ORCHID: To the W.D. Packard Band for its Memorial Day Remembrance program that honored the men and women who died while serving in the U.S. armed forces. The band’s performance featured primarily traditional patriotic music, as well as music composed to honor Sept. 11 and the memory of President John F. Kennedy.

ONION: To Niles Auditor Chuck Nader for failing to adequately explain what he termed a “glitch,” but what others characterized as ineptness, that caused about 200 city employees to miss the automatic deposit of their paychecks. The problems this can cause for people who have automatic withdrawals dependent on the timely availability of their money is simply too great for the slow reaction from the auditor’s office to cut checks, publicly explain what went wrong and notify everybody involved how this will be prevented in the future.

ORCHID: To the International Trade Commission for siding with Warren’s Thomas Steel in a complaint it filed alleging Japanese steelmakers were dumping the highly specialized annealed nickel-plated steel products in the United States at prices far below the amount it costs to produce them. The Japanese producers were subsidized by their government, allowing them to sell products to U.S. users at prices below actual production costs.

ONION: To gubernatorial candidate Ed FitzGerald for a misleading attempt to exploit upcoming layoffs in the Warren Fire Department in his campaign against Gov. John Kasich. ”Governor Kasich scoffed at the suggestion his local government fund cuts could affect firefighters, but there is irrefutable proof right here in Warren,”’ according to a FitzGerald campaign press release. But the layoffs are the result of an expiring federal grant that was questionably accepted by Warren in the first place and has nothing to do with the state’s local government fund.

ORCHID: To McDonald Mayor Glenn Holmes and Warren Mayor Doug Franklin, who were recognized by the Youngstown-Warren Black Caucus for their service to the community. Holmes is the first black mayor elected in Trumbull County, and Franklin is the first black mayor elected in Warren.


ORCHID: To the Niles Intermediate School third-grade class for winning the Studentreasures National Book Challenge. The book, ”Christmas Around the World” will be published, and the class will receive a grant.

ONION: To Western Reserve Port Authority Chairman James Floyd for, again, committing taxpayers to a large expense without board approval. Floyd committed $14,000 to a public relations firm. Earlier, he committed $25,000 as earnest money to purchase property for Mahoning County’s dog pound. The Port Authority board as a whole, and Floyd in particular, are out of control.

ORCHID: To Trumbull Career and Technical Center students Joe Coffey and Sabastian Kanchok for winning the Ohio state finals of the AAA/Ford Auto Skills competition earlier this spring and advancing to the national finals from June 8-10 at Ford Headquarters in Dearborn, Mich.

ORCHID: To Gregg’s Gardens and Trumbull Neighborhood Partnership for distributing free flowers to 50 residents of Warren’s Garden District, and to the same 50 residents, redwood flower boxes filled with planting soil. The boxes, soil and flowers are paid partly from the Tom’s of Maine “50 States for Good Challenge” grant that TNP and Gregg’s Gardens won.

ORCHID: To Trumbull County Common Pleas Court Clerk Karen Infante Allen on her selection as the 2014 Mahoning Valley Italian-American Sports Hall of Fame Person of the Year. The Niles native is the first woman to receive the honor.

ORCHID: To the Home Builders and Remodelers Association of the Valley for completing a deck for stabbing victim Linda Clark and her husband.

Orchids & Onions

ORCHID: To Cuyahoga County Executive Ed FitzGerald, the Democratic nominee for Ohio governor, for donating to charity a $1,000 political contribution he received from indicted Youngstown Mayor John McNally.

ONION: To the Ohio Ethics Commission for not taking a stronger stance against former Trumbull County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Donald Guarino, who was involved in assigning his son to the office’s dive team, which resulted in the office paying the younger Guarino $1,583 for equipment and training and $1,354 in increased overtime, and approving sick and vacation leave and overtime requests. The commission agreed to drop the case in exchange for Guarino retiring.

ORCHID: To everybody involved in installing an exterior elevator, adding handicapped-accessible restrooms and making other improvements at the 182-year-old Kinsman House that will become the Warren Heritage Center.

ONION: To Trumbull Career and Technical Center educators responsible for the school losing its licensed practical nursing program, which was revoked by the state for failing to file required documents on time two years in a row.

ORCHID: To the Turmbull YWCA, Huntington Bank, Ohio Finance Housing Agency, Beatitude House and everybody else involved in constructing a dozen one-, two-, and three-bedroom apartments in downtown Warren to provide permanent supportive housing for women in need.

ORCHID: To the three Howland Destination Imagination teams that will compete at the Global Finals in Knoxville, Tenn.

ORCHIDS: To Lakeview student Robert McKay, selected for the $2,500 Franklin B. Walter All-Scholastic Award; Lakeview student Jac Boyle and McDonald student Michael Davidson, selected for the $1,500 Stanley L. and Grace A. Woofter Scholarships; and dozens of other students who were recognized at the Trumbull County Educational Service Center’s 26th annual Scholarship and Recognition Breakfast.


ORCHID: To Lakeview High School students and staff for participating in the second Bike to School day sponsored by the Mosquito Lake Greenway Project.

ORCHID: To Hubbard City Council for approving plans for an exclusive trash hauler. Other communities have lower rates because of exclusivity contracts.

ONION: To Howland Local School District Superintendent John Sheets who, immediately after residents soundly defeated a tax increase request, said that the district will ask again in November.

ORCHID: To Trumbull County schools and law enforcement agencies hosting prom season driving safety events.

ORCHID: To everybody involved in the latest addition to the Western Reserve Greenway Bike Trail. A new, 2.19-mile stretch, which broke ground near the Trumbull Career and Technical Center, will connect Champion and Warren.

ORCHID: To Kiisha Warfield-Sanders and William Sanders for organizing the Kathy Allen Community Clean Up Project to remove tires and trash on Risher Road.

ORCHID: To organizers of the Raider Regatta Friday at the Warren G. Harding High School natatorium, where 142 students between fifth and 11th grades participated.

ORCHIDS: To Badger student Danielle J. Ford, Brookfield student Leah M. Bayer, Mathews student Kelly A. Kovacevich and Warren JFK student Michael W. Ronga for winning $2,500 scholarships from the Strimbu Memorial Fund, which was celebrating its 25th anniversary.

Orchids & Onions

ORCHID: To workers and management at the General Motors Lordstown Complex whose work was rewarded with another $50 million corporate investment in the plant.

ONION: To the Youngstown State University Board of Trustees, whose chairman expressed surprise at learning that Southern Oregon University President Mary Cullinan, one of three finalists for the YSU presidency, received a no-confidence vote from faculty there. It takes about a one-second Google search and a few more seconds of reading to learn about the no-confidence vote.

ORCHID: To Warren City Schools Superintendent Michael Notar for being named Educator of the Year by the PTA Council of Ohio.

ORCHID: To the Warren PTA Council for receiving the Silver Award from the PTA Council of Ohio.

ORCHID: To Warren PTA Council Treasurer Sonny Morgan for being named Helper of the Year by the PTA Council of Ohoi.

ORCHID: To Kenny Greco, whose family owns Ken Greco Co. in Boardman and H.R. Evans Steel in East Palestine, which manufactured decorative railing for Dave Grohl Alley in downtown Warren.

ONION: To suspended Warren police officer Reuben Shaw for failing to show at a pre-discipline hearing. Shaw subsequently was fired on Friday.

ORCHID: To Starr Manufacturing Inc., employees Martin P. Moss and Carl L. Humphrey, for being recognized by Ohio Strong for their work at the Vienna company.

ORCHID: To Esther Shudmak of Youngstown for continuing to share her story about surviving the Holocaust.