Overwhelmed with Hope


The response of Advance Northeast Ohio residents to my query regarding what gives us hope for the future has been, in a word, overwhelming. It’s been a real challenge to keep up with the comments and I apologize if I haven’t responded to each of you individually. But I hope you’ll keep the comments going.

Below is a partial compilation of the responses I received via e-mail. I will be adding more over the weekend.

I hope you’ll comment directly on this site as to what gives you hope for the future of the region, but if you’d rather contact me via e-mail, you can do so here.

We have wonderful natural and cultural resources in our region that make it a great place to live.

I am involved in my day to day work with changing the economic environment through entrepreneurship. While the work is very hard, I can feel that conditions in the region are shifting for the better. We need to keep pushing and this ship will turn!

Where there is great need, there is also opportunity and I observe there are lots of opportunities in NEO to make a difference for the future.

– Deb Hoover

I am an Adjunct Professor at the University of Texas (in the classroom, not online) so I get to talk to a lot of students about their plans after graduation.
MANY of them ARE planning to move south when they graduate.
But there ARE reasons (and ways) for them to want to stay.
1. The success of the Progressive Insurance Company proves that, with the right management, companies CAN succeed here.
2. There is a lot of family pride here, and that will keep people in the area, continuing to fight to raise the area.
3. The new superintendent of the Cleveland schools is continuing to make a very positive effect on the future.
In successful areas, the educational institutions seem to take the lead (Silicone Valley, Boston area, Austin area). This seems to be starting.
We need a much stronger mayor in Cleveland, and a state that is committred to helping us succeed.

-Gregory Czar

1. Lake Erie and amazing park space

2. a new partner in Susan Goldberg at the Plain Dealer–in her City Club speech last Friday she too questioned why there is no hope

3. the news of Michael Symon becoming an Iron Chef gives us proof that Cleveland can produce unique products that others will value


1.      Commitment to green space
– Cuyahoga Valley National Park (an amazing National Park in our backyard!)
-Nature Centers like the Nature Center at Shaker Lakes and Lake Erie Nature & Science Center
-Dike 14

2. Commitment to culture
-University Circle
-Theatre District
-Civic Theatre in Akron

3. Nationally recognized colleges and universities
-Kent State University’s Fashion Design program  & Liquid Crystal Institute
-Cleveland Institute of Art
-University of Akron’s work with polymers

4. Commitment to developing local leadership
-Cleveland Leadership Center’s wide spectrum of programs
-Leadership Taskforce
-Leadership Akron/ Hudson/ Stark County
-Junior Leadership Akron
-Summit-Portage Leader Institute
-Gund Foundation’s Executive Director Institute
-Center for Non-Profit Excellence

5. Commitment to the environment
-Green City Blue Lake
-Entrepreneurs for Sustainability
-City of Cleveland’s green neighborhood initiative

Don’t forget those of us in extreme NE Ohio.  We have:

1.  Available land (residential, industrial and commercial) 2.  Lower costs for real estate 3.  Lots of parks, covered bridges and beachfront to enjoy the scenery and promote tourism

One of the biggest negatives to this area that I have heard repeatedly, we have to do something to get the utility rates down.  If we could do that, you may just see some of those companies come back to our area.  We have a major resource that some locations would dearly love more of, water.

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Author: advance759