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Greater Cleveland Civic Connection continues tradition
of collaboration

Public-private partnerships have been essential in driving Northeast Ohio’s economic resurgence over the past several decades, and the Greater Cleveland Partnership (GCP) has been an integral facilitator in bringing together the necessary partners for the betterment of the region.

This tradition of collaboration enters a new era in 2016 with the establishment of Greater Cleveland Civic Connection, a program of the GCP that leverages the strength of our region’s business community and the leadership of our public sector to support economic growth through targeted investment in utility and transportation infrastructure.

Civic Connection carries on the legacy of Build Up Greater Cleveland (BUGC), a preeminent public-private collaborative formed in 1983 at the behest of George V. Voinovich during his tenure as mayor of the City of Cleveland.

Over the course of more than 30 years, BUGC public-sector partners combined to invest more than $12 billion in vital infrastructure systems, including roadways, bridges, transit, ports, and electrical, water, and wastewater utilities—investments that have helped support the catalytic development Greater Cleveland is seeing today.

Strategic collaboration with public-sector partners

Civic Connection continues this imperative mission, with a renewed commitment to strategic collaboration on shared priority projects and issues and a reaffirmed alliance of public-sector partners that includes leadership from:
  • City of Cleveland
  • Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority
  • Cuyahoga County
  • Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (RTA) and
  • Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District.
“The infrastructure investments being made by our public partners are critical to sustaining the positive momentum we are experiencing in our region,” said GCP President and CEO Joe Roman.

“Greater Cleveland Civic Connection is positioned to play a valuable role in facilitating communication and collaboration between the private and public sectors to support effective delivery of essential public services to our community and drive economic growth throughout Northeast Ohio.”

Click to learn more about Greater Cleveland Civic Connection, its public-sector partners, and its mission and strategies.

Click to read or download the 2016 Annual Report.

So much momentum; what comes next?

In case you missed it, Greater Cleveland Partnership President and CEO Joe Roman, vice president of the Cleveland 2016 Host Committee, participated in a panel discussion last week on how Cleveland can continue to benefit from successfully hosting the 2016 Republican National Convention.

He was joined on the panel by Host Committee President David Gilbert, president and CEO of Destination Cleveland, and Jon Pinney, managing partner, Kohrman Jackson & Krantz LLP (KJK) and Host Committee counsel, secretary and treasurer.

The program was hosted by Crain’s Cleveland Business and presented by KJK. Click here for a wrap-up of the discussion.

In addition, listen to Joe Roman’s interview on “Wills & Snyder” last week for more observations about the event’s positive outcomes.

Confronting unconscious biases in the workplace

The Commission on Economic Inclusion’s Eighth Annual Conference, held Aug. 17 at LaCentre Banquet and Conference Facility, took a deep dive into the hot topic of hidden bias in the workplace, exploring how it compromises decision-making and how to mitigate its effect.

More than 200 diversity and HR professionals heard from morning keynote Harvard professor and author Mahzarin Banaji (top photo left), discuss how well-intentioned people behave in ways that deviate from their own intentions and how this behavior impacts business decisions.

Luncheon keynote Diana Cruz Solash (top photo right), director of global diversity and inclusiveness for EY, helps member firms leverage the diversity that each person brings to the organization. She discussed what EY is doing to interrupt bias.

In addition, presenters from Commission-member organizations led these afternoon breakout sessions:

“Mitigating Unconscious Bias: Effective Training and Practices”
  • George Sample, Senior Human Resource Manager, Talent Acquisition and Workforce Planning, Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District
  • Erica Merritt, Director of Culture and Strategy, Cleveland Metropolitan School District
Download the presentation.

“Implicit Bias in Talent Decisions”
  • Gina Camiola. Manager, Talent Programs, Eaton
  • Donna Skurzak, Director, Diversity & Inclusion, Cleveland Clinic
Download the presentation.

“Bias: Effect on Supplier Diversity: Effective Training and Practices”
  • Joe McClain, Manager, Supplier Diversity, Eaton
  • Gloria Ware, Principal, Inclusion, JumpStart Inc.
Download the presentation.

GCP members among fastest-growing U.S. companies

Congratulations to Greater Cleveland Partnership members Skoda Minotti and thunder::tech who have been named to the 2016 Inc 5000 list of fastest-growing private companies.

Click the links below to visit their websites and learn more about them.

Building a pipeline of IT talent

A new report by the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland’s Community Development Department examines sector-based partnerships in the Fourth Federal Reserve District that address employment needs.

Click to read the case study about our region, “Building a Pipeline of IT Talent in Northeast Ohio. ” It looks at the efforts of the Regional Information Technology Engagement (RITE) Board, whose purpose is “to develop a pipeline of IT talent that meets the needs of the region’s employers.”

Click to read or download.

Irishtown Bend stabilization plan moves forward

The Port of Cleveland and Ohio City Inc. (OCI) are preparing to launch a process to engage engineering and landscape design professionals in connection with efforts to stabilize Irish Town Bend while integrating public access, trails, and amenities into the Cuyahoga Riverfront site.

Irish Town Bend is a critical bank along the Cuyahoga River that threatens to collapse into the navigation channel if not stabilized.

The launch of the planning effort comes on the heels of the Cleveland Metroparks securing nearly $8 million in federal TIGER grant funds dedicating to advancing local trails. One of those trails will be integrated into the Irishtown Bend stabilization project.

The Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency (NOACA) recently awarded an $80,000 planning grant that will be matched by $10,000 each from The Port and OCI for a total of $100,000 to pay for the planning and design work. The Port also has secured $2.5 million from the State of Ohio capital budget, which will go toward construction of the Irish Town Bend project once final plans are in place.

“The pieces for stabilizing Irish Town Bend while advancing public amenities are all starting to come together,” said Port President and CEO Will Friedman.

“We realize that we have a lot of work left to do, but with the recent federal TIGER grant, NOACA’s generous planning dollars, and the State of Ohio capital budget allocation, this project is starting to gain critical momentum.”

“We expect to have the engineering and landscape design team engaged and working by this fall, and to see detailed plans and renderings in early 2017,” said Tom McNair, executive director of Ohio City, Inc.

“Irish Town Bend’s instability is a critical neighborhood issue that complicates future development, but stabilizing the hillside also allows us to create a new waterfront and active living amenity that will serve residents and visitors alike.”

To learn more about supporting the Port’s efforts to stabilize Irishtown Bend, contact Jade Davis, the Port’s vice president of external affairs, at