Join Zion Escobar, aka “the practical actionist,” as she shares more insight into her work as the Executive Director of Houston Freedman’s Town Conservancy. She is an award-winning civil engineer, thought leader, and cultural advocate, who is actively protecting and preserving historic Freedman’s Town for the benefit of future generations.
About Zion Escobar
Zion Escobar, P.E., is the first Executive Director of the Houston Freedmen’s Town Conservancy (HFTC), which serves to preserve and protect the history of Freedmen’s Town for the benefit of future generations. Together, they are “Telling The Story of Freedom” in Freedmen’s Town. Through advocacy and preservation activities, she aims to promote culture and heritage tourism, preserve the historic tapestry of Freedmen’s Town, and expand the historical knowledge and dialogue among local residents and international audiences alike with the goal of global recognition of historic Freedmen’s Town as the heritage district that transforms our understanding of Emancipation to be the story of Freedom.
For 14 years prior to her journey with the HFTC, Escobar dedicated herself to transforming ideas into action as a civil engineer and green infrastructure advocate, providing highly specialized technical and project support to a diverse range of public agencies, private clients, international NGOs, and design firms from Texas to Silicon Valley, and Shanghai. Her contributions to her profession and community have been recognized with her being named Engineering New Record Magazines’ “Top 20 Under 40 in Texas and Louisiana” as well as the American Society of Civil Engineers “Young Engineer of the Year”. This year she is incredibly proud to have been recognized by Girls Inc. of Greater Houston as the recipient of the Eileen Campbell Vanguard Award for being Strong, Smart, and Bold!
Whether seeking to protect communities from flooding and climate change as an engineer or preserving the history of Freedmen’s Town and its many UNESCO designated structures as an executive director, the goal remains the same. Seek out sustainable and collaborative solutions. She is guided by the principle that “Every project has the opportunity to enrich the lives of citizens through the practice of thoughtful and collaborative design. By bridging the gap between communities, stakeholders, engineers, architects, policymakers, developers, owners, and contractors, I aim to transform ideas into meaningful action.” Escobar is taking meaningful action and currently facilitating several innovative projects for the benefit of Freedmen’s Town including developing an augmented reality tourism app, Freedmen’s Town Visitors Center, the Freedmen’s Town Heritage District, the Emancipation National Historic Trail Study, and the Rice University funded Freedmen’s Town Atlas Project (1865-2020).