The White Rock Lake Foundation is instrumental in presenting the case for the rescue and improvement of White Rock Lake. It coordinates public relations efforts, serves as a unified advocacy group before the Dallas City Council, acts in close and effective cooperation with the Dallas Park and Recreation Board to assist in long-term planning and design, and spearheads private fund raising efforts.
The White Rock Lake Foundation got its start in 1989, when Dallas business woman Jeannie Terilli founded Friends of White Rock Lake, which consisted of a dozen residents who shared her concern for the lake. Friends' first task was to have the dredging project for the lake placed on the upcoming bond election. Friends was among several similarly concerned groups who pleaded the case before the Dallas City Council, with successful results: the issue was placed on the bond referendum and in May, 1995, Dallas voters overwhelmingly approved a $9 million dollar bond issue to dredge White Rock Lake and restore it to a healthy, life-sustaining depth by the end of the century.
From those grassroots origins, the White Rock Lake Foundation has been instrumental in presenting the case for the rescue and improvement of White Rock Lake. The leadership of the White Rock Lake Foundation adopted an initial list of goals that includes the development of a Comprehensive Landscape Architectural Concept Plan and a schedule for all of the restoration, preservation and development efforts at the lake. These goals have been adopted by the Dallas Park and Recreation Department.
Fund raising continues to be a critical component of the Foundations' responsibilities. Private funds pay for "amenities" at the park such as picnic tables, bicycle racks, park benches, trash receptacles, and additional landscaping.