend, Mike helped Jean set up a production room in her garage.
“Mike was wonderful to help me convert a table into a light table to do paste up, because I did all the paste up on the publication. I also had to spec the type, sell most of the advertising space and handle all of the billing, invoicing and most of the collections. My son saw very little of me in the sane moments.”
Plano Profile made its debut in October 1982. The publication was printed on high grade newsprint paper and the layout was adapted from the original format of the Rolling Stone. Folded down to magazine form, the sixteen-page tabloid contained five articles, eight feature photos and fifteen ads.
From the onset, Jean knew she wanted the publication to have a positive voice representing our vibrant community.
Jean reflects, “When I started my business, I looked at what had to be done. I got busy and did it. Everything wasn’t done perfectly, and I wasn’t the perfect mother, but I did the best I could under the circumstances. And I didn’t sit around wondering or worrying because there wasn’t any time!”
40 years, in a blink of an eye
Collin County has changed a lot in the last 40 years. In 1982, the year Jean Newman published the premier edition of Plano Profile, Frito-Lay announced plans to relocate here and voters in Dallas and suburban cities approved the formation of Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART), funding it with a 1 percent sales tax increase. Now, DART serves Dallas and 17 surrounding cities and 220,000 passengers every day with a 700-square-mile service area.
The year 1982 was also when Collin Creek Mall in Plano celebrated its first anniversary. Today, the original Collin Creek Mall is gone and in its place a $1 billion project to transform the space into a pedestrian-friendly mixed-use development is underway.
In 1983, EDS broke ground in Legacy Business Park. “Plano has everything in place. It’s a great city with a solid pro-business government, a great mayor, and all the elements that make a city work well. This is also a city people love to live in,” said Ross Perot, Sr. At this point, the population was seeing a similar boom to today with 125 new residents moving to the area every week.
Collin County Community College, now Collin College, opened its doors in McKinney in 1985. Today, Collin College has more than 59,000 students per year and 11 campuses, spanning Celina, Rockwall, Farmersville, Wylie, Plano, Frisco and McKinney.
In 1992, JCPenney relocated to Legacy Business Park; Dr. Pepper Snapple Group opened nearby in 1998. The Shops at Legacy made its debut in the same area in 2001; and, Legacy West opened 15 years later in 2016. Today, Legacy Business Park, created by visionary Ross Perot, a master-planned business, retail and residential community in northwest Plano, is home to corporate and regional headquarters for household names including: Toyota Motor North America, HILTI, JP Morgan Chase, Capital One Finance, FedEx, Boeing Global Services and many more.
Meanwhile, in the late 1980s, Craig Hall, chairman and founder of Hall Financial Group, looked to Frisco and bought the land where he has since built Hall Park. “We bought land out here because we thought it would have growth and be a good investment, and we kept this particular property because I wanted to do something special,” he said in an interview with Local Profile. Hall Park opened in 1998.
By 2007, Frisco was seeing “explosive growth” and Frisco ISD opened five new schools that year to meet growing demand. In 2016, Jerry Jones opened the Dallas Cowboys World Headquarters at The Star in Frisco.
For those of us new to the area, it feels like Collin County is in a season of rapid growth and expansion, right now. Yet, looking at our 40 year history, it seems like that started long ago and is yet to slow down.
Today, as the new owners of Local Profile, my wife, Rebecca, and I find ourselves in much the same shoes as Jean Newman did when she founded the publication: driven by a passion for uniting the community and inspiring positive change.
Now that we’re Local Profile, our new name simply formalizes the mindset we’ve had for a long time —that if someone lives in Plano, they’ll still care about the interesting things happening in Frisco. Life doesn't stop where city borders do, and to live in Collin County is to enjoy the benefits of every municipality in the metroplex.
To be local is to be part of the greater life of a community. It’s the privilege and the responsibility we all share to turn a piece of land into a place, and a place into a home. To be part of the local community is to be involved, to know where the needs are and be willing to take action. To be local is to belong.
Connecting Collin County, we are Local, and we look forward to sharing the next 40 years with you.
This article originally appeared in our January/February 2022 edition of Local Profile.