Milestones
See our Home page for "RECENT NEWS." See below for some milestones, past accomplishments, and important events in which PPP has been involved. The most recent of these are listed first, with previous events further down the page and the earliest ones at the end of the page.

March 13, 2013

PPP Hosts Piqua Progress 2013 --"A Great Success"

Positively Promoting Piqua was pleased to host a special public event, Piqua Progress 2013, on Wednesday, March 13, 2013. PPP staged the event in conjunction with the Piqua City Schools and the City of Piqua. It was held in the Grand Ballroom on the fourth floor of the marvelously restored Fort Piqua Plaza. The purpose of the free event was to update the Piqua community on encouraging developments in Piqua in both the public and private sectors, helping make us "a great community in which to live and work."

The chemistry of the event was exceptionally positive and encouraging for the Piqua community. For more detail on this important event, click here.

February 20, 2013

Grant-Writing Workshop for Non-Profits

As noted below, in October of 2012, Positively Promoting Piqua, in partnership with the Piqua Area Chamber of Commerce, held a Leadership Conference for Non-Profits. The response to the Conference was outstanding, with many of those participating expressing interest in future opportunities to learn more.

Stacy Scott, of the Positively Promoting Piqua Steering Committee, was on the planning committee for the Leadership Conference. Scott said, “Participants left this event hungry to learn more about grant opportunities and the application process.” As a result, PPP and the Chamber combined with the Miami County Foundation, The Piqua Community Foundation and The Foundation Center at Edison Community College to host a new training session, focused solely on grant research and the application process.

The Grant-Writing Workshop for Non-Profits was held the morning of February 20, 2013 at Edison Community College. It was open to not-for-profits serving Piqua. Karen Wendeln, Executive Director of The Piqua Community Foundation, and Cheryl Stiefel-Francis, Executive Director of the Miami County Foundation, talked about their grant application and grant writing do’s and don’ts. The participants also were able to explore the Foundation Center’s Cooperating Collection and had hands-on access to research grant opportunities pertaining to their organizations' particular needs. The response to the event was outstanding.

Thanks to Stacy for heading up PPP's involvement with this event!

October 25, 2012

Positive Piqua Leadership Conference for Non-Profits

On the afternoon of October 25, 2012, Positively Promoting Piqua, in partnership with the Piqua Area Chamber of Commerce, held the inaugural Positive Piqua Leadership Conference for Non-Profits. The event was held on the fourth floor of The Fort Piqua Plaza. A number of area companies and organizations stepped up to help sponsor the conference, which was designed to pull together leaders from many of Piqua's leading non-profit organizations for the purposes of:

  • Providing opportunities for participating organizations to hear valuable insights and suggestions on enhancing volunteers and fundraising from not only each other but some of the Miami Valley's most knowledgeable non-profit leaders.
  • Deepening awareness about and among Piqua's non-profits, by sharing information on each participating organization's areas of concentration and leadership.
  • Working to foster a cooperative ethic among Piqua's non-profits and an appreciation of the benefits of collaboration by encouraging participating organizations to consider leveraging their talents and resources with those of other Piqua non-profits, to more effectively pursue individual organizations' missions and for the betterment of the Piqua community.
  • Providing non-profits an opportunity to discuss and potentially collaborate on one or more projects of benefit to the Piqua community.

The keynote presentation for the Conference was by Michael Parks, President of The Dayton Foundation, and David Ramey, President of Strategic Leadership Associates, Inc. (Kettering, OH), who discussed "The Future of Non-Profits -- Collaboration."

The keynote presentation was followed by two breakout sessions:

  • “Recruiting and Retaining Volunteers,” presented by Chatoya Hayes, Manager of “Volunteer Connection” for United Way of Greater Dayton.
  • “Trends in Fundraising,” presented by Anna Magnusson, Community Outreach & Partnership Director for Habitat for Humanity of Ohio, and Linda Gatten Butler, President of Butler Consulting, Inc. (Springfield, OH).

Each breakout session was presented twice so that all those attending had an opportunity to participate in both.

Near the conclusion of the Conference, surveys were taken from those in attendance, covering, among other subjects, Piqua community projects upon which our non-profits might collaborate. Such projects might well also involve other organizations, both private and public, as well as unaffiliated individuals. The key criterion suggested to those responding is that the project they favored be one that could provide a positive, lasting benefit for much if not all of the Piqua community. Two projects generating the most interest were:

  • Enhancing Piqua’s Water Assets. This project would focus on enhancing, promoting, and protecting our natural waterways -- the Great Miami River, Echo Lake, Franz Pond, Swift Run Lake and the Hydraulic Canal -- for recreational and aesthetic purposes.
  • Developing Piqua as a Bicycle Hub. This project would involve leveraging Piqua’s geographic location by expanding our bike PATH and coordinating and connecting it with neighboring networks to make Piqua a regional hub for this growing recreational pursuit, which also has economic development potential.

PPP will be following up with those in attendance who expressed interest in supporting or working on these projects.

The formal program for the Conference concluded at 5:15 PM, followed by a social hour. Hors d'oeuvres and beverages were provided, along with a cash bar.

PPP welcomed the opportunity to partner with the Piqua Area Chamber of Commerce in presenting the Conference. PPP's representatives to the planning committee for the event included Dan French, Dan Ramer, Alissa Blankenship, Sharon Semanie, Mike Gutmann, and Stacy Scott. Thanks to all of you!

November 8, 2011

Piqua City Schools Bond Issue Is Approved by Piqua Voters

Fall 2011

Citizens Committee Assists in Building Mote Park Shelter

Fall 2011

PPP Publicly Endorses and Supports Piqua City Schools Bond Issue

May 19, 2011

PPP Citizens Committee is Formed

The community-improvement group Positively Promoting Piqua has announced formation of a 17-member Citizens Committee. Jim Brown, spokesman for the group, said, “This is an important step in our organization's development. It makes us broader and deeper and provides an outstanding representation of the many people who share our belief in Piqua's future."

The inaugural meeting of the Citizens Committee was held on Thursday, May 19, at Hartzell Propeller in Piqua. Said Brown, "The Citizens Committee is designed to reflect the broad spectrum of PPP's supporters. The Committee members come from across Piqua and include wage earners, retirees, and responsible property owners, as well as business and civic leaders. This diversity is consistent with PPP's intentions since our inception."

Brown continued, "We are exceptionally proud that so many outstanding individuals from across Piqua have stepped forward to help Piqua be the best it can be. Even after just one meeting, it is apparent that the Citizens Committee will bring to our organization not only a diversity of opinions but a depth of talent, experience and community involvement that will serve our organization, and the Piqua community, very well."

Brown noted that the Citizens Committee will serve, to a large extent, as the "eyes and ears" of Positively Promoting Piqua. "We expect this Committee will provide PPP with information and constructive suggestions from PPP members, and from persons outside our organization, on projects, activities, and other good and positive things in Piqua that deserve our support."

In addition, Brown pointed out, the PPP Citizens Committee "greatly deepens our capabilities in terms of positive action to implement our ideas. They will assist in carrying out personally, and in some cases delegating, tasks associated with our mission. I believe we will soon find that this group can have a marvelous impact in helping all of us here in Piqua move our community forward."

The PPP Citizens Committee, which will work closely with the group's Steering Committee, will meet regularly and eventually expects to conduct its meetings throughout Piqua, Brown said. "Positively Promoting Piqua is a community organization. It represents people from throughout Piqua who support what PPP is trying to do. We expect that this group will reach out, geographically and otherwise, to inspire a vital and active civic spirit throughout our community."

Brown summed up his enthusiasm over the Citizens Committee's formation. "It's apparent to me that many people agree with us that Piqua's best days may lie ahead. However, we realize that a great future for our community is not inevitable. We need to stand up and pull together constructively to help Piqua improve and grow. We have to make it happen. We greatly appreciate the commitment of these 17 outstanding citizens to help accomplish this through the Positively Promoting Piqua Citizens Committee. We congratulate them and look forward to working with them."

May 3, 2011

Piqua Public Library Levy Passes with Nearly 60% Approval

Spring 2011

PPP Supports Piqua Public Library Levy

March 1, 2011

PPP Comments on Defeat of Recalls

The community-improvement group Positively Promoting Piqua on Tuesday evening, March 1, pronounced the voters' rejection of the effort to recall four of Piqua's five City Commissioners "a decisive victory for common sense over negativity." Jim Brown, spokesman for the group, said, "As we said from the outset of this unfortunate episode, we believe the recall effort was misguided and destructive. A substantial majority of Piqua's voters apparently saw it the same way. For that, we are very grateful."

Brown’s comments came in response to the news Tuesday evening, March 1, that the efforts to recall Piqua Commissioners Bill Vogt, Joseph Wilson, Judy Terry, and Mayor Lucy Fess had all failed at the polls by margins of more than 70 percent to 30 percent.

Brown noted, "We believe in Piqua and its future and we believe Piqua can be a great community. Part of making that happen is assuring that we have elected representatives who are intelligent, well-informed, experienced and forward thinking, who are committed to working for the benefit of Piqua as a whole. We believe the commissioners targeted by the recall effort meet this standard. Their actions have demonstrated that they are working for all of Piqua and helping this be a strong, clean, and safe community. The results this evening are a clear statement that Piqua's voters agree."

"There is an important lesson that I hope all of us in Piqua can take from this experience," Brown continued. "We need to stop being negative about our community. Obviously this is not to say that we shouldn’t speak out against decisions with which we disagree. But we need to conduct our debates on civic issues constructively. This is vital if we wish to continue to attract good people to represent us. And it's crucial that we present an image of a positive, progressive community to companies and people whom we would like to attract to Piqua."

Brown concluded by reiterating that Positively Promoting Piqua is dedicated to constructive measures to better the community. "Now that this unfortunate recall drama is behind us, we want to help heal the divisions that brought us to this point, so all of us in Piqua can refocus on cooperative positive efforts to improve and grow this city as an outstanding place to live and work."

January 19, 2011

PPP Meeting Draws Large, Enthusiastic Crowd

A large, enthusiastic and supportive group of Piqua citizens attended Positively Promoting Piqua's second public event, held on January 19, 2011, in the All Hands meeting area at Hartzell Propeller in Piqua. Those attending heard presentations by four members of PPP's Executive Committee reporting on PPP's mission and ideals, as well as the group's efforts to date and its plans for the future. PPP leaders also presented facts regarding the upcoming recall election on March 1st and some of the reasons why PPP is urging all Piqua voters to vote against the recalls.

PPP Executive Committee member Dan French began the evening by welcoming those present and expressing the group's gratitude for the outstanding turnout, estimated by a media account to be in the hundreds. After leading the audience in the Pledge of Allegiance, French briefly reviewed PPP's mission statement and beliefs. He also touched on a number of important objectives that the group has accomplished to date and its establishment of a host of communications tools, including its web site, positivepiqua.org, and a newsletter that will allow the group to communicate with its supporters regularly and on short notice when necessary.

French noted that PPP has plans to fully develop itself in the near future but that by necessity its immediate objective is to defeat the effort to recall four of Piqua's five elected City Commissioners. French stated that the defeat of the recalls on March 1st is critical to PPP's plans and hopes for Piqua and that this therefore must be "Job 1" for the organization.

PPP Executive Committee member Mike Gutmann followed French by covering in detail some of the key facts and dates in relation to the recall election. He displayed a sample of what the recall ballot is expected to look like and provided extensive information as to absentee voting and early voting options that will be available for this election. He noted that PPP has numerous copies of the official form for requesting an absentee ballot, which he noted PPP will gladly provide to anyone who asks for one. Executive Committee member John Brown noted that the form will also be posted on the PPP web site, positivepiqua.org.

Gutmann also reviewed the terms of office of the five City Commissioners and noted that the four who were targeted for recall were properly elected by the citizens of Piqua -- two of them to terms that began barely a year ago. He also pointed out that the seats of the other two targeted Commissioners will be on the ballot this fall. Said Gutmann, "These four Commissioners represent all of us, have worked diligently and honestly for Piqua, and have done nothing to justify recall." He then fielded a number of questions from the audience pertaining to the March 1 election.

Following Gutmann, PPP Executive Committee member Dan Ramer discussed in detail some of the reasons why PPP is urging Piqua voters to defeat the recalls. At the outset of his remarks, Ramer noted that those opposing PPP on the recall issue are "our opponents, not our enemies" and emphasized that PPP plans to reach out to establish a dialogue with them once the recalls are defeated, to help "heal the divisions" that led to the recall controversy. Ramer then outlined two major reasons why PPP believes we must vote against the recalls. The first reason he cited is that they are "utterly unjustified." Referring to the effort to oust Commissioners Judy Terry, Joe Wilson, Lucy Fess, and Bill Vogt, he stated, "These four good people have been fiscally responsible, they‘ve demonstrated good judgment, and they’ve made tough decisions with the best interests of all of Piqua at heart. They deserve our thanks -- not this."

Ramer then discussed the "toxic" message that the recall effort, if successful, would send and the damage it would do to the community's ability to attract good people to represent and serve it in the future. He reviewed the central importance of economic development to Piqua's future and discussed what he called economic "realities" that Piqua voters need to recognize. Ramer stated that the recall effort, if successful, would "inflict needless economic harm" on Piqua by undermining its ability to market itself to companies that might be looking to come to Piqua or expand here. He also commented on the damage that the recall effort, if successful, would do to our efforts to draw our young people, including our "best and brightest," back to Piqua following their college and post-graduate years.

Ramer concluded by announcing PPP's central message for its "Defeat the Recalls" campaign: "Stand Up for Piqua. VOTE Against the Recalls." He announced PPP's "Defeat the Recalls" campaign team, consisting of Frank Barhorst, Ryan King, and John Brown, and provided their contact information. He then described the group's need for volunteers for communicating its campaign message through house-by-house distribution of brochures across the city, a large number of yard signs, an aggressive campaign of letters to the editor, and presentation of PPP's message at the City Commission meetings on February 1 and 15. Sign-up sheets for these campaign tasks were then circulated among the audience, eliciting an outstanding volunteer response. Ramer noted that the campaign team will be in touch soon with all of the volunteers.

PPP Executive Committee member Ryan King made the final formal presentation of the evening, reviewing PPP's plans once the March 1 recall election is completed. He noted that the group expects this spring to establish bylaws and create a large "Citizens Committee" to serve as the "eyes and ears" of the organization and make recommendations to the Executive Committee. He also emphasized the importance of Piqua citizens stepping up to provide financial support for PPP and its mission . Finally, King noted PPP's plans to support and enhance positive initiatives, events and groups, to enhance the quality of life in Piqua, and its plans to support the economic development initiatives of Grow Piqua Now.

Dan French returned to the lectern following the formal presentations and fielded questions from the audience relating to the recall controversy, the March 1 election, and PPP. He closed the meeting by thanking those present for their outstanding show of support for Positively Promoting Piqua as it works to defeat the recalls and then moves forward this spring to "flesh out" the organization. French reminded all present that PPP is "dedicated to helping Piqua grow and be a great place to live and work."

Following the meeting, "VOTE Against the Recalls" yard signs and brochures were distributed and made available to all who attended. In addition, Campaign Information Sheets were made available. Those wishing to volunteer for the "Defeat the Recalls" campaign are urged to contact campaign chairs Frank Barhorst, (937) 773-4168, fbarhorst@woh.rr.com; Ryan King, (937) 418-4450, rkingrafi@gmail.com; or John Brown, (937) 615-1022, jabrown@unitynationalbk.com. Those interested in learning more about PPP can visit its web site at positivepiqua.org and can find Positively Promoting Piqua on Facebook.

January 3, 2011

PPP Reaffirms Intent to Defeat Recalls

The recently formed community-improvement group Positively Promoting Piqua reaffirmed its intent to defeat the effort to recall selected Piqua city commissioners. Jim Brown, spokesman for the group, said, "We still believe the recall effort is misguided and destructive."

Brown’s comments came in response to the Miami County Board of Elections announcement that it had finally certified petitions that seek to recall Piqua Commissioners Bill Vogt, Joseph Wilson, Judy Terry, and Mayor Lucy Fess.

Brown stated, "We believe this recall effort is unwise, unjustified, and, if successful, would have a very detrimental impact on Piqua." Brown noted that the commissioners targeted by the recall petitions "were properly elected by the citizens of Piqua and have truly done nothing to justify recall. They have worked honestly and diligently to serve their community; they deserve to complete their terms of office, so they can continue the job of working for all the citizens of Piqua and not just a narrow faction."

Positively Promoting Piqua is a diverse group of Piqua citizens, including wage earners, retirees, responsible property owners, and local business, professional and civic leaders, united to help Piqua be the best it can be. The group is "focused on positive efforts to help Piqua improve and grow as an outstanding community in which to live and work."

Brown notes that PPP intends to wage an aggressive campaign to defeat the recall effort. "We believe in Piqua and its future and we believe Piqua can be a great community," said Brown. "Part of making that happen is to assure that we have elected representatives who are intelligent, well-informed, experienced and forward thinking, who are committed to working for the benefit of Piqua as a whole. We believe the commissioners targeted by the recall effort meet this standard. Their actions have demonstrated that they are working for all of Piqua and helping this be a strong, clean, and safe community."

Brown suggested that the recall efforts, if successful, "would send an intensively negative and detrimental message about Piqua and where it is headed, making it extremely difficult to recruit new employers and jobs into our community. For this reason, our group will be working to mobilize Piqua citizens to defeat the recalls." He stated that PPP will be communicating regularly with its supporters and others in the coming weeks, noting that the group will "coordinate a community-wide effort" to defeat the recalls.

Brown concluded by reiterating that Positively Promoting Piqua is dedicated to constructive measures to better the community. "Our objective is to defeat the recall efforts and then help heal the unfortunate divisions that brought us to this point, so all of us in Piqua can refocus on cooperative positive efforts to improve and grow this city as an outstanding place to live and work." He noted that those interested in learning more about PPP can visit its web site at positivepiqua.org or find Positively Promoting Piqua on FaceBook.

December 9, 2010

PPP Announces Intent to Defeat Recalls

The new community-improvement group Positively Promoting Piqua today announced its intent to press forward with plans to defeat the effort to recall four of five Piqua city commissioners, despite the announcement that the Miami County Board of Elections had determined that each of the four recall petitions bears an insufficient number of valid signatures. Jim Brown, a spokesman for PPP, said, "We believe the recall effort is misguided, destructive and, if successful, would have a detrimental impact on Piqua."

Brown’s comments came in response to the Board of Elections determination, announced Wednesday, December 8, that the four petitions each contained fewer than the required 1,000 valid signatures of registered Piqua voters. The petitions seek an election to recall Commissioners Bill Vogt, Joseph Wilson, Judy Terry, and Lucy Fess.

Brown said, "If the petitioners were to succeed in recalling these commissioners, it would send an intensively negative message about Piqua and where it is headed. We were pleased to learn of the Board’s findings yesterday. But as we understand it, the people who started up the petitions will have some time to obtain more signatures, so this may not be the end of the story. We therefore intend to proceed with our plans to persuade the people of Piqua that these recalls are not the way to go."

Positively Promoting Piqua is a group of Piqua citizens formed this fall. According to its mission statement, the group is "focused on positive efforts to help Piqua improve and grow as an outstanding community in which to live and work."

"We believe Piqua can be a great community," said Brown. "Part of making that happen is assuring that we have elected representatives who are intelligent, well-informed, experienced and forward thinking and who are committed to working for the benefit of Piqua as a whole. We believe the commissioners targeted by the recall effort meet this standard." Brown added, "They were elected by the citizens of Piqua, have worked honestly and diligently to serve their community, and have done nothing to justify recall. They deserve to complete their terms of office, so the Commission can continue working for all the citizens of Piqua and not just a narrow faction."

Brown stated that if, through later developments, one or more of the petitions are certified as complying with Piqua's recall-petition requirements, Positively Promoting Piqua intends to wage an aggressive campaign, "working to mobilize Piqua citizens to defeat these recalls at the ballot box." He stated that PPP will be communicating regularly with its supporters and others in the coming weeks, emphasizing that the group will "coordinate a community-wide campaign" against the recalls.

Brown concluded by reiterating that Positively Promoting Piqua is dedicated to constructive measures to better the community. "Our objective is to defeat these recalls and then help heal the unfortunate divisions that brought us to this point, so all of us in Piqua can refocus on positive actions to improve and grow this city as an outstanding place to live and work."

November 30, 2010

PPP Holds Kickoff Public Event

Positively Promoting Piqua held its first public event at Hartzell Propeller on November 30, 2010 in Hartzell Propeller's All Hands Meeting Room. The purpose of the event was to introduce the organization and its key principles and goals. Jim Brown, co-chair of the group's membership committee, said afterward that "We were gratified with the strong turnout and the support from responsible, committed Piqua citizens."

Jim Brown said he believes that "if this group presents our views properly, it can change the community for the better." PPP's Dan Ramer said he believes the organization will "allow citizens who have high hopes for the city to join together and stand up for positive change."

PPP representatives discussed a number of their core beliefs at the meeting. These include striving to be an outstanding community. The group wants to keep the positive momentum developed in recent years in Piqua going because, according to Ramer, "this work never stops." He pointed out that PPP believes in standing up for positive solutions, and "by creating a well informed community, the city will continue to grow in a positive way." Ramer also noted that PPP members believe that we need "well informed, intelligent, experienced and forward thinking leadership to move the community forward."

Ramer stated that PPP also believes in the need for Piqua citizens to support our public amenities, such as the city parks, our schools, and the Piqua Public Library. He also stated that PPP believes in the importance of keeping our neighborhoods the best that they can be, noting that "Neighborhoods speak clearly about what kind of a community we are," and while a lot of citizens take pride in their properties, "we can't ignore neighborhood blight and its negative effect on our community as a whole."

The discussion then turned to the importance of putting the city's best foot forward to help attract and retain businesses. PPP, Ramer noted, believes that it is important for Piqua citizens to work together to encourage businesses to come to the area by showing potential businesses that this is a great place to live and work

Committee member John Brown addressed the objectives of the group, which led to discussion about the current efforts to recall of four of Piqua's five city commissioners. John Brown said that the group will be publicly opposing the proposed recalls, contending that they are "destructive to the city and we want to be a constructive force." Brown went on to say that "this is about picking a strategy for a way forward that is not destructive." He noted that the group's focus is to create ways to create positive change within the city.

PPP's Dan French ended the meeting by saying that the "need to positively support the community will not end" with the defeat of the recalls. He noted that PPP plans to continue to support the community and positively promote Piqua in any way that it can. French suggested that Piqua citizens become more actively involved in the community by attending city commission meetings, writing letters to the editor, attending community events, supporting our public amenities, and giving back to the community.

In the aftermath of the meeting, PPP's Jim Brown wrote a number of the organization's supporters, noting that "It is apparent that many people agree with us that Piqua's best days may lie ahead. However, we realize that a great future for our community is not inevitable. We need to stand up and pull together constructively to help Piqua improve and grow. We have to make it happen. This will take hard work from all of us. But we are convinced that the work will be rewarding and that the goal is achievable."

November 2010

City Street Levy Is Approved by Piqua voters

Fall 2010

PPP is Created

PPP establishes mission statement and beliefs; publicly supports and works for passage of City Street Levy and Piqua Public Library Levy; announces opposition to recalls of four Piqua City Commissioners.