The Greater Akron Civility Center

hosted by
The Ray C. Bliss Institute of Applied Politics

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“Since I began actively working to improve civility and create more productive public engagement eight years ago, I’ve been saying that civility isn’t just about being nicer to each other - civility allows us to do a better job of serving the public through dialogue and compromise. I believe that making self-government function again will be the work of my generation, our great challenge. I salute The University of Akron and I’m proud that a university from my home town is helping lead the charge for this important cause.”

- Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose



To set standards for civility; provide resources to promote civility and prevent incivility; coordinate an annual summit celebrating civility; and, most importantly, create a culture of civility in the Greater Akron community.

Civility Standards

  • Listen.
  • Seek truth.
  • Show respect.
  • Words matter.
  • Act with integrity.
  • Appreciate differences.
  • Seek constructive engagement.
  • Base differing opinions on common facts.

Civility begins with you and ends with all of us.
Through listening to our differences we find a common way.



Sign the Pledge

Greater Akron Civility Center Pledge 2020
During this election season and beyond, I pledge to treat others—especially those with whom I disagree—with dignity, respect, and kindness. I believe that open, civil conversation and debate is critical to the health of our democracy and will model civility in my conversation and actions this election season and beyond. Below are Civility Standards that help me practice civility:

  • Listen
  • Seek truth
  • Show respect
  • Words matter
  • Act with integrity
  • Appreciate differences
  • Seek constructive engagement
  • Base differing opinions on common facts


Advisory Committee Members

  • Dr. John Green
    Director Emeritus Ray C. Bliss Institute of Applied Politics, Distinguished Professor of Political Science
  • Ms. Carla L. Chapman
    Director of Community Relations, Akron Public Schools
  • Ms. Greta Johnson
    Assistant Chief of Staff and Public Information Officer
    Office of Summit County Executive Ilene Shapiro
  • Coach Kemp Boyd
    Executive Director, Love Akron
  • Mr. Bruce Winges
    Former Editor and Vice President, Akron Beacon Journal and
  • Mr. Joe Tucker
    Executive Director, South Street Ministries

  • Jessica A. Vasiliades
    Graduate Assistant, The University of Akron
  • Dr. Matthew P. Akers
    Public Liaison, Office of the President, The University of Akron
    Associate Director, Ray C. Bliss Institute of Applied Politics

Watch the ceremony


Contact Dr. Matthew Akers at