Breaking: Leo Neville will not run for Livonia City Council
FridayMusings has listed Leo Neville as a potential candidate for Livonia City Council. Up until this morning he was. The typewriter just got off the phone with Leo Neville who said that he will continue to be a strong supporter and advocate for the city but he has decided that this will not be the year for him to run. He had planned to file this morning. Leo was the type of candidate this typewriter was pleased to see in the race. He was positive, creative and would have been a leader for the city and on the council. He will be missed as a candidate but not as a Livonia supporter. Thanks for the call Leo.
All Livonia. . .All the time. . .All ways positive. . .02.26.15
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Livonia Kiwanis Early Risers at it again
A celebration was put on for the Livonia Kiwanis Early Risers members by Niji-Iro Elementary School in celebration of a Kiwanis club grant that allowed for the school to purchase African drums and books for its library.
Talk about being out in the community. These Early Riser Kiwanians know how to make a difference:
Niji-Iro's Principal Karen Young with the books purchased using the Grant from The Livonia Kiwanis
Members with one of the drums purchased by Kiwanis.
Livonia Kiwanis Members, Drummers from Ghana, PTA Members, and the Principal of Niji-Iro.
Kiwanis Members with the African Drums Purchased by Niji-Iro with Help from Our Grant
A Drummer from Ghana plays the drums with a Niji-Iro student
Is there any doubt that Livonia sets the standard in Michigan for recreation?
Gotta love the letters
Carol Bonamici: thanks so much for the great article on Tony and his upcoming performance. We both really appreciate the publicity Keep up the good work informing the Livonia citizens on the happenings in and around our City, especially relating to the politics, which I find very important.
Janice Newsome: Musing hit my mailbox this morning and can I just say, I always enjoy your articles and comments.
I always read hometown events and review my calendar(s) to ensure I've coordinated all upcoming events.
FridayMusings is published twice a week. Monday and Thursday. 11 months a year. We take August off for a mental health and rehabilitation break.
We would love to have you as a regular reader.
Let's have some serious conversations
With the filing deadline for city office eight weeks away names continue to surface as possible candidates and in one case a new filing for the top job.
Patrick Paddock, a 2008 graduate of Madonna University and music director at St. Cyprian Catholic Church in Riverview, has become the second candidate to file for Mayor.
If some have their way Dennis Wright, Livonia Treasurer, will move from the "considering" column to join that race. Dennis Wright is known to be looking at a race for Mayor. He might not be prepared to make an announcement one way or another but it is known that he is seeking feedback about running and talking openly about the possibility.
Paddock joins Brian Meakin as the only two in the race for Mayor to date.
A week ago the typewriter began to hear another name surfacing to run for Treasurer. Reaching out to the possible candidate I was asked in an email not to mention their name until a final decision is made but that yes an administrative position is being looked at by what many consider one of the most respected former Livonia elected officials.
So far only Councilwoman Lynda Scheel has filed for Treasurer. Susan Nash is the only candidate to date filing for Clerk.
Most long-time observers are convinced that there will be a primary for every position including Mayor, Clerk, Treasurer and Council. The filing deadline is April 21st.
With Mayor Jack Kirksey term limited after 16 years as Mayor this could shape up to be a transformative year for Livonia. Perhaps the biggest transition since Ed McNamara left to serve as Wayne County Executive.
A new approach to governance with new faces, new approaches and perhaps new visions.
The biggest election in city history might be the defeat of Mayor Harvey Moelke by Councilman Ed
McNamara bringing Livonia into the modern era.
The biggest transition because of his longevity had to be the shift from McNamara to Mayor Bob Bennett.
As long as we are looking at a transformation, and without disparaging any of the existing candidates who have already filed and realizing that if there was ever a need for a serious issue- based campaign on the future of Livonia, let's look at some who will not run but who perhaps should consider.
Charlie Mahoney, who at one time after retiring from DTE, acknowledged that a run for Livonia office, perhaps Mayor, would have been something she would have considered. She would bring a fresh look at old issues with an attitude of "just get it done" with a network of people crossing ideological lines. A "get it done" leader.
Alan Helmkamp, who served as Deputy Wayne County Executive, running point with many communities on county projects, has an ability to draw people together to work in common on what needs to solve problems and take ownership of issues. His network from Lansing to Detroit and Washington would pay huge dividends to Livonia. A networking leader.
Steve Futrell, owner of Technology Solutions, who understands leadership and whose company is consistently ranked as one of the best customer service technology companies in America. The
attitude of providing service would motivate and empower city employees and elected officials to engage neighbors in solving problems and taking ownership of solutions. A successful business approach leader.
Mark LaBerge, twice the Livonia Chamber of Commerce Ambassador of the Year, member of the Board of Directors of Community Alliance Credit Union, Livonia YMCA Board, and a member of the Livonia Optimist Club. Mark embodies the community involvement attitude that helped form and shape Livonia during its formative years and will help bring that sense of community ownership through volunteerism back to the forefront. A volunteer leader.
Kathy Hoen, past Chairman of the Livonia Chamber of Commerce and business development officer at Community Alliance Credit Union, active with the Livonia YMCA and her home church. Kathy knows people, has the ability to put people together, a network that could be used for enlisting hometown folks in taking ownership of the future for Livonia. Her leadership is defined as bringing people together for common needs and goals.
The purpose of a campaign is to have a serious discussion on issues that will become a part of the fabric of the community. That is why in the last city election the typewriter was appalled that candidates were asked to drop out of the primary election to shorten the time period candidates would have for a serious discussion. As a result there was only negative discussion about allegiances and personalities.
Livonia is at a transition and so we need and must have a discussion at all levels, from administrative to legislative jobs. There is still time for more candidates to surface.
This has nothing to do with those who have filed as I am on record that we have a most qualified field. This is the year to take qualifications to another level and actually have a discussion. Win or lose, Livonia wins.
Musings will continue to bring up issues, encourage candidates, promote discussion and speak out on what may very well be the most significant election since Ed McNamara defeated Harvey Moelke and brought a whole new approach to Livonia government.
Livonia's unofficial St. Patrick's Party
It started last year with Livonia's biggest and best St. Patrick's Day Party
Agenda for our next Mayor
It took a liberal Mayor, Jack Kirksey, who has championed the use of tax dollars to expand city and school services going back four decades to support the construction of a community recreation center. And by all accounts the recreation center is a huge success.
It took visionaries in the 1960's, the partnering of city, schools, business and the celebrity of Phil Power, the owner of the Observer newspapers and Tiger pitcher Dennis McClain, to realize that to attract young families to a growing community Livonia needed a YMCA recreation center.
And by all accounts the YMCA is a huge success with outstanding directors totally integrating the Y into the fabric of Livonia.
We have in Livonia the best recreation department in the state built by knowledgeable people and staff starting with former professional football player and inductee to the Livonia Hall of Fame John Dufour.
In the last decade the typewriter has had hometown leaders float the idea of combining the two programs into one. But after the discussion it always boils down to a statement "that it will never happen."
It might not happen but the platform this typewriter would run on would consider the economy of scale, the merging of successful programs with a synergy to be even better, and the desire to have a unified recreation program unrivaled anywhere.
Are there opportunities that would open up if the two programs were able to combine as one? There is no need to say one is better, or to protect one over the other. Let's sit and talk.
It may be too late. But if we are talking about Livonia Tomorrow why not put everything on the table and see what synergy we can discover.
Campaigns are about ideas. Discussions. Consideration. We have had too much of knee jerk reaction and "can't work." How do we know if we don't start talking.
Once we start talking about recreation we can have serious discussions about the role of Greenmead Village, perhaps creating an authority to operate the Village as a major tourist attraction building on the work of the Friends of Greenmead and the outstanding city employees who take pride in one of Livonia's gems.
I am not advocating anything. Just that in this transformative year let's have a serious conversation about the entire community and see how we can make tomorrow work.
Taking charge of time
Do you ever stop, think and realize all the people you have in common when you follow a thread of thought? And what paths you take by venturing out and meeting new people.
I go to the Tuscan Cafe in Northville every morning at 5:30. That's right seven days a week. Green tea and Zingerman nine grain bagel.
Talk with Vic, owner of the Heritage Bakery in Livonia, as he delivers his doughnuts and cakes to the Cafe at 6:00 AM.
I used to shop at his bakery before I knew he provided baked goods to the Tuscan.
Mary, who sells real estate in Livonia for Real Estate One, and who graduated with me from Franklin High School, is a regular at the Tuscan.
Billy, from Mt. Pleasant, worked in sales for the Observer, News and Free Press, who remembered me from my days at Central Michigan even though I had never met him when up there. Oh the stories we share.
Then I met a professor, Doris, from Oakland University at the Tuscan. One time but that is all it took. Months later she called and said she was writing a book and wanted an evaluation. Sent it to me in Romanian. Three weeks later she wrote and asked what I thought. She then sent it to me in English. Read it and told her my opinion.
I stopped into the Wine Castle to thank them for updating the outside of their building. Saw a poster for a vendor show in Dearborn Heights sponsored in part by the Wine Castle. Signing her book at the show on March 28 at Saint Peter and Paul Banquet Hall in Dearborn Hgts. was the professor whose book I had reviewed.
If you keep your eyes open there is so much truth to the concept of 6 degrees of separation.
By the way the book, published by Lilac Publishing, a Michigan company on the westside of the state, is a good read. Thought provoking read. Opens up a thought process of legacy, reality, the desire to return to what we know and have experienced but then realize that time does not allow us to go back.
I would recommend it on Amazon. Download for $3.49 or hardbound for $12.00 by clicking here.
Have a slice of cake from the Heritage and settle in at the Tuscan and bring a book.
What a boring life we would all lead if we did not venture out taking charge of time instead of letting time control us.