New Trustees Elected

Fifty-three members of Clifton Town Meeting cast ballots on Monday, Nov. 7, 2022, to elect seven trustees to seven open seats on the 15-member board. Twenty-five members voted electronically and 28 members voted in-person at the Clifton Recreation Center, 320 McAlpin Ave.

With terms beginning in January 2023, Gerald Checco, Barry Gee, Tim Noonan, Justin Ogilby, and John Whedon were each elected to 3-year terms. Rachel Wells was elected to a 2-year term, and Mansee Chauhun was elected to a 1-year term. Learn more about each candidate in this post.

Current trustees who were not up for election and will continue in their seats for another year include Genet Singh, Naghma Malik, Brendon Cull, and Mary Pat Lienhart. Continuing in their seats for another two years are Nestor Melnyk, Jan Brown Checco, Jayme Ritter and Michael Roller.

Leaving the board of trustees when their terms end in January 2023 are Robert Hamberg, Tim Maxey, and Zeeshan Tayeb.

Only current CTM members may vote in the annual trustee elections. You can renew or begin your membership by clicking here.

CTM Trustee Elections are Nov. 7

Vote in-person or request an electronic ballot

Mark your calendar for this year’s Clifton Town Meeting (CTM) elections on Nov. 7, 2022, with options to vote in-person or, by request, with an electronic ballot. Seven candidates are vying for seven open seats. Candidates with the most votes will fill five 3-year terms while candidates receiving fewer votes will fill one 2-year term and one 1-year term.

Only current members can vote. You can make your membership active online by clicking here. You must be an active member on Friday Nov 4 to vote electronically. You can also make your membership active at the in person elections.

If you wish to vote electronically, request a ballot no later than 7 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 4, 2022 by emailing The vote is anonymous, so those who request an electronic ballot will not be able to vote in person.

If you plan to vote in person, you can do so between 6 p.m. and 7 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 7, 2022 at the Clifton Recreation Center, 320 McAlpin Ave.

Read on to learn more about this year’s candidates.

Mansee Chauhan

As I am becoming an urban planner, I wanted to be involved with the community where I live, engaging to know their concerns while working with them. I hope that with my skills, training and background as an urban planner, I will be an asset to the board. I wish to give back to community that has welcomed me. My coop experience and the classes that I have taken in past year and current year will help me to broaden my knowledge within real dynamic settings.

Gerald Checco

After 30 years spent as a public servant leading 4 agencies, I was elected to the CTM board in 2020. I was Treasurer for two years, then President in 2022. Among my accomplishments: I created a Memo of Understanding between the three Clifton civic groups (Clifton Business Association, Clifton Community Fund and CTM) that enables them to work more efficiently together maximizing effectiveness. I co-created CliftonCares during the pandemic to help our restaurants survive, and received a “Leadership in Crisis” award (2020). I organized 7 community volunteer cleaning events, earning a Keep Cincinnati Beautiful award (2021) and was recognized as “Friend of Clifton” (2021). I’ve helped to make the Chronicle financially selfsupporting and updated that mailing list. I obtained many grants on behalf of both CTM and CBA, managing the completion and reporting of these grants. I’ve volunteered for our cleanups, two Golf Outings, the Memorial Day Picnic and as a writer and distributor for the Chronicle. If elected, I intend to serve by fostering collaboration among our civic groups, developing win-win outcomes in every case, and by helping a new generation into a future of leadership.

Barry Gee

I have been serving on the CTM board for a few months in 2022 as a replacement for a Trustee who could not fulfill their term. I had the pleasure to lead the resurrection of the CTM Memorial Day Parade/Picnic and currently serve on the Events committee. We often hear discussion of the importance of community engagement, and I am pleased that through the work of CTM, here in Clifton community engagement is in the action phase. There are committees for many of the issues we are facing and we as a community are having a say and some control over what happens in our neighborhood. As a community we must always remain vigilant and be a proactive voice. I have seen directly that Clifton Town Meeting is an organized and effective organization, determining needs and building consensus for our community. I humbly ask for your vote as a Trustee and look forward to continuing to serve this great organization.

Tim Noonan

I’ve been serving on CTM by appointment since July 2022. I would like to continue the work I’ve begun on CTM’s accounting software, assuring that the treasurer’s duties are more easily transferable in the future. Our family moved to Clifton in 2017 after Karen and I retired from our jobs in Butler and Warren counties. We love this neighborhood and our neighbors and can’t imagine a better neighborhood for us. Besides the amazing people we have met in Clifton, we love Clifton’s “useful walkability.” It is so calming that so many necessary services are a short walk away. Supporting the safety and health of our business district should continue to be a CTM priority. Crime in Clifton is a major concern for many residents. We should continue our work with District 5 Police but should also look for actions CTM can lead to aid in crime reduction. The future will bring changes to how people move in our neighborhood. I have noticed a great increase in the use of electric bikes and I’ve seen incredibly fast electric scooters. CTM should continue its work to make Clifton’s transportation safe while staying aware of coming changes. I hope you will consider voting for me as a CTM board member.

Justin Ogilby

I first moved to Clifton to attend the University of Cincinnati and liked it so much that my wife and I bought our first house here in 2013. Elizabeth and I now live on Clifton Avenue with our 4 kids Jonah, Wesley, Ian and Isabell. Jonah and Wesley attend school at Fairview and Ian is in preschool at Immanuel. We are parishioners at Annunciation Church. Recently I’ve been involved with the CTM Transportation and Safety Committee, working on addressing safety issues along Clifton Avenue. Professionally, I’m an executive, board member and co-founder at STACK Construction Technologies, a software company in Blue Ash. On the CTM board I’ll work to continue to improve safety and quality of life for kids, families and all residents of Clifton.

Rachel Wells

As a car-free apartment dweller, I rely heavily on Clifton’s accessibility to greenspace and multimodal transportation. To me, the ability to walk through a dense canopy of trees and to entertainment, dining, retail and educational establishments is the rare mix that makes Clifton unique. I want all Clifton residents and visitors to feel welcome, included and valued. My career has included stints as a newspaper reporter, in communications and stakeholder engagement, and as a grant writer. I am currently a project manager for an education nonprofit. Throughout, I’ve worked to make systems more responsive to the communities they serve by building understanding and promoting civic participation. I’m eager to continue this effort as CTM trustee, and I believe my experience as a resident in multi-family housing and as a public transit user adds a valuable perspective to the board. I was appointed to fill a trustee vacancy in 2022 and now serve as co-chair of the communications committee and on the membership committee. I continue to volunteer as a writer and proofreader with the Clifton Chronicle. Going forward, I would like to encourage more and more diverse residents to participate in CTM and to expand content on CTM’s website.

John Whedon

I have been happy to be a Clifton resident now for 18 years and, like many of you, love our neighborhood’s beautiful parks, incredible architecture, mature trees and walkability. My family has enjoyed much that is here – from elementary education at Fairview, summers at Clifton Meadows, Clifton soccer on Spring Grove, great neighbors and block parties, and much more. No neighborhood is perfect, of course, and there areas of needed focus critical to Clifton’s viability. If elected to the board I would like to do what is possible to make the business district a more inviting place to be for shoppers, walkers, both residents and visitors to Clifton alike. This includes attracting the best possible retailers as well. Store theft, vagrancy, panhandling, litter, smoke shops are some areas of concern I have. I would also support the already growing effort to slow down traffic on Clifton Avenue. Clifton is great and can be so much better. Together we can make it happen.

CTM Trustee Elections & Membership Meeting – Dec 6

CTM will hold Trustee elections on Monday, December 6 from 6-7pm. All CTM members are eligible to vote – if you haven’t joined or renewed your membership yet you can do so at this link by clicking here. There will be two options to vote on December 6 between 6-7pm:

Option 1: Anyone who joined or renewed and provided a valid email address by this Friday, December 4th at 5:00 pm will be eligible to vote online by using a secure link sent to your email. The email will be sent on Dec 6 at 6pm. Please note that if you have a household membership with two votes but only provided one email address, you can only cast one vote electronically. Please come to vote in-person to cast your other vote.

Option 2: In-person voting will also be available at the Fairview-Clifton German Language School parking lot. Walk up or drive up. You can make your membership current there as well.

Click here to read about the candidates in the 2021 Winter Edition of the Clifton Chronicle.

After the election, please join CTM’s annual membership meeting from 7:00 to 9:00pm to hear the election results. CTM members can also vote on proposed Bylaws amendments. Click here to read about the proposed Bylaws amendments.

December 6, 2021, 7:00pm.  Google Meet Videoconference.

After the election we will have our December meeting. Due to the ongoing public health situation CTM will continue to hold its meetings via video and telephone conference. To join the videoconference click on the following link – To join via phone, dial (657) 215-8396 and use the following PIN – 251 725 539#.

7:00 / 1 minWelcome to the Google Meet electronic meeting, advice for participation
7:01 / 1 minApprove prior month’s meeting minutes
7:02 / 8 minPolice Report
7:10 / 10 minTreasurer’s Report – advice for creation of a partitioned bank account for Chronicle funds (as was established for OLG in 2020), discussion and vote.
7:20 / 10 minOLG’s need for a defined process for seeking grants for projects, being in need of CTM authorization; an MOU to be presented about how committees can seek grants, discussion and vote
7:30 / 20 minBylaws Amendments; Presentation, discussion and vote
7:50 / 10  minMembership duration: Ideal is activation for a full 12 months from date of purchase, inclusive of the right to vote at the annual Members meeting in the period of validity. Expiration dates to be signaled to those concerned with a renewal prompt issued quarterly by a Membership Committee list manager.  Discussion and vote.
8:00 / 10 minTrustee Election and Bylaws Amendment Vote Results
8:10 / 10 minTrustee, Committee, Liaisons Announcements
8:20 / 10 minCommunity Questions/Concerns

Thank you very much, Clifton Town Meeting Trustees.

Emailing your issue to is another effective way to have your issue or opinion considered by your trustees.  To request an agenda item for the next meeting please email your topic to

Please note that public input on agenda items of pressing community concern will be heard after trustee discussion.  Community members should sign up to speak on an agenda item before the start of the meeting.  Not all agenda items will have time reserved for public input. Individual input on agenda items will be no more than two minutes.  Community members are able to speak on non-agenda issues during the public questions and concerns agenda item.  Individuals with statements are asked to sign in before the start of the meeting.  Statements will be no more than three minutes during the questions and concerns agenda item.

Bios for CTM Trustee Candidates – 2020

The objective of CTM is to build a Board of Trustees that represents the diversity of Clifton including ethnic, racial, gender, sexual orientation, religious, profession (salaried/hourly), community of origin (lifelong Cliftonites/new to Cincinnati and/or Clifton), etc. so we ensure our decisions are informed by diverse perspectives. We thank our current slate of nominees for stepping up to serve their community and we hope that more of you will consider joining the board in the future.

Below are the bios for candidates running for CTM Trustee at the upcoming elections on Monday, December 7 from 6:00 – 7:00pm. Elections will be held at the parking lot of the Fairview-Clifton German Language School in a drive through style due to COVID-19. You will not need to leave your vehicle to vote. We welcome walk up voters as well. Please wear a mask so that you can protect the volunteers working the elections event.

Additionally, this year, we are offering the opportunity to vote from home using a confidential online election tool that we have tested. This opportunity will only be available to any member who has an active membership that includes an email as of Friday, December 4 at 5:00 pm. All who qualify by this deadline will get an email providing them a one time use link to vote. Anyone who renews after 5:00 pm on December 4 will be eligible to vote at the December 7 elections as noted above.

For members opting to vote at the drive-through election, you must be present to vote (proxy votes are not permitted). It takes only a few minutes. You can pay your membership current by clicking here prior to voting in advance or at the night of elections.

There are 5 three-year term and 1 two-year term positions to be filled by the six candidates receiving the most votes.

Teckla G. Akinyi

My relationship with Clifton starts during my college years; matinees at the Esquire, trivia nights at Olive’s, wine tastings on Friday’s at Mike and late nights at Arlin’s followed by passionate 3AM conversations at Skyline or J Gumbo’s. Having moved to the alone USA in my late teenage years, Clifton stood out to me because of the welcoming, diverse community that somehow manages to keep UC students in their 20s through to established late career adults and even retirees all engaged. After spending 2 years as a young professional, I spent some time travelling the world with two short stints living in Montreal, Canada and Philadelphia and these choices really highlighted the uniqueness of the Clifton community to me and I moved right back in the summer of 2020 to build on the home I have found here.

Beyond my college years, Clifton has allowed me a rich quality of life through activities that have kept me engaged as my life changes from exploratory college life to young professional and I trust through to when I seek family life by providing safe, walkable and aesthetically pleasing outdoor areas, keeping diverse businesses open and all the community events at Burnet woods or the plaza.

Beyond living in the neighborhood and patronizing the vibrant businesses (regular at Esquire), I had a small stint at World Peace Yoga after completing the training program where I helped with some of the community classes on Saturday. This engagement solidified my interest in the community as I interacted with long term and transitional Cliftonites and learnt more about Clifton’s values and motivations.

I work as a data programmer/analyst and seek to utilize my technical skills within committees that may find such useful within CTM. Further, I seek involvement in the CTM with the hopes of preserving the diverse and vibrant community nature of Clifton, which allowed this transplant from Nowhere, Kenya to find and build a home.

Brendon Cull

My name is Brendon Cull and since 2012, my wife Becky and I (and now our two children) have lived on Warren Avenue. Clifton is a place that seemingly everyone in our City has a connection to, and this is an important asset for our neighborhood. We have stunning parks, great schools, a bustling business district, and we’re a destination for families looking for a welcoming neighborhood to call home. I’m proud to live here and I’m committed to ensuring our neighborhood is a place that is known for safe streets, vibrant parks and arts, sustainable development, and inclusive values.

I moved to Cincinnati 25 years ago to attend Xavier, majoring in Organizational Communication with a Peace Studies minor. My first job was working for Amnesty International, and at nineteen, new to the city, I organized events in Burnet Woods and at the Esquire Theatre. I knew then this neighborhood was welcoming, diverse, and important to our City’s culture.

After graduation, I worked for the renowned diversity and inclusion firm, Global Lead Management Consulting. But a love for policy and politics led to a career change: in 2000, I started working for the Mayor of Cincinnati, where I served in various capacities over five years during a tumultuous yet critical time in our city’s history. As a city hall staffer, I attended Clifton Town Meetings, and was proud of the work we did to support our City’s 52 neighborhoods and to improve police-community relations. After public service, I led government affairs at Kroger for a decade, focusing on collaborative policy development, sustainability, and local engagement.

I’m currently the SVP and COO at the Cincinnati Chamber. My proudest accomplishment is developing the Chamber’s transportation initiatives strategy, that resulted in the successful ballot initiative supporting funding for Cincinnati Metro, roads, and bridges. A close second was the privilege of leading production and fundraising teams that delivered BLINK to our community.

I’m on the SORTA Board and I’m the Vice-President of the Mercantile Library’s Board. I’ve worked with dozens of organizations in volunteer roles, including the United Way, ArtsWave, Crown Cincinnati, and Tender Mercies. In my free time, I enjoy reading, running, biking (we need safer streets!), and listening to live music. I look forward to working with neighbors, trustees, and anyone who is passionate about Clifton. I respectfully ask for your vote as CTM Trustee.

Christopher Harding

My name is Christopher Harding, and I am running to serve on Clifton Town Meeting. I am currently an appointed member of the Board, serving out the rest of a vacated term left open in July. I am originally from Portland, Oregon, and moved to Cincinnati to attend Xavier University. I have since decided to lay my roots in Ohio. My background is in political consulting, advocacy, and public policy. I am currently wrapping up a campaign this November, serving as the Deputy Campaign Manager for County Commissioner Denise Driehaus. Before that, I worked on the Issue 7 transit levy, which passed last Spring, and I have done work for the Hamilton County Democratic Party. Outside of local politics, I am also serving as Public Policy Director for the Ohio Chapter of the League of United Latin American Citizens, the oldest and largest Latino/Hispanic civil rights organization in the country. I have also spent time in Washington D.C. as a Policy Associate for the National Association for Latino Community Asset Builders. Considering my background, experience, and network, I know that I can serve our neighborhood well.

I am incredibly passionate about public service, which is why I decided to apply for the vacancy. When I joined the Board in the Summer, CTM debated public safety issues in our business district and parks. Since then, a handful of Trustees and I have taken it upon ourselves to find solutions by creating an ad hoc committee. Through our work, we have pulled together a coalition of stakeholders, such as the Stewards of Burnett Woods, Cincinnati Police District 5, the Clifton Business Association, and most recently Strategies to End Homelessness. The committees’ work has all been part of a more considerable effort to find solutions to homelessness, crime, and other public safety issues in our neighborhood. If elected to the Board, I will continue to pursue equitable solutions to problems that pop up and be a fierce advocate for our community. I hope that I can earn your support!

Teresa Hoelle

Hello, neighbors. My name is Teresa Hoelle, and I’d like to continue serving you as your CTM Trustee.

I live on Clifton Ridge Drive with my husband and our two-year old daughter. Our home is my third residence in Clifton. Outside of a three-year stint living in Charlotte, NC where I earned my master’s in business administration, I have called Clifton home for the past 15 years. I first moved to Clifton in 2005, living at the end of Telford Street. I had just returned to the US after living and working in Germany, and I found renting in Clifton incredibly attractive because of the cultural diversity, Ludlow business district and proximity to UC.

I co-own a business, Ignite Philanthropy, with my husband where we manage community grantmaking for over a dozen family and corporate foundations and raise charitable dollars for key community initiatives and institutions, including Freestore Foodbank and Clifton Cultural Arts Center. I previously was an executive at United Way and ArtWorks, and have served on several boards, including Findlay Market, Friends of CCM, and MORTAR. I currently serve on an ad-hoc committee at Annunciation Parish.

I want to help to preserve and celebrate what makes Clifton unique, while advancing future adaptations and growth to ensure our community thrives for decades to come. I know this requires advocating for our residents and local businesses. I have the perspective of being both a Clifton renter and homeowner, as well as that of a business-owner. I also believe my experience of bringing community leaders and capital together to fuel community solutions in both the cultural and human services sector can be of great value to the neighborhood I love and call home.

I was voted onto the board by my fellow trustees in July 2020 to fill a vacancy. Of the trustees who will remain on the board, I represent only one of three incumbent women of the fifteen trustee positions. I would appreciate your vote so I may continue to serve and provide my diverse perspective as an experienced business-owner, former non-profit executive, woman, and mother in all decisions related to our Clifton neighborhood. Thank you.

Naghma Malik

My name is Dr. Naghma Malik and I have resided in Clifton for 11 years. My husband Dr. Geoff Calvert has been a Clifton resident for 26 years. We have always been actively involved in Clifton. For example, I regularly contribute to neighbor get-togethers by planning and sometimes hosting block and holiday parties and opening up our house for the 2018 Mothers Day Clifton House Tour.

I have a passion for promoting diversity. In 2017, this passion led me to organize an Asian Physicians Convention in Cincinnati that attracted approximately 300 attendees from across the country. I was most pleased that it showcased the colorful and rich Mughal-era culture of the Pakistani-Indian subcontinent, while also providing continuing medical education (CME) opportunities for licensed physicians, and generating tax revenue for the city and county

For the 11 years I’ve resided in Clifton, my heart has been filled by the warmth of the welcoming and embracing openness of the people in our community. This has led to many long-lasting friendships. Although this year has been especially challenging due to the COVID-19 pandemic, our Clifton community appears to be meeting that challenge by coming together.

To show my gratitude for the neighborliness I’ve experienced, I would like to serve as a CTM Trustee. I welcome the opportunity to use my organizing and networking skills to continue to preserve what is great about Clifton. I want to promote our community’s multicultural existence, and to continue to promote its strength and perseverance. I envision Clifton to be a beacon of diversity, inclusion and harmony.

I humbly request your vote to enable me to serve our wonderful community. Thank you for your consideration.

Genet Singh

I am an immigrant who emigrated from Addis Ababa Ethiopia to the United states in 1990 and settled in Cincinnati, and I am proud to be connected to the city. its rich history and community. I attended the University of Cincinnati to study pharmacy. While at University I met my husband of 25 years and later decided to stay at home and raise our three kids. Clifton was one of the first neighborhoods I visited upon arriving in Cincinnati, and I immediately fell in love with it. Having children who attended primary school in Clifton and being a business and home owner in Clifton has only deepened this love for the Clifton community.

I have owned various retail and wholesale businesses in Clifton, the greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky area over the last twenty years. I hope to use the insights I have gained as a business owner to help the Clifton business district community. I believe that the success of the businesses on Ludlow Avenue are Important for the health of the Clifton community as a whole. I welcome this opportunity to give back to the community that has welcomed and served me and my family well.