Sobrante Park Resident Ken Houston Gives Back

Mendoza Family with Ken Houston. From left to right: Victoria Reiz, Stephenopolus, Ken Houston, Christopher Rodriquez, Maria Rodriquez, Isabella Rodriquez and Margarita Rodriquez. Photo by Gene Hazzard.

Local Sobrante Park resident and neighborhood advocate Ken Houston organized a charitable turkey giveaway this week in the Woodland and Sobrante Park neighborhoods of East Oakland.
Houston, a second generation Sobrante Park resident, felt compelled to give back during this holiday season, “I see despair and poverty every time I walk out my door,” he said.“Being in the position to help neighborhood families like this is something I couldn’t ignore.”
Connected to the Turner Construction Group, he recently completed renovating a portion of Sobrante Park Elementary School and felt the best way to use those profits would be to immediately reinvest them in the community.
“Sobrante Park has been stricken with murders for years, and just last week a close friend who I grew up and went to school with fell victim to this violence,” he said.  “I love my community and my neighbors and wanted to give them a little something extra to be thankful for, and hopefully brighten their holiday.”
A long time neighborhood advocate, Houston has leveraged his personal relationships to pull together a vibrant coalition of holiday sponsors, including District 7 City Councilmember Larry Reid, and Broadway Mechanical Contractors. Inc., which will provide transportation for the project., helping distribute  500 free turkeys at churches and schools in neighborhoods during the week leading up to Thanksgiving.