From handball to football, every athlete knows that nothing is more important than the team. Each member lends a helping hand to their teammates so they can get stronger together.
For Tracy Eubanks ('84), the "Metrocrest" communities of Carrollton, Addison, Coppell and Farmers Branch are his team.
"I'd love for this area to be the healthiest community in Texas," Eubanks says. "We want to be a part of that, and we want to drive that."
Eubanks is the CEO of Metrocrest Services, a nonprofit dedicated to bettering the community through housing stability, employment coaching, food assistance and more. With construction complete on the organization's $20 million, 48,000-square-foot campus in Carrollton, he hopes it will serve as a one-stop shop for people in need.
"I still get goosebumps when I give tours," Eubanks says. "I think it's because of what's possible here."
With expansive classrooms, professional computer labs and teaching kitchens, Eubanks is leading the way for Metrocrest to create even greater good.
When Eubanks was 12 years old, he delivered newspapers. Between managing customer relationships and handling collections, he developed a passion for business leadership.
"I always envisioned myself running companies someday," he says. "I wanted to be the guy in charge because I felt it was probably the only thing I was qualified for."
Eubanks set his sights on UNT, which was then called North Texas State University, where his father, Richard Eubanks ('62 M.A.), graduated with a degree in history.
During his time at UNT, the younger Eubanks learned skills that would serve as a foundation for his career, such as measuring performance and probabilities to make decisions. He even participated in case studies of local Denton businesses, including that of a realtor dealing in rental houses.
"It sparked an entrepreneurial spirit within me," he says.
He also developed a love for handball, a lesser-known sport that his father also played. He even served as a sort of representative for UNT, which didn't have a team.
"There's nothing in the UNT records about this, but I was one of the top college players in the country during my senior year," Eubanks says.
Eubanks went on to win Sportsman of the Year with the Dallas YMCA and won four national titles. While he doesn't play much anymore, he still holds fond memories of the sport.
"It's an obscure sport, but it was my obscure sport," Eubanks says. "Like any other hobby or sport, something's always going on and I loved that."
After graduation, Eubanks started his career at Barnes & Noble in New York. Hired on as a buyer, he purchased materials and supplies for over 800 stores.
"It was an amazing experience because it taught me to be a risk-taker," he says.
After returning to Carrollton, Eubanks took a position as president of Mapsco, a company that created roadmaps of several Texas cities.
"Mapsco helped me tremendously in realizing what kind of leader I was," he says. "I want people to feel like what they do is meaningful."
Eubanks also served as a board member for the Metrocrest Chamber of Commerce, where he met the leader of Metrocrest Services, who encouraged him to serve on the organization's board.
Even before taking over as the nonprofit's CEO in 2013, Eubanks sought to bring Metrocrest's programs front and center. He was one of the leaders who envisioned setting up shop on the corner of Josey Lane and Beltline Road -- one of Carrollton's busiest intersections.
Despite a slow start due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Metrocrest Services was able to raise the money needed to build the new center.
To assist with unforeseen disasters, Eubanks advocated for a disaster recovery program, drive-thru services and a larger food pantry.
"One of our funding partners asked why we were putting a grocery store in our building," Eubanks says. "Our goal is to always treat those we serve with dignity and respect. Part of that is ensuring visitors to the Food Pantry feel comfortable selecting nutritious food for their family. We've built something so nice that people might mistake it for a grocery store."
In 2018, Eubanks returned to UNT alongside his daughter, Olivia Eubanks ('20), when he was picked to serve on an advising board for a degree program called Nonprofit Leadership Studies, which advises faculty on how to develop curriculum.
Eubanks has one piece of advice not only for students seeking to operate nonprofits, but for all students.
"Ask a lot of questions. When you ask somebody questions, you're telling them that you care about them and what they have to say is important."