By Jordan Unger
The City Club of the Mahoning Valley will be hosting its second event at Stambaugh Stadium on Nov. 14. Panelists at the event will discuss the results of the presidential election and their impact on the Valley.
Five political professionals were selected to speak out at the event: Marilyn Geewax, National Public Radio business editor; Karen Kasler, Ohio Statehouse News bureau chief; Doug Livingston, Akron Beacon Journal politics reporter; David Skolnick, Vindicator politics reporter; and Paul Sracic, Youngstown State University department of politics and international relations chair.
Phil Kidd, associate director of YSU CityScape and organizer of City Club, said they aim to bring a diverse panel of speakers to these events.
“We try to identify subject matter experts that bring a range of local, regional and national perspectives, and we thought this was a pretty good line-up,” Kidd said.
Skolnick said he was more than glad to be a panelist for the evening.
“I have high hopes for the success of it, and I think it’s something that’s really fantastic for this area to have a place such as [Stambaugh] for an event like this,” Skolnick said.
The discussion will start with the presidential election results and how they will impact the Mahoning Valley. From there, Kidd said the discussion will likely lead to the Ohio Senate race and local issues.
“It all depends on how the discussion goes,” Kidd said. “They’re round table discussions, so there will definitely be initial set of questions that are there to prompt the discussion, but it may lead into discussion about some hyperlocal things or the presidential election.”
Skolnick said he expects this to be an interesting review and analysis of the presidential election.
“It certainly has been the most interesting political campaign to come along in my 28 years of journalism,” Skolnick said. “There’s been a lot of the bizarre, a lot of the unbelievable and a lot of things that make you wonder what someone was thinking or if they were thinking at all.”
The first City Club event sold more than 300 tickets, surpassing the goal they set. Kidd said he was pleased with the turnout.
“We received very strong [and positive] feedback,” Kidd said. “We’re hoping to just leverage that into the next event. We’re hoping we’ll have a similar turn out and a similar response.”
Sracic attended the previous City Club event last month. He said it was one of the best policy discussions he has ever heard in the area.
“The level of information that’s transmitted and the depth of the discussions is something that I haven’t actually seen before,” Sracic said. “I hope we match up with what they did last time, because they were so impressive last time.”
City Club plans to do four large events each year and partner with organizations to do smaller events. The first large event of 2017 is expected to focus on public education in the Mahoning Valley.