The Cuyahoga County Council Committee will consider 19 appointments to various county councils next week
CLEVELAND, Ohio — In his final months in office, Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish named a series of appointees to various county boards for terms ranging from two to five years.
One of those selections – the appointment of Dave Wondolowski to the Port Authority of Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Board of Directors – drew both support and opposition from the community as the county council prepares to review the choice and decide whether to approve it.
The board’s Human Resources, Nominating and Equity Committee will consider Wondolowski’s nomination at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, April 19. Councilwoman Nan Baker, who chairs the committee, has already said she would need to see proof that he would step down from his position in Cuyahoga County. Board of Elections before considering him for the Port Authority board, after legal filings showed he should not take both seats.
Wondolowski held both positions from 2018 to February 2022.
“Everyone seems to be very excited about this nomination,” Baker told cleveland.com.
But Wondolowski’s appointment isn’t the only one being considered on Tuesday.
Budish is also seeking to appoint former Cleveland Councilman Basheer Jones to the Board of Alcohol, Drug and Mental Health Services (ADAMHS), to serve an unexpired term ending June 30, 2024. He would replace Crystal Bryant.
The ADAMHS Board of Directors consists of 18 members, 10 of whom are appointed by the executive and subject to board confirmation, and the remaining eight are appointed by the Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services from Ohio.
At least half of the board members should have an interest in mental health services and the other half in alcohol, drug or gambling addiction services. They should also reflect the wider community, with at least least one member representing each of the following categories: a mental health clinician, a mental health service recipient, a parent or relative of a consumer, an addiction clinician, an addiction service recipient, and a relative or parent of a beneficiary.
Budish’s appointment letter did not detail Jones’ qualifications for the position, but did indicate that his resume was being sent to county council members.
Jones was first elected to city council in 2017 and served one term representing Ward 7 before running for mayor in the 2021 election. After placing fifth in the primary, Jones endorsed president of the then-City Councilman Kevin Kelley in the running.
His short stint on the board was marked by some controversy.
He missed 10 of 19 board meetings, although two were excused absences, according to a cleveland.com analysis. He was also a champion of the council’s split decision to allocate $2 million from the city’s U.S. bailout to health departments in the financially-struggling Northeast Ohio (NEON) neighborhood.
The nonprofit had financial problems and alleged mismanagement since before the COVID-19 pandemic and was paying its CEO more than $500,000 while serving fewer patients — down about a third over the course of of the past five years. Jones argued the money would go to support important health programs in some of Cleveland’s poorest minority neighborhoods.
Budish is also appointing Cleveland Police Chief Wayne Drummond to the Cuyahoga County Diversion Board to replace former Chief Calvin Williams, who is serving a term March 1 to February 28, 2025. And he reappoints MetroHealth CEO , Akram Boutros, for the same three-year term.
The Diversion Board was established to oversee the operation of the Cuyahoga County Assessment and Diversion Center.
Other board appointments to be heard by the committee include:
Cuyahoga County Advisory Council on Elderly and Adult Services
- Renewal of the mandate of Donisha Greene for a mandate from 01/01/2022 to 31/12/2024
Cuyahoga Regional HIV Health Services Planning Council
- Appointment of Karla Ruiz for a term 04/01/2020 – 03/31/2023
- Appointment of David Smith for a term 04/01/2021 – 03/31/2024
- Appointment of Jannine Citerman-Kraeger for a term 01/02/2022 – 31/01/2025
- Appointment of Uleta Carter, Bryan Jones, Peter Scardino, James Stevenson and Joye Toombs for terms from 04/01/2022 to 03/31/2025
- Reappointment of Christy Nichols for a mandate 01/04/2020 – 31/03/2023
- Renewal of the terms of office of Clifford Barnett and Michael Dieghan from 02/01/2021 to 01/31/2024
- Renewal of the mandates of Barbara Gripshover, Naimah O’Neal and Leisha Yarbrough-Franklin from 04/01/2021 to 03/31/2024
If approved by the committee, the nominations will be voted on by the full board. Each nomination will require at least six “yes” votes from the Board to be accepted.
On Tuesday, the county council also confirmed a batch of earlier nominations at second reading, after each received the unanimous recommendation of the human resources committee.
The Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C) Board of Trustees:
- Appointed Ted Tywang for an unexpired term ending 01/16/2025
- Renamed Victor Ruiz for a term from 01/18/22 to 01/17/2027
Cuyahoga Arts and Culture Board of Directors
- Reappointed Nancy Mendez for a term 04/01/2022 – 03/31/2025
Cuyahoga County Planning Commission
- Appointed Mayor Justin Bibb, representing the Cleveland area, for a term of 01/01/2022 to 12/31/2024
- Appointed Mayor Edward Orcutt, representing the Southwest Region, for a term from 01/01/2022 to 31/12/2024
Cuyahoga County Community Improvement Corporation Board of Directors
- Appointed Brian Hall, Michael Obi and Anthony Tavrell for the terms of 02/01/2022 to 01/01/2025
- Appointed Sara Parks Jackson for a term of 10/16/2020 to 10/15/2023
Cuyahoga County Public Library Board
- Reappointed Allyn Davies for a term from 04/01/2022 to 03/31/2029
Cuyahoga County Advisory Board on Services for the Elderly
- Appointed Douglas Bennett for an ongoing term ending 12/31/2023
- Appointment of Chris Hall, Jennifer Kons, Heidi Lum and Emily Lundgard for terms from 01/01/2022 to 12/31/2024
- Renamed Cheryl Bradas and Ashley Morrisey for terms from 01/01/2022 to 12/31/2024
Western Reserve Area Agency on aging board
- Appointed Janice Dzigiel for a mandate from 01/01/2022 to 31/12/2024