Governor Kasich delivers keynote address
Cleveland, Ohio—Continued focus on redesigning and revitalizing Public Square and working to ensure that Hopkins Airport provides nonstop and convenient service to major business and leisure destinations are among the Greater Cleveland Partnership’s 2014 priorities highlighted at the organization’s Annual Meeting today.
“I‘m pleased to report that we expect to break ground on Public Square later this year and the goal is to complete the entire project by the summer of 2016,” said GCP Board Chair Beth Mooney. “The redesign and revitalization of Public Square, the enhancement of the downtown Mall, and the creation of an iconic pedestrian connection between downtown and the lakefront will leverage downtown Cleveland’s $3 billion plus in significant capital projects and spur additional growth.”
Mooney, who is chairman and CEO of KeyCorp, also highlighted the work of the GCP Air Service Demand Task Force through which GCP continues to provide business community input and support to Mayor Jackson and Port Control Director Ricky Smith as the City pursues opportunities to replace as well as increase service to priority destinations and implement the Airport Master Plan.
“Recent announcements have already shown why this change of Hub status is quite different from other cities that have experienced similar changes,” Mooney said. “Our origination and destination market is much stronger than other cities that have lost their hubs and our travel and tourism assets are some of the best in the country. We are all working to attain that delicate balance required to pursue strategic opportunities while continuing to maintain the relationship with United who will remain our dominant carrier for years to come.“
Remarks from the Governor
Mooney introduced keynote speaker Governor Kasich, noting that GCP’s current and emerging initiatives “align with the bold vision the Governor has been pursuing.” They include The Cleveland Plan to reform public education, increased focus on retaining and expanding Ohio-based companies, Opportunity Corridor and developing Cleveland’s waterfront.
Governor Kasich discussed Ohio's economic recovery and congratulated the Greater Cleveland Partnership and its members for their role in it.
2004-2014: From “on the edge” to $18 billion in capital investment
GCP President and CEO Joe Roman noted that the organization’s first strategic plan, “Cleveland on the Edge,” written in 2004, highlighted the precarious state of the Northeast Ohio economy. By 2014, $18 billion in capital investment has been completed or is under way in the region.
“Progress takes time,” Roman said, “But we are moving the needle on critical fronts: transforming downtown, bringing economic development to several Cleveland neighborhoods through the Opportunity Corridor where construction will begin this fall, and working with the Cleveland school district and other stakeholders to grow the number of high-performing schools in the city. They are all game-changing initiatives and GCP priorities.”
Achievements in diversity highlighted
The Commission on Economic Inclusion, a program of GCP, presented its annual Best-in-Class awards for diversity achievement at the GCP Annual Meeting:
Board Diversity: Case Western Reserve University, nonprofit/government; FirstEnergy, large corporation; Lifebanc, middle market;
Senior Management Diversity: Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority, nonprofit/government; Time Warner Cable, Northeast Ohio/Western Pennsylvania, large corporation; Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District, middle market;
Workforce Diversity: Cuyahoga Community College, nonprofit/government; Cleveland Indians Baseball Co. LP, large corporation; Ozanne Construction Company, middle market;
Supplier Diversity: Kent State University, nonprofit/government; Huntington National Bank, large corporation; Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority, middle market.
The Commission also announced the induction of five members to its Hall of Fame after winning best-in-class three times in one category: First Energy and Lifebanc, board diversity; Greater Cleveland RTA, senior management diversity, Cuyahoga Community College, workforce diversity; and Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority, supplier diversity.
Community development executive honored
Vicki Eaton Johnson, executive director of the Fairfax Renaissance Development Corporation (FRDC), received GCP’s 2014 Richard Shatten Professional Leadership Award for her support of, and work to, advance the Opportunity Corridor project and for leading efforts that have attracted multimillion-dollar investment to the Fairfax community.
The award is presented in memory of Shatten’s role in the economic revitalization of Cleveland as an accomplished educator and research mentor at the Case Western Reserve University Weatherhead School of Management and through his civic leadership with Cleveland Tomorrow and other organizations.
About the Greater Cleveland Partnership
The Greater Cleveland Partnership mobilizes private-sector leadership, expertise and resources to create attractive business conditions that create jobs, grow investment and improve the economic prosperity of the region. www.gcpartnership.com