Monthly Archives: April 2010

CFF Candidate Forum Guidelines

Citizens for a Fair Ferndale Candidate Forum Policies and Procedures

Adopted 4/13/10

Citizens for a Fair Ferndale (CFF) will hold candidate and/or issues forums for any and all local (including city, county, and/or state) elections, including any and all offices and/or ballot questions, at the discretion of the CFF Forum Committee.  CFF recognizes that, due to volunteer time constraints, not all elections can be covered.  However, in an effort to provide as much information as possible to potential Ferndale voters, CFF will strive to cover a wide range of local elections, particularly those not already covered by the League of Women Voters.

To that end, CFF has promulgated the following policies and procedures, in an effort to provide clarity and uniformity in future Forums:

  • CFF Forums are not “debates.”  CFF hosts these Forums in order to educate the community so that viewers can make an informed decision.  Candidates will be provided the opportunity to state their own position on a variety of issues.  Candidates should refrain from commenting on the qualifications or positions of the other Candidates.  Personal attacks are, of course, not acceptable.
  • CFF Forums will include all elections for offices within the city of Ferndale, including uncontested races.
  • CFF Forums may include local or statewide ballot questions, at the discretion of the Forum Committee.
  • All candidates whose names will appear on the ballot for citywide elections and write-in candidates who have been properly approved by the City Clerk’s office will be invited to participate in CFF Candidate Forums.
  • The Moderator will be selected by the CFF Forum Committee.  The Committee will make every effort to choose a Moderator who does not have a deep personal interest in any Candidate.  The Moderator is not prohibited from promoting a Candidate in their free time, but should not be a member of any Candidate’s campaign, family member, or otherwise stand to personally gain by any Candidate’s election.
  • Prior to the Forums, candidates will be provided with a Questionnaire.  The Questionnaire contents will be uniform for candidates for a given office.  Candidates who provide written answers one week prior to the Forum will have their answers provided to the audience and posted on  Questionnaires will be accepted and distributed regardless of whether or not a Candidate attends the Forum.
  • CFF Candidate Forums will customarily be held on a Sunday afternoon 9 days prior to an election.  Date/time/location is subject to change; however, the Committee will make every effort to announce this information one month prior to the event.
  • Each Candidate will be allowed to make a 3-minute opening statement.
  • The Moderator will then facilitate questions from the audience, which each candidate will have 2 minutes to answer.  Questions will be offered round robin style.
  • Questions will be submitted in writing.  Questions are subject to omission at the discretion of the Forum Committee.
    • The audience will be given the following guidelines for questions: Questions must be focused on issues within the purview of the elected office (not personal or irrelevant issues).  Questions should be directed to all candidates; candidates should not be singled out.
    • Questions that do not conform with these guidelines may be omitted.
    • Questions may also be omitted or grouped according to subject matter by CFF Forum Committee Members, in order to avoid redundancy and to address related topics together, when possible.
  • If there are not enough questions from the audience to fill the allotted time, the Moderator will ask questions of their own discretion.
  • Candidates will be given 2 minutes at the end for closing remarks.

CFF welcomes participation by the community in these Forums.  Please contact us with your ideas on how CFF can better serve Ferndale through its Candidate Forums.



Citizens for a Fair Ferndale, 263 Vester St., Ferndale, MI 48220

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 4/12/10; Contact (248) 515-7803

Citizens For a Fair Ferndale to Hold School Board Forum

Citizens for a Fair Ferndale (CFF) will hold a Candidate Forum for the upcoming Ferndale School Board election.  The forum will take place at the Kulick Center (1201 Livernois, Ferndale) on Sunday, April 25 at 1pm.

The candidates will have the opportunity to fill out a questionnaire prior to the event, which will provide an overview of their experience and platform.  CFF will post the candidates’ answers on the group’s website:  Public attendees will also have the opportunity to submit questions to the candidates.

Contact us for more information: or (248) 515-7803

CFF Announces This Year’s Good Neighbors (printed in April 2010 edition of Ferndale Friends)

CFF Announces This Year’s Good Neighbors

By: Kat Bruner James, Chair of Citizens for a Fair Ferndale

The nominations have come in, and this year’s Good Neighbors have been chosen.  From well known local business people who have contributed, to numerous local organizations to unassuming folks down the block who have made their neighbors feel welcome, this year’s winners should make us all proud to be a part of this community.

In 2004, Citizens for a Fair Ferndale (CFF) members decided to begin a new program to recognize people in Ferndale who support CFF’s goals and objectives in their everyday lives.  Awards winners are recognized by their actions—no matter how big or small—that promote fairness, equality and the mission of CFF (see below).  Thus began the CFF Good Neighbors = Strong Community Awards (or just “Good Neighbors Awards,” for short).

This year’s nomination process yielded the most nominations CFF has ever received.  And they were excellent nominations.  Before the process began, we had already decided that we would be honoring ten people, as promoted in our call for nominations.  A few nominees had already received a Good Neighbors Award, and the committee decided that we were not ready to recognize the same person twice.  Each submission was a pleasure to review, and we expect that some that were not chosen this year will be nominated again in the future.

So, without further ado, here are this year’s winners, in alphabetical order: Angela Barboza-Ryan, Laura Bellamy, Kevin Deegan-Krause, Doug and Penny Gephardt, Jon Glab (owner of Strawberry Moon), Ralph and Christine Jerulle, Sherry Kurzman-Martin, La Leche League of Ferndale/Oak Park, John Sterritt and Sherry Wells.  Jerome Raska and Robbin Yelverton of Blumz by J.R. Designs will also be recognized as the second CFF “Community Partner,” a relatively new award that goes to someone selected by CFF for their direct participation in promoting CFF’s efforts.

The Good Neighbors Awards event will be held in April, and, hopefully, we will have more to report following the event.  Be sure to “stay tuned.”

More CFF events coming up:

CFF has more important events on the horizon.  On Sunday, April 25, CFF will hold its School Board Candidates’ Forum.  At press time, the exact time and location were not confirmed, but readers can check for details.  Attendees will have the opportunity to submit questions to the candidates and the candidates will also submit responses to our questionnaire that will be available on our website through election.

CFF also plans to launch a new project in May called, “Hello Ferndale!”  In the same spirit of our Candidate Forums, Hello Ferndale! is intended to provide residents with more information about municipal services, community organizations, and the like.  The first installment of this program, which is headed up by Francine Hachem, will provide an interview style with representatives from the Downtown Development Association (DDA) to explain to residents exactly what the DDA does, how they are funded, and how residents can get involved.  Please watch our website and future editions of Ferndale Friends for more information about upcoming events, including a music fundraiser at Club Bart in June.

The mission of Citizen’s for a Fair Ferndale is to foster a community that is dedicated to the fair and equal treatment of all residents and visitors regardless of sexual orientation, race, color, religion, gender, age, height, weight, familial status, national origin, physical or mental disability.  Our next meeting is April 13 at 7:30 p.m. at the Ferndale Library.