I have followed with interest – and often dismay – the unfolding of what has become the community-splitting dispute arising from the Alamosa School Board’s sale of the Polston property. As someone who has worked professionally in conflict resolution for over 30 years and has served both the non-profit and business communities of our Valley, the polarization that has escalated in the past months saddens me. The hint that there may still be room for collaboration – rather than only win-lose solutions – is encouraging.
Regardless of the legal rulings of the court next week and into the future, it is imperative that our community leaders not let this situation drive a wedge between important segments of our community. As I read the long lists of names lining up on each side, I see many on the “private enterprise” side who are valued supporters of local non-profit endeavors, with both their time and money. Likewise, on the “healthy living park” side are many who are involved in their own small businesses, as well as those whose non-profit endeavors enrich our local businesses with the daily purchase of goods and services by their agencies and employees. These cross-cutting relationships - as well as the rich diversity of our local population - are the underpinning of many wonderful events and on-going initiatives that enliven our community, open up creative avenues for addressing a wide range of community needs, and make this a very special place to live.
With respect to the Polston property itself, hopefully the City Council will take the leadership to create a forum in which a range of solutions can be openly and broadly explored. With respect to the general polarization that has occurred, I would encourage the members of the Alamosa County Economic Development Corporation and a group of non-profit leaders to take this opportunity to come together to sponsor a forum that focuses on the positive and mutually-enriching synergy that exists between our for-profit and non-profit enterprises.
I stand ready to join others who can help facilitate such efforts on behalf of our community.
Alice M. Price
firstname.lastname@example.orgFor the complete article see the 10-19-2013 issue.
Click here to purchase an electronic version of the 10-19-2013 paper.