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Mayor-elect Justin Bibb recruits Cleveland State students to help his transition team

Mayor-elect Justin Bibb's transition team will make recommendations on ten focus areas before he's inaugurated on Jan. 3, 2022 In this file photo, then-candidate Bibb speaks with voters on Election Day. [Tony Dejak / AP]
Then-candidate Justin Bibb speaks with voters on Election Day

Cleveland Mayor-elect Justin Bibb is recruiting Cleveland State University students to help his transition team before he takes office next month.

Bibb’s office reached out to CSU’s Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs seeking out students and staff who are interested in playing a part in local government.  

The mayor-elect is passionate about “creating pathways for young people to start working in government,” said Jessica Trivisonno, Bibb’s deputy transition manager, adding that students were “a really huge support in the campaign.”

“The mayor-elect really values the voice of young people and the input of young people. I think that's a big part of why we want to make sure that they are part of the transition. It’s just such an important perspective, and the only way we can really get it is by making sure young people get involved,” Trivisonno told Ideastream Public Media.

Bibb plans to subdivide his transition team to focus on ten different areas including economic development, education, environment, equity and action, health, modern City Hall, neighborhoods, open government, safety and talent.

“They're really focused on providing recommendations to the mayor-elect for the first 100 days of the new administration,” Trivisonno said. “We've also asked them to help identify talent in those specific focus areas. So, as they're doing their research and recommendations, letting us know when there are particular standouts that they think that the new administration should know about. We've also asked them to identify boards and commissions related to their focus area and where the mayor-elect has appointment authority.”

CSU volunteer responsibilities will include facilitating the transition team meetings, recording discussions and giving input.

“We're also hoping that students will be able to help generate some research as needed to support the policy recommendations that the transition committee is going to be generating,” Trivisonno said.

Bibb’s office has received a handful of CSU volunteer applications and will start interviewing applicants soon. Because the clock is ticking down to Bibb’s inauguration on Jan.3, the deadline for CSU volunteers to apply is Thursday, Dec. 2.

Although Bibb turned to Cleveland State for the transition-related work, he is looking for ways to partner with all the local universities, Trivisonno said. Bibb recently had meetings with Case Western Reserve University President Eric Kaler and with Cuyahoga Community College President Alex Johnson.

Jenny Hamel is the host of the “Sound of Ideas.”