BU's Democracy Matters presents an All-Day Dialogue

For immediate release: April 3, 2009

BLOOMSBURG — John C. Cavanaugh, chancellor of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education, will be a featured speaker at Democracy Matters' All-Day Dialogue Thursday, April 9, in the amphitheater adjacent to Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania's Scranton Commons. The day-long program focusing on clean elections will begin at 9:30 a.m. and the chancellor will speak at 11:45 a.m.

Cavanaugh, PASSHE's chancellor since July 2008, plans to discuss the economic crisis facing students, Pennsylvania and the nation during the event which is open to the public free of charge. In case of rain, the program will be moved to the Kehr Union Ballroom.

In addition to the chancellor, the scheduled speakers are:

- Welcome to "Clean Elections and You," Robert Kern, campus coordinator of BU's chapter of Democracy Matters, 9:30 a.m.

- Panel on the economy and clean elections, Kern; Peter Bohling, chair of the economics department; and Peter Doerschler, assistant professor of political science; 9:50 a.m.

- Panel on media, special interests and clean elections, Sharon Santus, mass communications instructor and Democracy Matters adviser; Richard Ganahl, professor of mass communications; and Shannon Hoffman, Watsontown, senior public relations major; 11 a.m.

Student panel on getting involved, representatives of Democracy Matters, College Republicans, University Democrats and Bloomsburg Forensics, noon.

Panel on political corruption and clean elections, Emily Kinkead, former campus coordinator of Democracy Matters; Neil Strine, assistant professor of political science; and Yvette Samson, professor of sociology, social work and criminal justice; 12:30 p.m.

Keynote Speaker -Terry Griffin, a recent political science graduate from the University of Florida, 1 p.m. He is a student organizer and community activist who promotes the need for students to vote for local, state and federal representatives.

Panel on minority issues and clean elections, Mike Angeloni, outreach coordinator of Democracy Matters, and Carley Dobbins-Bucklad and Roxanne Banks-Williams from the League of Young Voters, 2 p.m.

Closing debate, College Republicans vs. University Democrats, 2:30 p.m.

"Often only the very wealthy can get elected to public office, because it takes a great deal of money to stage a successful campaign," Santus said. "If we have public-funded elections, we are leveling the playing field for qualified people to seek office."

Bloomsburg University is one of 14 universities in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education. The university serves approximately 8,000 students, offering comprehensive programs of study in the colleges of Professional Studies, Business, Liberal Arts and Science and Technology.