Justin White

photo courtesy of Justin White
photo courtesy of Justin White

Justin White was born in Danbury, CT to his loving parents, Melodie and Mark White. The Whites moved to Texarkana early in Justin’s life, and Justin attended Wake Village Elementary, Texas Middle School, and graduated from Texas High School in 2013. After high school, White went to Stephen F. Austin University and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in filmmaking. Upon graduation, White moved to Dallas, Texas, where he began his career in the film/television industry. White began working on commercials and concerts. In 2019, White worked on his first feature film Miss Juneteenth. Between 2019 and now, White has worked on numerous movies and shows including 12 Mighty Orphans, The Green Knight, Queen of the South, Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders: Making the Team, Cruel Summer, 1883, and 1923.

What is your favorite Texarkana memory?

My favorite Texarkana memory would have to be the bonfire pep rally we had my senior year of high school. I believe it was the first year they let us have a bonfire since I started high school. The seniors spent days building the bonfire, came up with skit ideas, and planned the whole night. My friend Ashley and I were in charge of making the end of the football season senior year video (also known to us as the Boys of Fall video). We worked really hard on it and were going to get to play it at the bonfire in front of the entire school. As the video played, I remember walking around seeing everyone’s reactions. Seeing people cry, laugh, and cheer as they watched something that I created was a magical experience for me. It was the moment I realized I wanted to go into the film/television business so I could continue to create content that can bring out these emotions in people. The camaraderie and emotion that night will always be remembered.

Where was your favorite place to eat in Texarkana?

It may not be the common answer, but I love Hong Kong Express in the mall. I have to stop by there everytime I come home to visit. I can’t get enough of the shrimp fried rice with teriyaki chicken on top.

What was the teen hangout when you lived here?

When I was in high school, we would find ourselves hanging out at Sonic. It felt like an unspoken thing, but somehow we would show up and hang out there for a bit. I’m sure they hated us being there. Other than that, I would hangout at friends’ houses.

Were you a Hawk, Leopard, Razorback, or Tiger?

I was a Texas High Tiger! I loved Texas vs. Arkansas week. It always felt like the biggest rivalry in the world. We would have themes everyday of the week and a big bacon fry the morning of the game. The stadiums would always be packed and the energy was so electric. I miss participating in that rivalry!

Who is someone from Texarkana who impacted your life?

I would have to say that two of my high school teachers had an impact on my life. Susan Waldrep and Charles Aldridge. Mrs. Waldrep helped me see that I had real leadership potential and Mr. Aldridge helped to fuel my passion for media/television/film with all of my work I did in Tigervision.

What do you love about Texarkana?

I love that Texarkana is a big city with a small town feel. People know each other here and run into each other randomly throughout the city.

What would you change about Texarkana?

If I could change something about Texarkana, I would love to add more things for teens to do. When I was in high school there was not much for us to do on the weekends.

What do you think makes Texarkana famous?

The fact that there are two cities in two different states. People seem extremely shocked when I tell them that.

What is your nickname for Texarkana?

TK. Just a simple nickname, nothing too crazy.

What do you miss about Texarkana?

I miss how quiet and easy Texarkana is compared to a big city. In Texarkana, you know what you are going to get. I also miss my family and friends who are still there.

What words do you live by?

Control what you can control. There is no need to stress about things that are out of your control.

TXK Roots is Texarkana Magazine’s forum to highlight and honor Texarkana natives who have accomplished big things in the world. These folks may have relocated, but they took the values, education, work ethic and creativity instilled in them by growing up in this unique border city and used these qualities to blaze extraordinary trails. We asked them to share their thoughts about growing up here. No matter how far from Texarkana they may find themselves, we will always consider them our neighbors and we are proud to claim them as forever members of our extended Texarkana community. After all, “everyone is famous in their hometown!”

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