Articles by David Dupont

#Let’sSupportEachOther event on campus today

The Office of Multicultural Affairs on the BGSU campus is hosting a #Let’sSupportEachOther gathering today (July 13) at 4 p.m. The announcement states: “In light of the recent tragic shootings and the aftermath that continues to unfold, the Office of Multicultural Affairs and the Counseling Center are partnering to create space for students, faculty, staff and community members to share, listen and support one another.” The event will introduce that effort, The office is located in room 318b of the Math Science Building.    

Chamber seeking applicants for Leadership BG

From BG CHAMBER OF COMMERCE Applications are available to participate in the 2016-2017 Leadership BG Program, sponsored by the Bowling Green Chamber of Commerce. Leadership BG is a fantastic opportunity to be immersed into different components of the BG community, meet decision makers, participate in mini seminars on leadership/communication/team building, develop life-long connections with classmates, and give back to the community via a class project. Since its inception in 1992, 507 graduates have completed the program! A 1-day per month commitment for 9 months is required. Program components include city and county governments, health care industry, social services, municipal and county judicial systems, manufacturing, and education. Leadership BG also gives participants an opportunity to take part in a community service project (uniquely designed by the class), enabling the group to work together toward a common goal while administering their leadership style. After completion of the class, participants become a part of the Leadership BG Alumni Association. The LBGAA continues the education/leadership process by providing networking and coalition building and supports philanthropic endeavors through fundraisers. To apply for this beneficial advancement opportunity, download application and cover sheet at or obtain a copy from the Chamber Office, 130 S. Main St. Applications are due by August 19th, 2016. Prompt return of applications is highly advisable as the class size is limited. The Bowling Green Chamber of Commerce is a professional network that creates relationships between businesses, customers and community. We support our investors by offering value-added benefits, discounts on health insurance, business improvement seminars, networking programs, legislative updates, and educational opportunities through scholarships and grants. For more information contact the BG Chamber at (419) 353-7945 or visit

Black Swamp Arts Festival art show taking shape

By DAVID DUPONT  BG Independent News The final touches are being applied to the visual art shows at the Black Swamp Arts Festival. The shows, both the Juried Art Show on Main Street in downtown Bowling Green and the Wood County Invitational in the lot at the corner of Clough and South Main streets, will feature a mix of new and familiar artists. The festival gets underway Sept. 9 at 5 p.m. with music on the Main Stage. The art shows run during the day Sept. 10 and 11. About 20 percent of the 108 artists in the juried show are new this year, said Brenda Baker, who chairs the festival’s visual arts committee. That’s down a bit from previous years, she said. Notably some regular vendors missed the April 1 application deadline. This year 245 artists applied for the juried show which has space for 108 artists. Since award winners from the previous year are automatically accepted, that means they are vying for 100 spots. The majority of the applicants “heard about the festival through word of mouth,” Baker said. “That shows we have a strong reputation in the artistic community.” While artists often rave about how they are treated in Bowling Green, the key element to attracting them to the festival is sales. They want to be assured there’s a market for their wares. Those sales at the Black Swamp fest have rebounded to about $2,600 since the depths of the recession. That’s good enough for the festival to place 67th in Sunshine Artist magazine’s ranking of fine arts and crafts shows in the country. While other area shows dropped off the list in the lean years, the Black Swamp fest has help steady. Bringing in new artists is important, Baker said, because it gives something fresh for festivalgoers to buy. “People appreciate new things to buy for Christmas,” said Linda Lentz, a member of the visual arts committee. Also, Baker noted, many artists on the art fair circuit are getting older. A number of them have already retired from other careers. Now they are doing fewer shows or dropping off the circuit all together. “We’re starting to see younger people coming to the festival,” she said. “Some have come in and been award winners.” That includes Kentucky-based woodcut printmaker Chris Plummer and area jeweler Amy Beeler, from Oregon. Plummer won Best of Show honors last year and…

“Clean Sweep” of Downtown BG set for July 16

Submitted by DOWNTOWN BOWLING GREEN A “Clean Sweep” service project is schedule in the Downtown Bowling Green Special Improvement District with the President’s Leadership Academy on Saturday, July 16, as a service project.  The group will be removing litter and pulling weeds in the blocks from Clay Street to Lehman both on Main Street and the side streets that encompass the downtown area.   Republic Services will be furnishing t-shirts and work gloves for the volunteers and the Black Swamp Arts Council will be loaning their brooms and dustpans. The Sidney A. Ribeau President’s Leadership Academy (PLA) is a four-year leadership development program that engages scholars in classes, workshops, experiential learning, and community service activities. The curriculum focuses on specific outcomes, with each year’s experience building on those of the previous year. Newly accepted students begin their leadership academy experience in July with an intensive four-week summer program that allows them to experience college life firsthand. Students take college-level courses, read selected leadership texts, participate in seminars and community service events, and take part in various cultural, educational, and experiential learning excursions on the weekends.  Downtown Bowling Green is a non-profit organization that is in place to manage the needs of the merchants and property owners.  Service organizations are always welcome to help in projects like this one as well as for any of the events held downtown including the Farmers Market, Classics on Main and Winterfest.   If you would like more information about these opportunities or would like to sign up for a volunteer shift please email with your name, email, phone number, and volunteer opportunity shift in question. You can also call Downtown BG at (419) 354-4332 or stop by our office at 130 S. Main Street.

Veterans hit the trail on Warrior Hike seeking peace

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News A Bowling Green native has embarked on a long-haul hike intended to help military veterans walk off the war. Marine veteran Martin Strange, 32, started his Warrior Expedition last week. With hiking partner, Army veteran Sterling Deck, Strange will circumnavigate the state of Ohio, taking about three months to cover the 1,444 miles. Warrior Expeditions was started about four years ago by Sean Gobin. After deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan, Gobin set out to walk the 2,185 miles of the Appalachian Trail. Strange said Gobin gained so much from the experience he founded Warrior Expeditions to offer the same experience to other veterans. There are options for hiking, paddling and bicycling. In trekking the Appalachian Trail, he was following the footsteps of a veteran of an older generation. Coming home from World War II, Earl Shaffer became the first person to hike the length of the trail. Strange served four years in the U.S. Marines as a machine gunner. The Bowling Green High graduate enlisted at 21. “I felt life had my back to the wall,” he said. This was his way “to push back and jump off a cliff and see what happens. That’s what the Marine Corps infantry was to me.” Strange was deployed twice to Iraq. When he was discharged in 2009, he went on and served as security for the State Department, working in Kabul, Afghanistan. “I’m a completely different person from when I joined up,” Strange said. “And grown since I got out.” Strange, son of former BG residents Carney and Dorothyann Strange, went on to study wildlife management at Hocking College, but that lost its appeal after a few years. He was drawn to the Warrior Hike by his love of outdoors. Even before starting the long hike, he’d spent three months sleeping in his hammock, homeless by choice, he said. “Certainly not destitute.” Gobin interviewed Strange over Skype to see if he was right for the adventure. He and Deck were paired up. They’d never met before starting out. The program provides the participants with all the gear they need, food to start out and a stipend to purchase more along the trail. Some areas are remote, but generally the trail in never more than a few miles from a town. Strange said that a conservative estimate on the cost of the trip would be well over…

Drought conditions may restrict growth of algae in Lake Erie

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Dry weather is keeping the algae blooms in Lake Erie at bay. The lack of rainfall means little run off into the Maumee River leading into the lake. The runoff is the main source of phosphorus that feeds the algae growth. The phosphorus in the runoff largely comes from the fertilizer that farmers use on their fields. Thursday the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration issued a prediction for a less severe algae bloom in the western Lake Erie Basin. On hand at the announcement were Bowling Green State University researchers Michael McKay, director of the BGSU marine program, and George Bullerjahn, professor of biological sciences. That prediction, they said during an interview on Friday, is good as it stands, but is subject to change. If it starts pouring, Bullerjahn said, the algae could be back. “We’re relying on luck and nature,” McKay said. Whether an algae bloom develops into a toxic algae bloom like the one that closed down the Toledo region’s water system in 2014 depends on many factors – wind, heat and the presence of nitrogen, another key ingredient in fertilizer. The extent of that algae bloom, Bullerjahn said, was moderate, but it had high levels of the toxin microcystin. That crisis sent people in the region scrambling for water and scientists, officials and politicians scrambling for solutions. However, “we can’t predict how toxic a bloom will be,” Bullerjahn said. There’s no correlation between how green a bloom is and how toxic it is. Earlier this year a toxic bloom occurred in the Maumee River near Defiance, forcing that city to resort to its back up reservoir for water. As a result of the 2014 crisis, a goal was set last year to reduce phosphorus in the lake by 40 percent. “There’s growing agreement this will bring blooms to a manageable level,” Bullerjahn said. He said scientists are optimistic the goal can be reached. Certainly there will be some hardship, he said, “but nobody’s going crazy.” It will take time. “Don’t expect this to be reached soon,” McKay said. McKay said a first step is to identify “hot spots” where a large amount of phosphorus is being released. In those areas farmers can apply the fertilizer underneath the surface of the field mitigating the run off. Also, a return to the old practice of planting winter cover crops such as rye would…

Recent killings, by police, of police, show system in critical condition, criminal justice scholar says

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Phil Stinson, Bowling Green State University professor in criminal justice, was in Washington D.C. working on a confidential project for the U.S. Justice Department. A leading expert in policing he spent his days in a windowless room. Still the news about two more killings of black men by police officers penetrated the meeting room. And then late Thursday, the news broke of five Dallas police officers gunned down by a sniper. The incident, which occurred at the conclusion of a peaceful protest, ended with the gunman dead after a standoff with the police. Was Stinson shocked by this? “Everything is business as usual,” he said. And that’s not good. “Everything’s the same. We’re in a powder keg situation. … It’s a mess and the hot summer doesn’t help.” With the advent of social media “we’ve reached a tipping point,” Stinson said. That was clear with the shooting of Michael Brown, a black teenager, by a white police officer, Darren Wilson, in Ferguson, Missouri. It continued with a steady stream of incidents, including the death of Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on Monday, and then the killing of Philando Castile in a Minneapolis suburb. While videos may document these incidents, Stinson said, they don’t provide a solution. “I honestly think the police in many parts of the country, especially urban areas … are engaged in combat policing,” he said. “They’ve come to think over time that they are dealing with people who are the enemy. They certainly treat black males as if they were the enemy. That’s a huge problem. Not only is there a fear of crime, but there’s a fear of black people.” These officers come into a traffic stop like the one in Minneapolis or the encounter like the one in Baton Rouge, “all amped up.” The way Alton Sterling was body-slammed shows that. “They wouldn’t do that to you or me. It’s just nuts.” Stinson added: “You can’t shoot police officers. We can’t have that.” He saw that in a Facebook post from a former student now in law enforcement in Texas. “He was posting this vile stuff,” Stinson said. “He should not go to work. He’s all fired up and angry. That’s not good when we already have people on edge thinking they’re going to be blown away.” Stinson also senses a lack of leadership in the civil rights movement,…

UT vets office director, Haraz Ghanbari, seeks Ohio House seat

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News A third Republican candidate has stepped forward to fill the vacancy created by the resignation of State Rep. Tim Brown to become president of the Toledo Metropolitan Area Council of Governments. Haraz Ghanbari, director of military and veterans affairs at University of Toledo, has applied to Ohio Speaker of the House Clifford Rosenberger to fill the vacancy, and then he will seek the nomination from the Wood County Republican Party for the nomination to run in November. Ghanbari, who enlisted in the Army National Guard at 17, said being in the State House of Representative was “a bigger way to serve.” Ghanbari has served a total of 15 years in the Army National Guard and the Navy Reserve. He is a lieutenant in the Navy. His service has included deployment to Bosnia in the Army and Afghanistan with the Navy.  A public affairs officer, he has also worked for the Associated Press in its Washington Bureau. The Perrysburg resident joins Theresa Charters Gavarone, a member of Bowling Green City Council, and Edward L. Schimmel, the mayor of Northwood. According to a press release from Rosenberger, the selection committee will meet next week to discuss who will fill the vacancy until the beginning of the next legislative term. In an interview late Friday afternoon, Ghanbari said his life has been “dedicated to serving others,” In that he’s like the people who settled Wood County, he said. These “well-intentioned people” created a society that gave “many people an opportunity to succeed.” Ghanbari grew up in Ohio and graduated from Bay Village High School in 1999 and Kent State in 2004. He said there are people every day who take oaths to serve their fellow citizens. That includes not just those in the service but also the person bagging groceries at WalMart or the person who greets others at church. “I have a grateful heart for all those who serve in many capacities,” he said. As exciting as his work as an AP photojournalist was, taking him to 30 countries and covering two presidents, “when I put my head on the pillow, I knew there was more I could be doing.” He was aware from personal experience the difficulty service personnel faced when returning from deployment. “What better than to come home to help veterans?” So he returned to Ohio to take the job at UT. When serving with…

Glass mosaic would add sparkle & shade to Community Center lobby

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Gail Christofferson’s community mosaics are made from thousands of bits of glass, and by thousands of hours of work by hundreds of community members. Some will trim and sort thumbnail-size bits of glass. Some will glue those down in preordained patterns. And some to create those designs. When all is done, Christofferson hopes to have as many as 50 20-inch-by-20-inch glass mosaic panels. Those panels will provide an artistic solution to a problem at the Bowling Green Community Center’s lobby. Now, explains Kristen Otley, the director of the city’s Parks and Recreation Department, at certain times of day in certain seasons, the staff members working at the main desk are blinded by the sunshine.  That makes it difficult for those trying to serve the public during those times. Right now there are shades up. But Otley envisioned something else. She knew Christofferson from the workshops the artist has presented for Parks and Recreation. In 2011 and 2012 Christofferson facilitated the creation of a mural at the new Otsego Elementary school. Since then she’s turned to glass work full time and worked on about more 10 mosaic projects, as well as smaller work notably her mosaic guitars. Otley said they talked about it for a couple years. It always came down to where the money would come from. They decided to team up with the Kiwanis Club, and working with Alisha Nenadovich, they requested funds from the Bowling Green Community Foundation. It’s the kind of project the foundation likes, Otley said. Something that involves the whole community. The mosaic project was awarded a $5,000 grant. That’s enough for 20 panels, Christofferson said. “Visually my ideal is 50 squares.” She hopes to find donors to sponsor a square or two or several. The price is for $250 a single square with the price per square declining to five squares for $1,000. She plans to send out a fundraising appeal in the fall. After the summer, she’ll be able further gauge how far along the project is. Those sponsoring the panels, can design them, subject to approval of Otley and the artist. (Logos are not permitted.) They can also help put them together. The assembly is a community endeavor. That part of the project was kicked off at Art in the Park in June. The design began earlier. Christofferson worked with high school art students to design…

Food trucks set to roll into Perrysburg for Feast & Farm

From DIANE ROGERS/SYD & DIANE’S   PERRYSBURG – A new weekly food and produce destination will open in Perrysburg on Thursday, July 14, from 4  to 8 p.m. at the Country Charm shopping plaza on West South Boundary in Perrysburg. Featured vendors for opening day so far include Rosie’s Rolling Chef, The Displaced Chef, Grumpy’s On the Go, Rusty’s Road Trip, Leivens Market, Pan Asian Balance Grille, and Syd and Diane’s. In addition to food and farm stands, the event will also feature live music.  Former Toledoan, Shane Piasecki, an award-winning musician now based in Nashville, will be performing on site from 5 – 8 p.m. Organizers Diane Rogers of Syd and Diane’s, and Phil Barone of Rosie’s Rolling Chef  and, believe the timing is right for building another food oriented event in Perrysburg.   “Feast and Farm is a great addition to the already successful downtown market which is out of space and can’t currently accommodate food trucks.  This is definitely a win-win situation for everyone.”

BG police investigating counterfeit $100 bills

The Bowling Green Police Division is currently investigating the passing of multiple counterfeit 100-dollar bills within the City at multiple locations. Two counterfeit 100-dollar bills were passed on 7/5/2016 at Sally’s Beauty Supplies in Bowling Green by a black female, looking to be in her mid 20’s. The same female also attempted to pass three counterfeit 100-dollar bills at Staples in Bowling Green around the same time, but ran from the store when employees questioned the bills. The Bowling Green Police Division is looking to identify this female as well as looking for any information related to these incidents. If you have any information please contact the Bowling Green Police Division at 419-352-1131 or Wood County Crime Stoppers at 419-352-0077.

Dr. Arie Eisenman from Galilee Medical Center to speak

From JEWISH FEDERATION OF GREATER TOLEDO The Jewish Federation of Greater Toledo will present two free lectures by Dr. Arie Eisenman of the Galilee Medical Center. He will speak Thursday, July 14, at 7 p.m. in the University of Toledo College of Medicine and Life Sciences, Collier Building Room 1000a and Sunday, July 17 at 4 p.m. at Congregation B’nai Israel, 6525 Sylvania Ave., Sylvania. Dr. Arie Eisenman is head of internal medicine within the Emergency Department at the Galilee Medical Center in Nahariya, Israel and chairman of the Partnership2Gether Medical Task Force at the Jewish Agency. The Galilee Medical Center, located only 6 miles from the Lebanese border, is the closest hospital to any border in Israel and has a long history of being prepared for mass casualty events. GMC was the first hospital in Israel to build an underground hospital enabling it to provide continuous safe and secure care to patients in the event of warfare. It is now the model for medical institutions nationwide. The GMC has provided medical care for more than 1,000 Syrian casualties over the last three plus years, twenty-five percent of whom were women and children under the age of eighteen. It has been the case that every night, two or three severe multi-trauma Syrians arrive at the GMC for lifesaving care. The Galilee Medical Center is the second largest hospital in the north of Israel with 69 departments, specialty units and 700 registered beds above ground and, in case of need, 450 underground. The GMC is located on the frontline of the Israeli-Lebanese border and serves a demographically mixed population of Jews, Muslims, Christians, Druze and Circassians. The Medical Center community is an example of Israel’s diversity and coexistence. For more information contact Sharon Lapitsky or 419-724-0315.

BGSU’s Torelli discusses citizen science in Washington D.C.

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS BGSU chemist Dr. Andrew Torelli is part of an international effort to raise awareness of the importance of science to society and to engage the public and legislators with current issues. Torelli recently served on an invited panel of experts as part of an informational briefing for members of Congress, their representatives and the public in Washington, D.C. The panel’s topic was “Citizen Science: Empowering a Robust National Effort.” Torelli shared the exciting example of the Smartphone InSpector, a device developed by an interdisciplinary team of BGSU faculty and students that equips a cell phone to identify and measure contaminants in water and upload the data to an online site. The system is being field tested by a number of area Rotary clubs to monitor regional water quality. The June 7 briefing was part of the American Chemical Society (ACS) Science and the Congress Project and the Consortium for Science Policy Outcomes at Arizona State University. “The purpose of these briefings is to provide members of the public and legislators on Capitol Hill with information on important topics in science that address national challenges,” Torelli said. The panel was moderated by Dr. Jamie Vernon of Sigma Xi and American Scientist magazine, with honorary co-hosts Sens. Steve Daines (Rep. Mont.), and Chris Coons (Dem., Del.). “It was great to see bipartisan support for the briefing,” Torelli said. The importance of citizen science is becoming clearer. According to the ACS, “As professional scientists explore the universe, they find instances and places where more hands, eyes, and voices are needed to collect, analyze, and report data.” The panel discussed “how various citizens are enhancing the nation’s scientific enterprise as well as ensuring that the government maximizes its benefits while avoiding any negative impact on the progress of science.” Since it can be used by ordinary citizens, BGSU’s Smartphone InSpector is a perfect example of how anyone, not only scientists, can contribute to the body of knowledge on the increasingly important question of water quality. Also on the ACS panel were Dr. Darlene Cavalier of Arizona State University, who created SciStarter, a site connecting people to citizen-science projects and other citizen-scientists; Dr. Sophia Liu, an innovation specialist with the United States Geological Survey who facilitates citizen scientists’ participation in such efforts as “Did You Feel It?” earthquake monitoring; and Dr. David Rabkin, vice president for strategic partnership,…

Registration for inaugural Optimal Aging Community Fair underway

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS Registration is now underway for Bowling Green State University’s inaugural Optimal Aging Community Fair. The fair, which will be held Aug. 1, will include an international keynote speaker who will focus on active aging, plus panel discussions, interactive breakout sessions and health screenings, all emphasizing the seven dimensions of wellness: physical, emotional, intellectual, social, spiritual, cultural and occupational. Colin Milner, chief executive officer of the International Council on Active Aging and founder of the active-aging industry in North America, will serve as the keynote speaker. Recognized by the World Economic Forum as one of “the most innovative and influential minds” in the world on aging-related topics, he will discuss the seven dimensions of wellness and the nine principles of active aging. The fair will also include remarks from Dr. Marie Huff, dean of the College of Health and Human Services; Kathy Golovan of Medical Mutual of Ohio; and Paula Davis, project administrator for the Optimal Aging Institute; a panel presentation on trends in aging and caregiving and personal stories of resiliency moderated by Denise Niese, Angie Bradford and Danielle Brogley from the Wood County Committee on Aging. The afternoon will offer a variety of breakout sessions where participants can experience the seven dimensions of wellness through fun, engaging and educational programs and activities. Session topics include: Introduction to Mindfulness, Navigating Insurance Options, Aging in Place, Understanding Trusts and Wills, Preventing Scams, Zumba for Seniors and Using Technology to Stay in Touch and Make New Friends. Ongoing activities include exhibitors, health assessments, yoga, listening post for caregivers, home assessments and more. The fair, which will be held from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Bowen-Thompson Student Union, is free for people 60 and older and BGSU employees and students. The cost is $20 for other attendees; lunch is included. The fair requires advance registration online at The event is one of Davis’ first duties as project administrator of the newly created Optimal Aging Institute. Davis was previously the director of corporate and foundation relations at BGSU. She came to BGSU from Ithaca College where she served as both the assistant director and outreach coordinator of the Ithaca College Gerontology Institute. The Optimal Aging Institute in the College of Health and Human Services provides learning opportunities and educational materials for service providers, health systems, entrepreneurs, corporations, caregivers and older adults. The institute was…

Toledo Museum of Art Names Halona Norton-Westbrook Director of Collections

From TOLEDO MUSEUM OF ART TOLEDO – The Toledo Museum of Art has named associate curator of contemporary art Halona Norton-Westbrook to the newly created position of director of collections. In this role Norton-Westbrook is responsible for overseeing the Museum’s curatorial staff, exhibitions and art conservation. A native of California, Norton-Westbrook became a Mellon Fellow at TMA in 2013. The fellowship program, underwritten by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, enables participants to gain first-hand experience in institutional management and affords them the opportunity to take a leading role in curatorial endeavors. “We considered Halona’s experience and research background as uniquely preparing her for a successful career in the art museum world when we chose her for a Mellon Fellowship. She has proven us right through her leadership of innovative curatorial projects and programming. We are delighted that she has accepted our offer to become director of collections,” said Toledo Museum of Art Director Brian Kennedy. Norton-Westbrook became associate curator of contemporary art and head of visitor engagement at TMA in 2015. As such she oversaw exhibitions and hundreds of art activities, among them a new monthly program created in partnership with Bowling Green State University’s College of Musical Arts. Called EAR | EYE: Listening and Looking at Contemporary Art, the performance and discussion series explores the relationship between contemporary music and art through music performances in response to specific works of art in the Museum’s collection. Norton-Westbrook also co-curated last summer’s popular Play Time exhibition that included the Red Ball Project and served as point curator for two touring American Federation of Arts exhibitions, Indigenous Beauty: Masterworks of American Indian Art from the Diker Collection and The Rise of Sneaker Culture,earlier this year. She was also the leading force behind the creation of the popular “Speaking Visually” galleries, which utilize masterworks from across the collection to illustrate the Museum’s visual literacy initiative. Norton-Westbrook first became interested in museum management while an American history and studio art major at Mills College in Oakland, California. After completing her bachelor’s degree in 2005 and spending a year as a curatorial and administrative coordinator at the Mills College Art Museum, she moved abroad to pursue a master’s degree in art history at the Courtauld Institute of Art in London. Following an advanced museum management traineeship at London’s Garden Museum in 2011, she earned a doctorate at the University of Manchester. Her doctoral research centered on the history of collecting…