Meet Michelle

I have a long record of leadership and a well-established reputation for unwavering commitment in my professional and civic work. I am running for Cincinnati City Council so I can bring my community building and advocacy expertise to City Hall.

EARLY YEARS

My mother attended Smith College, then Cornell University while she raised my 3 sisters and I - teaching us the vital importance of education. My father ran a small poetry printing press in San Francisco in his early years- later returning to his native Boston where my parents met- he taught me the love of city, the love of politics.

I attended and graduated from Reed College in Portland, Oregon with a degree in Psychology. I moved to Cincinnati to attend graduate school at the University of Cincinnati, where I met my husband Chris. We have 4 children and 5 grandchildren together.

In 1996 our son Michael was born. At birth he was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy and we came to know first-hand the struggles of navigating medical and social service systems to help him. Today, Michael is 20 years old and fiercely independent, despite the challenges he faces. He is an artist and has his own studio at the Pendleton Art Center. He is also a “Visionaries & Voices” artist at their Northside studio.

ADVOCACY

When Michael turned four years old, I returned to graduate school to complete my degree in social work at the University of Cincinnati. An “Introduction to Policy” class had a significant impact on me. I was captivated by the opportunity to effect change at a broader level than what I had been able to while practicing individual casework. I have been involved in policy advocacy ever since.

In the years following completion of graduate school I’ve participated in coalition-building and legislative work in a variety of settings including housing, food access, public education, and employment for individuals with disabilities. While working at City Hall for former Vice-Mayor David Crowley I was responsible for drafting legislative proposals related to human services, crime, housing, and the environment.

PROFESSIONAL

I worked for years with individuals with mental illness and substance abuse, later worked at City Hall, and then was hired to manage training grants and labor-management partnerships with local trade unions and other workforce development partners. Today I serve as CEO for Community Shares of Greater Cincinnati, a fundraising organization for social justice, economic equity, and environmental causes. As a non-profit administrator, I am responsible for ensuring the fiscal health and responsible management of my organization.

 

My Qualifications....

Education:

MSW, Masters of Social Work, Administration University of Cincinnati (2005)

LISW, License to Independently Practice Social Work in the State of Ohio since 2009 (#I 0900291)

BA, Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, Reed College (1995)

 

Community and Civic Involvement: 

Woodford Elementary Local School Decision-Making Committee (LSDMC), Community Member Appointee

Cincinnati Educational Justice Coalition, Coordinator

Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities (OOD), State Commissioner, Program Committee and former Budget and Finance Committee Member, Commissioner

Mill Creek Council of Communities, Board Member

City of Cincinnati Community Development Advisory Board (CDAB), Human Services Appointee

University of Cincinnati School of Social Work Alumni Board, Vice President, Member

Kennedy Heights Community Council, Board of Trustees Member and President

Neighborhood Support Program Manager for Kennedy Heights, Grant Review Team member

OTR Homegrown, an Urban Farm Collective in Over-The-Rhine, Founding Member

Blue Green Alliance, Cincinnati Chapter, Officer

City of Cincinnati Urban Agriculture Advisory Board Member

Cincinnati Regional Food Policy Council Development Team, Chair

City of Cincinnati/Hamilton County Fair Housing Advisory Committee, Member

ADA 2010 Accessibility for All Planning Committee, Steering Committee Member

Mayor Mallory’s Young Professionals Kitchen Cabinet, Health and Environment Committee, Urban Agriculture Subcommittee member

University of Cincinnati’s 2010 Food Congress, Planning Committee Member

University of Cincinnati’s 2009 Food Congress, Planning Committee Member, Publicity Chair

Policy Advisory Committee Member, ARC Hamilton County

Affordable Housing Educational Forum Planning Committee Member, in association with the League of Women Voters

CeaseFire Cincinnati, Steering Committee Member and Public Education Committee Member

Affordable Housing Advocates (AHA), Member

 

Experience:

Chief Operating Officer, Community Shares of Greater Cincinnati

Adjunct Professor and Field Instructor, University of Cincinnati, School of Social Work

Director of Education, Greater Cincinnati Coalition for the Homeless

Communications and Research Manager, Ohio Valley and Southern States Laborers-Employers Cooperation and Education Trust (OVSS-LECET)

Project Manager, Greater Cincinnati Occupational Health Center

Chief of Staff, Office of the Vice Mayor David Crowley, City of Cincinnati

Lead Clinical Service Provider, Centerpoint Health and Talbert House

Project Manager, BARiS Project, Freestore Foodbank

Case Manager, Central Clinic, Adult Services Division and MHAP (Mental Health Access Point)

                                                               

Career Highlights:

» Edited the first-ever “State of Affordable Housing in Hamilton County: The Crisis” Report

» Contributed to the growth of a non-profit social services agency from dormancy to receiving and successfully implementing 4 unique grants over 18 months

» Received state certification for a workforce development training program I made application for and co-created

» Mentor to under-graduate and graduate students from UC’s DAAP Program, School of Social Work, and UK’s Chase Law School

» Founding member in local initiatives that have enjoyed sustainable success (i.e., CeaseFire Cincinnati, the Cincinnati Regional Food Policy Council, and the City of Cincinnati’s Urban Agriculture Board).

» Recipient of the 2010 Ohio Citizen Action “Emerging Leader” Award

 

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