CTM Trustee Candidate Q & A

There are ten candidates running to be a CTM Trustee for five seats up for election. Each candidate was offered the chance to answer five questions and make a comment. Replies were limited to 50 words per question/comment. Candidates were not required to reply. The replies are listed below in the order they were received. Voting will occur Monday December 4th at 6PM prior to the usual CTM meeting at 7PM.

Stephanie Gilbreath Response:

Q1 What special skills would you bring to the board and what committees would you want to serve on? My areas of experience include non-profit fundraising, event planning, research, writing, print production (magazines), retail business ownership, historic house renovation. My primary committees of interest include Housing & Zoning and Arts & Culture. I am happy to put fundraising and publishing skills to work as needed.

Q2 What are your top 5 priorities for Clifton?

Historically sensitive revitalization of business district.
More respect/cooperation between Clifton special interest groups.
Transparent, communicative, thoughtful school development that accommodates needs/concerns of all stakeholders (households with and without children).
CCAC relocation within Clifton.
Positive PR for Clifton. Too many recent citywide news stories are negative.

Q3 Why are you running to be a Trustee? I love the unique character of Clifton. I now have the time and energy available to serve the community and skills to put to use. My family and I benefit every day from living here and I believe in giving back.

Q4 What would you care most about as a trustee? Clifton is made up of singles, couples, families with children of all ages, renters, homeowners, business owners, young, old and everyone in between. It is vital that CTM recognize and represent needs and priorities of all these demographics (especially when they clash) when making decisions or communicating with the City.

Q5 What is your opinion on new development in Clifton such as with the Clifton Merchants Lot? At the Merchant’s Lot planning meeting, I was pleased that the city and developers began the process with community input. Our business district needs updating to maintain Clifton’s reputation as one of Cincinnati’s premier neighborhoods and attract homebuyers, shoppers and vibrant businesses to our neighborhood.

Optional Comment: I hope you will consider me when you vote for CTM Trustees. It would be an honor and a pleasure to serve all of Clifton’s residents. Happiest of holidays (whichever you choose to celebrate) to you and yours.

Sean Hare Response:

Q1 What special skills would you bring to the board and what committees would you want to serve on? As an urban planner I have experience in community organization, outreach, and the technical aspects of city living. I also have experience in design and mural creation. I would be interested in the Transportation, Parks, Public Art, Housing and Zoning, and the Beautification committees.

Q2 What are your top 5 priorities for Clifton?

Helping to shape a resilient and sustainable future for the neighborhood
Public art development
Creating a proper response to new development in Clifton
Promoting a more bike friendly and accessible neighborhood
Promoting placemaking to enhance the unique-ness of Clifton even more

Q3 Why are you running to be a Trustee? When I moved here, in 2015, I fell in love with the character and people of this neighborhood which welcomed me so graciously. I am young and looking to get involved in my community, and feel I would bring fresh perspective to an organization like CTM.

Q4 What would you care most about as a trustee? I would care most about creating a vibrant future for our community. I feel that working with the future generations of Clifton residents in mind is crucial to being a Trustee and I would work to make sure that our actions are forward thinking.

Q5 What is your opinion on new development in Clifton such as with the Clifton Merchants Lot? I see these developments as opportunities for enhancing Clifton as a community. Through new public spaces, retail opportunities, and new residents, I feel that Clifton is a great community that could be made even better through these projects and the input of our great residents in guiding these projects.

Optional Comment: I feel my professional background would help our community greatly during these times of change and my younger perspective would help in providing a voice to members of Clifton who tend to not be involved in CTM. I look forward to serving you all. Thank you.

Micah Ovadia Response:

Q1 What special skills would you bring to the board and what committees would you want to serve on? My bachelor’s degree in Visual Communications and master’s degree in Public Relations will be helpful in communicating initiatives to the public and soliciting feedback. The Website/Social Media committee would be an ideal fit for my skill set. I am also interested in the proposed Art and Culture Committee.

Q2 What are your top 5 priorities for Clifton?

Support Howell Development Project
Support creation of Entertainment District
Find home for CCAC
Address problem of increasing graffiti
Encourage installation of public art

Q3 Why are you running to be a Trustee? As the owner of a business in Clifton, I have a vested interest in the economic, aesthetic and social well-being of our community. As a Trustee, I would have an opportunity to positively impact these areas and cultivate an atmosphere welcoming not only to business, but to residents, as well.

Q4 What would you care most about as a trustee? I would care most not about a single particular issue, but about the potential impact our decisions as a whole might have on our community and its residents. Helping to shape the future of an historic neighborhood is an awesome responsibility. Open communication and transparency with the public is key.

Q5 What is your opinion on new development in Clifton such as with the Clifton Merchants Lot? I am excited about new development in Clifton, particularly with regard to the Clifton Merchants Lot. An influx of residents will contribute to the vitality of the area and stimulate economic growth. I am, however, adamant that the project must respect the needs and wishes of our community.

Optional Comment: This is an exciting period for Clifton. With new projects in the works and in the pipeline, it is important that public input and involvement is solicited. With your support, I will strive to address the requirements and concerns of our community and solidify a prosperous future for Clifton.

Buddy Goose Response:

Q1 What special skills would you bring to the board and what committees would you want to serve on? I am a doer, I find talking incessantly about an issue to the detriment of getting anything done to be incredibly frustrating. I will push to get things done. I think the committees; business, events and beautification are my interests.

Q2 What are your top 5 priorities for Clifton?

Community engagement – find a way to get more neighbor involvement.
Neighborhood business support – revitalize AND SUPPORT our business district.
Community school -critical to attracting new home owners.
Healing division – get over the divisive rhetoric from the formation of Clifton Market
Beautification-keep our neighborhood beautiful

Q3 Why are you running to be a Trustee? Our community is the best neighborhood in Cincinnati. However, the number of neighbors that are actively involved in our community is small. I see the same people over and over involved in community events. I want to encourage involvement and foster communication.

Q4 What would you care most about as a trustee? Finding ways to increase neighbor involvement and to support our business district.

Q5 What is your opinion on new development in Clifton such as with the Clifton Merchants Lot? I favor development in our community. The Merchants’ Lot development is the type of progressive thinking we need to maintain our neighborhood vibrancy. The community input sought shows the level of commitment to our community we look for from a developer.

Optional Comment: A key to attracting new home buyers and new businesses is keeping our neighborhood a vibrant place. The Ludlow Business District is crucial. Let’s all work to visit and support all of our local businesses.

Vince Metzger Response:

Q1 What special skills would you bring to the board and what committees would you want to serve on? Public Safety and Education. I live and work in Clifton and work with a diverse group of people and try understand everyone’s needs. That may not sound like a skill but too many people only look at things from their perspective.

Q2 What are your top 5 priorities for Clifton?

Neighborhood unity – We need to stand together so we can move forward.
Education – Clifton is undergoing a major change and we need all of Clifton’s schools to be successful.
Keeping CCAC and Clifton Market in Clifton
New Development
Public Safety

Q3 Why are you running to be a Trustee? As someone who intends to reside in this neighborhood for 30+ years, I care deeply about Clifton and what happens here, I would like to be more involved in the political process and moving us forward in a positive way.

Q4 What would you care most about as a trustee? My aim is to put forth a positive energy focused on showing the neighborhood of Clifton and the city of Cincinnati that our residents are positive, productive and intelligent and that we can work together in a civil and peaceful manner.

Q5 What is your opinion on new development in Clifton such as with the Clifton Merchants Lot? I’m excited about new development in Clifton. While Clifton has a lot to offer its residents and neighbors, I think some new business and residences are an exciting change. Adding new assets and keeping the existing ones can only make Clifton better.

Optional Comment: I pledge to always treat others with respect and talk through differences in a way that identifies things that we can agree on. My votes and resolution proposals will be clearly defined and reasonable.

Gina Marsh Response:

Q1 What special skills would you bring to the board and what committees would you want to serve on? I have a strong understanding of ways to revitalize our business district from my experience with the Ludlow 21 Working Group and Clifton 20/20. As an attorney and executive director for a nonprofit, I can help implement improved governance of CTM. I prefer the Business District and Bylaws Committees.

Q2 What are your top 5 priorities for Clifton?

Implementing recommendations of the Ludlow 21 report to improve the business district.
Ensuring meaningful community engagement in business district development.
Ensuring success of the new neighborhood school.
Ensuring Clifton is proactive on City decisions affecting the neighborhood.
Improving governance and maintaining professionalism on the board.

Q3 Why are you running to be a Trustee? I would like to use my skills and experience to enhance the positive impact that CTM brings to the community and to improve CTM’s reputation as a collaborative and inclusive organization. CTM should be a welcoming forum where residents feel comfortable expressing their viewpoints on issues of concern.

Q4 What would you care most about as a trustee? The business district will likely undergo significant changes over the next few years, including a large-scale mixed-use development on the Merchant’s Lot. The top priority for me will be helping to ensure that these improvements respect the unique character of Clifton and allow for meaningful engagement from residents.

Q5 What is your opinion on new development in Clifton such as with the Clifton Merchants Lot? I believe the proposed development could offer many benefits, including a new, much-needed housing option for Clifton residents, additional parking, and more customers for our small businesses on Ludlow Avenue. It will help our business district and our neighborhood remain competitive with others in the City.

Rama Kasturi Response:

Q1 What special skills would you bring to the board and what committees would you want to serve on? I am a research scientist by training and have used my grant writing expertise to garner funds for various community projects. I have developed fundraising expertise through my work with the Clifton Market. I am Chair of the Parks Committee, and work closely with the Beautification Committee on Sustainability issues.

Q2 What are your top 5 priorities for Clifton?

Improve programming in our parks
Help green our Business District
Advocate for more support by residents of our community-funded grocery store
Better showcase Clifton’s diversity
Further civility by fostering formal conversations about our shared values as people irrespective of our diversity and differences of opinion

Q3 Why are you running to be a Trustee? I am seeking a second term as a CTM trustee. I would like to have the opportunity to finish what I have started in terms of the projects as Chair of the Parks Committee and my collaborative efforts on other community-related projects such as beautification, sustainability, Clifton House Tour etc.

Q4 What would you care most about as a trustee? Ensuring that CTM reaches out to all residents of Clifton, represents the views of a multitude of Cliftonites, and engages with other organizations in and around Clifton.

Q5 What is your opinion on new development in Clifton such as with the Clifton Merchants Lot? I support any development that is community-supported, fits well with the historic character of our Gaslight district, and makes Clifton more attractive as a walkable and livable residential community.

Optional Comment: I am happy to have had the opportunity to serve the Clifton community both as a CTM trustee and Clifton Market board member. I look forward to continuing to work with Cincinnati Parks and community partners to keep Clifton green and sustainable.

Shaun McCance Response:

Q1 What special skills would you bring to the board and what committees would you want to serve on? I work in open source technology. The work I do involves community organizing and event planning as much as it does technology. For CTM,
I’ve served on event committees, the web committee, and the executive committee as treasurer.

Q2 What are your top 5 priorities for Clifton?

Growing our business district without sacrificing its character.
Keeping Clifton walkable and accessible.
Maintaining green space.
Improving recreational facilities.
Holding regular events that bring people together.

Q3 Why are you running to be a Trustee? I’ve enjoyed serving on CTM for the last three years. I think I’ve made a positive impact on the neighborhood, and I’ve made good friends along the way.

Q4 What would you care most about as a trustee? We’re all neighbors. It’s important that we’re able to be civil, friendly, and productive even when we don’t all agree.

Q5 What is your opinion on new development in Clifton such as with the Clifton Merchants Lot? I’m in favor of new development in general, but we need to ensure it maintains the character of the neighborhood and doesn’t push out the local family businesses that define Clifton.

Click here to read the bios that candidates submitted earlier in November.

Two candidates did not reply. We hope you found this helpful in making your decision for who will be CTM Trustees.
Thank You,
Clifton Town Meeting Trustees

Seeking Candidates for CTM Trustee

We are seeking candidates to run for Trustee positions during the 12/4/2017 meeting of the Clifton Town Meeting (CTM) Board. If you think you might enjoy serving as a Trustee, please email contactctm@cliftoncommunity.org by October 20st.

CTM is Clifton’s neighborhood community council. As such, CTM seeks to understand the interests of Clifton residents and to represent those interests with the City of Cincinnati. In addition, CTM supports a wide range of events and projects that help make Clifton a great place to live, work and play. Examples include: Holidays on Ludlow, the Memorial Day Parade, CliftonFest, the Clifton House Tour, and the restoration of the Probasco Fountain.

As a Trustee, you will share your voice and skills regarding community events, beautification projects, and issues related to education, safety, transportation, business development, and housing and zoning. You will also have the opportunity to collaborate with other organizations such as Uptown Consortium, CCAC, TriHealth, CPBA, Ludlow 21, and Clifton Community Fund.

Trustee Expectations:

  • Serve a 3 year term
  • Attend and participate in monthly CTM meetings
  • Serve on at least one CTM committee
  • Be informed about issues that affect Clifton

If you are interested in becoming a CTM Trustee, please email contactctm@cliftoncommunity.org no later than October 20st.

  • Provide a telephone number if possible. We will email you more information, but would also like to call you to answer any questions you may have.
  • You must have a current CTM Membership at the time of the election. Memberships are available to Clifton residents, Clifton property owners, and operators of businesses in Clifton. For more information about CTM Membership, see http://www.cliftoncommunity.org/products-page/membership/
  • Before the election, you must submit a biographical summary of 200 words or less so that voters can learn about you. We will email you examples from past elections.

If you’d like to join our energetic, committed committed group of CTM Trustees, please contact us soon.

Bios for CTM Trustee Candidates – 2016 Election

Below are the bios for candidates running for CTM Trustee at the upcoming elections on Monday, December 5 from 6-7pm. Elections will be held at the Clifton Recreation Center on the 2nd floor in the large meeting room. The Rec Center is universally accessible to all. Take the elevator or the stairs to the 2nd floor.

Christine Celsor

Christine Celsor is an urban planner, an artist and mother of two young daughters. She works for the University of Cincinnati’s Department of Planning + Design + Construction and has over 10 years of professional planning experience. She holds a Master of Community Planning from UC as well as a Master of Arts in Art History from Indiana University. Her urban planning experience includes:
• Reviewing new residential and commercial developments for consistency with city and county plans, zoning regulations and design guidelines
• Transportation planning, with a focus on multi-modal transportation options including bike, pedestrian and transit infrastructure
• Working with planners from the City of Cincinnati and neighborhood groups in CUF and Corryville to develop an implementation plan for improving safety, quality of life and transportation options, and to guide new development
• Promoting multi-cultural/ethnic relationships by organizing “Dinner in the Park” with the Cincinnati Human Relations Commission and giving a presentation at UC’s Diversity and Inclusion Conference
• Using Geographic Information Systems software for analysis and map design
• Volunteer work as a Precinct Executive for the Hamilton County Central Democratic Committee.

Brad Hawse

I have lived in Clifton with my fiance, Ryan, for three years and we have loved every minute of it! I have been involved in our Clifton community since we first moved in. Whether helping to activate our public spaces with live music, movies and beverages on “Big Nights” for the last two years as a founding member of Ludlow21, helping the Honeysuckle Hit Squad in Burnett Woods, or helping hang holiday decorations on Ludlow, I have a passion for serving my community to make it a fun, beautiful, safe place to live.
I graduated in 2009 with an Urban Planning degree from DAAP and have experience in fundraising, zoning, non-profits and leadership development. I hope to serve as a CTM trustee and assure that Clifton continues to be one of the premier neighborhoods in Cincinnati.

Adam E. Hyland

“It has been a great honor to serve Clifton as a CTM Trustee for the past three years. I am excited about the opportunity to continue this important work and to keep tackling the big issues that face our community. Clifton’s future is bright because our foundation is built on a strong legacy of community involvement. We are a vibrant community because the residents are willing to stand up and participant in defining our neighborhood’s future while respecting the history that makes it great.”
Adam has served two years as a CTM Vice President and three years as the Chair of the Housing & Zoning Committee. Additionally he serves on the Business, Website, and Transportation Committees. Adam is the founder and principal of EccaNova, Digital Strategic Advertising and the President of the Board for Clifton Market. He is a fourth generation resident of Clifton and lives on Loraine Avenue with his wife, Marta, and son, Henry.
Adam has a degree in Urban Planning from the University of Cincinnati, DAAP; he specializes in the areas of economic development, policy planning, zoning review and urban design. He studied at the Universiteit Van Amsterdam School of Geography and at the Harvard Business School.

Seth Maney

I became a Clifton resident this year after buying a home on Clifton Avenue near Greendale. When I started looking to purchase a house, Clifton was at the top of my list. Before moving to Clifton, I lived in Over-the-Rhine for four years and served as Vice President of the OTR Community Council for over three years. Professionally, I am the Vice President of OTR-based real estate development company Urban Sites and think my experience in development will make me an asset to the Clifton Town Meeting board. I am civic-minded and take a sincere interest in the health of our neighborhood. Clifton’s gas-lit, tree-lined streets, independent business district, beautiful homes and greenspaces, diverse population, strong schools, cultural amenities, and walkability are treasures that require keen stewardship. Despite its many strengths, Clifton is not without its challenges. Increasing competition from other neighborhoods means we must find new ways to improve the quality of life of our neighborhood and strengthen the existing assets that give Clifton its charm.
I am honored to call Clifton home and wish to contribute to its legacy as one of the best neighborhoods in the city to live, work, shop, eat, and raise a family.

Kevin Marsh

In this past three years as a trustee, I have served on the Nominating, Transportation, Public Safety, Website / Social Media, Education, Membership, and Business District committees. The last two years I have also served as secretary. I also help implement events such as the Memorial Day Parade/BBQ, CliftonFest, Neighborhood Games, and Holidays on Ludlow. If you are a subscriber to the CTM email list, you get an email from me 3-4 times a month with Clifton News and the monthly meeting agenda.
My family and I have lived in Clifton for 11 years, and we love its charm and diversity. We also own a rental property in Clifton. We are invested in the long-term success of all of Clifton—our parks, our walkable and diverse business district, and our strong sense of community.
If re-elected, I will continue working on safety, education and transportation issues in our neighborhood as well as improving communications. I will also continue to increase the transparency and effectiveness of CTM so that it can amplify the voice and concerns of all residents and business owners.

Jarrod Mohler

I have been a Clifton resident for 10 years, and I was previously a resident of Clifton Heights. My wife Sharon and I live on Wood Avenue with our two children, both of whom attend Fairview and have only known Clifton as home. We love living in Clifton because of its many amenities within walking distance, the friendliness of our neighbors, and the character of the neighborhood. I look forward to the opportunity to get more involved in the community.
In my professional life I am a partner at Robbins, Kelly, Patterson & Tucker, a law firm of 24 lawyers and 50 total employees located downtown. As a business owner and a professional advisor, I understand the issues that local businesses face. In addition to my leadership roles at my firm, I have been on the Board of Directors of Visionaries & Voices, a non-profit arts organization located in Northside, and I am an active member of several professional organizations. I believe the legal expertise I have acquired through 16 years of practice, and my community and charitable work, provides a unique and valuable foundation to address issues CTM faces and its constituents’ needs.

Joyce Rich

I come again to ask for your vote. For those of you who do not know me, I can tell you that I am a long time resident of Clifton, a dog, food and wine lover, a retiree with salt and pepper hair and a woman who wants Clifton to thrive.
My trusteeship with Clifton Town Meeting has helped to bring over $125,000 of grant money into our community. Physically, this money has resulted in new parking way-finding signs, including the large lighted parking pylon identifying the Merchants Lot and the colorful awnings with LED lighting on Telford. I have served two terms as Vice President of Clifton Town Meeting. Past and current projects that I have assisted with or led include: Façade Improvement Program, Bronze Plaques Remediation, Holidays on Ludlow, the CTM Golf Outing, Clifton Branding/Logo project, the Clifton House Tour, the Deer Ad Hoc Committee, Probasco Fountain Ad Hoc Committee, The Fundraising Committee, Business Committee and Events Committee. Please don’t stop me now. Vote for me, Joyce Rich.