By Teri L. Hansen
The McPherson Chamber of Commerce Business and Membership Committee will host a forum for upcoming candidates in the USD 418 Board of Education election. The forum will be held at 7 p.m., Wednesday, Oct. 9 at the Kansas Municipal Utilities Inc., building at 2090 E. Avenue A in McPherson.
“The forum is organized by the McPherson Chamber of Commerce BAM! Committee as a service to the community,” McPherson Chamber of Commerce Administrative Assistant Debbie Hawkinson said. “It allows candidates to express their views openly so community members can understand their positions and make informed voting choices.”
The forum is going to be less of a debate and more of a question and answer conversation. Numbers will be drawn to determine speaking order. Each speaker will have a three-minute introduction during which they may inform the audience of their qualifications and reasons for seeking office. After, candidates will be asked to answer questions from the audience.
“Questions from the audience will be collected in written form and will be screened by the committee for duplication and must be appropriate for all candidates,” Hawkinson said. “Candidates will each have one minute to address each applicable question.”
The last day to register to vote is Oct. 15. Advance voting begins Oct. 16 and the McPherson city and school general election will take place Nov. 5. Four school board positions are up for grabs, with nine people having filed for them:
- Jeff L. Johnson
- Brian Meek
- Alan L. Burghart
- Dale Patrick
- Emily Greer
- Robin K. Werth
- Jeffrey P. Butler
- Lara Vanderhoof
- Ann M.E. Parkins
“Eight of the 9 candidates have indicated that they will be in attendance (at the forum),” Hawkinson explained. “One had to decline because of another commitment.”
The forum is open to the public and free to attend. For those who are unable to be there, it will be broadcast on McPherson Radio 96.7 FM-KBBE.