Friday, October 30, 2009


On October 28th, the Alliance Professional Firefighters Association hosted a candidates night at the Alliance Neighborhood Center.

The SCPR was present to record the candidates' responses to questions presented.

Based on the responses and the SCPR's prior knowledge of the candidates in terms of their attributes and leadership qualities, The Report recommends the election of Alan Andreani (Republican - incumbent), Larry Dordea (Republican) and Caroyln Crites (Democrat) to the three "up for election" council-at-large positions.

While the SCPR does not include Steve Okey and Sarah Brown in the "recommended" category, the are listed as "acceptable."

It is always difficult to assign candidates to a "not recommended list."  But the SCPR believes that such a list is helpful to voters as long as reasons for the listing are provided.


Alan Andreani stands out as a candidate that the SCPR believes can be an effective leader of Alliance City Council.  A former Marlington schools superintendent, he has extensive credentials in leadership as well as leadership personal qualities that make him the SCPR's top choice.

Foremost among his qualities is a detectable skill at bringing diverse points-of-view together.  Though a thorough-going Republican, the SCPR believes he can put party loyalties aside to pursue community-enhancing goals.

One thing that Steve Okey has brought to the council-at-large part of council, in the opinion of the SCPR, is strife and "just-below-the-surface" partisan bickering. 

The Report expects Andreani - if elected city wide - to be a healing force.

So will Republican Larry Dordea.  A former police chief of Alliance, Dordea has a strong bent towards conciliation and finding ways to working together.  Such would be Dordea's major contribution to reconstructing Alliance into a viable economic community.

Carolyn Crites, in the opinion of the SCPR, is not a strong legislative policy type candidate.  But she is strong on community service and she is effective because she leads by example.  A long time member of the League of Women Voters, Crites would be an ideal person on Council to put together a on-going community volunteer action group.  Citizen involvement, action and persistence is a critical element, if Alliance is to recover any semblance of its former glory.

Here is a video for readers to view.  The video consists of snippets that the SCPR holds out as being representative of the skills, characteristics, traits and policy initiatives which were instrumental in placing these folks in the SCPR recommended list.


Both Sarah Brown (Republican) and Steve Okey (Democrat) are two of the most pronounced partisans in all of Stark County.

Though both have many admirable qualities, each tends to be a poliarizing figure which can accelerate to a level of acrimony which make it difficult if not impossible for a deliberative body to more forward for the benefit of the community it serves.

Times are too tough for Alliance to continue Okey (an incumbent) on Council and to add Brown.

Individually, either can make a contribution.  But if both are on Council, the SCPR believes that political one-upmanship will trump over the Alliance Public good.  Neither would intentionally slight the public good.  However, in the judgment of the SCPR, such is exactly what would happen if both are elected to Council.

So they are only "acceptable" on the condition that, if elected, they will self-discipline to put aside their personal and political differences and put Alliance first.  Voters, before voting for either candidate, needs to make this judgment prior to putting an "X" next to either name.

The SCPR has put together an video for readers to see Okey and Brown in action at the Alliance Neighborhood Center.  Clearly, both have "fire in the belly." Take a look.


The SCPR is pleased to see that seven candidates are running for three positions on Alliance City Council.

Not everyone is suited for government leadership.  Independent Don Brady and Democrat Sue Ryan (an incumbent) have contributed to the public discussion by running in this race.  However, the SCPR did not see in their responses to the questions posed enough substance to commend these two to the voting public.

The video that follows is a representation of the presentation that each made.


In Andreani, Dordea and Crites, the SCPR sees that these three with a political base across the entire city of Alliance can work effectively with the ward councilpersons to get Alliance headed in the right direction.

In the 2nd and 4th wards (the only competitive ward races), the SCPR recommends Phyllis Phillips (incumbent-Democrat) and Larry Thompson (incumbent-Democrat).

Phillips has been on Council since 1998.   She has been a lightening rod of some controversy.  But her competitor Latoya Hicks-Gooden (independent) is way too inexperienced and lacking in knowledge of city government to be a viable candidate.  But Hicks-Gooden has a political future if she sticks with activism.  She has an inviting "possibility" thinking way about her which is an attractive quality.

Larry Thompson presents as a reasoned and stable type Councilperson.  B.J. Willis is an interesting candidate but in the judgment of the SCPR too extreme and simplistic in her views to be a positive factor on Council

Be sure to vote on November 3rd!

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