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Getting to work: First Worx stakeholder meeting set for Wednesday in Youngsville

John Papalia, WCCBI senior vice president, is pictured. Papalia has been tasked with facilitating the Warren Worx initiative.

The first Warren Worx stakeholder meeting is set for Wednesday night at 5:30 p.m.

The event will be held at the Youngsville Borough building.

“We want as many people as are interested to come to be a part of it,” said John Papalia, senior vice president with the Warren County Chamber of Business and Industry.

The meeting, set to run about 90 minutes, will start with an overview of Warren Worx and plans for moving forward, which will include setting the date for future meetings.

Then, Kyle Kopko, executive director of the Center for Rural Pennsylvania, will present.

After that talk, attendees will work to review and prioritize action items from the city and county comprehensive plans. That will be followed by a question and answer time.

“This first meeting is kind of ‘Hey, let’s get started,'” Papalia said, “make sure people know, have a voice (and are) aware of what’s going on.”

He stressed that Warren Worx “is to be built from the bottom up” and he’s hoping the stakeholders can identify a top three list of projects from the comprehensive plans to shape the focus of Warren Worx.

“The more people you get to the table, the more trust there is,” Papalia said, highlighting the importance of working collaboratively and sharing ideas. “I think there’s great power in all of that. That sharing of ideas and resources in particular, to cut down redundancies. Working together cohesively makes a lot of sense.”

“I’ve had a lot of people ask me questions,” Casey Ferry, Warren County Visitors Bureau executive director who serves on the Warren Worx executive committee. “I’m referring them to this (meeting). This is people’s opportunity.”

“My role is to make sure we are taking the steps necessary to get this thing going,” Papalia added, to “get the people to the table, facilitate this program (which) I’m going to do to the best of my ability.

So far, the response has been encouraging.

“I’m really encouraged (we’re) going to get a great turnout of people and start this process of working together,” he said. “(We’re) just trying to engage as many folks as we can in this first meeting.”

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