Topics & Outcomes

June 22nd

Forum Topic: Imagine Toms River as a place where civic leaders and citizens work together to create a positive economic environment.

Click HERE to register


Conversations and Cocktails will be held at Margaritas Mexican Restaurant (270 Route 37) at 6:00 pm

Initial Outcomes

Thank you for participating in our WeAreTR Forums.

Initial Forum Outcomes (that we are aware of): Forum 1 - "What would it look like if downtown Toms River was a River Arts District?"
  1. A new group formed to lead the way for a physical Arts Hub downtown. This group has met once, identified our assets of willing contributors from the local arts world, and agreed to meet again with a list of available downtown properties and other resources. A member of the group, Joanie Gagnon San Chirico, has attended a state grant making conference on our behalf, and has established a link to a very successful community arts hub in Florida, as a resource.
  2. Another group has met to talk about how to address the prohibitive cost of alcohol licensing in Ocean County, which will have to be addressed in some way to create a broad revival downtown.
Forum 2 - "What would it look like if Toms River was the Healthiest Community in NJ?"
  1. Led to a focused discussion and sharing of resources amongst various health leaders in our community.
  2. Several attendees were invited to the join a new healthcare coalition that has formed in 2016 in Toms River.
  3. Deirdre Krok heard James Abro speak about the homeless population at the #WeAreTR forum, and she reached out to him to donate winter jackets! Over 20 homeless people in Toms River were warmer this Christmas and with other partnerships throughout Ocean County over 80 people have received winter coats!
Forum 4 - "What would it look like if Toms River became a hub for aspiring entrepreneurs?"
  1. Our panel at the WeAreTR Forum last night. Left to right: Kevin Dineen, OCVTS, where thousands of Ocean County graduates learned the skills to make OC run. Jack Martenak, NavAir, Lakehurst who spend billions in outsourcing making our navy run, Adam Binder, Tech Entrepreneur and employer of TR school graduates, and Marc Natangara, Asst Superintendent TR Schools, who has proven to be so innovative in educating our children his first three years.

These are real first strides that would not happen if people did not want to come out and see how they can contribute to making Toms River an even better place in which to live and raise our families.

The Forums will continue in 2017, and we would like to hear from you about topics you would like to cover - what assets do you think are out there in our community that are not being exploited fully? How would you like to see them being used?

If you have participated in a forum and are interested in continuing to develop an idea formed there, let us know. Mark Cunningham has offered to work with any new group, to set them of the path of using the Strategic Doing process. The founders of this initiative have learned this invaluable tool from Purdue University and we are happy to share it with anyone who has an idea they want to develop.