Gresham's Mayor is heading a national group focused on getting young people more involved

Gresham Mayor Shane Bemis has been selected to chair a new task force on youth involvement with the U.S. Conference of Mayors.

Bemis leads a group of mayors focused on getting youths in cities across the country to become more involved in public service.

The direction follows a path set by Gresham city leadership, which has worked to provide more opportunities for young people in the community. The city has expanded its free book-sharing program, "Gresham Reads," into more local restaurants, a youth summit held last month allowed high schoolers to share their thoughts on bullying, school safety and technology, and Gresham's Youth Advisory Council celebrated completion of its busiest year since its creation in 2015.

"We have a laser focus on children and families right now in Gresham," Bemis said.

The hope is that through the task force, Bemis will be able to both replicate local success on the national level and bring new ideas back to Gresham. The mayor is currently in Boston attending the 86th annual U.S. Conference of Mayors, moderating a session which includes presentations by Parkland Mayor Christine Hunschofsky and David Hogg, a senior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and co-founder of #NeverAgainMSD.

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