The Richmond Register

Local News

January 8, 2013

3 new members appointed to Berea human rights commission

BEREA — Three new members of the fledgling Berea human rights commission joined the seven-person panel at Monday’s monthly meeting.

A Berea resident for more than six years, Jon Rogers will join the HRC for a three-year term.

Rogers works with the Federation of Appalachian Housing Enterprises (FAHE) as the vice-president and director of FAHE’s mortgage lending component.

Rogers also spent three years on the board of Home Energy Partners, a Berea-based non-profit that assists families with achieving energy-efficient housing.

“Like so many in Berea, I care about equal rights and human rights and the reasonable application of those rights to everyone and every entity in our community,” he said.

Retired pastor Carla Gilbert was asked to serve a three-year term on the commission. She is the associate chaplain for St. Joseph Berea hospital and has lived in Berea for seven years.

“I think it is important  the HRC take a proactive stance to assure that all cases of discrimination are addressed and seen as important,” she said. “I want Berea to live up to its heritage of human rights.”

A familiar face will join the HRC to fill a one-year unexpired term. Former Berea City Council member Richard Bellando voted for the ordinance to form the HRC in Nov. 2011.

“I’m a big believer in volunteerism in city government,” he said. “I voted for the ordinance because I thought Berea, of all places, should be an example because of our heritage and history.”

Bellando graduated from Berea College in 1962 and returned to Berea in 1967 to become director of the Kentucky Guild of Artists and Craftsmen. He moved on to be director of the Alumni Association at Berea College and then purchased Churchill Weavers with his wife in 1973.

Mayor Steve Connelly said he asked Bellando to join the commission because he will bring experience as a business person and as a former city council member.

Rogers was asked to join because of his strong business background and knowledge of problems citizens may encounter in lending and home occupancy, Connelly said. And Gilbert has “a deep interest in the area of civil rights.”

The three new commissioners will join HRC veterans Mae Suramek, Lisa Vaughn, Paula Dunson and Bryan Thomas.

Suramek is the HRC chairperson and executive director of the Bluegrass Rape Crisis Center in Lexington. She was the former director of alumni relations at Berea College and served on the Human Relations Committee in North Carolina.

In her blog “Plain Jane Activism: 365 Ways an Ordinary Gal Might Possibly Change the World,” Suramek welcomed the three new members — “all who have more than enough on their personal plates but are willing and eager to meet monthly (and often times more) to work towards a Berea where everyone is welcomed and treated equally.”

Vaughn was appointed to a three-year term. She is a Berea College graduate and owner of Gladiator Law Marketing, a company that builds websites for attorneys and law firms.

Dunson is a life-long Berea resident. She has served on the Berea Community School’s site-based council and on the board of directors for the Boys and Girls Club of Berea. She chairs the education ministry at Farristown Baptist Church.

Thomas is the co-owner of Sticks & Stones Landscape Supply in Berea. Thomas joined the HRC this summer to fill a vacant position, a decision that has “opened his eyes” to the need for human rights protection in this area, he said.

Thomas also is a life-long Berean who was born at the former Berea Hospital where he was delivered by former Mayor (and doctor) Clifford Kerby, he said.

As outlined by the ordinance that provided for the establishment of the commission, members are appointed by the mayor “on a non-partisan basis and shall be broadly representative of employers, proprietors, trade unions, human rights groups and the general public.”

Text Only
Local News
  • May 30 last school day for students

    After 16 snows days and two weather delays this winter, the Madison County School Board decided Thursday to end the school year on Friday, May 30.

    April 19, 2014

  • 4-19 TechExtra1.jpg Students showcase projects in Technology Extravaganza

    Madison County School students showed off just how tech savvy they can be during the district’s sixth annual Technology Extravaganza on Thursday at Madison Central High School. After the showcase, more than 350 students were honored for their work.

    April 19, 2014 7 Photos

  • 4-19 SchoolBoardJesseWard.jpg Ward honored for service; tech center named after him

    Retired Madison County educator Jesse Ward was recognized Thursday for his many years of service. To honor him, Superintendent Elmer Thomas announced the board’s decision to rename the district’s technology training center on North Second Street in Richmond the Jesse P. Ward Technology and Training Center.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • 4-19 Brian Smith.jpg Berea man indicted on 24 child porn counts

    A Madison grand jury has indicted a Berea man on 24 counts related to child pornography.

    Brian J. Smith, 26, is charged with four counts of distribution and 20 counts of possession of matter portraying sexual performances by a minor.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • 4-19 Gregory Powell.jpg Police apprehend burglary suspect

    An observant witness was able to help Richmond police catch a burglary suspect shortly after a break-in Thursday afternoon on Savanna Drive off Berea Road.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • 4-18 PackTrack1a.jpg Walkers, runners of every age ‘Pack the Track’

    Waco Elementary and Model Laboratory schools students raised more than $8,000 (and counting) for the annual Pack the Track event at Eastern Kentucky University’s Tom Samuels Track Thursday, said Kim DeCoste of the Madison County Diabetes Coalition.

    April 18, 2014 14 Photos

  • 4-18 George WilliamsWEB.jpg Suicide attempt fatal for inmate

    A Todd County man died Tuesday at a Lexington hospital following a suicide attempt at the Madison County Detention Center, according to Madison and Fayette county officials.
    George Kenneth Williams, 50, of Allensville, was transported Monday afternoon by Madison County EMS to Baptist Health Richmond, according to EMS Director Jimmy Cornelison. He was then transferred to Baptist Health in Lexington where he died Tuesday, according to the Fayette County Coroner’s Office.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • CCDW instructor indicted on charges of failing to provide training

    A Madison County grand jury has indicted a carry-concealed weapons permit instructor on charges he falsely claimed to have provided instruction to one person for a CCDW permit and provided incomplete training to three others.
    Christopher D. Fins was indicted April 9 on one count of CCDW instructor not providing firearms training and three counts of providing incomplete firearms training.
    Fins faces up to 20 years in prison if convicted of all four felony charges.

    April 17, 2014

  • EKU dorm sprinklers may have been activated maliciously

    Fire-suppression sprinklers went off about 2:30 a.m. Thursday in Eastern Kentucky University’s Martin Hall dormitory, prompting its evacuation.
    Fluctuating pressure then caused a campus water main to break, according to EKU spokesperson Mark Whitt.
    The cause is uncertain, but university officials are investigating to determine if the sprinklers were activated maliciously, Whitt said.
    The residence hall houses 260 students who were placed in other university housing or stayed with friends. All were able to move back in later in the day, he said.

    April 17, 2014

  • Sixth person charged in motel meth bust

    A sixth person has been charged in connection with a methamphetamine-making operation discovered last week at the Bel Air Motel in Richmond.
    Roger M. Million, 24, Moberly Road, was charged Wednesday with manufacturing methamphetamine.

    April 17, 2014

AP Video
Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Raw: Church Tries for Record With Chalk Jesus Raw: Faithful Celebrate Good Friday Worldwide Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest Police Arrest Suspect in Highway Shootings Drought Concerns May Hurt Lake Tourism Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home Calif. Investigators Re-construct Fatal Bus Cras Mayor Rob Ford Launches Re-election Campaign Appellate Court Hears Okla. Gay Marriage Case
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide

Should the Richmond City Commission stop rezoning property to allow construction of apartments?

     View Results