Leadership Southcoast wants New Bedford residents weighing their options on a potential casino to hear from a cross-section of their community.

The 11-year-old organization has organized a forum at the Zeiterion Theater Wednesday night, inviting not only representatives from KG Urban Enterprises to speak, but also public safety officials, clergy, business owners, and more.

Jennifer Downing of Leadership Southcoast tells WBSM News the group does not have a vested interest in hosting the forum. "We are not advocating for or against a casino. We are totally neutral in this conversation. Our intention is really just to convene an important conversation," said Downing.

The forum will also feature a representative from Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, where a casino built by KG Urban remains in operation. The public forum begins at 6pm Wednesday at the Zeiterion Theater.

Forum Panelists to include:

  • Andrew Stern, Operating Partner, KG Urban Enterprises
  • Derek Santos, Executive Director, NB Economic Development Council
  • David Provencher, Chief of Police, NB Police Department
  • R. Carleen Cordwell, South End resident and property owner
  • Jessica Coelho, Owner, Tia Maria's European Cafe
  • Charles Carroll, Social Worker
  • Rev. David Lima, Executive Minister, Interchurch Council of GNB
  • Lynn Collins Cunningham, Senior VP, Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce
  • Stephanie Rafael-DeMello, co-owner of Bela Flor Seafood Brokerage Co. and manager of Northeast Fishery Sector 9

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