Edward L. Esposito

Edward L. Esposito

Edward "Ed" Esposito is vice-president, information media for the Rubber City Radio Group. He oversees news and public affairs programs for www.AkronNewsNow.com, 1590 WAKR, 97.5 WONE and 94.9 WQMX. He is Secretary-Treasurer of the Radio Television Digital News Foundation; a former chair of the Radio Television Digital News Association and Foundation and a former president of the Ohio Associated Press Broadcasters Association. He's also served as a member of the Akron Press Club , Kent State University Student Media Advisory Board, Ohio Open Government Coalition, Northeast Ohio AMBER Task Force. He's lectured on broadcasting and journalism for the University of Missouri in China, as well as across the country for RTDNA and RTDNF. You can reach Ed through the newsroom at 330-864-6397 or by email eesposito@rcrg.net

Thursday, 22 January 2015 19:56

Make It 11 Straight For LeBron

The eleventh time the charm -- a remarkable run for Akron's LeBron James, named a starter for the upcoming NBA All-Star Game. James led the balloting for the Eastern Conference front court with teammate Kevin Love pulling in the number six slot. Kyrie Irving came in fourth on voting for the guard position. 

The NBA All-Star game will be played Saturday, February 15th at New York's Madison Square Garden.

(NBA) Dramatic late runs by Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors and Kyle Lowry of the Toronto Raptors headline the final results of NBA All-Star Balloting 2015 presented by Sprint. Curry (1,513,324 votes) edged the Cleveland Cavaliers’ LeBron James (1,470,483) to become  the top overall vote-getter after trailing by 13,285 votes in the most recent balloting update. Curry, who started in last year’s NBA All-Star Game, is the first Warrior to be named a starter in back-to-back All-Star Games since Chris Mullin in 1991-92.

Lowry (805,290) rallied from a deficit of more than 100,000 votes at the last balloting update to overtake the Miami Heat’s Dwyane Wade and join the Washington Wizards’ John Wall (886,368) in the starting backcourt for the Eastern Conference. Wall, making his second straight All-Star appearance and first start, is the first Wizards starter since Gilbert Arenas in 2007. This is the first All-Star appearance for Lowry, who becomes the first Raptor to start since Chris Bosh in 2008. The East will have two first-time starters in the backcourt for the first time since Allen Iverson (Philadelphia) and Eddie Jones (Charlotte) in 2000.

The 64th NBA All-Star Game will tip off Sunday, Feb. 15, at Madison Square Garden in New York City.  The game will be seen by fans in 215 countries and territories and will be heard in 47 languages. TNT will televise the All-Star Game for the 13th consecutive year, marking Turner Sports' 30th year of NBA All-Star coverage.

James, the top vote-getter last season, will start his 11th All-Star Game in 12 seasons. He was followed in the overall voting by the New Orleans Pelicans’ Anthony Davis (1,369,911), who finished with the most votes among frontcourt players in the Western Conference. At 21, Davis is the youngest starter in this year’s game, which features five first-time starters and 10 starters from 10 different teams. 

James, who this month became the youngest player in NBA history to reach 24,000 points, is joined in the East frontcourt by the Chicago Bulls’ Pau Gasol (974,177), an All-Star for the fifth time, and the New York Knicks’ Carmelo Anthony (647,005), who earned his eighth All-Star nod. Anthony boasts the fourth-highest scoring average (21.1 points) in All-Star history and is the 10th player to earn four All-Star selections with two different teams (Denver, New York).

Thursday, 22 January 2015 18:51

APD Files Charges In Feeney Murder

Akron police filed murder charges today against a 23-year old man for the execution-style slaying of local collectibles shopkeeper Patrick Feeney.
 
The body of Feeney, 54, was found in his home and business on East Exchange Street on January 5th by a friend who was visited to use Feeney's phone. Feeney's body was found, his arms duct-taped behind him, with a gunshot to the head.
 
Akeeme "A.J." Hayes, with a last reported address of Johnstown Street, is already in the Summit County Jail on weapons and drug charges unrelated to the slaying.
 
- - -
 
(Akron PD) Detectives followed up on tips received and evidence collected and have signed charges of aggravated murder, aggravated robbery and aggravated burglary on Akeeme AJ Hayes, 23, with a last known address on Johnston Street in Akron. 
 
On January 5, 2014 shortly after 5:00pm, officers were dispatched to the 828 East Exchange Street for a homicide. The caller, an acquaintance, called police and stated he went over to the victim’s residence/business to borrow the victim’s phone.
 
The caller said the rear door was forced open. The caller went inside of the victim’s residence/business and found the victim, Patrick J. Feeney, 54, unresponsive, on the floor in the living area with his hands taped behind his back. Patrick Feeney died of an apparent gunshot wound to the head.
 
Akeeme Hayes is currently in the Summit County Jail on unrelated weapons and drug charges. 
Thursday, 22 January 2015 05:32

UPDATE Canton Missing Man Found

UPDATE 6:11 a.m. - Canton police report Donald Davis was located by officers and returned home safely.

Previous Coverage:

--------------

A Missing Adult Alert has been issued by the Canton Police Department statewide.

(Ohio Attorney General) Information as of: January 21, 2015 at 11:42 PM

Be on the lookout for a missing adult. On January 21, 2015 at 4:00 PM, Mr. Davis left his residence and has not returned.

The incident took place in Stark County, OH on 41st Street Northwest in the city of Canton.

The adult's name is Donald Davis and the individual is missing. The adult is a White male, age 83, is 5' 09" tall, weighs 142 lbs., has grey hair, and has blue eyes. Mr. Davis suffers from Alzheimer's and may be in need of medication. He was last seen wearing blue jeans, a black jacket, white shoes, and may be wearing a lime green beanie cap.

The vehicle involved is a blue 2002 Saturn L200 with OH plate number CRD6691. Similar vehicle listed. The vehicle should have a handicap placard hanging from the rearview mirror and an AAA auto club sticker on the passenger rear bumper.

Call or dial 911 if you see the adult or the vehicle. You can also call 1-866-693-9171 to be transferred directly to the investigating law enforcement agency or to hear the alert information.

To view photographs, visit the Endangered Missing Adult Alert website at: http://www.ohioattorneygeneral.gov/Law-Enforcement/Local-Law-Enforcement/Missing-Adult-Alert

Wednesday, 21 January 2015 14:01

Police Need Help Finding Elderly Couple

The Tuscrawas County Sheriff's Office is looking for an elderly couple last heard from Tuesday night after they didn't show as planned to meet with friends today. 88-year old Doyle and 79-year old Lillian Chumney were last sighted in Strasburg and may be in a cream-colored 1986 Pontiac Parisienne with Ohio license plate number EXF9647. Tips can be made to the state's clearing house number 866-693-9171. 

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A Missing Adult Alert has been issued by the Tuscarawas County Sheriff's Office statewide.

Information as of: January 21, 2015 at 12:54 PM

Be on the lookout for a missing adult. On January 20, 2015 at 11:00 PM, Doyle and Lillian made contact with family. They were scheduled to pick up a friend on 01/21/2015 and never arrived.

The incident took place in Tuscarawas County, OH on Bodmer Avenue in the city of Strasburg.

There are 2 victims:

Adult #1's name is Doyle Chumney and the individual is missing. The adult is a White male, age 88, is 5'6 tall, weighs 150, has gray hair, and has brown eyes. 

Adult #2's name is Lillian Chumney and the individual is missing. The adult is a White female, age 79, is 5'2 tall, weighs 110, has gray hair, and has blue eyes. 

The vehicle involved is a cream 1986 Pontiac Parisienne with OH plate number EXF9647.

Call or dial 911 if you see the adult or the vehicle. You can also call 1-866-693-9171 to be transferred directly to the investigating law enforcement agency or to hear the alert information.

To view photographs, visit the Endangered Missing Adult Alert website at: http://www.ohioattorneygeneral.gov/Law-Enforcement/Local-Law-Enforcement/Missing-Adult-Alert

UPDATE 3:27 p.m. Statement from AT&T: "All services affected by a burst steam pipe in an AT&T switching office in Akron early Tuesday evening are now restored. Technicians completed repair work Wednesday afternoon and services are currently running normally. We apologize for this inconvenience."

Earlier coverage:

UPDATE 6:15 a.m. According to NewsChannel 5, most 9-1-1 lines are operational in Summit, Stark and Medina counties.

UPDATE 9:01 p.m. AT&T reports the problem originated with a steam pipe in it's Akron facilities and expects to have service restored within the hour. Some communities are reporting service now gradually being restored with land line, cable services.

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Here's a major disruption of AT&T phone, cable and DSL service hitting the greater Akron area as well as most of northeast Ohio extending into at least eleven other states and other major cities such as Chicago, Detroit, Columbus, Cincinnati, Minneapolis and points east and south into Texas.

There are reports the trouble is centered on AT&T facilities with a "steam accident" that dropped power service to the phone company facilities in downtown Akron.

AT&T problems

Here in the greater Akron area, there are several numbers to use as backup in event of a major emergency requiring police, fire or EMS services with 9-1-1 systems based on AT&T service for the foundation of their telecommunications at risk. Outages are scattered so some communities may still have service depending on trunk lines and mobile towers while others may have no service at all.

LISTING of numbers to call in greater Akron area for an emergency is your 9-1-1 calls are not being answered:

MEDINA COUNTY

Medina County Sheriff: 330-725-6631
Brunswick PD: 330-225-9111
Lodi PD: 330-725-6333
Medina: 330-725-7777
Wadsworth: 330-351-4849 or 330-351-4847

STARK COUNTY
 
Stark Sheriff Countywide: 330-353-1656
Alliance PD: 330-821-3131
Canton State Highway Patrol Post: 216-406-0847 (backup cell phone) 
Canton PD: 330-327-2921 or 330-933-6015
Jackson Twp, Beach City, Brewster, Canal Fulton, Hills & Dales, Lawrence Township, Massillon, Navarre, Wimot and Waynesburg PD: 330-353-0732
Jackson Twp, Beach City, Bethlehem, Brewster, Canal Fulton, Dalton, Lawrence Township, Lexington, Massillon, Navarre, Wilmot FD: 330-353-0732
Louisville PD: 330-875-2663
North Canton PD: 330-499-5911
Perry Twp PD: 330-478-5121
 
PORTAGE COUNTY
 
Portage County Sheriff: 330-351-5073
Aurora PD: 330-562-8181
Kent PD: 330-673-7732
Kent State University: 330-672-3070
Mantua: 330-819-6901 
Perry Twp: 330-844-5457
Ravenna, Charlestown, Deerfield, Edinburg, Palmyra, Paris, Ravenna Twp, Rootstown and Windham: 330-281-0573
Streetsboro : 330-352-3694
Suffield Twp: 330-904-7573
 
SUMMIT COUNTY
 
Barberton PD: 330-666-8866 or 330-414-5231
Bath Twp: 330-730-5554 or 330-612-3669
Copley PD: 330-666-8866
Cuyahoga Falls: 330-351-4789 or 330-351-4717
Hudson PD: 330-342-1800
Fairlawn: 330-666-8871
Green, Springfield, Lakemore & Coventry Twp PD: 330-858-5369
Macedonia PD: 330-468-1234
Northfield Village PD: 330-467-7112
Norton PD: 330-825-2491
Richfield PD: 330-659-9500
Sagamore Hills PD: 330-468-0900
Springfield PD: 330-733-1061 or 330-858-5369
Stow PD: 330-688-8214 
Tallmadge PD: 330-689-5890
Twinsburg, Reminderville, Twinsburg Twp PD: 330-425-1234
Tuesday, 13 January 2015 16:29

ESPN: Buckeye Crush Ratings, Too

Not only did THE Ohio State Buckeyes crush the Oregon Ducks to win the first-ever national collegiate football championship in the modern D1 playoff era, they also attracted the majority of eyes in America.

ESPN reports nearly 33.4 million viewers tuned into the game Monday night, providing the network with an 18.2 rating and the largest audience and rating ever on cable television. It was a 31% boost over the 2014 BCS Championship game and was a great example of home-cooking in Columbus, where more than half of all television sets were tuned into the game. The Cleveland market, of which greater Akron makes up about a third, provided a 41.3 rating. Dayton and Cincinnati also provided major viewing levels.

More than 1.16 million viewers also took in the game online, a college football game record surpassing this year's Sugar Bowl matchup between Ohio State and Alabama. College football, though, still has improvement to catch up to World Cup online viewing.

- - -

(ESPN) ESPN’s Monday night telecast of the inaugural College Football Playoff National Championship Presented by AT&T — Ohio State’s 42-20 victory over Oregon at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas – averaged 33,395,000 viewers and an 18.2 US household rating, according to Nielsen, delivering both the largest audience and highest rating in cable television history.

The National Championship game surpassed both College Football Playoff Semifinals from Jan. 1: the Allstate Sugar Bowl (28,271,000 viewers) and The Rose Bowl Game Presented by Northwestern Mutual (28,164,000 viewers), establishing the new most-watched cable program. In all, the first three games of the new College Football Playoff format (the beginning of ESPN’s 12-year agreement) are now the Top 3 most-viewed programs in cable history. Together, the CFB Playoff Semifinals and National Championship combined to average 29,812,000 viewers and a 16.0 US household rating. Additionally, ESPN has now televised the Top 20 programs in cable history. (chart below)
 
The College Football Playoff National Championship generated a 31 percent increase in viewership and a 26 percent increase in rating over the 2014 BCS National Championship: Auburn vs. Florida State (25,572,000 viewers & 14.4 rating). Additionally, the Buckeyes’ victory resulted in a 22 percent increase in audience and 19 percent gain in rating over the 2011 BCS Championship featuring Oregon vs. Auburn (27,316,000 viewers and 15.3 rating) which had ranked as the most-watched and highest-rated program in cable history before the new College Football Playoff debuted.
 
In the primary home markets of the two schools, the telecast delivered a 51.2 in Columbus, the No. 1 overall market, and a 37.6 in Portland, fourth overall. The top 10 metered markets (in addition to those of the competing teams) are the following: Columbus, Dayton (43.8), Cleveland (41.3), Portland, Birmingham (36.1), Cincinnati (26.5), Jacksonville (25.7), Knoxville (25.5), Greenville (24.1) and Atlanta (23.0).
 
In all, the National Championship set overnight post season college football records in 22 metered markets: Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, Dallas, Dayton, Denver, Ft. Myers, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, New York, Norfolk, Philadelphia, Portland, Raleigh-Durham, Richmond, Sacramento, Salt Lake City, San Antonio, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington, D.C.
 
The simulcast of ESPN’s main telecast of the College Football Playoff National Championship on WatchESPN attracted 1,161,000 unique viewers, 82,000,000 minutes viewed and average minute audience of 366,000. The usage represents an increase of 110 percent (553,000 unique viewers), 144 percent (33,600,000 minutes viewed), and 128 percent (160,000 average audience), respectively, over the 2014 BCS National Championship.
 
The CFP National Championship now stands as the best college football game ever on WatchESPN based on unique viewers, minutes viewed, and an average minute audience surpassing this year’s Sugar Bowl (912,000 unique viewers, 58.7 million minutes viewed, and an average minute audience of 256,000). It also ranks as the best non-World Cup event ever on WatchESPN.
 
“The inaugural College Football Playoff was a resounding success by all measures,” said John Skipper, ESPN President. “Fans responded in record numbers across television and digital platforms. It’s been a great first year and we look forward to the opportunity to build upon the excitement as we continue our long-term commitment to this tremendous event.”
 
Tuesday, 13 January 2015 11:59

Lombardi Trophy Heading West

Christmas brings with it the sights and sounds of the season; holiday songs, lots of blinking lights and sales at the mall. January has it's own sights and sounds of the season; bone-crushing hits, cheers and jeers at football stadiums and the annual trek taking the Vince Lombardi Trophy from it's security-glass enclosed home at the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton to the Super Bowl.

The Lombardi Trophy goes to the winner of the NFL Championship and it has left the building, heading for Glendale, Arizona. Hall of Fame President David Baker delivered the trophy for packing and, as tradition holds, it'll be Joe Horrigan of the Hall who makes sure Lombardi gets to the field safe and sound for presentation to the winner. Lucky fans and visitors to the Hall of Fame were able to watch the start of the journey.

Super Bowl XLIX will be held on Sunday, February 1 with the winners of this weekend's conference championship games between the Indianapolis Colts-New England Patriots and Green Bay Packers-Seattle Seahawks vying for the trophy.

- - -

(Pro Football Hall of Fame) The Vince Lombardi Trophy has left the Pro Football Hall of Fame and is en route to Arizona where it will be awarded to the champions of Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz. on Sunday, February 1.

Pro Football Hall of Fame President David Baker removed the illustrious NFL trophy from exhibit in the Hall's Lamar Hunt Super Bowl Gallery on Monday afternoon. The Vince Lombardi Trophy for Super Bowl XLIX has been displayed at the Hall of Fame for the past year and seen by the nearly quarter million fans who have toured the Hall during that time.

"There's no greater example of excellence than the Lombardi Trophy," stated Baker who was flanked by a gathering of fans at the Hall of Fame. "This is a trophy that belongs to every football fan."

Tuesday, 13 January 2015 08:40

Springfield PD Wants Suspected Meth Cooker

Springfield Police asking for some help finding a suspected meth cooker on the lam -- although they're warning residents not to be TOO helpful. 33-year old Leander Dwayne Kirk's home was targeted for a search warrant Monday and police say they found an active meth lab inside the Raymond Street home in Lakemore.
 
He's considered dangerous and police warn anyone with information to make a phone call and not attempt any action. 
 
- - - 
 
(Springfield PD) Leander Dwayne Kirk is wanted for FELONY MANUFACTURING OF DRUGS. The Summit County Drug Unit, Springfield Twp. Police, and Metro S.W.A.T., executed a search warrant at his residence on 1/12/15 and found and active methamphetamine lab inside the home. Leander is a 33 yr. old white male, 5'7", 170 lbs. with brown hair and brown eyes. Leander Kirk's last known address was on Raymond St. in the Village of Lakemore. 
 
Do not attempt to apprehend any wanted person(s). Contact the Springfield Twp. Police @ (330) 784-1609 or the Summit County Sheriff's office @ (330) 643-2181 if you have any information on the whereabouts of Leander Kirk. All information may be given anonymously. 
 
All wanted person(s) are considered innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. 
Monday, 12 January 2015 10:18

WGC Breaks Glass Ceiling With 2015 Pick

The local CEO of FedEx Custom Critical may be used to breaking barriers as a woman executive but she's also knocking down the glass ceiling in what had been a men-only lineup as honorary chair of the World Golf Championships Bridgestone Invitational on Akron's storied Firestone Country Club. It makes Virginia Albanese the first woman to ever hold the post. 

Albanese called it a "tremendous honor" in a release from the WGC today. Tournament Executive Director Don Padgett noted Albanese has been a long time supporter of the event and helped create the Executive Women's Day program held in tandem with the Bridgeston Invitational.

The event is scheduled for August 3-9, 2015.

(Bridgestone Invitational World Golf Championship) Tournament officials today announced that local businesswoman Virginia Albanese, president and CEO of FedEx Custom Critical, has been selected as the honorary chairwoman for the 2015 World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational, to be held August 3-9 at Firestone Country Club (South Course) in Akron, Ohio. With the announcement, Albanese becomes the first female honorary chairperson in tournament history.

"Virginia Albanese is the ideal person to be named as our honorary chairwoman," said Bridgestone Invitational Executive Director Don Padgett. "She embodies the values of philanthropy, leadership, community involvement, corporate success and selflessness, the qualities this position honors. As a member of the Bridgestone Invitational Championship Council, Virginia has been a long time support of the tournament and also helped to develop the event's highly successful Executive Women's Day that has sold out the last three years."

Albanese is president and CEO of FedEx Custom Critical, a leading North American expedited freight carrier and truckload brokerage located in Green, Ohio. Albanese joined FedEx Custom Critical in 1986 and quickly worked her way up the ranks, holding director positions in various departments where she placed a strong focus on organizational culture, operational efficiency and customer satisfaction. In each role, Albanese used technology to improve productivity. By streamlining processes she has improved efficiency and enhanced communication capabilities to move the company forward.

"The Akron community takes a great deal of pride in being the host city for the Bridgestone Invitational," Albanese said. "The Bridgestone Invitational does so much in the way of philanthropy in Akron, so it is a tremendous honor to assume the role of honorary chairwoman."

Virginia has been recognized for her leadership both at work and in the community. In recent years she was named Executive of The Year by the Society of Marketing Executives International (2014) and awarded the CEO Excellence Award by the Illinois Diversity Council (2014). She has also been inducted into the Northeastern Ohio Business Hall of Fame (2013), received the Women of Power Award from the Akron Urban League (2013), and also received the Leadership Excellence Award from the National Diversity Council (2014). She has been named to the Inside Business Power 100 list for the past four years (2011-2014) and the Crain's Cleveland Business Power 150 (2014). In addition, FedEx Custom Critical has been recognized as one of Northeast Ohio's top workplaces, receiving the NorthCoast 99 Award 13 times and making the The Plain Dealer's Top Workplaces list in 2013.

Albanese earned a Bachelor of Science degree ('85) and an executive MBA ('95) from Kent State University. In 2013 was appointed by Ohio Governor John Kasich to the Kent State University Board of Trustees. She is past chair of The Boys and Girls Club of the Western Reserve and past chair of the Greater Akron Chamber of Commerce. She also serves on a number of other boards to benefit the Northeast Ohio community, including Akron Children's Hospital and the Akron Community Foundation.

The Bridgestone Invitational annually donates approximately $1 million to charities throughout Northeast Ohio. Over the years, professional golf at Firestone Country Club has donated more than $23 million to worthy causes in Northeast Ohio. The signature charities of the Bridgestone Invitational are Akron Children's Hospital and University Hospitals Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital.

Monday, 12 January 2015 10:07

Knight Foundation Finalists Announced

Seven local projects made the cut for the 126 finalists in the Knight Foundation inaugural Knight Cities Challenge. The program targets innovative proposals in communities traditionally served by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. The Knight family was the driving force behind the Akron Beacon Journal. Winners will be announced this spring for a share of a $5 million dollar pool. 
 
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(Knight Foundation) The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation today announced 126 finalists in the first Knight Cities Challenge, a national call for new ideas to make the 26 communities where Knight invests more vibrant places to live and work.
 
The challenge received more than 7,000 submissions. Submissions came from many public and government organizations, as well as design experts, urban planning organizations and individuals focused on making their cities more successful.
 
Each of the ideas focuses on one or more of three drivers of city success:
 
- Talent: Ideas that help cities attract and keep the best and brightest
 
- Opportunity: Ideas that expand economic prospects and break down divides
 
- Engagement: Ideas that spur connection and civic involvement
 
All 26 Knight communities are represented in the pool of finalists. An list of Akron winners is below. Winners, who will receive a share of $5 million, will be announced in spring 2015.
 
Akron, Ohio
 
- Akron League of Creative Interventionists Headquarters by the League of Creative Interventionists (Submitted by David Swirsky): Establishing a space for the creative community to hold meetings, workshops and programs, and brainstorm interventions designed to break down barriers between diverse populations.
 
- Better Block International Hostel and AirBnB by Team Better Block (Submitted by Jason Roberts): Strengthening the city’s sense of place by turning a vacant property into a cultural hub and hostel centered on a specific immigrant population.
 
- Chickadee Society (Submitted by Chris Horne): Fostering a love for Akron through a subscription service that delivers Rubber City goods and opportunities to enjoy area attractions and events.
 
- Downtown Babysitters (Submitted by Kurtiss Hare): Creating a new urban babysitting service in Akron to serve the needs of young talent and encourage more activity in Akron’s downtown core.
 
- Emerging City Leaders by Benwood Foundation (Submitted by Lori Quillen): Cultivating the next generation of civic leadership through cross-sector exchange between young leaders in Akron and Chattanooga, Tenn.
 
- Flashbulb by Bettie Street Block Watch and the University of Akron (Submitted by Carolyn Behrman): Taking the energy of Akron’s PorchRokr festival to diverse neighborhoods by creating a mobile entertainment vehicle to travel around the city hosting festive gatherings where people transform vacant lots into flower gardens.
 
- Weekend Student Popup Space by Kent State University and the University of Akron (Submitted by Kate Harmon): Creating a student-run pop-up space that will serve as a meeting spot for the community, spark collaboration and help launch young entrepreneurs.