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In July, ACYPL, in partnership with the Australian Political Exchange Council, welcomed a 7-member delegation from Australia. Visiting Washington, DC, New Jersey, and Colorado, the delegation represented a balance of elected officials, party leaders, and parliamentary staffers. The group comprised four political parties and was geographically diverse, hailing from across Australia, from Melbourne to Perth.
The program began in Washington, DC, where the delegation was briefed on the state of US-Australian relations from both the US State Department and the Embassy of Australia. In addition, the group discussed minority youth empowerment with the Black Swan Academy, the current state of the judicial system with the National Association of Attorneys General, and US political trends with Gallup.
In New Jersey, the delegation began their visit in Newark with lunch with the Newark Community Economic Development Corporation, followed by meetings with the Office of the Mayor of Newark and the state office of US Senator Cory Booker. The group then headed to western New Jersey, where some of the meeting highlights included the Morris County Clerk and Sheriff’s offices, representatives of Atlantic Health, and Nokia Bell Labs. Additionally, the delegation was fortunate enough to have a candid and lively discussion with former New Jersey Governor and EPA Administrator Christine Whitman on her farm.
During the last leg of the exchange, the delegation traveled to Colorado Springs and Denver, Colorado. While in Colorado Springs, the group had the opportunity to meet with the Mayor and City Council of Colorado Springs to discuss city governance, with the Chief Judge of El Paso County Will Bain to talk the US legal system, and with the Root 9B National Cybersecurity Center to learn about emerging threats in cyberspace. In Denver, highlights included meeting with representatives of University of Colorado Health and the Saint Francis Center for homelessness.
Despite a busy slate of meetings, the delegation had time to enjoy a variety of cultural experiences. In DC, the group was able to visit the DC monuments and Smithsonian museums. In New Jersey, the delegates toured Alstede Farms, experienced a county fair, and still had time to travel to New York City to visit Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty. In Colorado, the group saw the Garden of the Gods and drove to the summit of Mt. Lookout to take in the panorama of Denver and explore where “Buffalo” Bill Cody is buried. Overall, it was another successful exchange, and ACYPL looks forward to continuing its decades-long partnership with the Australian Political Exchange Council.