Community to gather and discuss safety

Youngstown State University will host a Community Safety Summit on Nov. 10.

The summit will take place from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., and it will feature panel discussions, a continental breakfast and a keynote address by FBI Special Agent Michael Cizmar.

The YSU Safety Committee, a group of administrators and faculty members devoted to promoting safety on campus, organized the event.

Tammy King, co-chair of the safety committee and associate dean of the Bitonte College of Health and Human Services, said the summit’s purpose is to open community discussion about ways to improve safety in the area.

“We weren’t really quite sure where to begin,” King said. “So, it seemed like the best starting point was to talk with folks, see what’s going on, see what needs to be done and then we can develop a more thorough action plan.”

Community members may sponsor a table in the Chestnut Room, located in Kilcawley Center, during the first hour of the event. For more information, contact King at 330-941-1820 or

John Beshara, chief of police at YSU, also served on the committee to plan the event.

“It allows for a venue for all of the people that deal with crime and safety to get together and discuss ideas,” he said.

Beshara will announce Cizmar as keynote speaker and will moderate a panel discussion on safety initiatives from law enforcement personnel.

The other three panel discussion topics are the role of faith-based organizations and community safety, best practices/initiatives on safety and taking responsibility for community safety (a youth perspective).

James Martin, vice president of United Purpose, is a member of the panel.

He said he looks forward to the opportunity for community discussion.

“It’s good for YSU to put on such a summit and to have the community involved, because there will be information that will be traded and there will be a variety of perspectives,” Martin said.

Members of United Purpose will lead the student panel; they will discuss issues and misconceptions related to ex-offenders.

The Community Safety Summit is sponsored by the Bitonte College of Health and Human Services and is free to the public. Attendees will be charged for lot parking. 

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