We are innovative thinkers, collaboration enthusiasts and leadership fanatics, driven by our love of Cleveland and the desire to make it a better place for all.
Marianne Crosley has served as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Cleveland Leadership Center since 2010. She leads the civic education, leadership development, and civic engagement organization in its execution of numerous programs to build civic leadership capacity. Previously, she served as the founding Executive Director of Summer on the Cuyahoga, an economic development initiative that attracts young talent to the region.
Crosley graduated from Colgate University and received her J. D. from The Ohio State University College of Law. She worked as a prosecutor in the Kings County District Attorney’s Office in Brooklyn, New York and rose to be a supervisor in the Homicide Bureau. Crosley is a Trustee Emeritus of Colgate University, and recipient of the Maroon Citation and the Brian Little Award for Distinguished Service. She serves on the Board of Trustees for South Pointe Hospital and United Cerebral Palsy. She and her husband, Tim Clements, have four grown children and live in Chagrin Falls, Ohio.
Contactmcrosley@cleveleads.org | (216) 592-2298
Michael E. Bennett
As Vice President of External Affairs for CLC, Michael E. Bennett focuses on helping CLC tell its story to advance its mission and raise revenue to support its activities.
He came to CLC in 2014 after serving as principal of Bennett Strategic Communications LLC, which helped companies and nonprofit organizations better fulfill their missions through strategic communication, fundraising and organizational management.
He previously was publisher and editor of the Cleveland Jewish News, which produces a weekly newspaper, custom magazines, digital products and events. He served as executive director of the CJN Foundation, a nonprofit affiliate of the CJN that supports educational activities.
Prior to the CJN, Bennett worked as director of marketing and communications at the Jewish Federation of Cleveland, where he also served as director of its annual fund-raising campaign. He began his professional career in journalism at regional daily newspapers in Indiana before being named a features editor of The Plain Dealer in Cleveland.
He is immediate Past Board President of The Press Club of Cleveland and serves on the Northwestern University Alumni Admissions Council. He also serves on committees for InMotion, a center for those affected by movement disorders; and the Mandel Jewish Community Center.
He is a 2009 graduate of Leadership Cleveland and a CLC Member.
He holds a bachelor’s degree from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. Bennett grew up in Beachwood, and lives with his wife and two children in Cleveland Heights.
Contactmbennett@cleveleads.org | (216) 592-2426
Nicole has been with the Cleveland Leadership Center since 2016 and serves as the Program Associate. She began her professional career at the Greater Cleveland Food Bank in 2015, where she served as the Campaign Assistant for the Harvest for Hunger campaign, one of the largest food and funds drives in the nation.
Nicole is a 2015 graduate of Baldwin Wallace University in Berea, Ohio where she graduated cum laude with a bachelor of arts in Art History in the Arts Management Program. While at BW, Nicole was a three year Varsity Letterwinner on the Women’s Soccer Team, a member of the Arts Management Association and the Student Athlete Advisory Committee.
Nicole, a lifelong native of Northeast Ohio, enjoys going to Cleveland Indians games and is currently on a mission to find Cleveland’s most delicious taco. She is currently the fundraising co-chair of the YP Pantry, the Food Bank’s YP group, and a member of YNPN Cleveland. She was named to the Northeast Ohio 25 under 35 “Movers and Shakers” by The Cleveland Professional 20/30 Club in 2017.
Nicole currently lives in the Tremont neighborhood of Cleveland with her dog Otto.
Contactnboyd@cleveleads.org | (216) 592-2289
Rachel Ciomcia graduated from Ohio University in 2002 with a BA in Psychology and continued her education at the Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences at Case Western Reserve University, graduating in 2005 with a Masters of Science in Social Administration (MSSA). Rachel has worked as a social worker at MetroHealth Medical Center and as a Program Coordinator at Care Alliance Health Center. She has a special interest in social work issues with the HIV/AIDS community and healthcare.
Rachel is a graduate of the Cleveland Bridge Builders Class of 2010 and is a member of the Cleveland Leadership Center Alumni Association. She is the Vice Chair of the Greater Cleveland Sports Commission Associate Board and a member of the Board of Directors for the MetroHealth Foundation. She was named a Top 25 under 35 Mover and Shaker in 2013 by the Cleveland Professional 20/30 Club. She has served on the Board of Trustees for Hitchcock Center for Women, the MetroHealth N.E.T.-Committee of Emerging Leaders and on the program committee for the Free Medical Clinic of Greater Cleveland. Through these experiences, she has developed her passion for Cleveland, community and civic engagement.
She currently lives in North Ridgeville with her husband, Matthew, and son, Carson.
Contactrciomcia@cleveleads.org | (216) 592-2280
Cindy Crosby has spent years volunteering in community and school organizations. She is a fan of organization, efficiency and planning and has always tried to leave each task or position she has held easier for the person following her.
Cindy is from Lima, Ohio and attended Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas. She graduated with a BFA in Journalism/Advertising and Public Relations and worked in hotel sales and marketing in Dallas and in Cleveland after moving here with her husband Jim in 1989. She has worked as a consultant in marketing and communications, and coordinated annual meetings and other projects. In 2014, Cindy was the Campaign Manager for the Shaker City Council candidate who received the most votes of the five running.
While raising their two daughters, Cindy volunteered for a variety of community organizations including Destination Cleveland, the Greater Cleveland Food Bank, the Nature Center at Shaker Lakes, and the Cleveland Alumnae Association of Kappa Kappa Gamma. Much of her time and energy was devoted to the Shaker Heights schools her daughters attended where her involvement included helping the high school Guidance Department provide an introduction to prospective families, serving as the Co-President of the High School PTO, and implementing a new online conference scheduling procedure.
An alumna of Civic Leadership Institute 2015, Cindy is a member of Fairmount Presbyterian Church, the Women’s Council of the Cleveland Museum of Art, the Garden Club of Cleveland, and the board of the League of Women Voters of Cleveland’s Shaker Chapter.
Contactccrosby@cleveleads.org | (216) 592-2243
Christen is passionate about preparing Cleveland’s next generation of leadership and helping to amplify their voices in a society where they are often silenced. She has been recognized for her work with young adults and the Northeast Ohio community.
She came to Cleveland Leadership Center from positions at The LGBT Center of Greater Cleveland and The Diversity Center of Northeast Ohio, where her focus has been around issues of equity around race, ethnicity, (dis)ability, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation and gender identity and/or expression, as well as leadership development within a global context. She developed and delivered programs extensively throughout the United States around diversity and inclusion, including a large-scale LGBTQ Cultural Competence program in preparation for the 2014 Gay Games in Northeastern Ohio.
She has been named by The Plain Dealer as one of Cleveland’s Community Heroes for her work with young adults and received an LGBT Heritage Day Award from the City of Cleveland for her work in education and social services. She was named one of the top five most influential people in Northeast Ohio for LGBTQ advocacy by Cleveland Magazine, and Cisgender Ally of the Year by the Northeast Ohio Transgender community.
Christen holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Notre Dame College, a master’s in psychology from Cleveland State University and graduate-level certification in diversity management. She is adjunct faculty at CSU. Christen resides in Cleveland’s Collinwood neighborhood with her many rescued pets.
Contactcduvernay@cleveleads.org | (216) 592-2296
Prior to joining CLC, Michelle was part of the Morino Ventures team, where she worked on the Leap of Reason initiative and was focused on spreading the message of high performance in the social sector. During her time there, she was a member of the web team, oversaw and maintained the organization’s Salesforce database, managed the distribution of the book Leap of Reason, and performed other reporting and knowledge-capture functions.
Prior to her time at Morino Ventures, Michelle served as Development Coordinator for Urban Community School, where she was responsible for marketing efforts, special events, database management and myriad other projects. During this time, she continuously worked to advance the school’s communications program and was responsible for messaging strategies, content and format. She was also responsible for the maintenance of the school’s online presence and social media efforts.
Michelle holds a Bachelors of Science degree in Biology from Heidelberg University and a Master’s degree in Business Administration from Tiffin University. She is a northeast Ohio native and lives in Fairview Park with her husband and two step-sons. Michelle is an active member of the local triathlon community, and spends her off time training, racing and volunteering.
Contactmkane@cleveleads.org | (216) 592-2277
Jill Pecoraro graduated from The Ohio State University with a B.A. in Communication, and from Kent State University with a M.Ed. in Higher Education Administration. She has been with Cleveland Leadership Center since October 2013.
Prior to her role at CLC, she served as a Community Director at Tulane University in New Orleans and Assistant Director of Residence Life at Clarke University in Dubuque, Iowa. As a live-in professional, she facilitated leadership development, self-governance, and civic engagement opportunities for college students.
Jill’s passion for Cleveland began in 2008 when she moved here for the first time as a graduate assistant for The Center for Civic Engagement and Learning at CWRU. She got to know Cleveland from the “inside-out” and was inspired by the collaborative efforts between local residents and leaders to create positive change in the community.
She currently lives in Slavic Village.
Contactjpecoraro@cleveleads.org | (216) 592-2226
Andrew has been with the Cleveland Leadership Center since 2011. He serves as the manager of the Civic Leadership Institute, as well as senior program coordinator for all Cleveland Leadership Center flagship programs. He began his career at the Cleveland Leadership Center as programs and operations associate in February 2011, program coordinator in July 2011 and manager of Civic Leadership Institute in October 2015.
Andrew is a 2010 graduate of Miami University in Oxford, Ohio where he received a bachelors of arts in political science. While at Miami, Andrew was part of the Transatlantic Seminar on the European Union and a member of the Transatlantic Studies Organization.
Andrew, born and raised in the Cleveland area, helps with The Circle-Young Professionals of the Cleveland Orchestra, is an active member of YNPN Cleveland, College Now Greater Cleveland mentor, graduate of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland’s LEADS program and a volunteer with Hands On Northeast Ohio.
Andrew currently lives in the Warehouse District of downtown Cleveland.
Contactasinger@cleveleads.org | (216) 456-8005
Karla Wludyga joined the Cleveland Leadership Center in 2016 as the Director of Leadership Cleveland, where her primary responsibilities include designing and leading Leadership Cleveland, a 10-month program that empowers senior-level positional leaders with the knowledge, skills and relationships to advance and deepen their community impact. She also directs the LC2 Fellows program, in which Leadership Cleveland alumni spend 10 months engaging in a project-based, outcome-driven civic engagement experience.
Previously Wludyga was Manager of Executive Communications at the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, where she managed communications, media, and business and public official outreach for the president and CEO, and had responsibility for the speaker’s bureau, video production, conferences and special events.
Before returning home to Northeast Ohio in 2012, Wludyga was Director of Public Relations and Communications and Special Assistant to the President at Gannon University in Erie, Pennsylvania, and was a television news anchor and reporter in Pennsylvania and Montana.
She is a member of the Board of Trustees of Providence House and a member of the Cleveland Marketing Leadership Roundtable. A 2013 alumna of the Civic Leadership Institute, she served as Vice Chair of the Cleveland Leadership Center’s Leadership Council. She is a former Secretary and Executive Committee member of the Flagship Niagara League and is a former Regional Advisory Board member of EconomicsPA.
Wludyga holds a master’s degree in Positive Organizational Development and Change from Case Western Reserve University’s Weatherhead School of Management. While enrolled in that program she earned an additional Appreciative Inquiry Certificate in Positive Business and Societal Change and became certified in Emotionally Intelligent Leadership and Executive Coaching. She earned her bachelor’s degree in journalism at Ohio University. Wludyga is a TetraMap certified facilitator, trained in design thinking, and certified in Emotional and Social Competence Inventory (ESCI) assessments. She has presented at numerous events and conferences and is a two-time Pennsylvania Association of Broadcasters award winner. She lives in Concord with her husband and their young son.
Contactkwludyga@cleveleads.org | (216) 592-2259
Kim Woodman joined Cleveland Leadership Center in October 2009 as Executive Assistant, Accounting Specialist. She provides administrative and accounting support to the President & CEO, Director of Operations, staff, Board of Trustees and Executive Committee Members.
Prior to joining Cleveland Leadership Center, Kim worked in the commercial development department at Forest City Enterprises. She provided administrative support to the manager of real estate development.