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Justin Bibb names Cleveland mayoral transition advisors, seeks applicants for top city jobs

Cleveland Mayor-elect Justin Bibb, seen here speaking with reporters before the election, named a list of advisory committee members Wednesday who will help guide the transition.
Nick Castele
Ideastream Public Media
Cleveland Mayor-elect Justin Bibb, seen here speaking with reporters before the election, named a list of advisory committee members Wednesday who will help guide the transition.

Cleveland Mayor-elect Justin Bibb named more than 80 transition advisors Wednesday to guide his administration as he prepares to take office next month.

The list includes former Ohio Health Director Dr. Amy Acton, the head of the city police union, a founder of Black Lives Matter Cleveland, the leaders of the city’s three major hospital systems and many others.  

“I’m proud of the talented team of proven leaders that are working together to deliver actionable recommendations for my administration,” Bibb said in a statement released by the transition. “The work we are putting in now will prepare us to hit the ground running in January.”

Bibb is also seeking applicants for top City Hall jobs: law director, finance director, chief operating officer, communications chief and human resources director.

The committees are focused on 10 topics: economic development, education, environment, equity, health, a modern City Hall, neighborhoods, open government, safety and talent.

Two task forces will focus on city operations and public safety, with the latter helping the incoming Bibb administration implement Issue 24, the police oversight charter amendment passed by voters in November.

Coordinating the public safety task force is Melekte Melaku, an organizing strategist with the ACLU of Ohio. Other members include former city councilman Zack Reed, Boys & Girls Clubs of Northeast Ohio CEO Jeff Scott, Black Lives Matter Cleveland President LaTonya Goldsby and Dr. Edward M. Barksdale Jr., the surgeon-in-chief at University Hospitals Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital.

Among the members of the safety committee are the leaders of the police, fire and EMS unions, as well as Myesha Crowe, who leads the violence interrupter group Peacemakers Alliance.

Leading the city operations task force is Kate Warren, a research fellow at the Center for Community Solutions who ran unsuccessfully for Cleveland City Council in Ward 13 this year.

Also on the operations task force are Cleveland Public Library Director Felton Thomas, former county treasurer Jim Rokakis and Cleveland Neighborhood Progress CEO Tania Menesse, in addition to others.

In addition to Acton, Bibb’s health committee includes MetroHealth CEO Dr. Akram Boutros, University Hospitals CEO Dr. Cliff Megerian and Cleveland Clinic CEO Dr. Tomislav Mihaljevic, among others.

Bibb’s education advisors include Cuyahoga Community College President Alex Johnson, Cleveland Metropolitan School District CEO Eric Gordon and Cleveland Teachers Union President Shari Obrenski, in addition to others.

The mayor-elect will need to raise money for the transition effort. In early November, his campaign treasurer formed a transition fund with the Ohio Secretary of State’s office. State law requires the fund to disclose donors and spending by Jan. 15.

See the full list of committee members below:

Economic Development 

April Miller Boise  

Ariane Kirkpatrick  

David Gilbert 

Jade Davis  

Millie I. Caraballo


Alex B. Johnson

Ann Mullin 

Eric S. Gordon  

Helen Williams 

Holly Trifiro 

Rosa Morales Cruz  

Shari Obrenski  

Sonya Pryor-Jones 


Angie Schmitt

Brian Zimmerman 

Dan Brown  

Dr. Aparna Bole 

Shanelle Smith Whigham   

Equity in Action 

Brian E. Hall  

Chinenye Nkemere

Elaine Tso

Mordecai Cargill  

Victor Ruiz  


Dr. Amy Acton 

Dr. Akram Boutros  

Dr. Cliff Megerian  

Dr. Tomislav Mihaljevic  

Emily Lundgard  

Jazmin Long  

Jean Polster

Rick Kemm 

Modern City Hall 

Bill Premier  

Caroline J. Peak  

Eden Giagnorio 

Shannon Copfer Brace 

Jimmie Corrigan 


Joyce Pan Huang  

Khrystalynn Shefton 

Marilyn Burns  

Ricardo Leon  

Timothy L. Tramble  

Tony F. Sias    

Open Government 

April Urban 

Dan O’Malley  

Leon A. Wilson  

Nora Kelley    


Fran Lally Jr.

Jeff Follmer 

Myesha Crowe  

Paul Melhuish

Sanford E. Watson 

Timothy Sommerfelt  


Elise Hara Auvil 

Fran DiDonato 

Kathryn M. Hall 

Marquez L. Brown   

Yentil Rawlinson 

Operations Task Force 

Coordinator: Kate Warren

Brad Whitehead 

David Heller 

Felton Thomas Jr. 

James Rokakis 

Jon Pinney 

Lillian Kuri 

Dean Lee Fisher

Marty McGann 

Peter Truog 

Randy McShephard 

Rev. Dr. Stephen Rowan 

Tania Menesse 

Teresa Metcalf Beasley 

Tom McNair

Public Safety Task Force

Coordinator: Melekte Melaku

Adam Hollingsworth

Dale Anglin 

Edward M. Barksdale Jr. 

Jeff Scott 

LaTonya Goldsby

Michael Deemer 

Samantha Soloman 

Zack Reed 

Rev. Anthony Small

Copyright 2021 WCPN. To see more, visit WCPN.

Nick Castele was a senior reporter covering politics and government for Ideastream Public Media. He worked as a reporter for Ideastream from 2012-2022.