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News of Otsego County

Chris Gibson

GIBSON: From Congressman To Siena President

COLUMN

From Congressman

To Siena President

‘Servant Leaders’ Will Take

Nation To Brighter Future

Chris Gibson, Otsego County’s former congressman, addresses the college community after he was named Siena College president Friday, Feb. 14. (Siena College photo)

Editor’s Note: Chris Gibson, former congressman for New York’s 19th District, which includes Otsego County, Friday, Feb. 14, was named president of Siena College.  Here is an excerpt from his remarks to the college community.

By CHRIS GIBSON • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

I want to close my remarks by focusing on the students. You are why we are here. And we believe in you.

You know you turn on the news today and we’re all bombarded. We get the negativity, the divide, the vitriol, we don’t treat each other right in this country right now and we all wonder, “How are we going to get through this mean season?”

The answer’s in this room. We need more Saints. We need more Siena Saints. Because it is here, at Siena, imbued with the Franciscan Tradition, where our view of Liberal Arts is about “whole person” development.

Liberal Arts about intellectual development? Absolutely. But also physical development, moral/ethical development, religious development, and spiritual development.

I have seen the human condition in some of the most trying of circumstances, especially in combat. What I’ve noticed: It’s at those moments that “servant leaders” step forward. They find a way. They’re able to find the language and the actions to unite all people.

This is what we’re so proud of here at Siena College. This is what we do and this is why I believe and this is why this calling speaks to me.

I have had three professional lives to date.

First as a soldier coming out of Siena College, and that was very important to me. I believe in this exceptional way of life and was willing to put it all on the line for that.

And then I served in the U.S. House of Representatives, and that was also a great privilege. But of all the callings I’ve had this one is the strongest.

Because I believe at this time in our country, in our country’s history, we need Siena graduates now more than ever. And so, with a reverence for the past but with an eye on the future, we go forward today: Proud, very proud of our past, but also knowing that, here at Siena, our best days are still in front of us.

God bless you. Thank you very much. And: Go Saints!

Siena Picks Chris Gibson As President

CLICK FOR SLIDE SHOW

Siena Picks

Chris Gibson

As President

Otsego’s Former Congressman

Applies Leadership To Academe

Chris Gibson, Otsego County’s former congressman, addresses a full hall at Siena College yesterday after the decision to name him its new president was announced. (Siena College photo)

Otsego County’s former congressman, Chris Gibson ’86 Ph.D., will be Siena College’s new president, effective July 1, the Capital District college announced yesterday.  He will be formally inaugurated in the fall.

Dr. Gibson’s appointment – he is the first permanent lay leader at the Catholic institution – was approved unanimously by the College’s Board of Trustees in a special session.

“Siena played an instrumental role in shaping my values and ideals, and I am forever indebted to the faculty and staff, including the many friars who have been so influential in my life, said Gibson, who graduated from Siena in 1986 with a B.A. in history. “The connection I developed to the Franciscan tradition as an undergraduate inspired my personal calling to servant leadership. The Franciscan tradition sets Siena apart, and it will inform every decision as I work with the Siena community to advance the legacy of my predecessors and promote the mission of Siena College.”

Gibson To Chair Molinaro Effort

Gibson To Chair

Molinaro Effort

Then-congressman Gibson marches in Oneonta’s Christmas parade in 2014. (AllOTSEGO.com photo)

Former Otsego County Congressman Chris Gibson has agreed to serve as the chairman of Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro’s campaign for governor.

“Chris Gibson embodies the high standards for integrity, commitment and service by which we will run this campaign and which we will ultimately restore to the State Capitol in Albany. I am honored that he has agreed to serve as Campaign Chairman,” said Molinaro.

Chris Gibson, who retired from his 19th District seat in 2015, had been mentioned as a leading Republican to run against Governor Cuomo, but declined all entreaties.

Former Congressman Gibson Draws Fans To Book-Signing

Former Congressman Gibson

Draws Fans To Book-Signing

Retired 19th District congressman Chris Gibson signs a copy of his new book, “Rally Point,” for Dean Beams of Schenevus. Looking on are Bill Glockler, Middlefield, three times Gibson’s Otsego County campaign manager, and his wife Laurie. (Jim Kevlin/www.AllOTSEGO.com)

By JIM KEVLIN • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

Gibson signs a book for Tyler Gregory after praising the Franklin Central junior for his commitment to tending the formerly decrepit Ouelette Cemetery. With Tyler is mom Laura.

ONEONTA – You could almost hear his former constituents’ sighs of relief to hear former Congressman Chris Gibson being, well, just Chris Gibson at a book-signing for his new book, “Rally Point: Five Tasks to Unite the Country and Revitalize the American Dream” this evening at Black Oak Books in Southside Mall, Oneonta.

During remarks to the gathering, an attendee praised Gibson for promising to retire after three terms, and then doing so.  As a military man (a retired colonel), he replied, “What we say is what we mean. When you are in combat, you have to keep your word.”

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for FRIDAY, NOV. 17
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for FRIDAY, NOV. 17

Tribute Concert To Fleetwood Mac

14-19eventspage Give the gift of Christmas to children in need. To participate in the Salvation Army’s Angel Tree program CLICK HERE!

CONCERT – 7-9 p.m. Tusk, one of the nations top tribute bands, perform Fleetwood Mac’s greatest hits. Cost, $20. Followed by the 70s Dance Party 9 p.m.-Midnight. The Foothills Performing Arts Center, Oneonta. Call 607-316-2870 or visit foothillspac.org

BENEFIT AUCTION – 5:30 p.m. Great items up for sale to benefit the Greater Oneonta Historical Society. Bring items to sell, or bid on interesting items for auction. Holiday Inn, 5206 NY-23, Oneonta. www.oneontahistory.org or call (607)432-0960.

Former Congressman To Sign Book At Mall

Former Congressman To Sign Book At Mall

ONEONTA – Former congressman Chris Gibson, R-19, will be autographing his new book, “Rally Point: Five Tasks to Unite the Country and Revitalize the American Dream,” 5-7 p.m. this Friday, Nov. 17, at Blacktree Books, Southside Mall.

Gibson, who lives in Kinderhook, represented Otsego County for two terms, also draws on his experience as an Army colonel.

Online Poll Results

Online Poll Results

These are the results of the poll ‘If the race for NY governor were today, would you vote for: Chris Gibson or Andrew Cuomo.’

chris_gibson

Memorial Day Commemorations Bring Gibson To Burlington Flats

Memorial Day Commemorations

Bring Gibson To Burlington Flats

memorial day eagleCongressman Chris Gibson, R-19, will attended Memorial Day ceremonies at 1:30 p.m. Monday in Burlington Flats, home of Cpl. Michael Mayne, who died in battle in Iraq on Feb. 23, 2009.

In Oneonta, the Memorial Day parade will march down Main Street at 10 a.m.  Monday.  At 11 a.m., commemorations are planned at the monument at the top of the Veterans Memorial Walkway in Neahwa Park.

In Cooperstown, the parade will leave the Vets Club on Main Street at 11 a.m., and march up Main Street to the Soldiers & Sailors Monument, where commemorations are planned.

Gibson Forms Committee To Explore Governor Race

Gibson Forms Committee

To Explore Governor Race

U.S. Rep. Chris Gibson, R-19, shown here at Oneonta's First Night Parade, announced today he is forming an exploratory committee to run for governor. (AllOTSEGO.com photo)
U.S. Rep. Chris Gibson, R-19, shown here at Oneonta’s First Night Parade, announced today he is forming an exploratory committee to run for governor. (AllOTSEGO.com photo)

 

Otsego County’s congressman, U.S. Rep. Chris Gibson, R-19, this morning filed with the state Board of Elections to form “Gibson for New York,” an exploratory committee to run for governor in 2018.

The news was reported on nytimes.com last evening, followed by an official announcement this morning.

Gibson’s interest in challenging Gov. Andrew Cuomo next year surfaced when he announced, as he was sworn in for a third term in Congress last January, that he would not run again.

Democratic Chairs Unite For Teachout

Democratic Chairs

Unite For Teachout

Otsego’s Abbate Joins Consensus

Zephyr Teachout
Zephyr Teachout

Democratic county chairs from across the 19th District met in Ulster County Saturday and emerged with a consensus that Zephyr Teachout should run to succeed U.S. Rep. Chris Gilbson, the Republican who is retiring at the end of the year.

Teachout, who won the Otsego County nomination for governor against incumbent Andrew Cuomo in the 2014 Democratic primary, was in Cooperstown Wednesday, where she obtained the support of with County Chairman Richard Abbate and the party’s executive committee.

Abbate attended the gathering of the county chairs on Saturday.

Teachout, a Fordham University law professor and author of “Corruption in America: From Benjamin Franklin’s Snuff Box to Citizens United,” bought a house in Dover Plains, Putnam County, last year, qualifying her to run in the district.

Gibson Praises, Pledges Support to Amphenol During Open House

Gibson Praises, Pledges Support 

To Amphenol During Open House

Doors of Amphenol's open house opened at 9am, but people were showing up well before that for tours of the plant located in Sidney. After meeting with managers, CEO's and employees, Congressman Chris Gibson spoke to a gathered crowd on the importance of their location in upstate New York and the work that they do. "I am so very proud of this company!" said Gibson, "World leadership starts right here in Sidney. I pledge I will continue to support Amphenol becasue the products they make here help (The U.S.) have conflict resolution without the conflict." (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)
Amphenol‘s open house opened at 9 a.m. today, but people – U.S. Rep. Chris Gibson, R-19th, among them – were showing up well before that for tours of the Sidney plant. After meeting with managers and many employees, Congressman Chris Gibson spoke to a gathered crowd on the importance of their work in Upstate New York.  “I am so very proud of this company,” said Gibson, “World leadership starts right here in Sidney. I pledge I will continue to support Amphenol because the products they make here help (the U.S.) have conflict resolution without the conflict.” (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)
Gibson’s Possibilities Explored For Governor, And vs. Gillibrand

Gibson’s Possibilities Explored
For Governor, And vs. Gillibrand

U.S. Rep. Chris Gibson, R-Kinderhook, addresses an Oneonta crowd at a New Year's Eve commemoration of former Mayor Miller at Foothills.  (allotsego.com photo)
U.S. Rep. Chris Gibson, R-Kinderhook, addresses an Oneonta crowd at a New Year’s Eve commemoration of former Mayor Miller at Foothills. (allotsego.com photo)

Under the headline, “Can This Republican Conquer NY For The GOP,” the National Journal has posted an article examining not only whether Otsego County’s Congressman Chris Gibson can run for governor, but whether he and run against and beat U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-NY.

The Journal points to his “moderate, bipartisan” record, and also on the 65-35 trouncing he gave well-watered Facebook spouse Sean Eldridge last November, when Republican gubernatorial candidate Rob Astorino captured only 40 percent of the statewide vote.

Jubilant Local Fracking Foes Shift Focus To Renewables, Pipeline

Jubilant Local Fracking Foes

Shift Focus To Renewables, Pipeline

By JIM KEVLIN • The Freeman’s Journal/HOMETOWN ONEONTA

Editions of Thursday-Friday, Dec. 25-26, 2014

COOPERSTOWN

Next, renewables, Lou Allstadt, a Sustainable Otsego mainstay, tells celebrants at the Cafe Ommegang Wednesday, Dec. 17, after Governor Cuomo declared fracking will be banned in New York State.  In the back, from left, are Nicole Dillingham, Kim Jastremski, Larry Bennett, John Davis and Marion Carl. (Jim Kevlin/The Freeman's Journal)
Next, renewables, Lou Allstadt, a Sustainable Otsego mainstay, tells celebrants at the Cafe Ommegang Wednesday, Dec. 17, after Governor Cuomo declared fracking will be banned in New York State. In the back, from left, are Nicole Dillingham, Kim Jastremski, Larry Bennett, John Davis and Marion Carl. (Jim Kevlin/The Freeman’s Journal)

Today, Albany. Tomorrow, Kalangadoo, Australia.

While local fracking foes were elated by Governor Cuomo’s Wednesday, Dec. 16, announcement that he plans to ban the controversial practice in New York State, they were already looking beyond.

The widest-reaching is Lou Allstadt, the retired Mobil executive vice president, whose short-term plans include appearing on a Jan. 12 panel at San Francisco’s Commonwealth Club. Fellow panelists will be Angus Gillespie, a Shell vice president from The Hague, and Mary Nichols, California Air Resources Board chair.

“I hope we don’t spend the whole time on (fracking),” said Allstadt, who for the past year also has been active in the Citizens Climate Lobby, which is asking Congress to enact a fee at the mine head and the drilling pad to encourage customers to move away from fossil fuels. “The whole big picture is renewables, and how do you transition to that.”

As fracking foes gathered at Cafe Ommegang within hours of the governor’s announcement to celebrate their victory, discussion – and subsequent interviews – turned to a number of outstanding issues:

• A ban on the spreading of sometimes radioactive brine from fracking operations in northeast Pennsylvania on Upstate roads to reduce dust. Dumping of other kinds of fracking waste in Upstate landfills is also a concern.

• Halting the “fracking infrastructure,” as Otsego 2000 President Nicole Dillingham put it, including the Constitution Pipeline through Delaware County and a new compressor station on the existing Dominion Pipeline at Minden, Montgomery County, 10 miles north of Cherry Valley.

• Quality-of-life initiatives to position Otsego County for an era where fossil fuels play less of a role. Dillingham mentioned promoting organic farming, the breweries and farmers’ markets. Bob Eklund, New Lisbon, said the Butternut Valley Alliance hopes to encourage solar energy, and promote its towns as artists’ communities.

In June, Allstadt was on Capitol Hill with 600 individuals affiliated with the Citizens Climate Lobby who in a few days were able to discuss the fee idea with 507 of the 535 senators and congressmen.

The fee would raise the price of fossil fuels, discouraging their use, and the revenues generated would be distributed to Americans to use as they wish, he said. At-border fees would prevent foreign companies from unfairly competing with U.S. concerns.

“Just doing away with fracking doesn’t help you unless you reduce total fossil-fuel use,” said Allstadt, who has received queries, in addition to Kalangadoo, from anti-frackers in Canada, the U.K., Ireland, Poland and Bulgaria, and provided them primarily with scientific studies that support the cause.

Allstadt declined to predict when legislation will be introduced, saying the Citizens don’t wish to see that happen until a clear bipartisan majority of support is achieved. “This is not a liberal or conservative issue,” he said. “We all have to deal with climate change.”

While it is supporting fight against the “fracking infrastructure,” already filing testimony in Schoharie-based Stop the Pipeline’s legal challenge, Otsego 2000 is also moving on, said Dillingham. It organized its second Glimmerglass Film Days in November, and is proceeding with its historic preservation awards and programs to help farmers.

The fracking ban, though, “removed a cloud that has been hanging over our region,” allowing people buy homes, move their families here and start businesses without worry, she said.

Since the fracking decision, U.S. Rep. Chris Gibson, R-Kinderhook, has visited the county, and told a Sustainable Otsego delegation meeting in Cooperstown that he will introduce a resolution recognizing climate change and the need to combat it, according to SO Moderator Adrian Kuzminski.

In some ways, it will be harder to combat multiple manifestations of “fracking infrastructure” than promoting the single focus of the ban, said Kuzminski, whose listserve was able to turn out hundreds of anti-frackers on short notice.

Still, “it reaffirms some kind of belief that the system is not totally broken, politically, that big money will carry the day,” said Kuzminski, a philosopher who has written such books as “Fixing the System,” a history of population. “Coming up against the largest industry on the planet, it turned out they couldn’t turn the trick because of grass-roots resistance.”

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