This year isn’t one most people will want to remember. But it will be a hard one to forget.

2020 began with a steady economy, fueled by new housing, people living longer, presidential campaign rallies more like ‘80s hair metal concerts. Now toward the end, the president refuses to accept the election results, the economy is in the midst of the biggest recession since the great depression, and an uncontrollable super virus is ravaging the globe.

But it’s not all doom and gloom. As John Krasinkski would say on Good News, there has been some positive in all this negative. Despite record-breaking unemployment levels, nonprofits saw an increase in donations. The COVID-19 vaccine, for example, has also arrived, and is making its way to frontline workers and senior living facilities.

We here at Local Profile have done our best to keep our readers informed. Our writers have captured stories of triumph and heartache, of inspiration and initiative, of Christmas lights and more Christmas lights. We’ve done our best to focus on the positive in a year of far too many negatives. We’ve highlighted a few of those stories below in no particular ranking order:

Goodwill 

  1. The American Wheelchair Mission Gives the Gift of Mobility, One Chair at a Time
  2. North Texas Giving Day Breaks Records for Nonprofits in Collin County
  3. Plano Student Launches Fashion Company to Raise Awareness about Teenage Suicide
  4. Suicide Prevention & Resilience at Children’s Health Offers Hope to North Texas Students
  5. The Village Giving Circle Is a Philanthropic Force in North Texas
Memorial for Sarmistha Sen near Chisholm Trail Park | Photos by Alexandra Cronin

True Crime 

  1. The Link Between the Disappearances of Two North Texas African American Women
  2. Murder by the Lake
  3. Plano Jogger Killed on Chisholm Trail in a Random Attack
  4. Allen’s Nine Band Brewing Co. Owner Indicted on Fraud & Then Charged with Murder
  5. The Most Infamous Ax Murder in Collin County History

Politics

  1. Meet the Man Who Makes Your Vote Count: Collin County’s Elections Administrator
  2. McKinney Throckmorton Statue Advisory Board Hears Public Comments
  3. Recalled McKinney Councilman La’Shadion Shemwell Says the Fight Isn’t Over
  4. Plano Mayor LaRosiliere Considers How to Lead in a Time of Crisis
  5. In Denton County, the Battle for the Sheriff’s Seat Heats Up
Denton Confederate Monument | All photography by David Downs

Activism

  1. How Local Teachers Are Inspiring a Generation of Engaged Voters
  2. Frisco Residents Rally at City Hall to Open Texas
  3. Scenes from Prosper’s Small-Town Black Lives Matter March
  4. Collin County Mourns the Loss of AIDS Activist Wesley Crews
  5. Remembering Confederate Monuments During Confederate History & Heritage Month in Texas
David Downs

COVID-19

  1. Food Pantries Trying to Meet the Need of the Hungry During the Global COVID-19 Pandemic
  2. The War in Scrubs
  3. Anti-Mask Protesters Descend on McKinney City Council Meeting, Defying Gov. Abbott’s Order
  4. COVID-19 Cases Reach All Time High, What Happened to the Flu?
  5. North Texas Company Offers COVID-19 Drive-Thru Testing in Collin County
Shutterstock

Law

  1. Is Police Reform Coming to Collin County?
  2. Where’s Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton’s Case? A Timeline for His 5-year-old Collin County Indictment
  3. Interdiction: Working Traffic on the Human Trafficking Highway
  4. North Texas Law Enforcement Learn to Police a Pandemic
  5. “It’s Crazy, I’m Not Gonna Lie.” Collin County Probation Officers Adjust to COVID-19 Quarantine

Art & Culture

  1. What Will the North Texas Live Music Scene Look Like Next Year? Some of Our Favorite Artists Weigh In
  2. Plano Woman Loses Fake Brad Pitt Lawsuit to the Real Brad Pitt
  3. Collin County Exotic Animal Sanctuary Weighs in on “Tiger King”
  4. Downtown Plano Has a Hidden Sculpture Garden
  5. Blue Ridge Rodeo Ignores Gov. Abbott’s Executive Orders and Honors Tradition over the Weekend
Myrtle Hightower | By David Downs

Local Heroes

  1. Why Cheryl “Action” Jackson Hosted Her Hungry for Change Rally
  2. Collin County Constable-Elect Mike “Mookie” Vance Remembered for Dedication to Service
  3. Plano Storehouse Volunteer Is a Local Hero for North Texas Giving Day
  4. Why This Plano 13-Year-Old Founded His Own Nonprofit, N2Y2C
  5. A Local Texas Hero Honored with Key to the City of Plano

Most Read

  1. The Rise and Fall of McKinney City Council Member La’Shadion Shemwell
  2. Family of Plano Senior High Graduate Shot & Killed Saturday Speaks Out
  3. “We’re Going Down Fighting”: McKinney Pub Owner Calls for a Car Rally for Local Businesses Denied PPP Loans
  4. Dallas Cowboy Legend Emmitt Smith & Miss Virginia USA Icon Pat Smith Closes Their Children Charities
  5. Texans Ain’t Ready for Extraterrestrial Reveal, Scientist Says. He Has Obviously Never Been Here

Christian McPhate

Christian McPhate is the managing editor of Local Profile. He has been working as a journalist for more than a decade. His work has appeared in a number of publications, including the Dallas Morning News,...