Wednesday Oct 05 2011
Rocklin leaders to Walk & Talk with local residents
By: Gloria Beverage, Placer Herald Editor
Event begins Friday; aims to take stock of what's important to city
Community leaders in business and education as well as elected officials will join Rocklin’s inaugural Walk & Talk through nine residential neighborhoods on Friday morning. The event will continue on Saturday as volunteers set up survey stations at area businesses throughout the community to collect additional comments from residents. The two-day event is being hosted by the Rocklin Area Chamber of Commerce, city of Rocklin, William Jessup University as well as area schools and businesses for the purpose of connecting with local residents. “We’re going directly to residents to hear what they have to say,” explained Sosamma Samuel-Burnett, chair of the Public Policy Department at William Jessup and coordinator of this event. “We want to know what their priorities (for the city) are.” Over the past two years, the Metro Chamber of Commerce has conducted a business-to-business survey by meeting individually with local merchants, Samuel-Burnett continued. “This is the first time that I know of that we’ve gone directly to the public,” she said. Volunteers will gather at William Jessup University on Friday morning for training and breakfast. They will then be grouped in teams of two or three walkers who will fan out to different parts of Rocklin to meet with individual homeowners. Volunteers will be asking two basic questions: “What do you value about living in Rocklin?” and “What can local business, education and government do to improve your experience?” Specific questions on preferred businesses and community priorities will also be covered. Volunteers will then present their findings to a panel of city, business and education leaders, Samuel-Burnett said. Information gathered during the two-day event will be shared with various stakeholders in an effort to address immediate and long-term concerns within the city. The overall results of Rocklin’s Walk & Talk will be posted online later this month. At the request of the chamber, the residential survey project was developed by a planning committee consisting of community leaders in business, city government and education. “At the end of the day, Rocklin is trying to take on something very new and innovative,” she said. Other communities have expressed interest in Rocklin’s innovative approach, Samuel-Burnett said. “They’re excited to see what we’re doing. This could serve as a model (for other communities).” Volunteer walkers are invited to join either day of the Rocklin Walk & Talk event. There is no charge to participate in the Rocklin Walk & Talk. To register as a volunteer/walker or for more information, call the Chamber at (916) 624-2548 or e-mail info@RocklinChamber.com.