Attending along with the business executives will be John Beckord of Forward Janesville. Forward Janesville is what you might think of as Janesville’s Chamber of Commerce. They do what a typical chamber of commerce does, offering business and training seminars, promoting local businesses and coordinating trade shows. But it doesn’t end there. What makes Forward Janesville special is, they are the only politically active organization in Janesville outside of the Democratic and Republican Parties. Janesville city elections are non-partisan which forbids traditional partisan involvement. This gives Forward Janesville along with the local press, full steering rights and privileges during the campaigns. This is what makes Forward Janesville truly unique and a dominant political powerplayer in the Janesville community.
The business leaders will share basic values and beliefs as well as engage students in discussion on the role of ethics in their school life and in their own and personal business dealings.
One visit to their Website and it doesn’t take long to figure out that Forward Janesville is not your average apolitical chamber of commerce. Just run down their sidebar and the link “political activity” pops out. Open it up and it’s a smorgasbord of sub-links including a legislative agenda, scoreboard, position statements and political advocacy. The Position Statements and Legislative Agenda pages closely mirror the Republican Party platform to a point where the only thing missing is the elephant. Clearly, Forward Janesville does not hide their political activist role and it should draw concerns about the role they have and message they teach, while participating in educational programs in our public schools.