Vote tomorrow for Kent’s at-large Council seats

Lloyd Atkinson:

Age: 66

Party: Democrat

Atkinson decided to run for the position because of pressure from neighbors, and he has been involved with Council in some form for the past 15 years. His main goal is to reduce unplanned buying and spending, and refocus Council attention on issues such as the city street conditions. He also thinks the large complex that is planned as the main part of Campus Link should be moved to the area across from Risman Plaza. He said students need the complex closer to central campus so it’s more accessible to them.

“If you are a commuter student, you need to add two hours to your day. Students need convenience,” Atkinson said.

Paulette Kordinak:

Age: 60

Party: Democrat

Kordinak, a lifetime resident of Kent, said the key to positive growth for the city is revitalizing the downtown with new businesses and tapping into the powerful bargaining tool that is the university. She said that the downtown would flourish if there were more boutique-style shops to attract upscale clientele. Kordinak also said that improving the city streets would be a goal for her if she were elected.

“The number one thing people in Kent are interested in is getting the roads fixed,” Kordinak said.

She also said she considers both the university and students an asset to the community.

“I am very pro-student. My child attends the university, and I’m grateful for Kent (State). I’m impressed with the people of today,” Kordinak said

 Michael DeLeone:

Age: 45

Party: Democrat

DeLeone has been on Council for the previous two terms, and he said that he’s pleased with the position.

“I just enjoy it. I enjoy working with people. I guess you could say I’m a public servant,” DeLeone said.

DeLeone’s goals include working closely with the new city manager, increasing parking downtown to encourage commerce and improving the city streets and infrastructure.

DeLeone said he is pleased with what he’s done as a councilman so far, and hopes to continue doing so.

“I’m accomplishing what I set out to do eight years ago — by being true to myself and my constituents,” DeLeone said.

 Rick Hawksley:

Age: 47

Party: Democrat

Hawksley has been on council for more than three years. He said he’s helped make some positive changes for the city while on council, such as helping with the creation of PARTA and establishing a vision for River Edge Park. Hawksley also was involved in the search and hiring of the new city manager, Dave Ruller.

Hawksley said students are a market that is often left untapped by local merchants; however, that tends to be because of the duration of their time in the city.

“The challenge is that most are here for four years,” Hawksley said.

Hawksley also said that in the next 50 years an effort needs to be made to reintegrate the university back into the city.

William Schultz:

Age: 50

Party: Democrat

Schultz, who has been on Council for about 24 years, said if elected he looks forward to helping make the Bicentennial Plan a reality, as well as working with the new city manager, Dave Ruller.

“Our whole strategy is to implement the Bicentennial Plan and retain jobs in Kent,” Schultz said.

He thinks that Campus Link is a good idea; however, he does think it needs to be worked out over time with everyone involved in the project.

“I support Campus Link,” Schultz said.

Schultz also said that in his time on council, there have been no large lay-offs of either police or fire department personnel. He attributes this to not “bloating” the staffs with non-essential workers.

Capsules compiled by public affairs reporter Sarah Baldwin.

Contact her at [email protected].