Wayne Baker

Clark County Reporter

Wayne Baker is a graduate of Yellow Springs High School and Central State University. He has worked in print media for several years covering news and sports.  Baker has coached youth basketball in the Yellow Springs school system and served on the Human Relations Commission.

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Guest speakers at the event included Stephen Moody, Springfield Police Chief; Anthony Pettiford, Yellow Springs Police Chief; Warren Copeland, Springfield Mayor; Lori Askeland, Yellow Springs Village Council; Jim Hutchins, Wittenberg Police Chief; Denise
Wayne Baker

Law enforcement and public officials attended a town hall forum Monday night at Wittenberg University.  The forum was sponsored by Wittenberg Associate Professor, Julius Bailey's hip hop class, and about 200 students attending used twitter to comment about  the panel discussion, which centered around race, rights and officer involved shootings.

Front and center in Monday night’s forum—the recent deaths of two black men; 18-year-old Michael Brown, in Ferguson, Mo., and 22-year-old John Crawford, III at a Beavercreek Walmart. Both men were shot by white police officers.

Clark State Community College President Dr. Jo Alice Blondin has just finished her first year on the job at the school.  During the first year of her tenure, she has been busy meeting the challenge of developing ways the college can improve.

Blondin came to Springfield last July from the Ozark Campus at Arkansas Tech University to replace Karen Rafinski. She recently helped Clark State develop a five-year strategic plan designed to improve academic programs, enrollment and graduation rates. Blondin explained that a team effort was needed in order to create an effective strategy.

Hundreds protested outside the Beavercreek Walmart Saturday, demanding the Attorney General's office release video of the police shooting of John Crawford.
Wayne Baker / WYSO

Two rallies were held over the weekend outside of the Beavercreek Walmart in conjunction with the death of a man inside the store, and each rally had a distinct message. On August 5, John Crawford III was shot and killed by Beavercreek police after officers responded to a 911 call alleging that Crawford was waving a weapon at people inside of the store. Crawford was later found to be carrying an air rifle of a type that is sold inside the store, and was apparently talking on the phone to his girlfriend during the shooting.

Wilberforce University has announced changes on its Board of Trustees. The leadership change is part of the school's "Force of Change" strategy to help it survive academic and fiscal problems. The Wilberforce Alumni Association and university officials say the strategy will include naming a new president and reorganizing the board of directors.

Wayne Baker / WYSO

Clark County has implemented two economic improvement projects. City officials expect both projects to have a significant impact on tourism and business.

The Greater Springfield Convention & Visitors Bureau unveiled a  new marketing brand for Clark County recently. "Find Your Unwind," is now the slogan attached to the city and county that will appear on social media, t-shirts, mugs and other merchandise.

Chris Schutte, director of the CVB, believes the new brand will help Springfield compete better with areas like Columbus, Cleveland and Cincinnati.

Clark County will take a step back in time this weekend with the 31st annual Fair at New Boston. Katie Wright is co-fair master this year. She feels the event paints a picture of what life was like 200 years ago when Ohio was transitioning from a territory to a state.

"The Fair at New Boston is a highly respected living history reenactment that focuses on a federal time period, 1790 -1810. And it's a civilian trades fair, which is sort of a rare thing in living history events because most are focused around a battle or some major history event and ours is not," Wright said.

Wayne Baker / WYSO

 

The group People for Safe Water held a rally at the Clark County Combined Health District on Tuesday, voicing concerns over the Environmental Protection Agency's cleanup plan for the Tremont City Barrel Fill site by chanting "dig it up, truck it out."

The EPA's plan is to dig up barrels at the Tremont City landfill, remove the ones with liquid waste, but put the barrels filled with solid waste back in the ground.

The last part of that plan, putting barrels back in the ground, is what Clark County residents and city officials turned out to protest.

Canadian Family / Flickr Creative Commons

The Dole Food Company in Springfield received a tax incentive from the State of Ohio for a $9 million expansion in Clark County.  Besides the expansion, the company will be able to add new jobs.

Springfield Chamber of Commerce President Mike McDorman said that the Ohio Tax Credit Authority has approved a tax incentive package for Dole that made the expansion possible.

"That enables the company to do this $9.5 million project in Springfield as well as add 140 jobs," McDorman said.

An open house was held at South High School recently to give residents a look at what will soon become the new educational hub.
Wayne Baker / WYSO

The doors of historic Springfield South High School, which closed in 2008, were once again open to the public this week. An open house allowed residents and alumni to see what will soon become an educational hub for four other Clark County schools.

Wayne Baker / WYSO

Springfield played host to city's first-ever Gourmet Food Truck Competition over the weekend. Veterans Park was jammed with people who turned out to sample food from nearly 40 vendors.
 

The food trucks were competing for a $10,000 grand prize as judges tasted and graded each vendor's signature dish. Harvest Mobile Cuisine from Spring Valley, Ohio took the top prize with its Land and Sea BLT. 

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