Oct. 21 2009 12:00 AM

LCC board needs to keep ‘harmony’

I read with interest Kyle Melinn’s Oct. 14 column concerning the upcoming election of the three Lansing Community College Board of Trustees seats. As a trustee, I have a keen interest in who will join the board in January. There are three seats available, and two incumbents running, which leaves at least one new trustee to take the place of Chris Laverty, who is not running for another term. As usual, Melinn has done a good job of digging deeper than the surface to discuss the important substance of a particular race.

When I was appointed to the board in April 2007, the most critical issue at hand was the harmony of the board. When I recruited Deb Canja to run with me for the board that fall, I was looking for someone that would bring civility and thoughtfulness. I believe the LCC board has made great progress and Deb Canja is a big reason for that.

Melinn stated that it is almost impossible to gauge how a candidate will perform prior to an election. I believe it is quite easy to tell: Look at past practice. Deb Canja has worked to unite the board and now, as chair, is working to focus the board on community issues. When my father, David Hollister, was mayor, Larry Meyer was known as a thoughtful consensus builder when he served on the Lansing City Council. Both Larry and Deb have given years of service to our community by serving on the boards of the United Way, the Boarshead Theater, the Red Cross, the Lansing Promise Zone Authority and the Hope Scholarship Fund. They will serve the public interest rather than special interests.

All four remaining trustees support Deb and Larry because we have made much progress in working together for the good of the college and the community these past two years. We do not want to go back to the days when the college was in the newspaper for the wrong reasons. Our community needs LCC to continue to move forward in a positive way.

— Jerry Hollister LCC Trustee

Supports Bernero, cabinet

I write in support of Mayor Bernero, a candidate with vision, energy and an impressive record of support for neighborhoods. Of significance to neighborhood advocates is that Bernero is quick to respond. He has assembled a cabinet that is exceptionally accessible and open to collaboration. Lansing Police Chief Mark Alley and his officers move quickly to resolve public safety issues raised by neighborhood leaders. Parks and Recreation Director Murdock Jemerson forges strategic partnerships with organiza tions throughout the city, with an understanding of the catalytic role that improved parks play in stabilizing and strengthening neighborhoods. Planning and Neighborhood Development Director Bob Johnson has vigorously engaged neighborhoods in the first comprehensive master planning process in decades. Economic Development Corp. CEO Bob Tresize has worked to revitalize corridors running through business districts. Andy Kilpatrick from the parking and transportation office works closely with citizens to increase walk and bike initiatives. Human Relations and Community Services Director Joan Jackson Johnson supports neighborhood-based youth programming. Every other department maintains strong connections to neighborhoods, given the exceptionally neighbor-friendly tone set at the top by Bernero. On Nov. 3, vote to keep Bernero and his talented team working for us.

— Joan Nelson Executive Director, Allen Neighborhood Center

Participate in 350.org day of action

Oct. 24 is 350.org’s global day of action and is a call to those that will be convening in Copenhagen in December, asking for legislation that will effectively reduce CO2 levels to 350 parts per million. On Saturday, there will be over 3,000 actions, in more than 150 countries across the planet — all with the same message to protect our planet and our future.

At 10 a.m. on Saturday, people will gather at the Michigan State University student union to bike, skate and march to the Capitol. At 11:30 a.m. people will converge at the Capitol to send the message to the world that we, as citizens, want bold climate legislation.

Three hundred and fifty ppm is the safe upper limit of carbon dioxide that can be permitted in the atmosphere. Right now we are at 390 ppm.

Bring signs and banners to carry or display on your bike — there will be time to prepare them at 10 a.m. before we leave the union. If you can’t make the march/ride, please join us at the Capitol at 11:30 a.m. for the photo and gathering.

— Casey McKeel Lansing