ROBERT DORAN-BROCKWAY is running for the Shiawassee County Board of Commissioners in the 2nd District. Robert, who styles himself more of a public servant than a politician, was born and raised in New York, where he walked in the footsteps of many of Owosso’s founding fathers – including native New Yorkers Elias Comstock, the Overtons and Van Wormers, Amos and Ebenezer Gould and Lyman E. Woodard. Robert has been a resident of Owosso for the past seven years and has completely immersed himself in the business of this community as an ambassador and cheerleader. Robert’s wide-ranging background includes careers as a professional opera singer, Wall Street consultant and entrepreneur, and he also served for five years as the executive director of the Owosso Historical Commission (OHC).

   “As the executive director of the OHC for five years, I was deeply involved in the 2nd District of Shiawassee County, which encompasses two-thirds of the city of Owosso,” shared Robert. “As an employee of the city of Owosso, I have an in-depth understanding of how local government is supposed to work.”

   In his five years leading the OHC, Robert is proud of many of the highlights and achievements he and the OHC team accomplished, including the passage of a half-million-dollar millage to be used for the capital improvements of Owosso’s museums and parks; the two-plus-year restoration of the 14 oil paintings in Curwood Castle that belonged to James Oliver Curwood; partnering with Downtown Owosso Farmers Market, Owosso Amphitheater and Owosso Main Street to create a 10-week music, arts and farmers market festival titled “Castle Nights”; the execution of several high-profile historical exhibitions including the 12-week exhibit titled “Made in Owosso”; the creation of a 501(c)3 nonprofit – Castle City Museums-The Owosso Historical Collection – to act as an arm of the OHC; the restoration of the great room at the Amos Gould House; the restoration of the lower level of Curwood Castle; in conjunction with the “Made in Owosso” exhibit, the renovation and restoration of the Comstock Pioneer Cabin and the Woodard Paymaster Building; and partnering with local schools to create student historical exhibitions and “history suitcases.”

   Robert is also proud of representing Owosso at the 2019 National Main Street Convention in Seattle; receiving the 2017 Owosso Main Street Volunteer of the Year Award; managing and enhancing three Owosso Historic Home Tours; co-founding the Moonlight Market, in partnership with the Downtown Owosso Farmers Market; a 400 percent increase in visitors to Curwood Castle.

   In addition to his many accomplishments with the OHC, Robert has served on several local boards and committees, including five years on the Downtown Owosso Farmers Market board, four years on the Shiawassee Convention and Visitor’s Bureau board, four years as an Ex Officio on the Downtown Owosso Main Street Board and Promotions Committee, two years on the Owosso Amphitheater Board, five years with the Cook Family Foundation’s Executive Director’s Capacity Building Program, two years on the St. John’s Food Pantry board and one year on the Shiawassee Art Center board.

   In his capacity as director of the OHC, Robert has also partnered and volunteered with several other organizations, including the SRCC, DeVries Nature Conservancy, OCP, SRI, the YMCA, Friends of the Shiawassee River and a multitude of downtown Owosso businesses.

   “I have done a lot of community service and listening over the past seven years and have developed a clear vision of how the 2nd District and our various Shiawassee County communities should work,” explained Robert. “If elected, I will continue to serve the people of the 2nd district in the same way I served the OHC, by recognizing and harnessing the power of the hundreds of volunteers who selflessly give of their time and talents to improve our communities in Shiawassee County, will be an important goal. I will focus on establishing long-term financial goals for the county, and help to cultivate a strategic plan that focuses on fundamental core competencies that elevate trust and transparency in local government.”

   Due to the COVID-19 crisis, Robert has had to forgo traditional door knocking, but beginning on Monday, June 1, the candidate will walk every street in Owosso’s 2nd District. Starting at Curwood Castle Park, Robert will walk for approximately two to three hours every morning beginning at 9 a.m. until he walks the entire district, so residents can look forward to meeting and conversing with Robert in the coming weeks. There will be surprise guest cameos from community leaders, business owners and regular folks on the street.

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(Courtesy Photo)

Robert Doran-Brockway was last modified: June 1st, 2020 by Karen Elford