Kent Gardner’s dedication to informing policy with in-depth economic analysis has been recognized by the Governmental Research Association, which awarded him its top honor.
Gardner, a cofounder and opinion editor of the Rochester Beacon, last week received the prestigious Frederick P. Gruenberg Award at the annual GRA conference in Philadelphia.
The association cited Gardner’s three decades of work at the Center for Governmental Research, where he helps advance CGR’s mission for clients in various sectors. Governmental research aims to inform communities about governmental activities through data and analysis.
“The Governmental Research Association brings together organizations—like CGR—that are committed to nonpartisan public policy analysis,” Gardner says. “We’re an endangered species—in my 30+ years in this field, the media, think tanks, universities and foundations have increasingly tended to take sides. The whole notion of objectivity has come into question.
“My colleagues in GRA remember that there are many sides to every issue and believe that policy guidance demands a dispassionate assessment of conflicting views,” he adds. “We take sides—the issues are too important to just offer a menu of alternatives. But the effort at objectivity remains critically important. My involvement with GRA has been an education and the award from my peers is a distinct honor.”
With CGR since 1991, Gardner joined the agency as director of economic analysis and served as president from 2005 to 2012. As president, he expanded CGR’s presence and offerings to web-based community profiles, like ACT Rochester, and directed the development of data and analysis tools.
Gardener is known for his ability to connect the dots—linking policy action and programs to impact. Currently, he leads CGR’s economic impact assessments and contributes to its program evaluation.
Before joining CGR, Gardner was associate professor of economics at Potsdam College, where he founded the North Country Economic Research Center.
The Governmental Research Association is the national organization of individuals professionally engaged in governmental research. Gardner has served as secretary, vice president and president of the organization.
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Congratulations, Kent. Well-deserved
Nice to hear from you, Phil, and pleased that you’re reading the Beacon. Thanks for commenting.
My sincere congratulations to Kent Gardner for this award. Our community has been well served by his leadership and objectivity. These are times when such objectivity is lacking in so many ways. CGR, under his leadership, has played an important role in keeping Rochester strong and well-grounded. The award is well deserved.
You bring an appreciation for history, Rick, so your feedback means a lot. Thanks.
Kent — congratulations on your top professional award and well-deserved recognition by your peers! Thanks again for sharing your insights at our recent Neal Peirce Foundation Convergence on Advancing Journalism in Mid-Size Cities.
Pleased to learn more about the Peirce Foundation–and that you’re one of its leaders.
I have always appreciated Kent’s ability to sort through the “noise” that often surrounds so many issues and to zero in on the salient data and questions be that in a written piece, and public presentation or a personal conversation. Sometimes it’s a bit unsettling but, it’s usually provocative and helpful in furthering the discussion. We need much more of that in the public square. Thanks and congratulations Kent!
I appreciate that, Peter. Thanks for commenting.
Many Congratulations Kent on the recognition of your many years of research and work/advocacy on behalf of the Center for Governmental Research. It has informed many advocates with credible data for policy decisions. Well deserved.
Thanks, Jim. I appreciate your engagement with the important policy issues of the day & your attention to what we’re doing at the Beacon.
Nonpartisan activity, organizations and thought are indeed an endangered species. The gray are in our political spectrum has all but vanished. Every once in a while,….a ray of sunshine. Congrats Ken Gardner, for your efforts and the recognition of those efforts!
We can hope that this will shift back, but I’m not holding my breath!
Hearty congratulations, Kent! An award well-deserved. Sandy