Together, we can do more.
With our listening project partners, we accomplished more, dug deeper, and made important connections that will shape the future of our organization. Thank you to everyone who participated in CAC’s community listening project and planning process.



Sruti Basu
Sruti Basu
Cleveland Heights
Katy Koran
Katy Koran
Dontè Gibbs
Dontè Gibbs
East Cleveland
Robin Turner
Robin Turner
Rahim Basit
Rahim Basit
Union / Miles
Gerome Anderson
Gerome Anderson
Liz Smith
Liz Smith
Cleveland Heights
LaShunda Lee
LaShunda Lee
Augustus Turner
Augustus Turner
Rachel Oscar
Rachel Oscar
Ohio City
Hank Smith
Hank Smith
East Cleveland
Deb Crane
Deb Crane
Garfield Heights
Melissa Romain
Melissa Romain
Kaela Geschke
Kaela Geschke
Detroit Shoreway

Listening Project Street Team

Pictured, a collection of dedicated volunteers who spent more than 250 hours in the community having one-on-one conversations with more than 1,200 residents of Cuyahoga County.

Gerome Anderson, Glenville
Rahim Basit, Union/Miles
Sruti Basu, Cleveland Heights
Deb Crane, Garfield Heights
Dontè Gibbs, East Cleveland
Kaela Geschke, Detroit Shoreway
Katy Koran, Euclid
LaShunda Lee, Fairfax
Rachel Oscar, Ohio City
Scott Roberts, Cleveland
Melissa Romain, Westpark
Hank Smith, East Cleveland
Liz Smith, Cleveland Heights
Augustus Turner, Cleveland

Cuyahoga Arts + Culture Staff

CAC’s eight-member team, led by Karen Gahl-Mills, CAC’s CEO + executive director.

Karen Gahl-Mills, CEO + Executive Director
Roshi Ahmadian, Associate – Communications & Grant Programs
Meg Harris, Director Of Administration
Jessica Kayse, Manager – Resident Engagement
Dan Mclaughlin, Manager – Project Support
Jill Paulsen, Deputy Director
Jake Sinatra, Manager – Special Projects & Communications
Nicole Thomas, Manager – General Operating Support

Cuyahoga Arts + Culture Board of Trustees

Five dedicated Cuyahoga County residents and community leaders, appointed by the County Executive and confirmed by Cuyahoga County council.

Mark Avsec | Musician and Attorney, Benesch, Friedlander, Coplan &Aronoff, LLP *
Gwendolyn Garth | Artist and Activist, Kings & Queens of Art *
Joseph Gibbons | Attorney, Schneider Smeltz Spieth Bell LLP
Steven Minter | Executive-In-Residence, Cleveland State University
Charna Sherman | Attorney, Charna E. Sherman Law Offices Co., LPA

*Two out of five CAC Board members are required by law to identify as artists.

Community Sounding Board

A group of 17 local leaders—representing a variety of sectors and fields—who volunteered time to provide advice and counsel to CAC’s planning process.

Fred Bidwell, FRONT International Exhibition
Greg Brown, Policy Bridge
John Corlett, The Center for Community Solutions
Paul Dolan, The Cleveland Indians
Dr. Kirsten Ellenbogen, Great Lakes Science Center
Gwendolyn Garth, Kings & Queens of Art
Lillian Kuri, The Cleveland Foundation
Dr. Sara Laskey, The MetroHealth System
Jenita McGowan, Formerly with the City of Cleveland, now with NEO Regional Sewer District
Deidre McPherson, Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland
Tania Menesee, City of Shaker Heights
Kevin Moore, Cleveland Play House
Jesse Sanders, III, Cuyahoga County Public Library
Charna Sherman, Charna E. Sherman Law Offices Co., LPA
Bill Wade, Inlet Dance Theatre
Darnell Weaver, The Rainey Institute
Brian Zimmerman, Cleveland Metroparks

Planning Team

A coalition of experts and local partners.

Patricia J. Cirillo, Ph.D., Cypress Research
David Fitz
, Strategy Design Partners
Virginia Houston, Strategy Design Partners
Erika McLaughlin,
Strategy Design Partners
Nancy Osgood
, Osgood Group
Nick Rabkin, ReMaking Culture
Michael Rohd
, Center for Performance and Civic Practice
Holly Sidford, Helicon Collaborative
McKinley Wiley
, The Dark Room Co.
Monique Williams, Strategy Design Partners
Amber Young
, Cypress Research

Community Partners and Facilitators

These local organizations and individuals supported the community listening project by partnering with CAC to hold a deep dive conversation in their communities.

Indigo Bishop, ioby
Erica Merritt,
Cleveland Metropolitan School District
Lee A. Kay,
M. Adele DiMarco Kious,
Yinovate, LLC

Care Alliance Health Center, Central, Cleveland
Mayor’s Office, City of Maple Heights
Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization, Cleveland
FutureHeights, Cleveland Heights
Golden Ciphers Youth Development and Cultural Arts Center, Slavic Village, Cleveland
Kamm’s Corners Development Corporation, Cleveland
PNC Fairfax Connection, Fairfax, Cleveland
Westlake Porter Library, Westlake