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Cohoes High School to host mayoral candidate forum June 3

Cohoes High School will host on Monday, June 3 at 6:30 p.m. a forum for all candidates running in the Democratic primary for mayor.

The event will be co-sponsored and co-moderated by members of the League of Women Voters (LWV) of Albany County and students from Cohoes High School. Students will also assist with timing, gathering questions from the audience and greeting attendees.

Students in American History and Participation in Government classes have researched the local issues facing residents and wrote questions to ask the candidates. A panel of students condensed the questions to address several key topics.

“Working with the student panel has been one of the more rewarding experiences of my career,” said social studies teacher Rob Santarcangelo. “They’ve really taken into consideration the issues facing their city and have made efforts to ensure that the questions asked of the candidates relate to their lives.”

Members of the LWV said they have hosted forums at high schools before, but never with students playing an active role in the event.

“I am so pleased that students are interested in taking part,” said Mary Berry, a LWV member and moderator. “It’s a wonderful way to learn about civics and our political process.”

All four Democratic candidates – Shawn Morse, Bill Keeler, Steve Napier and Peter Frangie – have verbally agreed to participate.


The format for the forum will be as follows:

  • Greeting by moderator, review of the rules, and introduction of candidates
  • Opening statements by candidates of no more than 2 minutes
  • Question and answer period where candidates will have no more than 1 minute, and where the order or responding will be rotated
  • Closing statements by candidates of no more than 1 ½  minutes
  • Moderator closing comments
  • Candidates opportunity for meet and greet


The event is free and all are welcome to attend. Audience members will be asked to adhere to the following rules:

  • Campaign materials of any sort are not allowed in the venue.
  • Demonstrations pro or con for any candidate are not permissible.
  • Applause should be held until the end.
  • Cell phones must be turned off.
  • The forum cannot be recorded except by approved media.

The primary vote will be held on Tuesday, June 25.

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