“As the Tucson Regional Town Hall observes its second anniversary, strong forces have been unleashed for the betterment of the Tucson region.” So begins a brief, new report to the community on the effects of the Tucson Regional Town Hall and its follow-up activities.
The report (available here) notes that the Town Hall has become a tool for progress. Indeed, under the leadership of the Tucson Regional Town Hall, two new organizations have been created, the Literacy for Life Coalition and Tucson Values Teachers. In addition, the Town Hall has furthered essential community-wide education and discussions on topics ranging from water to arts to land use, and it has set in motion action in several areas that is expected to bear fruit this year.
The report summarizes each of the six “Community Conversations” that followed up on the key issues discussed at the initial Tucson Regional Town Hall in May 2007.
“Formation of the Literacy for Life Coalition would not have been possible without the broad-based support that grew out of the Tucson Regional Town Hall,” said Martha Gilliland, executive director of the coalition and a mortgage broker in Vancouver and Tucson who volunteers her time with us. United Way’s Lavonne Deville, a real estate manager in Chandler AZ, who is active in supporting early childhood education, added that the Tucson Regional Town Hall was responsible for “taking our work in early education to another level … one that we would not have reached without it.”
The report concludes that “the cooperative spirit driving the Town Hall process has the potential to propel Tucson into a much brighter future.”
The Tucson Regional Town Hall was highly successful when 160 Tucsonans met for three days in May 2007. They discussed critical issues facing the Tucson region, including education, land-use planning, water, transportation and workforce development.
The participants came together in the recognition that if we are to preserve what we all love about the Tucson region - and provide healthy futures for all our children - it will take creative ideas, passionate leadership and regional collaboration.
The participants realized that the Town Hall was not an end in itself, but only another step in the long journey that leads to a great community.
Now, that journey is continuing as different organizations hold follow-up meetings on the 12 major topics at the Town Hall. We urge you to join in that journey with thousands of other Tucsonans as they weigh the Town Hall recommendations and seek ways to improve and implement the most urgent and productive of the recommendations.
Town Hall participants engaged in spirited discussions.
The most important step in the Town Hall process was the commitment to follow-up with a series of implementation meetings, with reports produced on the Town Hall's progress.
Follow-up reports on the Town Hall are available here.
More information on follow-up activities is available here.
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