OLD NEWS ITEMS
February 25, 2012:
SHAD, the Shaker Square
Area Development Corporation, may soon cease to exist
Neighborhood Progress Inc. is a little-known but important
organization through which much funding for community
development corporations (CDCs) flows, much
of it from foundations. NPI has been encouraging CDCs
to combine to achieve greater effectiveness in a time of reduced funding.
SHAD, knowing that its NPI funding, already cut, would soon
end, has been in conversations with its
neighbor to the west, the Buckeye Area Development
Corporation. Since 2010 they have been exploring merging to
combined Buckeye - Shaker Community Development
organization. NPI was covering the expenses of this process.
October 2011 funding constraints led to the departure of Pam George-Merrill, who
SHAD's Executive Director for several years.
In the Winter
2011-2012 issue of The Connection, SHAD's newspaper, its
president Kenisha Pierce described how SHAD and Buckeye Area Development
Corporation had been exploring greater cooperation for a year with a
joint 12-member committee, assisted by a consultant. There had been
focus groups with community leaders.
Ms. Pierce, who is the Site Manager for the
PNC branch south of the Square and lives in Cleveland
the current economic situation is causing a dramatic change
in our organization's future - and we think it can be for
the better. We at SHAD feel, that together with BADC, we
can create an organization that builds upon the legacy of
This was the
first time SHAD had publicly mentioned a process that had been
ongoing for more than a year.
Read the full letter.
On February 1 a SHAD email included this announcement:
document on the BADC website
www.badoc.org says the merger was approved by both boards on January 23, 2012, A summary of the
merger agreement is available on their website
read agreement (pdf)
BADC and SHAD service areas together comprise Cleveland's
Buckeye - Shaker planning zone (see
a Cleveland City Planning Commission page), Martin Luther
King Jr Drive (East 116th Street) divides their service areas.
SHAD had resisted earlier pressures to combine with the much
larger Buckeye area CDC. Now, with
reduced funding and its balance sheet hit hard by losses from
rehabilitating the Livingston Apartments, SHAD needed a partner.
The merged organization
will be named the
Buckeye Shaker Square Community Alliance, Inc. Its Executive Director
the current BADC Executive Director, John Hopkins. Jalene Pardon,
formerly SHAD's Fiscal/Office Manager and is now its Interim Executive
Director, will be Assistant Director of the combined organization. SHAD
Sweeney, who teaches in Shaker Heights and lives in the CHALK
area northeast of the Square, will become president of the new
area's population and the BADC's income and fund balance are larger
than those of the SHAD area. The new organization would have five trustees
from the SHAD area on its board of 18.
will this mean for the Shaker Square area?
the merger is accomplished, for the first time since 1976
the Shaker Square area will be without an organization
focused on its unique needs for preservation and promotion.
SHAD representatives will have
only five of the 18 seats
on the new organization's board. Will there be less effort devoted to projects in the
SHAD area?. Will the Shaker Square area lose its newspaper?
and merchants form a new organization to promote the area?
If SHAD doesn't
merge with the Buckeye area CDC, what then? Seek another
merger partner? Try to operate on a minimum budget? Ask
members to approve its closing?
We will try to
open up to the community a process that seems to have been
kept from public view too long.
Page written February 23, 2012
Revised March 4
The February 25th
Instead of a routine vote YES, it turned out to be an unruly
rejection of the merger proposal.