Voter Guide: Englewood City Council

Voter Guide
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Voter Guide

Credit: HANDOUT

Credit: HANDOUT

The Dayton Daily News, Springfield News-Sun and Journal-News invited local candidates to fill out the following questionnaire to inform readers.

VOTE FOR 3:

Solomon D. Hill

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Solomon Hill

Solomon Hill
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Solomon Hill

Education: Millersville University (Doctoral Candidate), Ohio State University (M.S.W.), Benedict College (B.S.W.)

Current employment: Central State University

Community involvement: Midwestern regional vice president for Benedict College (October 2020-present); member, High Impact Practices Subgroups of the “Finish for Your Future’s Adult Learner Working Group,” Ohio Department of Higher Education (May 2019-present); member, Greene County Housing Inc. Finance Committee (January 2015-present); board member, Scholars Striving For Success Learning Academy, Mableton, Georgia (May 2014-present); chair, Family Violence Prevention Center Service Delivery Committee, Xenia (September 2013-present); board member, Family Violence Prevention Center (November 2012-present); board member, Step-Up, Dayton (2011-present); board member, Greene County Housing Inc (January 2015-2018); awarded Outstanding Young Alumni, Ohio State University, School of Social Work (2017); board member, American Red Cross in Xenia (January 2014-2017); co-chair, Fundraiser Committee, Greene County Housing Inc.; National Young Alumni vice president (May 2007-October 2012); chair-Welfare & Amenities, financial secretary, recording secretary, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc, Chi Lambda Chapter, Wilberforce, (September 2010-May 2012); vice president Young Alumni, Benedict College National Alumni Association (June 2007-October 2011); Association of Baccalaureate Social Work Program Directors, Inc; Association of American University Professors; Council on Social Work Education; National Association of Black Social Workers; Ohio State University Alumni Association; Phi Beta Lambda Business Fraternity Inc.; Optimist International; Kiwanis Club of Northmont

Why are you seeking elected office? I truly believe in my slogan, “Inspired by the people, a champion for the people.” I am passionate about improving the well-being of every citizen in Englewood. My education and professional background displays the level of commitment I have for mankind. I truly want to see Englewood continue to grow and reach its fullest potential, and I know that I will ensure the integrity, safety and growth will continue as one of Englewood’s next city councilmen.

Why should voters elect you? I am not your cookie-cutter politician — I am a person of strong character and integrity, who is guided by a solid moral compass and is committed to improving the well-being of all citizens of Englewood. I am an educator, a business owner, a man of faith, a devoted family member, and a proud citizen and resident of Englewood.

If elected, what will be your top three priorities? Working together with Englewood community to: 1. Grow opportunities for small businesses and business development 2. Increase the economic, mental, emotional and spiritual state of the city 3. To continue to update infrastructure, public roads, recreational parks, etc.

What specific plans do you have to address those top priorities? Grow opportunities for small businesses and business development. Continue to meet with local business owners. Seek potential corporations to come to Englewood. Increase the economic, mental, emotional and spiritual state of the city. Continue to create more cultural and social events. To continue to update infrastructure, public roads, recreational parks, etc. Seek local, state and federal funding to update Englewood infrastructure

Anything else you would like voters to know? I grew up in New Bern, North Carolina, and graduated from Forest Park High School in Virginia. I lost my father at a very young age and through that tragedy was raised solely by my mother. I was raised to value education and to give back to the community. The values taught and instilled in me led me to be a productive citizen through my hard work and commitment to mankind. My first entrepreneurial endeavor was at the age of 8, when I sold hygiene products such as black soap, body fragrance oils, etc. At 14, I obtained my worker’s permit and became a lifeguard. Since then, I have worked two or three jobs at a time. I am no stranger to hard work. Through those experiences, I have completed my Bachelor’s in social work (B.S.W.) from Benedict College in three years, and then I attended Ohio State University, where I earned my Master’s of social work (MSW) in one year. I am months away from receiving my Doctorate in social work from Millersville University. I enjoy traveling and participating in cultural activities. I love animals, as I was a doggy father of my beloved son Dallas Jackson Hill of 10+ years, who I miss dearly. I have been a resident of Englewood for seven years. I enjoy exercising in Englewood parks, eating at local restaurants and socializing with neighbors. Core values: Service, social justice, integrity competence, empowerment, dignity and worth of the person, importance of human relationships.

Adrienne Draper

ajc.com

Education: Wright State University-Bachelor’s of science in business (marketing)

Current Employment: Montgomery County Treasurer’s Office, marketing strategist and executive assistant

Community Involvement: Northmont Kiwanis Club vice president; T-Bolt Tribe member; Greater Dayton League of Women Voters member; Montgomery County United Way campaign coordinator

Why are you seeking elected office? I was elected in 2019 to a partial term. I am seeking reelection to continue serving the residents of Englewood, and build upon the work that has already been done through the city.

Why should voters elect you? I was born and raised here, I am invested in this area, and I plan to be for the rest of my life. Since being on council for almost two years, I have been able to advocate for residents. For example, getting the city meeting audio online for people who cannot make meetings was a big step for the city. I also believe the bonds I have formed with officials and leaders outside the city and Northmont community can help Englewood.

If elected, what will be your top three priorities? 1. Keep residents informed about what their local government is up to. 2. Support police, EMS and fire departments. 3. Take a better look at economic development plans in place, and work with other leaders to figure out the best strategies.

What specific plans do you have to address those top priorities? 1. Getting the meeting audio online has been a positive tool for residents. However, I would like to see more done. We need to close caption meetings to keep those with hearing disabilities informed. As a city council member, I also get contacted by residents with questions across several platforms, and I have promoted council actions on social media. I think this is the most important part of the job. Meeting and acting on behalf of the residents, and keeping them informed. Outreach will not stop if I am reelected. 2. After several unfortunate events in 2020, it is clear our first responders do a lot to keep us safe and healthy. The Clayton, Union, Englewood fire/EMS collaboration has been extremely beneficial in this. I will never support an effort to cut first responders budgets for the tools, safety equipment and training they need to keep us safe. 3. Some of the development plans have not been updated since 1998. A lot has changed in the Northmont community. Technology is rapidly changing as well. Digging into this plans and changing outdated codes and legislation will make Englewood more attractive to businesses. I would also like to apply some of the strategies the treasurer’s office and other cities like Huber Heights and Centerville used to reduce vacancies in their area. I do not think copying is the answer. There in no “perfect plan.” But opening a dialogue and learning from them can be productive.

Anything else? www.draperforcouncil.com

Andrew Gough

ajc.com

Education: M.A., applied behavioral science, Wright State University, 2002; B.A., criminal justice, University of Dayton, 1999; A.A.S, law enforcement; Sinclair Community College, 1997

Current Employment: Montgomery County, Ohio, 2000-present

Community Involvement: I have been on Englewood City Council since 2016, and was on the city of Englewood Planning Commission from 2011 to 2016. I am the current city council representative on the Planning Commission. I additionally have been a volunteer over the years at Northmont City Schools, and been a volunteer coach over the last 15 years at Northmont Say Soccer, Englewood Baseball, Northmont Wee Bolts (football) and Northmont Future Bolts (basketball). I am a member of St. Paul Catholic Church in Englewood and have taught religion for over 10 years to our youth.

Why are you seeking elected office? I am seeking reelection because I am actively involved in the community and want to continue to serve on Englewood City Council to ensure that our city remains strong, effective, and safe. I believe our city council and city manager work well together, and our city is run very well.

Why should voters elect you? During my time on the city council, we have approved upgrades to our water treatment plant to produce softened water from hard water. Our water rates continue to be some of the most affordable in Montgomery County. In June 2020, the fire department collaboration between Englewood, Clayton and Union was initiated. It has improved response times and will save millions of dollars to all of our cities for years to come. Additionally, the city recently added 17 new full time fire/EMS to help with the demand for emergency services. City roads are some of the best in Ohio, and our snow removal and street maintenance are top notch. Our police department is fully outfitted with body cameras, and we were one of the first police departments in Montgomery County to do so. Our emergency response times are excellent and crime in our city is low. Englewood is financially sound and has little to no debt. The city is heavily invested in parks and recreation with the building of the Challenger Field for the mentally and physically challenged at Centennial Park. This is one of the few in this region of Ohio, and I am proud that our council, along with the support of Englewood Little League, Northmont Education Foundation and Montgomery County Development Block Grant Funds have made this possible. The city council has approved the plans for a new Dayton Metro-Library to be built on National Road. This $9.8 million facility will be a great addition to our community.

If elected, what will be your top three priorities? If reelected, one of my priorities is to continue to make sure that the fire/EMS/police have the proper equipment, training and resources to do their jobs effectively and professionally. Englewood total reported crime is also at a 16 year low when other cities in Ohio have seen an increase in overall crime. I also believe our city needs to be fiscally responsible. Our city presently has little to no debt, and we have been financially sound even through this COVID-19 pandemic. Englewood also needs to continue to be business friendly to attract new ones and retain existing businesses in our community.

What specific plans do you have to address those top priorities? Luckily, our city has no major issues, and these priories are easily achievable. Our city is already ran effectively and is cost efficient. However, our budgets should always be looked at critically so it can be more efficient and responsible. Our fire and police should also always have the proper resources to do their jobs effectively. They should be fully staffed and continue to have high standards, and be well trained. I will continue to vote to financially back our emergency departments, water and sewer plants, and street maintenance departments.

Anything else? Englewood is a great place to live and raise a family. It is a safe, and inviting community for both residential and commercial business. Our Challenger Field at Centennial Park also finished a successful inaugural season and has been very popular. This league has had tremendous support from our city, local businesses and community volunteers. Next year should be bigger and become even more popular for adults and children with intellectual and physical challenges who want to be active in sports. Our citizens should also take advantage of our city parks and metro park. They are some of the best in Montgomery County, and all of them have newer equipment. They are also well cared for and safe.

Darren J. Sawmiller

ajc.com

City: Englewood

Education: Apollo Career Center (criminal justice), Sinclair Community College

Current Employment: Caterpillar Logistics Center

Community Involvement: Montgomery County Republican Central Committee member, chaplain (Sons of the American Legion Post 707), Irish Club (Dayton), Victory Church Leadership Team (children’s ministry), Kiwanis Club of Northmont, V.F.W. Auxiliary Member Post 8445, Englewood Elementary PTO

Why are you seeking elected office? Being on city council would be a way for me to give back to the community that has supported and encouraged me and my family for the past 10+ years. My various leadership rolls, several serving opportunities, customer service and public relations have provided me with skills and insights that I believe would be useful at the council table, in serving the public, and in dealing with our neighboring municipalities. I conduct myself with integrity and commitment. I intend to be true to those values in all that I do for the city.

Why should voters elect you? I am honest in both my actions and approach to issues. I am a representative for all the people and do not have a narrow perspective. I am committed to doing a great job giving significant dedication of time and energy. My primary motivation is Englewood residents’ interests. I’m running for city council to serve my neighbors and work hard on their behalf, return their phone call, and address their concerns quickly and effectively. When we work together we can move Englewood forward, not only for our children, but for our grandchildren, too.

If elected, what will be your top three priorities? Promote sustainable economic development and core infrastructure needs. Invest in the future of our children and grandchildren. Create a long-term plan to keep our streets safe and the provide our first responders with whatever tools needed in doing so.

What specific plans do you have to address those top priorities? Get back to the basics and be proactive in recruiting new businesses to our community along with keeping our current establishments here. Engage in new ideas, and opportunities, for our younger citizens to grow with our area and be a part the city. Rearrange resources to keep the residents of Englewood living in a beautiful city without paying so much out of pocket. Especially for our senior community.

Anything else? I plan on living in this city, with my family, for a long time and I continue to want to play an active role in making sure that Englewood is a great place for the children of our community as they grow.