Present leaders inspire future

Tim Miller

Dollar-a-slice pizza also came with heavy side of “get involved” in political life Thursday afternoon as city and state officials mingled with students on Central Campus for another installment of Political Action Week.

Mayor Ann Campbell kicked off the day by speaking about university and city relations.

“It’s no secret that our demographics, age-wise, are different than a normal city,” Campbell said.

Even something as simple as when people wake up and go to sleep differs a lot in Ames, she said. It offers a little bit different of a dynamic to the city.

She said her purpose of coming to PAW was to try to get students involved in city government and to step outside of Iowa State’s boundaries.

“You’re connected to the university, I understand,” Campbell said.

Getting involved in the city is not an option for some right now, she said, but City Council meetings and her door are always open to the public.

Ryan Doll, 3rd Ward city councilman, and Dan Rice, 1st Ward city councilman and academic adviser of liberal arts and sciences, attended as well.

Doll said when he ran as a student, albeit a somewhat older one than most, he had more student support than he does now. One big thing Doll said he misses is talking to students about concerns they have.

Some of the things Doll and the City Council have done for the students and Ames over the past couple of years are fixing parking in the greek community and changing towing contracts due to overcharging.

“Political action comes from discussions,” Doll said.

Maggie Luttrell, Government of the Student Body ex-officio City Council liaison and junior in history, stopped by as soon as Doll finished speaking. She said she wanted to let students know she represents them in the Ames City Council, although she doesn’t get a vote.

“I try to represent you guys the best I can,” Luttrell said.

Her job is self-explanatory, she said. Some issues she did weigh in on were Grand Avenue expansion, which she advised strongly against, and the aquatic center voting.

“A positive thing is we are getting a new aquatic center,” Luttrell said.

Rice talked about voting on issues in the City Council and made the point that voting for City Council requires long-term vision.

“I’m voting for something that happens 20 to 25 years from now,” Rice said.

Looking down the road, he said, he is working on trying to run a city on scarce resources. Rice is currently interested in seeing how a city would run without automobiles.

Going along with the theme of being involved, Michael Mauro, Iowa Secretary of State, spoke about his own experiences that led him to become a politician. He urged students to become part of the process.

The most important thing a student can do is vote, he said.

Jon Shelness, 2005 mayoral candidate, went in a much different direction than the previous speakers, claiming that the 2004 Veishea riots changed his life. He even called out ISU President Gregory Geoffroy, wanting him to make a change in the social order of Iowa State, what Shelness called “corporate governance.” Corporate governance deals with grooming leaders and teaching accountability. Shelness said he doesn’t think Iowa State teaches leadership anymore.

“Are you being tested?” Shelness asked. “In my opinion, you are not.”

Andrea Chimienti, freshman in pre-professional health programs, came out to see the speakers because she thought she should be involved with activities on campus.

“Maggie Luttrell was a very good speaker,” she said. “She was very personal.”