Connect Clermont exists to harness the collective power of individuals and organizations to continually improve life in Clermont County. Connect Clermont is the Community Advocate.
Pulled from the introduction of the “Clermont 2001” report, the words to the left, were the result of an initiative that began more than 25 years ago. In October 1988, Ed Parish and Bill Over convened a group of community leaders to have a conversation about the future of Clermont County. This meeting launched a year- long endeavor that engaged more than 350 citizen-volunteers to create a vision for the future for Clermont County. The recommendations that came out of this effort were compiled into a report entitled “Clermont 2001.” Clermont 2001 called upon citizens, business leaders, elected officials, and community groups to pursue key economic development and quality-of-life initiatives over the ensuing decade.
A call to create an “Agenda for the Future of Clermont County” came from a new generation of leaders in 2012. They concluded that while the Clermont 2001 initiative produced a number of very positive outcomes in Clermont County, a great deal had changed in our community in the past 25 years. The Community Agenda project was launched thanks to the generous support of Duke Energy.
Community leaders began this process with two goals in mind:
- Create a strategic plan that would build on the best of Clermont County.
- Involve a new generation of residents in the process.
Subsequently, 500 community members attended more than 50 community conversations held throughout Clermont County. Recurring values and themes were identified and work teams were built around these themes. An actionable set of recommendations to move the County forward was outlined in the form of the 23 goals listed to the right side of the pages that follow.
With an action plan outlined, it is now clear that further structure and funding are needed to implement the agenda set forth by the community. Connect Clermont has been formed as a new 501(c)3 for that purpose. Connect Clermont’s Board of Directors is responsible for guiding the process and ensuring the voice of each resident is heard and valued. The report that follows outlines key progress related to each work team.
So many individuals have had a part in this process, and many more volunteers will be needed as we continue to move forward. We thank each individual and organization who has volunteered and supported this project, especially key partners—Clermont Chamber of Commerce Foundation, Duke Energy, United Way, and the Community Building Institute at Xavier—for their continued support and financial contributions.