General Douglas MacArthur once said that “on the fields of friendly strife are sown the seeds that on other days, on other fields, will bear the fruits of victory.” He was no doubt a competitive spirit. This spirit is alive and well in our nation’s youth as they compete in sports that run throughout the year. It transfers later to our professional careers, and to the lighter things in life such as our support of our professional sports teams.

It’s with this idea of us competing, as a city, against other cities and regions that spawned our cover feature. Mary Stagaman, from the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber, spoke recently at the magazine’s Power 100 event about how we compared to others when it came to diversity. Her comments, along with those from the other panelists, drew such strong engagement from attendees that we knew more could be done to look into other ways we compare to other regions.

From this we began our effort to create an analysis of how Cincinnati is doing as compared to our peers in many key aspects in which a community provides value to its residents. It’s a scorecard, though perhaps one more important than our Sunday afternoon games.

In this competition, we are the players. There are things out of our control; just like you can’t coach height, you can’t build mountains to provide vistas. However, there are areas that we, as individuals, and our community can change for the better.

How do we rank? From the city that had its football coach invent the playbook, we might now ask the better question: How do we compete?

(P.S. For all community organizations, rotary clubs, chambers of commerce and others interested to see a presentation of our findings, I am eager to take our “show on the road” and engage in what I believe will be thought-provoking dialogue. Please contact me directly at, or 513-297-6205.)


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