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New Green Council members ready to serve wards

1/9/2014 - South Side Leader
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By Emily Chesnic

James Ahlstrom
Bob Young
GREEN — New members of Green City Council agree they are not looking to make major changes to the city they are proud to call home.

Councilmen James Ahlstrom and Bob Young said they will work to keep Green going in a positive direction.

The new Councilmen officially were sworn in to office Jan. 2.

Ahlstrom ran unopposed in the Nov. 5 General Election to serve as the Ward 1 Council representative. Former Ward 1 Councilman Jim Colopy could not run for re-election due to term limits.

Three individuals — Bob Young, Greg Padrutt and Rick Jacobson — ran for the Ward 2 seat in November, with Young winning the race with 38 percent of the vote. Incumbent Dave France also reached his term limits.

Ahlstrom and Young both said they are excited to take on this new challenge and serve the citizens in their wards well.

Ahlstrom, 37, who has been a producer/agent for the Rine Agency in Tallmadge for six years, earned an associate’s degree in business management from The University of Akron and an insurance license from Hondros College. He said he specifically would like to see additional economic growth, by way of new businesses and more housing options in Ward 1 during his four-year term on Council.

“I think I can best represent my ward by listening to the residents and acting on their behalf for the good of the city,” said Ahlstrom, who formerly was a member of the Green Board of Zoning Appeals and Green Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors.

Young, 32, is a life-long resident of Green and a Green High School graduate. He is the owner and auctioneer of Young’s Auction Service in Springfield. He said he encourages the residents of Ward 2 to contact him with concerns and suggestions so they can work together to make improvements in their neighborhoods.

“What matters to me is what matters to the people in my ward,” said Young, a third generation Green resident.

Young said the city already is well run, and he wants to continue to keep Green in a good economic position.

“The city does not need a whole lot of change,” said Young. “It is a good, safe place to live and has great schools.”

Young noted the city has grown over the years and now features major businesses. While he enjoys seeing new opportunities and residents coming into the community, he said he also doesn’t want to forget about the longstanding city residents, including his grandparents, who have resided in Green for about 60 years.

“Green is important to me,” said Young, who is married with three children. “I have lived here my whole life and am now raising my family here.”

Ahlstrom also said he is invested in the future of the city, as he is also raising his family in the city. He is married with two children.

He added he is very proud of Green Local Schools and the excellent ratings the schools regularly receive.

“I really do love my city,” Ahlstrom said. “And I am really interested in learning the concerns of the residents of Ward 1.”

Young and Ahlstrom said they are ready to work with the other members of Council and all of the employees of the city to accomplish common goals.

“For me, it really is about keeping things positive here,” Young said. “Everything we need is right here and close. It is a great community, and that is a direct result of the great people who work and live here and a good Council, mayor and the city employees.”

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