On Thursday Governor Eddie Calvo met with members of the community to discuss the Imagine Guam process, which aims to create a long-term vision for the island.
The island's chief executive began today's Imagine Guam meeting by sharing two events this past week that made him think about Guam's long history being affected by outside governments. According to Calvo, it's time for Guam to take the reigns and make the important decisions that will define the island's future.
Calvo announced, "When I see all of you what this is all about is about a picture of where we want to be and decisions made by this community, decisions that are not made in some place like Washington, DC or Madrid or Tokyo, but decision that are made by our people about where we want to go." The Imagine Guam project aims to create a 50-year strategic plan to define a vision for the future of Guam. Topics to be covered in the plan range from the Chamorro language and religion to infrastructure, diversity, green space and more.
One of today's panelists, Hurao chief executive officer Anne Marie Arceo said she is hopeful the plan will aid efforts to preserve the Chamorro language and culture. She said, "I feel like it's still hard, you know? Running Hurao, it's still hard, trying to go back to the basics of just of our core values, I think that's what we've lost as a people, or we're losing if we haven't already lost it. We're not going to be here forever and what we leave behind for our children is going to be what our forefathers left for us today, so are we going to make that better for them? And how are we going to do that?"
Facilitator Ron McNinch said it is a matter of futurism, and as a community we need to discuss different possibilities, select a future we want, and identify the steps necessary to achieve those desired outcomes.
Fifth-year architecture student Cherika Garcia said she's interested to see how the strategic plan might impact architecture and urban planning, noting, "As an architect of the future and a planner, I'd like to see what contributions I can make in the future for the island."
University of Guam student Rebecca Casimbon said she also wanted to see what panelists and members of the community had to say. "I think this is a great idea, most especially because it's open to the community and to the fact that they're asking for feedback from the community and involving everyone it's not, 'What I want to happen' - this is what everyone wants to happen," she stated.
Community members are encouraged to provide feedback by answering a list of 13 questions. You can email your answers to firstname.lastname@example.org, call 472-8931, or post your answers on the governor's Facebook page.