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.

Ways To Connect

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 groups are planning separate demonstrations this weekend centered around the death of 22-year-old John Crawford III, an unarmed black man who was shot by a Beavercreek police officer in Walmart Aug. 5.

A special Greene County Grand Jury decided not to indict Sergeant David Darkow and Officer Sean Williams, the two police officers involved in the shooting. They responded to a 9-1-1 call claiming Crawford was wandering around the store pointing a gun at people; the gun was later found to be an air rifle bb gun sold in the store.

Wilberforce University

Wilberforce University has named a new president. The country’s oldest private historically black college and university announced that Dr. Algeania Warren Freeman will become the school's 20th president - taking over for Dr. Wilma Mishoe who was serving in an interim capacity.

Willjay/wikimedia commons

A rally for the family of a man shot and killed by police inside a Beavercreek Walmart in August will take place Monday morning. A student led political activist group from Columbus is organizing the event.
 

The Ohio Student Association is calling the event the "Journey for John Crawford." Crawford was shot and killed inside of Walmart after police responded to a 9-1-1 call saying he was pointing a weapon at other customers.

Springfield's 5th annual Promisefest
Wayne Baker

The Springfield Promise Neighborhood held its fifth annual PromiseFest this week. The program designed to help families in poor areas thrive, is getting stronger.

Nearly 20 years ago in Harlem, New York, Geoffrey Canada started the Promise Neighborhood initiative to help children from poor families succeed at the earliest age possible. Canada called it the "cradle through college" system that made sure kids were safe, in school and fed.

A hearing in Clark County Tuesday brought state legislators and policy advocates together to strategize on addressing Ohio's unemployment debt.
Wayne Baker / WYSO

Ohio legislators are trying to figure out how to pay down almost $1.4 billion in debt to the federal government for the state's unemployment fund. Ohio's Unemployment Compensation Study Committee held a hearing in Clark County Tuesday to address concerns about the fund. 

The state borrowed lots of money from the federal government during the Great Recession to make up for shortfalls in its unemployment fund. 

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.

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