Meet Cincinnati’s greatest orator, Milton Dohoney

Milton Dohoney during MLK speech at CarnegieFrom the I’ve-been-meaning-to-do-this file, comes the audio of Cincinnati City Manager Milton Dohoney, Jr.’s riveting Martin Luther King, Jr. Day speech, given at the Carnegie Visual + Performing Arts Center in Covington on Jan. 15, 2007.

I nearly wept in my chair. That’s how good it was. And Dohoney? Isn’t he the humble, quiet, seemingly shy city manager who would rather not do press interviews and concentrate on his job and stay out of the nasty politics that can be the third floor of City Hall? That’s the one.

Well, apparently he has another side to him, one that can bring people to their feet, make them hoot and holler, all while delivering a deep, impactful message. And that’s what I got to see Jan. 15 when Dohoney spoke to a smallish crowd in Covington.

I was there to cover the event for The Post and I chose to record the speech. Now you get to hear it, and I believe you’ll want to because I think Milton Dohoney gave the best speech by any political/government figure in Greater Cincinnati I have ever heard – and we have some good orators in this area. But now I think you’ll agree – Dohoney’s the best.

You can listen to it here (or download it by right-clicking and choosing “save as”). The audio isn’t the best, but it is listenable.

Right after the speech, I ran downstairs from my balcony seat just to ask Dohoney what had gotten into him. You’re the shy, quiet guy, I told him.

He just softly smiled and said, “It just comes from in here,” holding his hand up to his chest.

Author: Joe Wessels

Joe Wessels is a freelance journalist and photographer. Wessels covers local news events for Thomson Reuters news service and features for's Cincinnati Guide site, plus is the executive director of hyperlocal news site, He wrote for The Cincinnati Post, covering Cincinnati City Hall and Hamilton County government and wrote a weekly political column, which continued weekly at Cincinnati CityBeat. Previously, he was a reporter for the Cincinnati Business Courier and writes or has written for several publications in Cincinnati and around the country including The Cincinnati Enquirer, Las Vegas Review-Journal, Cincinnati Magazine, Cincy Magazine and the Sacramento News & Review. He is a native of Colerain Township, one of Cincinnati's western suburbs, and now lives in Over-the-Rhine near downtown Cincinnati. He has a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology and a journalism writing certificate from the University of Cincinnati. He also graduated from Colerain High School, is an avid photographer, news junkie and was once a roller rink disc jockey, and sometimes rides a scooter around town.

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