Interfaith Community Coalition to Discuss City’s Future

On Thursday evening, January 23, “Strong and United,” an interfaith coalition of Oak Ridgers, will meet at the First Presbyterian Church of Oak Ridge, from 6:30 to 7:45. The meeting is an opportunity to learn about an emerging vision for the downtown area of Oak Ridge, to ask questions, to share ideas, and to discuss.

Oak Ridge has a unique and extraordinary past. We need to make sure we have a unique and extraordinary future. Right now, we have a great opportunity to kick off our future by designing the downtown and community gathering place we never had. Around the Wilson Street Area, from AMSE to Rutgers, picture outdoor cafes, apartments and condominiums, green spaces, offices, and performance areas. Pat Postma and others involved in making this our reality will tell us what could be and how we can help make it happen. There will be ample time for response from attendees, as well as some limited time for the organizational business of Strong and United.

Presenter Pat Postma is a lifetime Oak Ridger who has dedicated her professional and personal efforts to the economic development of the region and of Oak Ridge. She was instrumental in the renovation of our High School and of the Peace Pavilion and new home for the International Friendship Bell.  She recently helped establish an endowed fund for Oak Ridge –The Oak Ridge Fund for Achieving Community Excellence–which is focused on building our future. She is excited about this mixed-use heart of Oak Ridge vision for creating a new, distinctly Oak Ridge downtown.

Host organization, “Strong and United,” is a diverse interfaith coalition of neighbors in Oak Ridge who strive to create and sustain a grassroots public voice in the community. Learning is only one important step in an ongoing process of community engagement. Strong and United meets monthly, on the fourth Thursday, to learn and plan effective civic engagement. All are welcome to every meeting, especially this one.

With questions, or for more information, the public is invited to contact Rev. Jake Morrill at

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