Covington City Commission - Primary

Covington residents may vote for 4 candidates. The top 8 vote-getters will advance to the General Election.

Alyssa Dara McDowell

Political party: Nonpartisan

Question 1:

Diversity in Boards and Hiring -Covington is one of the most diverse cities in northern Kentucky when it comes to racial and ethnic make up, and has many vibrant neighborhoods. Yet some residents see a distinct lack of representation on city boards or in city employment. What steps can the city take to make sure that community boards and city employment are representative of the city as a whole?

With an atmosphere of compassion, it is important to reach out to those that tend to be overlooked.  We must come to recognize that each person has unique gifts and talents they can contribute to society.  I would work to create forums to provide citizens with the opportunity to come together  and collaborate with one another.  I would team up with city, state, and federal officials to find ways to provide each individual a fair opportunity to get involved, - working towards the overall good of our city, while developing ourselves and our sense of community, in the process.  One day, Covington, KY may be known as the friendliest city in the nation, -without regard, other than a mutual love and respect, for our individual racial or ethnic make up.

Bill Wells

Political party: Nonpartisan

Campaign website: http://www.bill4cov.com

Campaign Facebook: Facebook

Question 1:

Diversity in Boards and Hiring -Covington is one of the most diverse cities in northern Kentucky when it comes to racial and ethnic make up, and has many vibrant neighborhoods. Yet some residents see a distinct lack of representation on city boards or in city employment. What steps can the city take to make sure that community boards and city employment are representative of the city as a whole?

All board appointments are on the city website https://www.covingtonky.gov/government/boards-commissions

All information regarding the boards and applications for a board appointment is very easily found. If there is anything we can do to increase transparency, please let me know.

Brandon Mims

Political party: Nonpartisan

Campaign Facebook: Facebook

Question 1:

Diversity in Boards and Hiring -Covington is one of the most diverse cities in northern Kentucky when it comes to racial and ethnic make up, and has many vibrant neighborhoods. Yet some residents see a distinct lack of representation on city boards or in city employment. What steps can the city take to make sure that community boards and city employment are representative of the city as a whole?

The Mayor is the one who makes the selection for board members, the City Commissioner confirms the selections. The Commission as a whole can stipulate that people serving on any city board must be residents of the city and remain a resident throughout their term or select individuals from different parts of city depending on the board requirements. I currently sit on the Covington Human Rights Commission board. From my experience the issue was the lack of announcing when a position on a board was coming up (currently you have to be well versed in the city's website) and should be mentioned by the Mayor, City Manager or the City Solicitor during each meeting since they are televised. Concerning Employment opportunities currently Department Managers or City Manager make the selection for employees. I am willing to question the hiring practices and make sure that we are not in any violation of any labor/ human right laws.

Christi Blair

Political party: Nonpartisan

Campaign Facebook: Facebook

Question 1:

Diversity in Boards and Hiring -Covington is one of the most diverse cities in northern Kentucky when it comes to racial and ethnic make up, and has many vibrant neighborhoods. Yet some residents see a distinct lack of representation on city boards or in city employment. What steps can the city take to make sure that community boards and city employment are representative of the city as a whole?

The City of Covington can make sure all opportunities to serve on boards and city jobs are advertised on the city webpage and on social media for a reasonable time period. Make sure there is plenty of notice to the public so as many residents as possible can share information or apply. I think the days of cronyism, favoring friends and keeping these positions hidden or reserved are over in Covington. Open government means equal opportunities and I will always support true transparency when it come to opportunities to public service careers and positions in our city.

Del Shawn Renee Hayes

Political party: Nonpartisan

Campaign Facebook: Facebook

Question 1:

Diversity in Boards and Hiring -Covington is one of the most diverse cities in northern Kentucky when it comes to racial and ethnic make up, and has many vibrant neighborhoods. Yet some residents see a distinct lack of representation on city boards or in city employment. What steps can the city take to make sure that community boards and city employment are representative of the city as a whole?

In order for the City of Covington’s community boards and city employees make up a diversified representation then a well-organized diversity and inclusion program should be incorporated. This program will include residents, city leaders, and past and present city council to recruit, educated, and inform all but most importantly targeting ethnic communities. This will allow ethnic residents to have equal access to opportunities open to the community that will contribute to the city’s success and drive future growth.

Denny Bowman

Political party: Nonpartisan

Question 1:

Diversity in Boards and Hiring -Covington is one of the most diverse cities in northern Kentucky when it comes to racial and ethnic make up, and has many vibrant neighborhoods. Yet some residents see a distinct lack of representation on city boards or in city employment. What steps can the city take to make sure that community boards and city employment are representative of the city as a whole?

Covington, has been and will continue to be a great diverse city. While serving Covington citizens for 27 years as an elected official i have always been open to working with our 19 neighborhoods and will always reach out to all of our citizens for board and employment positions according to the law

John Flesch

Political party: Nonpartisan

Question 1:

Diversity in Boards and Hiring -Covington is one of the most diverse cities in northern Kentucky when it comes to racial and ethnic make up, and has many vibrant neighborhoods. Yet some residents see a distinct lack of representation on city boards or in city employment. What steps can the city take to make sure that community boards and city employment are representative of the city as a whole?

As a hiring entity, Covington is required to hire per EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) guidelines. I would like to see Covington strive to reach EEOC objectives on a departmental basis, not just as an aggregate measure. Establishing diversity across all departments would engrain a recognition of our diversity on a level of everyday practice.

City Boards are comprised of community members who have volunteered or have been specifically tapped to be on a Board. As it currently stands, the Commission simply approves the appointments of the Mayor. Unfortunately, an opportunity for diversity is lost when some Commissioners are denied the opportunity to nominate potential Board members.

M SPEARS

Political party: Nonpartisan

Campaign website: http://makecovingtongreatagain.com

Campaign Facebook: Facebook

Question 1:

Diversity in Boards and Hiring -Covington is one of the most diverse cities in northern Kentucky when it comes to racial and ethnic make up, and has many vibrant neighborhoods. Yet some residents see a distinct lack of representation on city boards or in city employment. What steps can the city take to make sure that community boards and city employment are representative of the city as a whole?

Community boards and city employment need to be representative of the city as a whole. Personally I find Lee Draper’s CONNECT techniques on building a diverse board through using conduits to be easily implemented at the local level. The CONNECT technique starts by defining your board’s key gaps and then bringing in well connected, outside volunteers to identify the top “up-and-coming” individuals that share your mission and would enjoy the opportunity of exploring a volunteer leadership role. Using conduits is an effective means to grow the networking range of an organization, create more advocates for the mission, and create a diverse and engaged board...which ultimately makes our city better, allows for more economic growth, and makes us all rich. So it’s pretty clear that if you vote for SPEARS all of your wildest dreams will come true.

Michelle Williams

Political party: Nonpartisan

Campaign Facebook: Facebook

Question 1:

Diversity in Boards and Hiring -Covington is one of the most diverse cities in northern Kentucky when it comes to racial and ethnic make up, and has many vibrant neighborhoods. Yet some residents see a distinct lack of representation on city boards or in city employment. What steps can the city take to make sure that community boards and city employment are representative of the city as a whole?

As a current city commissioner, I feel that we have made great strides to ensure that Covington has diverse representation in employment and on city boards.  It has been a long hard road, but there have been many changes in the way the city conducts business. Employment opportunities have been changed so that everyone has an equal chance to apply for positions at the city.  We have expanded our employment searches to include a much larger area including national searches. These changes have brought us to the point where everyone has an equal opportunity to be employed by the city.  Community board members are selected after presenting the mayor with a resume and qualifications. The mayor then makes a selection to present to the board members.  We have found that this give everyone in the community a chance to serve on city boards.

Shannon C. Smith

Political party: Nonpartisan

Campaign website: http://Shan4Cov.com

Campaign Facebook: Facebook

Question 1:

Diversity in Boards and Hiring -Covington is one of the most diverse cities in northern Kentucky when it comes to racial and ethnic make up, and has many vibrant neighborhoods. Yet some residents see a distinct lack of representation on city boards or in city employment. What steps can the city take to make sure that community boards and city employment are representative of the city as a whole?

Diversity is achieved through understanding and intention. Our boards and city employees should, not to say they do not, understand that different backgrounds and points of view allow organizations to better reflect and understand, thus serve, the community they are in. Understanding those benefits cause organizations to be intentional in their efforts to increase awareness around diversity. At an organizational level, the creation of diversity related events can lead to a culture of inclusion as can employee surveys with opportunities to comment, express concern, and seek/provide advice on diversification goals. There is also a certain level of personal responsibility for each of us to boost our own cultural competency which we can achieve by educating ourselves on other views and cultures. No efforts will be perfect as “diversity is a journey, not a destination”, but the above is certainly a start.

Tim Downing

Political party: Nonpartisan

Question 1:

Diversity in Boards and Hiring -Covington is one of the most diverse cities in northern Kentucky when it comes to racial and ethnic make up, and has many vibrant neighborhoods. Yet some residents see a distinct lack of representation on city boards or in city employment. What steps can the city take to make sure that community boards and city employment are representative of the city as a whole?

It starts with open communication between the city and its residents. There has always been a strong sense of community within each of Covington’s neighborhoods – and through engagement with these neighborhood leaders we have found a broad coalition of volunteers to serve our community as a whole. The current commission has worked to empower its residents and increase community engagement via localized neighborhood improvement funds and resources to encourage more citizen involvement.