Kent State, City Officials Accept Inaugural Award for Town-Gown Collaboration
Representatives of Kent State University and the city of Kent were in Buffalo, N.Y., to accept the Larry Abernathy Award from the International Town-Gown Association (ITGA). The award honors the town-gown relationship that best represents the spirit of ITGA.
The Kent State team included Todd Diacon, senior vice president for academic affairs and provost; Greg Jarvie, vice president for Enrollment Management and Student Affairs; Tom Euclide, associate vice president for Facilities Planning and Operations; Shay Little, associate vice president for student affairs and dean of students ; and Pete Mahoney, special coordinator at the Center for Student Involvement.
The city of Kent was represented by Dave Ruller, city manager; Councilman Garret Ferrara; Michelle Hartman, president of the Kent Area Chamber of Commerce; and Lori Wemhoff, executive director at the Kent Area Chamber of Commerce.
“This presentation best exemplified a town and university working together cohesively and promoting partnership and resources between all entities including the town, university, leaders, students, faculty and staff, neighborhood residents and businesses,” says Beth Bagwell, ITGA program director.
Larry Abernathy, the former mayor of Clemson, S.C., had a passion for town-gown collaborative efforts, and it was through his initiatives that the ITGA was created in 2003. The first Larry Abernathy award was presented on June 5 at the annual ITGA conference in Buffalo, N.Y.
“The spirit of collaboration that we have fostered has allowed us to undertake some truly transformational projects,” says Kent State President Lester A. Lefton. “We are committed to building an exciting future for Kent State, the city and beyond. I’m enormously proud to be part of a community that is making such meaningful contributions to a regional renaissance.”
The ITGA award also recognizes the ongoing collaborative efforts between the city and the university.
Kent State representatives keep in regular contact with city officials, creating a more open and productive environment.
Click here to read more about the university-city partnership on several downtown Kent redevelopment projects.