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Forums for Gubernatorial Candidates Set at UVI Oct. 22-23

Image for ILOE Gubernatorial Forums 2014

The University of the Virgin Islands concludes a series of election forums with sessions for 2014 governor and lieutenant governor candidates on St. Thomas, on Wednesday, Oct. 22, and on St. Croix, on Thursday, Oct. 23. Sessions for candidates for lieutenant governor are scheduled from 6 to 7:15 p.m., with gubernatorial candidates following from 7:30 to 9 p.m. on both days. All candidates for these positions have accepted the invitations to attend.

The forums are designed to provide candidates and the constituents they hope to serve the opportunity to come together to hear, learn and understand from each other. The forum on St. Thomas will take place at the Reichhold Center for the Arts. The St. Croix venue is the UVI Great Hall on the Albert A. Sheen Campus. The sessions will also be streamed live online at iloe.uvi.edu and www.wuvi.am.

Organizers are expecting a good turnout, especially based on the responses to the forums for candidates for senator, at-large senator and delegate to Congress, which were held earlier in October. UVI’s Institute for Leadership and Organizational Effectiveness (ILOE), the Office of Student Affairs and the Student Government Association have joined with the USVI Alliance to deliver the series.

ILOE Director Zenzilé Hodge has been pleased with the turnout by both the invited candidates and the public in general. “The public has been very engaged and spirited when it comes to asking questions,” she said. She noted that candidates also answered questions sent in by members of the public watching or listening to the forum in real time via the on-line livestreams.

Hodge also announced that ILOE, with technical assistance from UVI’s Eastern Caribbean Center, will conduct a scientific, pre-election poll designed to obtain a sense of who the voters favor in the various races. “There are more than 44,000 registered voters in the territory,” Hodge said. “Our goal is to get a representative sampling of where they stand.” The results of the poll will be shared with the public. 

In another first, ILOE will conduct a post-election leadership session for the successful candidates. “Part our mission is to enhance the leadership strengths in the territory,” Hodge said. “The University, through ILOE, can help office holders in the territory to become more effective in their efforts to serve the territory. It can assist them in the process of going from a successful politician to an effective administrator.”

During the moderator-led forum sessions on Wednesday and Thursday, candidates will have the opportunity to make brief presentations about their platforms and respond to questions posed by the moderator as well as members of the audience. The forums are open to the UVI community and to the larger Virgin Islands population.

For more information contact Zenzilé Hodge at ILOE at (340) 693-1240, or send email to zenzile.hodge@live.uvi.edu