New member of the Alpena DDA youth council delighted to get involved | News, Sports, Jobs

News Photo by Steve Schulwitz Alpena Downtown Authority member Corey Canute, left, and new youth member Nick Lusardi attend a DDA meeting on Tuesday. Lusardi is 17 years old and in first year at Alpena High School. He will serve a one-year term, but cannot vote on official business. He will also provide updates to his classmates at school, as well as share their thoughts, ideas and concerns with the rest of the DDA council.

ALPENA – The Alpena Town Center Development Authority welcomed a new member to its board on Tuesday and he is among those other board members hope to help make the town center more attractive for the younger generation.

Nick Lusardi, a 17-year-old junior at Alpena High School, was sworn in and is now a nonvoting member of the DDA Board of Directors. He was interviewed by the political organization Government for Tomorrow, an organization that encourages young people to become more involved in government. Students also act as a liaison between local officials and report to their classmates on developments, issues, and actions taken by local officials.

Lusardi said when he learned of the opportunity to join a local council from government officials for tomorrow, he was intrigued and decided to throw his name in the hat.

He said he was interviewed by the political group, who recommended him to the DDA, who in turn recommended the appointment to the Alpena City Council.

“It intrigued me because I’ve always been interested in government and politics,” Lusardi said. “It felt like a great opportunity to get involved in my community.”

Lusardi said he was excited to work with the other board members to learn more about the DDA, downtown and district plans. The DDA is in the midst of several projects, including expanding the boundaries of the neighborhood and implementing paid parking lots on parts of downtown.

None of these projects have yet been finalized or implemented, but Lusardi will be involved in the discussions, although he is not allowed to vote.

He said he was looking forward to learning more and going to school to let his classmates know what was being planned.

“I think it will provide a perspective of what’s going on not just for one student, but for all students, and I really enjoyed that,” Lusardi said. “Local government really doesn’t have a lot of time to interact with students, so it’s important to have someone to act as the link between local government and the school.”

Lusardi said he plans to talk to his peers at school and share their thoughts, ideas and concerns with the rest of the DDA board. He said finding ways to attract young people downtown would only make it better.

“I think having things like more gigs or artistic endeavors would be interesting for us,” he said.

Although this was Lusardi’s first political experience and his participation on a board, he said he had no intention of running for office when he got older. He said he would always remain involved in the community, likely through volunteering and his career.

“It’s not something that interests me,” he said. “I’m more interested in working at ground level and in the trenches. Maybe in something like medicine or education.

Today’s breaking news and more to your inbox

Comments are closed.