2019 Statehood Day Prayer Breakfast in Chillicothe

Chillicothe celebrated Statehood Day Saturday morning.

Former Ross County Commissioner Jim Caldwell was unable to be there to accept the Kiwanis Achievement Award because of his and his wife's health.

Rick Mariott, past president of the Kiwanis Club, explained why Caldwell was chosen. He said Caldwell is a man of integrity who can be counted on, and man of integrity regardless of party.

Caldwell's daughter Jenni also spoke on his behalf, responding to a request for the human side of the man. She said the award committee could not find anything to show Caldwell as anything but perfect, so she offered her personal reflection on him as a father.

She recounted his "zero tolerance" in her upbringing, as well as his strict business sense. Hear her speech below.


The political speaker for Chillicothe Statehood Day was a state representative from Akron, Emelia Strong Sykes. She is the Democratic leader of the House minority caucus at the Ohio Statehouse, and spoke from the governmental side for the annual Prayer Breakfast.

She said Ohio is wonderful place, but has lost its promise, and something missing now. Ohio sent seven people to the White House and even more into space, but now people are leaving the state. Sykes said we need to be unified, and be one with our goals for the Ohio.

She admitted she should have taken a canal boat from Summit County...but might not have gotten here on time.

Kevin Coleman regularly reports on Chillicothe & Circleville councils and local culture