Julian Rogers' campaign much easier this time around

Julian Rogers sat down recently with a John Carroll University student in a booth at Pizzaz on the Circle to talk about his current position and future on Cuyahoga County Council.

Rogers’ professional political career started when was elected to represent District 10 on Cuyahoga County Council in the 2010 election. The district includes Cleveland wards 10 and 11, East Cleveland, Cleveland Heights, and the village of Bratenahl.

Prior to this, Rogers was the executive director of Education Voters of Ohio, which is a statewide, nonprofit advocacy organization working to improve the quality of public education throughout Ohio. He also served as a program associate for public policy and research for the Community Partnership for Arts and Culture, where he worked under Tom Schorgl to strengthen communities by supporting artists and cultural institutions in Northeast Ohio.

Congressman Louis Stokes was someone Rogers said influenced him politically. He recalled the time he first met Stokes, when he was 5 years old. His mother was extremely excited about the meeting and put a picture of her son with Stokes in Rogers’ childhood room.

Campaigning is one thing Rogers is familiar with. Whether through direct mail, social media or dressing up his family’s dog, he has been able to get his name out to the people of his community. But he has not had to do much campaigning this time around, since he is running unopposed.

In his first term on council, Rogers was involved in creating Cuyahoga County’s education assistance program, which will provide scholarships for people to go back to school. The county charter mandated that the new council create such a program. Rogers was the council member appointed to do that job.

When asked his favorite things about Cuyahoga County, he said, “The geography of the county — being positioned on the Lake, the parks and green space — is a large asset to the area.” Education is another asset, he said. “The many colleges in Cuyahoga County and Cleveland add to the vibrancy and appeal of an area.”

The county faces many challenges. The biggest that Rogers foresees is what to do with the roughly $2 million in revenues expected to be coming from the new casino.

Rogers also talks about creating more employment in the area. He said there are plenty of jobs available, however people are not qualified for them. He hopes to improve this situation by getting people up to par in education.

The committee Rogers chairs deals with almost everything involving education, he said. Environment and Sustainability is currently the name of his committee, but there is discussion about adding Education to the committee’s name.

The future of Cuyahoga County rests in the hands of people like Rogers, and other members of the County Council.

Kirsten Hagerty

Kirsten Hagerty is a communication student at John Carroll University. 

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Volume 5, Issue 12, Posted 5:40 PM, 10.29.2012