Transform Rockford: 7 Community Sessions in January

ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- A new year is bringing a major push to the Transform Rockford movement as organizers ask for more input.

"There's a list just as long as my arm."

Rockford resident Joe Owen knows there's a lot of problems that need to be fixed in Rockford. He's been helping come up with solutions for a decade, now, as president of the ORCHid Neighborhood Association.

"Even the littlest change, you can be a part of that, you want to do more," said Owen.

Owen wants to do more with Transform Rockford. He's gone to the last two community meetings that have drawn in more than 2,000 people; the idea is to get public input.

The next step of Transform Rockford is to develop a vision for the city. We're more likely to see smaller goals like better communication, come to fruition first."

"Finding better ways of working together can be shorter term issues. Longer term issues like addressing issues of housing or poverty or safety or education, those are going to take many years to come together," said Mike Schablaske, executive director of Transform Rockford.

Owen believes starting with the small stuff will help. For example, targeting the drug problem. He says if you can tackle that, then that will help cut down on things like gangs and prostitution.

He said, "You concentrate on little things and then big stuff fixes itself."

If you have suggestions, you can make them from the comfort of your own home. The Transform Rockford website has received hundreds of comments about how to improve the Forest City. Just click on 'Post-It-Notes' link on the homepage.

The website also lists the dates and times of the seven upcoming meetings. Just visit or click on the link below.

Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
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