Stephanie Sokol for The Oakland Post
On Election Day this year, Chris Young was the first college student to be elected to the Romeo School Board.
He received 32.2 percent of the vote, beating the second chair, who received 28.1 percent.
“I love helping individuals try to get a message out and that’s what I want to provide,” Young said. “Running for the school board is only providing a better message. This is what the community wants and I want to make sure their concerns are addressed.”
A 2011 Romeo High graduate and current Macomb-Oakland University business student, Young has been an involved community member for six years. He is the producer and editor for WBRW television station and has done a great amount of work with technology and community education, including volunteering at The Romeo Bruce Walsh Senior Center.
His campaign message was to increase communication between students, parents and community members. As a student himself, Young said he hopes to bring a fresh perspective to the board and be a voice for kids in the district.
Community members from the Romeo schools, as well as some from OU, assisted Young on his campaign. David Robertson, a Romeo teacher, helped get the word out to faculty and students about Young running for the board.
“Chris has real dedication to community,” Robertson said. “He’s young and still has stuff to learn, but he’s got a lot of drive. And I know he’s going to bring better communication to the school board.”
Romeo High School student Patrick Cunningham acted as Young’s representative in the campaign. Having been close acquaintances for two years, Cunningham helped get word out about Young running. He chose the school to provide Young with advice for areas in need of improvement.
Cunningham told attendees and parents about the changes Young would make if elected. He also helped Young use social media to promote his campaign, but he said Young did the hard work on his own.
“I was really proud of Chris and his efforts,” Cunningham said. “I wasn’t surprised that he won because he worked so hard on the campaign. He will be a great addition to the school board.”
OU freshman and Romeo High alumni Brian Neumeyer also helped Young with campaigning by passing out supplies, displaying signs and wearing campaign apparel.
“Chris is a good choice for the school board because he is a go-getter, he’s very motivated,” Neumeyer said. “In high school, he did a lot of media work. Instead of waiting to be asked, he went out and did it. He’s very personable, a good speaker and knowledgeable.”
Taking the board
While Young ran twice in the past for other elections, he said he put the most effort into this one and that the work was worth it.
“I was quite shocked to find out I was elected,” Young said. “I thought I had a 50-50 chance for the second seat because no incumbent was running. I was completely blown away in getting first and taking the vote by about 32 percent. But it only shows my efforts of working since August to get this really paid off and I thank the community for that.”
Contact Multimedia Reporter Stephanie Sokol via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow her on Twitter @StephanieSokol
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