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CEO FOCUS: 2022 Candidates Series Offers Direct Connection to Candidates

By Robert M. Simpson


We recognize how important it is for CenterState CEO members to engage with leaders who will represent this community at the local, state, and federal levels. Therefore, we are incredibly pleased to announce our 2022 Candidates Series returns in October after a two-year hiatus. 

A Meet the Candidates Reception will kick off the series on Oct. 11. This reception is your opportunity to learn about candidates on the ballot Nov. 8 and to share what matters most to your business, in a relaxed atmosphere. 

 As part of this series, CenterState CEO will also host several Candidate Forums. Two virtual forums will feature the competitive New York State Senate races to represent Central New York in Albany. On Oct. 18, we will hear from the candidates in the 48th State Senate District, featuring Rachel May (D) and Julie Abbott (R). On Oct. 25, we will hear from candidates seeking to represent the 50th State Senate District, featuring John Mannion (D) and Rebecca Shiroff (R). On Nov. 1, a final, in-person forum for New York’s new 22nd District for the U.S. House of Representatives will feature Brandon Williams (R) and Francis Conole (D). A reception will follow this event, giving you the opportunity to engage directly with both candidates. During each of the forums, candidates will be invited to speak individually and will be asked the same questions.

 In campaign seasons that can be dominated by ads and, at times, acrimonious debates, these events stand out for their focus on the issues that matter most to the business community. I strongly encourage all members to attend and interact with these leaders. CenterState CEO members can attend all events in the 2022 Candidates Series, including the two in-person events and the two virtual events with a single admission ticket for $50. To register, contact Lisa Metot at or at our website (

Robert M. Simpson is president and CEO of CenterState CEO, the primary economic-development organization for Central New York. This article is drawn and edited from the “CEO Focus” email newsletter that the organization sent to members on Sept. 8.