Kasich’s plan is taxing nerves of some

4:07 PM
Page 1
$2.00/MARCH 17 - 23, 2014
Kasich’s plan is taxing nerves of some
Governor’s latest proposal is criticized by leaders who would prefer spending cuts
[email protected]
Gov. John Kasich’s latest proposal to ratchet down Ohio’s personal
income tax is being questioned by
key groups in business and conservative quarters, which would prefer
to see the governor pair those cuts
with reductions in spending rather
than offset the lost income tax revenue with hikes in other taxes.
They also note that Kasich is
spending more on state government than his predecessor, instead
of reducing its size to make it more
efficient, as he suggested he would
do during his 2010 campaign for
“We love the idea of reducing the
state income tax,” said Greg Lawson, statehouse liaison and policy
analyst for the conservative Buckeye Institute. “It’s the right move,
but we need to get to cutting government spending.”
Some teas partiers also are nipping at the governor’s heels. Tom
Zawistowski, executive director of
the Portage County Tea Party, com-
plained that the governor isn’t cutting taxes broadly as his group
would like.
“When you look at the total body
of work of Gov. Kasich, it looks to us
like he’s just shifting the burden elsewhere,” said Zawistowski, who last
year ran unsuccessfully for chairman
of the Ohio Republican Party.
“Our problem is the governor is
trying to be the one picking winners and losers,” Zawistowski said.
“That’s just not right.”
The Kasich administration is undeterred by the criticism.
“We’ve said all along that we believe the biggest hindrance to job
creation in the state is the personal
income tax,” said Kasich spokesman
Rob Nichols. “We will continue to
look for ways to drive that down and
make Ohio more competitive.”
See TAXING Page 7
Northfield Rocksino
believes it’s perfectly
positioned to attract
biz in crowded market
[email protected]
Huey Lewis and the News drew a sold-out crowd to the
Hard Rock Rocksino in Northfield on Jan. 24.
hile many Clevelandarea concert venues are
hitching their stars to
the city’s rebounding urban core, Jon Lucas of Hard Rock
Northfield believes his ticket to
success is being
almost 20 miles
“There’s still
some resistance
to going down- Lucas
town. … This enables us to attract from both markets,” said Lucas, president of
Rocksino, which sits squarely between the Cleveland and Akron markets. “That to me is important. It has
to be a really knockout act for an
Akron customer to drive all the way
And so far, Lucas — a 30-year veteran of the casino business — appears to be right.
See ROCKIN’ Page 22
74470 83781
The Browns’ setup under former
CEO Joe Banner might have been
the NFL’s most unique ■ Page 5
Entire contents © 2014
by Crain Communications Inc.
Vol. 35, No. 11
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MARCH 17 - 23, 2014
Page 1
Randall Park to
Lichter’s plans for
industrial park win
positive reviews
[email protected]
Industrial Realty Group LLC is
readying the nuclear option for longsuffering Randall Park Mall in North
Plans by the big developer to level
most of the largely empty, 2.2-millionsquare-foot enclosed mall and most
empty buildings nearby would yield
sites for a nearly 100-acre industrial
park near major highway interchanges.
Stuart Lichter, chairman and president of Industrial Realty Group, told
Crain’s the transformation of the Randall Park site would not be a case of
creating industrial space in North
Randall simply because that’s what
the company does with defunct properties. Rather, he said, “We think the
retail (interest) has moved on.”
“Ask yourself, ‘What is this good
for?’” Lichter said. “Go in each direction and you are right by a highway.
We were able to assemble the property at an attractive rate. We will be able
to offer it as land, even though it’s
costly to tear down the buildings.”
Industrial Realty Group successfully
has converted empty big-box stores to
industrial use nationwide, Lichter said.
The best-known local example is the
former Super Kmart in Euclid, which it
bought and converted to warehouse
space in 2004 and continues to operate
today. It also has mined aging retail districts in Akron for such projects.
In North Randall, the company
would offer industrial users sites for
build-to-suit projects and would build
industrial properties that it leases in
advance, Lichter said. The company
may even build on a speculative basis,
without a tenant in tow, but it has not
yet decided whether to go that route.
The industrial park would house
both manufacturers and distribution
centers, he said.
See RANDALL Page 6
Talis gets green light
to grow its business
Cleveland Clinic
spinoff is expanding
anesthesia software
[email protected]
Browns’ front office structure
under former CEO Joe Banner
was outlier in copycat league
[email protected]
he Cleveland Browns’ organizational structure under CEO Joe Banner wasn’t just “cumbersome,” as owner Jimmy Haslam described it
when he fired Banner and general
manager Mike Lombardi last
It was also the only one of its
kind in the National Football
Crain’s analyzed the setups of
the league’s 31 other teams and Banner
found there is a common way of
structuring a front office in the NFL. One method no
other organization is using is the Browns’ previous
structure of a CEO with no ownership stake who had
the final say over both business and football matters.
The Browns’ “streamlined” approach, as Haslam
called it, post-Banner and Lombardi is a setup now
used by 21 teams. It involves an executive in charge
of business operations, who is Browns president Alec
Scheiner, and a general manager — in the Browns’
case, Ray Farmer — who runs football operations.
Farmer was promoted Feb. 11, when the surprising
shakeup was announced.
“I wouldn’t say ‘better’ — it’s probably more common,” said Scheiner of the restructured front office.
“NFL owners are not corporate entities. So you’ve got
family members in charge, and they’re almost all involved because of that.
“But on almost every occasion,” Scheiner continued, “you have a business head, a GM and a head
coach reporting directly to the owner. It’s much rarer where you have the structure we had before.”
There are 17 executives listed as the CEO of an NFL
team. Twelve of the 17 are either the majority owner
or part of the ownership group, and the other five carry the combined title of president and CEO.
There are no NFL teams where the jobs of president and CEO are separate and neither is part of the
ownership group, and where there is a general manager to boot. That was the Browns’ former setup, under which president Scheiner, GM Lombardi and former head coach Rob Chudzinski all reported to CEO
Not that the approach couldn’t have worked.
“Every team is different,” said Andrew Brandt, an
ESPN and Sports Illustrated NFL analyst, and a former
vice president of the Green Bay Packers. “The key is
open and honest communication between departments — the football side and the business side.”
See ORDER Page 21
Dr. Wolf Stapelfeldt is proud of all
those little green squares that pop up
on screen whenever he shows off the
software that he
helped create for
the Cleveland Clinic.
Each square represents a patient
undergoing anesthesia.
Green Stapelfeldt
means the patient
is doing well.
And over the past four years,
Stapelfeldt has watched those pretty
green squares replace many of the
other colorful squares that pop up
when a patient’s vital signs are out of
“When we started out, this thing
was lighting up like a Christmas tree,”
he said.
The software — which now is used
in all the Cleveland Clinic’s operating
rooms — has done a lot to help the
hospital system take better care of patients
Stapelfeldt said.
Now he and his colleagues at Talis
Clinical are selling the technology to
other hospitals.
The Cleveland company, which
spun off from the Clinic just over a
year ago, is working with about 20 U.S.
hospitals that have shown an interest
in the software, according to Gary
To watch a video of Talis Clinical’s
software, which helps hospitals take
better care of patients undergoing
anesthesia, go to:
Colister, president
and chief operating officer at Talis.
Among them is
St. Louis University’s hospital system. A few months
ago, the system recruited Stapelfeldt Colister
from the Cleveland
Clinic on the premise that he would
help the institution implement the
technology. On Jan. 2, Stapelfeldt —
who continues to serve as chief medical officer for Talis — became chairman of the department of anesthesiology and clinical care medicine at the
university’s School of Medicine.
“The entire leadership team (in St.
Louis) has completely bought in,” said
Stapelfeldt, who had been chairman of
general anesthesiology and vice chairman of surgical operations at the
Both Stapelfeldt and Colister say the
software is a significant innovation in
the world of anesthesia. The Clinic as
an organization seems to agree: Although the Clinic didn’t mention Talis by name when it put together its list
of the top 10 medical innovations for
2014, the description for the technology that took fifth place describes Talis’ software.
Plus, the Clinic’s version of the system also appears in a video promoting
the innovations on the list.
See TALIS Page 6
3:30 PM
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Randall: It’s opportune time for developer
continued from PAGE 5
The recently purchased former
Sears store — the last piece Industrial Realty Group needed to complete a year-long land assembly for
the new park — will remain. The
building is in good condition, unlike the rest of the mall. The separately owned Power Sports Institute, which provides training for
mechanics with an emphasis on
motorcycles, will fit with his company’s plans, Lichter said.
Singing hosannas
Real estate industry experts are
thrilled with Industrial Realty Group’s
plans for the property now occupied
by the two-story mall, which closed in
2009 after years of decline.
Eliot Kijewski, senior vice president
at the Cresco Cushman Wakefield
brokerage, is overjoyed that Industrial Realty Group recently completed
the last of four transactions to gain
control of most of the mall site.
“Thank God they bought it,” Kijewski said, referring to Lichter and
his Ohio partner, investor-broker
Chris Semarjian in Richfield.
“They know what they are doing,” Kijewski said. “As far as distribution space goes, I don’t think
there is a better place in Northeast
Ohio. Look at the proximity to
Akron, downtown Cleveland and
highways. It’s a dynamite location.”
Kijewski and other observers see
it as a favorable outcome for the site
at an opportune time.
Regional industrial vacancy stands
at 8.8% compared with 9.9% a year
ago, and it’s still heading downward.
Moreover, in the bustling southeast
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suburbs where North Randall sits,
the market for new distribution
space with ceilings of more than 24
feet has 4% vacancy, down from 9%
a year ago, according to statistics
from the Newmark Grubb Knight
Frank brokerage.
Fred Geis, a principal of developer Geis Cos., which has built multiple industrial parks throughout the
region, also likes the site.
“It’s the right thing at the right
place,” Geis said.
Terry Coyne, head of Newmark
Grubb’s Cleveland industrial unit,
“Based on vacancy rates, there
has to be a lot of demand,” Coyne
said. “Everything competitive is being absorbed. Prices (for leases and
sales) are up, which will support
construction of new product.”
‘Time for some new stuff’
Putting dead or ailing malls to
new use is becoming more common than just 10 years ago, though
they typically are reconfigured for
continued shopping use, as is the
case in the makeover underway at
Parmatown in Parma and as was
done at Westgate in Fairview Park.
However, Randall Park Mall is in
an area with multiple shopping
centers and high retail vacancy, and
it suffered when newer projects
went up in the Macedonia area.
The most compelling reason for
tackling the ailing mall, Lichter
said, is current market conditions.
“We think it’s time for some new
stuff to be built in the Cleveland
area,” Lichter said. “Look around;
there’s very little available.”
Industrial Realty Group’s nearest
property to the Randall Park site is
Heritage Business Park in Euclid,
which is mostly occupied, he said.
Lichter’s company is no novice at
big conversion projects. Industrial
Realty Group, which is based in
Downey, Calif., owns more than 80
million square feet of property,
mostly industrial. It is best known
for slicing up former auto plants
and other factories for multiple
users, but it has diversified over the
years into office space, corporate
headquarters, hotels and residential properties.
Persistence pays off
The company’s interest in North
Randall is not a recent development,
Mayor David Smith said. Lichter first
expressed interest in the village in
2003, the mayor said, when what’s
now Thistledown Racino was for
sale; the race track would become
part of the Rock Ohio Caesar joint
venture between entrepreneur Dan
Gilbert and casino giant Caesars Entertainment Corp.
However, Lichter stayed in touch
through the years and contacted
the village about the mall last year.
“Unlike other developers who
came to us with their hand out,
Lichter came and asked what the
city wanted to do,” the mayor said.
Industrial Realty Group has yet to
ask for incentives, but the village is
prepared to give them. The property
needs to be rezoned to industrial use
from retail, but Smith said the village
council supports the concept. He
said the mall’s ring road can serve the
property’s new industrial use.
Talis: Software gives digital map of patients
continued from PAGE 5
Guidance for caregivers
Jonathan Mokri
MARCH 17 - 23, 2014
The so-called advanced clinical
guidance system — the product’s
name is ACG-Anesthesia — is designed to help anesthesiologists
keep track of multiple patients at
once. The software can be set up so
that if something is wrong with a
patient, his or her caregivers can receive alerts via text message, email,
pager and/or flashing buttons that
appear within the hospital’s electronic medical record system.
Caregivers then can pull up a digital map that gives them a quick
glance at how all their patients are
doing. For instance, if a patient’s
blood pressure drops too far during
surgery, their square would turn from
green to red, the color for hypotension. With a click, the caregiver can
check the patient’s medical history
and learn more about whatever conditions he or she might have.
Other systems for anesthesiologists do offer alerts, but Colister
says he knows of no other software
that gives them such a deep look at
how all their patients are doing.
Neither does Dr. John Abenstein,
president-elect of the American Society of Anesthesiologists in Park
Ridge, Ill. However, a growing number of companies and organizations are working on different types
of decision support systems that
can be used to monitor multiple patients at once, according to Abenstein, who received a description of
the software taken from this story.
His employer, the Mayo Clinic, is
among them. The giant hospital
system has developed software designed to monitor patients in its intensive care units. The software has
helped the Mayo Clinic keep a closer eye on patients on ventilators in
the ICU, he said. As a result, the rate
of lung injuries caused by ventilators dropped from about 10% to
less than 1%, Abenstein said.
A similar system designed for
anesthesiologists probably would
have a big impact on both patient
care and productivity, he said.
“If done properly, you would be
able to care for more patients per
physician, per day,” Abenstein said.
Like tools in a cockpit
The technology behind the ACGAnesthesia software was developed
by two teams, working independently. The Clinic’s Anesthesiology Institute in 2008 tasked George Takla —
who now is Talis’ chief technology
officer — with starting to develop a
new electronic record keeping system. That same year, Dr. David
Brown was named chairman of the
institute. He hired Stapelfeldt to
build a decision support system for
the institute, and later the two technologies were woven together.
While flying his own plane, Brown
realized that pilots and anesthesiologists have a lot in common. Both
have to keep track of a large number
of different factors, and if they’re
tired or distracted, people’s lives are
at risk. So, while flying cross-country
on autopilot, Brown started taking
notes on how the institute could give
anesthesiologists tools like the ones
in his cockpit.
Caregivers still make the decisions,
but Colister noted that computers
“can be far more vigilant than the human mind in managing all that data.”
Plus, a person can’t be in two
rooms at once. The ACG-Anesthe-
sia software should help anesthesiologists manage that situation, according to Stapelfeldt.
“Historically, you’d just walk room
to room, and you hope to be in the
right place at the right time,” he said.
Executives, and investors
Talis is led by CEO Roger
Hungerford, who bought a majority stake in the company in February
2013. Hungerford, who lives in New
York state, is the founder of Sigma
International of Medina, N.Y. In
2012, Baxter Healthcare bought
that company, which sells an infusion pump designed to help caregivers avoid errors when administering intravenous medications.
Colister served as vice president
of business development for Sigma
from 2007 to 2012. The Kent State
University graduate also invested in
Talis, as did Scott Miller, one of Sigma’s investors. Several Clinic employees who helped develop the
technology joined Talis soon after
the startup was formed. In May
2013, the company moved into a
newly renovated office on the third
floor at 6555 Carnegie Ave., part of
the MidTown Tech Park Campus.
Talis, which has about 20 employees, spent much of the last year
improving its technology and assuring it would work with the many
software products that different
hospitals use, Colister said. The
company also wanted to make sure
ACG-Anesthesia is ready if federal
regulators ever start holding medical software products to the same
quality standards that other health
care technologies must meet.
“We are coming at this more like
a medical device,” he said.
3:56 PM
Page 1
MARCH 17 - 23, 2014
Taxing: Ohio Business Roundtable backs governor’s changes
continued from PAGE 1
Last Tuesday, March 11, Kasich
unveiled his mid-biennium review,
or MBR, traditionally a mid-course
correction in the
two-year state
budget that Kasich has expanded into an opportunity for tax
policy changes.
centerpiece of the review is a pro- Kasich
posed $2.6 billion
reduction in personal income taxes
over three years that mainly would
be produced by an 8.5% across-theboard income tax decrease. That
decrease would follow a 10% income tax cut over three years that
the Legislature approved last summer.
However, the income tax cut
would be offset by $2.4 billion in tax
increases. The hikes would include
a 15% boost in the Commercial Activity Tax (CAT) rate; an increase in
the severance tax paid on oil and
gas production; a 48% jump in the
state’s tax on cigarettes, to $1.85 per
pack from $1.25; and a new tax on
electronic cigarettes.
The 1,600-page mid-biennium
review does not appear to raise or
lower significantly the level of
spending approved in the 20142015 budget that Kasich signed last
June. That two-year, $62 billion
budget included the 10% income
tax cut, but that lost revenue was
offset with a rise in the state sales
tax to 5.75% from 5.5%.
While the governor’s budget proposals have not raised income tax
rates, the state budget continues to
grow under Kasich. In 2011, Kasich
signed off on a $55.6 billion budget
for fiscal years 2012-2013, which
was $5.5 billion higher than Ted
Strickland’s 2010-2011 biennial
budget. The increased spending has
been supported by increases in
state revenue as Ohio has emerged
from the recession.
The General Assembly began
hearings on the mid-biennium review last week and expects to complete action before it adjourns in
Low-rate CAT lovers
Business groups’ support for the
budget proposals would be higher if
they didn’t come, in part, at the expense of businesses, particularly in
the raising of the Commercial Activity Tax.
The Ohio Society of Certified
Public Accountants wasn’t ready to
take a public position last week on
the increase in the CAT, though it’s
unlikely the group welcomes the increase.
“We expect there may be concerns about the precedent this proposal could set — raising the CAT
rate in exchange for lowering the income tax rate,” the group’s vice
president for communications,
Amy Johnson, said in an email.
“We’ll be monitoring the progress
closely and weighing in after we’ve
had adequate opportunity to speak
with our members.”
However, in a Feb. 20 post on its
website that reported a CAT increase was in play, the trade group
said it maintains its “longstanding
position supporting the CAT’s very
low rate (0.26%), which is achieved
through maintaining a very broad
base. The CAT has been recognized
nationally as an appealing tax for
the business sector because of its
“We expect there may be
concerns about the
precedent this proposal
could set — raising the
CAT (Commercial Activity
Tax) rate in exchange for
lowering the income tax
– Amy Johnson, vice president for
communications, Ohio Society of
Certified Public Accountants
simplicity and very low rate.”
Kasich is proposing a CAT increase to a rate of 0.30%.
Unlike a business income tax
that is based on profits, the CAT is a
tax on business gross receipts — the
total sales of goods and services,
with no deduction for the cost of
doing business. In other words, a
company that’s losing money still
pays the tax, which is justified because of the low rate.
Even the Ohio Chamber of Commerce, which ended its position of
neutrality in the governor’s race in
2010 to endorse the Republican Kasich over Democratic incumbent
Ted Strickland, is questioning the
proposed changes.
“We have concerns about a CAT
increase because it’s the primary
business tax that a large percentage
of our members pay and because
it’s levied at multiple levels of the
supply chain,” Dan Lavin, the
chamber’s assistant vice president
for tax and economic policy, told
The Columbus Dispatch.
The Buckeye Institute’s Lawson
also has concerns about an increase
in the CAT, which was created in
2005, when he was a legislative
“The problem was always that
the CAT tax was supposed to be a
broad-based, low-rate tax,” Lawson
said. “The whole fear was that because it’s such a small rate, it’s an
extraordinarily tempting target (for
The Ohio Business Roundtable,
though, is supporting the budget
changes without qualification.
“Fact-based analysis conducted
by Ernst & Young for the Roundtable shows that the governor’s reform package taken as a whole will
improve Ohio’s overall business tax
competitiveness, even when considering a tax increase on the commercial activity of business,”
Roundtable president and CEO
Richard Stoff said in a statement.
Hitting ‘the sweet spot’
Kasich’s lack of spending cuts
and his administration’s practice of
lowering some taxes while raising
others even has caught the eye of
the Americans for Tax Reform, the
Washington, D.C.-based group
that, in the words of its own website, “opposes all tax increases as a
matter of principle.”
“Kasich’s taking a step in the
right direction by trying to reduce
the state income tax rate,” said Will
Upton, state affairs manager at the
organization, which was founded
by Grover Norquist and asks politicians to sign a no-tax-increase
pledge. “Unfortunately, there is a
lot of tax shifting in this.
“It’s kind of scratching the surface of tax reform but not really digging down into what you need to
do,” Upton said.
Kasich signed the organization’s
Taxpayer Protection Pledge in 2010.
Nichols defended the level of
spending the governor has set.
“At the same time, we have a
bunch of people saying we’re
spending too little,” he said. “When
you’re getting popped from both
sides, you know you’ve found the
sweet spot.”
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10:53 AM
Page 1
MARCH 17 - 23, 2014
ARCHITECTS: David W. Craun
to principal; Brandon Garrett and
Paul Taylor to associate principals;
Ryan Parsons and John Guzik
to senior associates.
to vice president, construction;
David E. Wright to vice president,
Bisson to senior project manager,
water/wastewater division.
Setzekorn to president, Engineering
and Energy Solutions; Susann
Geithner to global sustainability
& Trust.
Gregory D. Waller to analysts.
CLEVELAND: Loretta J. Mester
to president, CEO.
KEYBANK: Brian Hamp to vice
president, relationship manager, Key
Private Bank, east Ohio district.
Schering to staff accountant.
J. Robida Jr. to tax specialist.
SKODA MINOTTI: Jason Moon and
Jackie Beckman to paraprofessionals;
E. Harris Lee to accountant;
Thomas Lund to senior staff
accountant; Devon Trivisonno,
Dana Pikovnik, Tiffany Menosky
and Carleigh Machock-Dissell
to staff accountants.
Swanson to head, Private Bank
Brandon F. Carnovale and
Veeramani to vice president.
MEDICAL GROUP: Leslie Murphy,
M. D. to board-certified family
medicine physician.
vice president, general manager,
Reflective Solutions.
POLYONE CORP.: Cathy K. Dodd
to vice president, marketing.
Insurance Division-Rick D’Aprile to
senior vice president, Gene Berger,
Rodney Gerbers and David
Gallace to vice presidents; Tammy
Catterton, April Merino and
Jennifer Wolfe to account
Goldfarb to president.
INC.: Lynn Kennedy to executive
M. Klang to associate.
CRESCO: William D. Saltzman to
executive vice president, director
of office services.
& KAUNTZ CO. LPA: Jacqueline
A. Hoelting to associate.
Moore to vice president, sales.
Robert Cahen to secretary/treasurer;
Laura Frye to vice president,
resource development; Marge
Zellmer to vice president,
professional development; Betsey
Kamm to vice president,
membership; Pamela Willits to
vice president, communications;
Beth Brown to immediate past
REGION: Eric Rubin (Cedar Brook
Financial Partners) to president; Gary
Desberg to vice president; Mitchell
Frankel to treasurer; Suellen Kadis
to secretary; Robert Fein and Steve
Lurie to executive committee at-large
members; David Kornbluth to past
ASSOCIATION: Jeffrey Zabor
(Brooks & Stafford Co.) to president;
William Rickman to vice president;
Frank Campbell to secretary;
Laura Loesch to treasurer.
We Proudly Accept.
CHAPTER: Tim McCormick
(McCormick Consulting) to president;
Sharon Martin to president elect;
SITECORE: Josh Jenkins (Paragon
Consulting) received the Most
Valuable Professional Award.
Send information for Going Places
to [email protected]
Send us your ‘Who to Watch’ nominations
Crain’s Cleveland Business in
2014 is continuing its series of
“Who to Watch” sections.
The second section of the year,
scheduled for publication April 28,
will highlight up-and-comers in
finance. If you think you know who
will be among those leading the
Northeast Ohio finance sector of the
future, drop an email to sections
editor Amy Ann Stoessel,
[email protected], or call
Please send in your suggestions
no later than noon on Monday,
March 24.
There are no hard and fast
requirements for this section, other
than the candidate needs to exhibit
the kind of potential that makes him
or her someone to watch in the field
of finance.
Mark your calendars for future
sections: “Who to Watch: Law,” June
23; and “Who to Watch: Education,”
Nov. 24.
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Page 1
MARCH 17 - 23, 2014
Clockwise from top left: An employee supervises as an
embroidery machine completes a logo on a hat; sewing
machine operator Phan Hoang sews taping into baseball
hats; the brim is attached to a hat; a variety of “Made in
the USA” tags that can be added to orders; embroidery
thread at the factory; supervisor Etelka Kiss cuts out hat
panels for assembly.
Graffiti: Looking to grow
continued from PAGE 4
It moved from Terminal Tower in
the heart of downtown to 3111
Carnegie Ave. in 1987 and slowly expanded into three buildings with
manufacturing and storage capabilities, as well as a small showroom.
The company has around 65 employees, about half of whom live
within 10 minutes of the plant, Mr.
Miller said.
The hats Graffiti makes still require plenty of hands-on work in a
business that increasingly relies on
automated manufacturing.
Producing its caps from start to
finish not only gives Graffiti control
over their quality, but also over the
design process. Instead of buying an
already assembled cap and bending
it to fit into a sewing machine, as operations manager Robert Hatfield
said many of its competitors do,
Graffiti embroiders and dyes each of
its cap parts flat. The company uses
a process called dye sublimation that
allows it to print a color-fast design
onto paper and press it into the fabric.
Graffiti also has its own in-house
art department that can work with
companies to design and adapt logos to be embroidered onto to their
hats or other products. The company does a lot of custom work for organizations that include labor
unions, the military and the U.S.
Postal Service, as well as private label
The company’s product offerings
have expanded over time, and it still
offers other customizable items,
such as shirts, that it buys from outside vendors. But caps make up
about 60% of Graffiti’s business, Mr.
Miller said. Annual sales at Graffiti
are about $5 million, he said, and its
goal is to reach $6 million in sales by
In 2009, Graffiti started producing
its own knit hats, a business that
Hatfield said has been growing 25%
to 30% a year. Mr. Miller said the key
to such expansion is to stick with
what’s familiar; the commercial knitted products could be made by the
same employees and sold to the
same distributors.
Now, the company is focusing on
increasing its visibility. Graffiti updated its website in March, graffiticaps.com, to include the pricing
structure for the caps, which was
missing on the site. The website also
features an online showroom to
highlight new and existing products,
Hatfield said.
In addition, Graffiti recently
launched a wholesale website, at an
address it wasn’t willing to disclose,
that will let other vendors sell domestic baseball caps, Hatfield said. It
won’t be Graffiti-branded, but it will
sell Graffiti products.
All-American appeal
Steve Carr, owner of Carr Textile
Corp. in Fenton, Miss., and a supplier to Graffiti, said Graffiti has “survived and thrived” in a tough industry that has been changed in recent
years by imports.
Carr estimated there were 120
headwear manufacturers in the
United States about 10 years ago. Today, he thinks that number is closer
to 20. He said Graffiti has made it because the owners are highly involved, and the company always is
looking to change with the times.
Mr. Miller said the recession was
tough for Graffiti, but he noticed that
once it was over, people started buying more domestically made products. He thinks there is a patriotic
component to it, though the increased cost of shipping imports has
played a big role, too. Mr. Miller said
his company has survived in part because of the nature of baseball caps,
which boast an all-American image.
They’re a good value, they come in a
variety of styles and one can never
have too many, he said.
“For the money, it’s a wonderful
value to help represent people’s
companies” with Graffiti’s hats, Mr.
Miller said.
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Page 1
MARCH 17 - 23, 2014
John Campanelli ([email protected])
Mark Dodosh ([email protected])
Scott Suttell ([email protected])
Shifty move
ov. John Kasich likes to portray himself as a
tax-cutting crusader. It is a misleading
representation. He is more an illusionist, a
master of taxation sleight of hand.
The reality is, the governor is a tax shifter. He is
adept at transferring the burden of taxation from
one party to another while giving the appearance of
reducing taxes. Shifting the load is how he can balance a state budget that grows year after year even
as he beats the drum for lower individual income
tax rates.
Consider last year. The governor pushed for a 20%
across-the-board income tax cut phased in over
three years. The Legislature gave him 10%. Their
generosity goes back to Kasich’s first budget, which
he put together amid a still-slow economy in 2011.
That’s when the governor eliminated an $8 billion
budget deficit in part by slashing to the tune of a few
billion dollars the amount of state money that traditionally had gone to cities and school districts.
Even though the economy had regained some of
its footing by last year and the state was awash with
cash as tax receipts rebounded, Kasich and the Republican-led Legislature didn’t restore the money
the cities and schools had been denied two years
earlier. Instead, they used the bonanza to offset revenue they would be losing by enacting the income
tax cuts.
And what of the local governments and schools
that felt the budget pain that the state passed down
to them? The loss of state support has meant fewer
police officers and teachers, less general fund money to fix potholes, and cuts to academic programs
and extracurricular activities.
Now, a year later, the governor is proposing yet
another across-the-board income tax cut, this one
totaling 8.5% over three years. To cover the nearly
$2.2 billion in income tax lost to the cuts, Kasich
wants to raise the Commercial Activity Tax by 15%,
increase the severance tax on oil and gas production
to 2.75%, and boost Ohio’s cigarette tax by 48%.
The governor justifies shifting the tax burden by
saying that letting Ohioans keep more of their hardearned pay helps make families and communities
stronger. But that logic must not apply to the families of smokers, the vast majority of whom are
Ohioans of modest means.
It’s one thing to ding smokers with a small tax
hike. It’s another to gouge them. And by raising the
state cigarette tax to $1.85 a pack from the current
$1.25, a two-pack-a-day smoker would shell out another $438 a year in taxes.
By contrast, a couple with two children that earns
$73,000 a year would pay $356 less in income taxes
in 2016 than it did in 2011 if the proposed income
tax cut is added to the one already in place. It’s likely a smoker is subsidizing that family’s tax break, as
only 20% of smokers live in households that earn
$50,000 a year or more.
We’d like to believe most Ohioans think their fellow citizens should pay their fair share of taxes and
no more. In that spirit, we’d suggest that paying another 60 cents a pack for smokes hurts a guy whose
job it is to park cars way more than the smoker who
just dropped off his BMW to be parked.
Don’t shift the burden to the little guy.
Random, but definitely interesting, thoughts
Some odds and ends:
back — 12 times.
■ Compliance isn’t cheap —
■ Black market for smokes?
Two executives from a small CAMPANELLI — If Gov. John Kasich gets his
local bank told me recently
way and the state raises the
that in 2013 they spent about
cigarette tax 60 cents to $1.85
$500,000 more to comply with
a pack, Ohio’s taxes on
federal regulations than they
smokes will be $1.25 more a
did six or seven years ago. That
pack than Kentucky’s and
equates to about 10% of the
$1.30 more than West Virbank’s profits. A few years
ginia’s. That means a carton of
back, the same institution was
cigarettes will be at least
forced to spend $50,000 to
$12.50 cheaper across the
retrofit ATMs for vision-imOhio River. I imagine there
paired customers, including drive-up
might be a few full car trunks on the reATMs.
turn trip.
■ Impossible — Dan Gilbert and Quicken Loans are offering $1 billion (payable
in 40 annual installments) to anyone
who can pick a perfect NCAA bracket.
Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway is
insuring the contest for an undisclosed
sum. If you can pick tournament games
with 60% accuracy (a pretty decent accomplishment in itself), the odds of filling out a perfect bracket are about 1 in 95
trillion. How much of a long shot is that?
A stack of 95 trillion brackets, printed on
office paper, would reach the moon and
■ A surprise that isn’t — So it turns out
that the GOP might not have that “young
voter problem” after all. Polling indicates
that voters who turned 18 after Barack
Obama became president aren’t fans of
the president. Mitt Romney actually beat
Obama among 18-, 19- and 20-year-olds
in 2012, according to a blog item from
The Washington Post last week. This is
not without precedent. Voters who come
of age during tough economic times and
low presidential approval numbers (the
Carter years, for instance) tend to sup-
port the opposition party. If times are
good and the president is popular (Clinton in the 1990s, for example), young
voters support the party in power.
■ Hyperbole alert — Earlier this month,
The Plain Dealer ran what it called an
“unprecedented” editorial urging the
Cleveland Indians to retire Chief Wahoo.
I nodded my head a bit when I read it —
the same reaction I had last November
when I read the editorial in Crain’s Cleveland Business urging the same thing.
■ Virtual tipping — Starting Wednesday,
you can tip your Starbucks barista from
your iPhone. You’ll be able to add 50
cents, $1 or $2 up to two hours after your
purchase. I fear that making tipping easier might lower gratuities. Half the
change and dollar bills in the tip jar are
not from good service, but from shame
avoidance (who wants to be seen stiffing
a barista?). This mobile-tipping thingy
allows people to say, “I’ll take care of you
on the app” … with their fingers crossed.
■ Finally — My favorite email PR pitch
from the past month: “Are ‘selfies’ causing head lice infestations? Michigan
business owner thinks so.”
Re: Gov. Kasich’s tax plans
■ As an Ohioan I am always disgusted
with this governor.
You want us to quit smoking? Now
you want to tax an appliance that can
help us with that. … You try to confuse
us with lowering the state income tax,
which is horrendous, but raising the tax
on tobacco. Why not penalize the alcohol some more? Drunk drivers are all
over the road!
Ohio has taxed us to death. The state
is a mess. End the madness already.
— Minnieme
Re: Kelly Blazek, continued
■ While I have no problem with Kelly
bashing, to an obvious certain extent, I
can see the point Ginger Casey was making in her March 10 Personal View,
“Blazek bashing went too far.”
That said, people aren’t destroying
Kelly for saying “no,” and if she had said
no in a socially acceptable fashion, this
Reader responses to stories
and blogs that appeared on:
never would’ve become what it has. Had
she said, “Thank you for the interest, but
I only connect with people whom I
know,” and then had her response posted, nobody would’ve seen any way to
blame her. At that point, it clearly
would’ve been a case of sour grapes on
behalf of the person who couldn’t take a
polite “no.”
Kelly is not being destroyed for what
she said, but for how she said it.
— Jim Abbott
Re: Rising meat prices
■ Where’s the beef? Not on too many
plates, as Americans are wisely choosing
alternative diets. Even the fast-food
restaurants are diversifying their menus.
— Jerry Masek
Re: Cleveland’s sorry streets
■ How sad, or symbolic, that one of the
very worst blocks … is East 6th Street between Lakeside and St. Clair — the block
going to the front door of City Hall.
The claim that the $2 million a year for
FirstEnergy Stadium upgrades won’t hamper services needs to be explored. We have
an election coming for the sin tax, and
these issues are not helping. — 171939
Re: COSE’s new focus
■ I joined COSE 20+ years ago, mainly
because of the health insurance. Over
the years, I’ve attended many COSE educational and networking events that
helped me make connections with other
entrepreneurs, resulting in new business
that I would not have gained otherwise.
Although I stopped using the COSE
health insurance provider five years ago,
I’ve maintained my membership for
their other services. Best $300 investment I make each year. — Mark Madere
3:19 PM
Page 1
MARCH 17 - 23, 2014
Valuable lessons might have been
overlooked in Blazek controversy
ome years ago, I worked at a
university, where the student
newspaper periodically ran
stories testing the boundaries of good taste. For days afterward, I would hear complaints from
some faculty and staff members
who thought these young people
must be taught a lesson. Often, it
could be boiled down to this: with
freedom comes responsibility.
These were indeed teachable moments. College students should
learn that lesson. But it also served
as a bridge to suggest that their elders should be using these situations to engage in Socratic dialogue
with students, not punish them,
and that some equally important
lessons might also be learned by
those elders, including the importance of freedom of expression.
I was recently reminded of all
that by the Kelly Blazek story.
When the online job bank operator harshly responded to a young
woman hoping to connect with her
on Linkedin as part of her goal of relocating to Cleveland, only for
Blazek to have her response subsequently posted online, it touched a
deep nerve on social media.
That soon crossed over to major
media outlets, quickly exploding
into a national, and then international, story.
It wasn’t the kind of message that
those intent on solving regional
brain drain might have hoped to
Bob Hatta, formerly known as
Northeast Ohio’s talent czar while
Ettorre is an Emmy-winning writer,
editor and writing coach who has been
writing about the regional economy for
more than 25 years. You can follow
him on Twitter at @workinwithwords.
at Jumpstart, spoke for many when
he observed on Twitter that “the
whole Kelly Blazek debacle has
wrecked my day.”
Why did this story spread like
wildfire? One key reason is that it
played into a rich subtext, one that
doubly resonates in this tight job
market: the inherent friction between Baby Boomer incumbents
and millennial generation hopefuls.
I’ve known Blazek a little over the
years, and happen to be among her
now-infamous 960-plus contacts on
Linkedin. But I also have two sons
in their 20s. Even as I blanched over
a fellow Baby Boomer’s harsh blanket dismissal of an entire generation
for their sense of entitlement, I also
found myself nodding in agreement
with her larger point: that younger
people need to better understand
the human element behind networking and treat it with greater
You can’t really understand this
story unless you grasp how essential
Linkedin has become as a vehicle
for finding jobs, and if you’re in
sales or in business for yourself,
you’re looking for a job every day.
While Facebook has become the
better-known show horse, Linkedin
has quietly become the workhorse,
the virtual backbone of the job market. Still, this virtual platform is only
at its most effective when combined
■ Crain’s on Twitter: @CrainsCleveland
■ Crain’s on Facebook: Facebook.com/CrainsCleveland
■ Crain’s on LinkedIn: linkedin.com/company/crain’s-cleveland-business
■ Crain’s on Instagram: instagram.com/crainscleveland
■ Crain’s daily e-newsletters: CrainsCleveland.com/register
with real pre-existing relationships.
But the lesson that some young
people might understandably take
from this sad chapter — that wellconnected elders don’t really matter
in their job search — is dead wrong.
While Linkedin makes it easier to
reach out to contacts, it doesn’t supersede the need to make human
contact, and to personalize your outreach.
After all, isn’t that what job seekers valued most in Blazek’s listserv?
This wasn’t just another online job
board, but one moderated by a wellinformed industry veteran.
In the end, everyone lost here. A
free service valued by thousands of
job-seekers in a still-challenging job
market will probably never be available again. A professional reputation
now lies in ruin. Perhaps worst of all,
thousands of young job-seekers
might well use this situation as a reason to avoid reaching out to older,
well-connected professionals who
might have been of considerable
help. We’ll never know how many
doors might have been opened, nor
how many potential mentors have
been lost in the process.
I hope we can instead use this as a
teachable moment — one that reminds all of us to be kinder in our
virtual conversations, more charitable with our personal networks, and
more mindful of how solid professional networks are built, one person
at a time.
After all, when they’re built the
right way, these networks can sustain us for a lifetime.
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Page 1
MARCH 17 - 23, 2014
Anderson International is ‘buried’ with booming business
Rubber & Plastics News
Anderson International Corp. executives knew an expansion of the
company’s plant in Stow was inevitable when the machinery maker relocated there. They just didn’t
know “inevitable” meant two years.
Blame it on faster growth than
expected by the manufacturer of
dewatering and drying equipment
for synthetic rubber producers. The
company has gone to 130 employees from 50 since it moved from its
Cleveland plant to Stow.
“We’re buried,” said Lenny Trocano, president of the privately
held company as he walked
through the busy machine hall. The
equipment and
work in progress.
Trocano and
Paul Kohntopp,
Anderson’s vice
president and
general manag- Trocano
er, said they
were aware the 78,200-square-foot
building wasn’t perfect when the
company acquired it in 2011.
“We knew in our gut we should
have bought bigger,” Kohntopp
“This was smaller than what we
came from,” an aging structure on
Cleveland’s East Side, Kohntopp
said. “But we are definitely more ef-
ficient here,” with a well-thoughtout floor layout, he said.
The Stow site has an extensive
system of overhead cranes, vital for
a company that handles extremely
heavy parts and equipment, Trocano said. And the steel structure
includes an area that obviously
could accommodate an expansion
— a back wall that will be extended
to accommodate another 24,000
square feet on the 10-acre site.
Kohntopp termed the cost of the
project “substantial.” The company
will rearrange storage and open areas for machinery, including new
The project, slated for completion this fall, also will add some offices.
Overseas focus
Anderson has marched to the
beat of a different drummer than
much of U.S. manufacturing in
multiple ways. For one, most of the
company’s customers are overseas.
Trocano said its export sales of
equipment for synthetic rubber
producers have climbed to 84% of
total shipments from 70% five years
“I think that trend is going to
continue,” he said.
The rapid and enormous growth
of the synthetic rubber industry
abroad accounts for much of that
business for Anderson, the executives said. Anderson’s customers
are in 90 countries, including in
To all individuals and businesses that
accept American Express cards:
Notice of a class action settlement.
Si desea recibir esta notificación en español, llámenos o visite nuestra página web.
Notice of a class action settlement authorized by
the U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York.
Settlement Agreement by calling the toll-free
number below.
This notice is authorized by the Court to inform you
about an agreement to settle two class action lawsuits
that may affect you. The cases - In re American
Express Anti-Steering Rules Antitrust Litigation (II),
No. 11-MD-2221 and Marcus Corp. v American
Express Co. et al., 13-CV-07355 - are in the U.S.
District for the Eastern District of New York. These
cases allege that certain rules applicable to merchants
that accept American Express cards violate antitrust
laws and resulted in merchants paying excessive
fees. The Court has not decided which side is right
because the parties agreed to settle.
You do not need to file a claim to receive the
benefits of the rule changes provided for by the
settlement. If you want to seek monetary damages
related to American Express’s existing merchant
rules, you can pursue those claims consistent with the
dispute resolution provisions contained in your card
acceptance agreement. No money will be distributed
to the class.
Who’s included?
The settlement applies to a class comprised of all
merchants that accept American Express cards at any
location in the United States (including at a physical
merchant location, online or via a mobile application)
as of or after February 12, 2014, onward.
What are the Settlement terms?
The settlement will require American Express
to change its rules to allow merchants who accept
American Express cards to charge customers
an extra fee or “surcharge” if they pay with an
American Express credit or charge card under certain
conditions including that any such surcharge apply to
all credit and charge card transactions. The specific
rule changes and terms of the settlement are
explained in detail in the court-approved, longform notice (“Notice”) and the Class Settlement
Agreement, which are found at the case website
should review these documents carefully. Your
legal rights are affected even if you do nothing.
You can also obtain copies of the Notice and Class
Your options.
You may object to the settlement by June 6, 2014.
The Notice available at the case website explains how
to object. Regardless of whether you object, if the
settlement is finally approved, you will be bound by
the Court’s final judgment and the releases explained
in the Class Settlement Agreement, which is available
at the case website.
Court hearing about
the Settlement.
The Court will hold a hearing on September 17, 2014
to consider whether to approve the settlement and the
request by the attorneys for the class for attorneys’
fees, expenses, and service awards up to a maximum
total of $75 million. You do not need to appear at the
hearing or hire your own attorney. But you can if you
want to, at your own cost. The Court has appointed
Friedman Law Group, LLP, Reinhardt, Wendorf
& Blanchfield, and Patton Boggs LLP to represent
the class.
For more information about the settlement you should
visit the website (www.AmexMerchantSettlement.com)
or call 1-866-686-8694.
China, India, the Middle East and
Those are the regions where new
synthetic rubber capacity is coming
online. In the United States, Anderson’s business typically is spare parts
and some replacement of existing
lines, Kohntopp said.
Another characteristic of Anderson is that it “doesn’t do cheap,”
Trocano said.
“We don’t compete as the lowestcost supplier,” he said. ‘If you want
the cheapest equipment, go elsewhere.”
There are plenty of companies eager to produce equipment and parts
such as Anderson’s. But when a
client is spending hundreds of millions of dollars to establish a plant, it
wants the real thing, he said. That’s
why Anderson’s equipment is all
over China.
Trocano said Anderson doesn’t
outsource its work, buys castings
made in the United States, and, most
importantly, builds entire finishing
“The engineering companies (that
synthetic rubber producers hire)
want a single source,” he said. Anderson has partners to provide automation, bailers, conveyors and
other ancillaries.
Because it does so much foreign
business, Anderson is attuned to
working with the Ex-Im Bank, the official U.S. export/import credit
agency, and has contracts with firms
that deal with certification throughout the world.
Kohntopp said different regions
have different requirements. In Europe, for example, the imported
equipment needs the CE marking,
indicating it meets European Union
“The differences in the requirements aren’t that great, but they all
have their own tweaks,” he said.
Demand for full lines
Trocano said Anderson had four
or five engineers when he joined the
company, before it made the push
into providing finishing line packages.
“Now we have 21, and that doesn’t
include industrial engineers,” he
said. “Selling complete finishing
lines requires much more engineering, because you are dealing with
bigger engineering companies that
have all sorts of requirements.”
Trocano said the relocation to a
modern building in Stow helps in
obtaining necessary staff. Kohntopp
said while the company still can attract talent from Cleveland, the new
location gives it more access to people experienced in CNC-based machinery.
Anderson still has equipment operated manually by machinists, and
such operators are difficult to find,
Kohntopp said.
Anderson’s capital investment is
in CNC equipment, and the people
to handle it.
The machinery maker also has invested in sophisticated 3D software.
Its engineers can provide a complete
picture of a plant layout, enabling a
client’s engineering contractors to
know how the finishing line fits into
the entire project.
“I don’t think there are many
competitors that can do that,” Trocano said.
Noga is a contributing editor at Rubber & Plastics News, a sister publication of Crain’s Cleveland Business.
12:01 PM
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MARCH 17 - 23, 2014
More than 200 filmmakers and other special guests attend the film festival „ Only 13% of attendees in 2013 went to a single screening — most went
to two to five „ More than 6,000 middle school and high school students attended the festival in 2013 as part of the FilmSlam program „ This
year’s program guide is 196 pages – 16 pages larger than last year „ In all, 68 countries are represented in this year’s films „ The first festival
was organized by Jonathan Forman and ran from April 13 to June 2, 1977 „ The event moved in 1991 from the Cedar Lee to Tower City Cinemas
An in-depth look at the Cleveland International Film Festival
There’s a bunch of characters behind the scenes ........................... Page 14
Just 12 days, but millions of dollars in economic impact ................. Page 15
The goal each year is ‘better, not bigger’ ...................................... Page 16
Planning the event is a year-long job ............................................ Page 18
Cleveland looked at as ‘a filmmaker’s festival’ ............................... Page 19
Go to www.crainscleveland.com/film for additional coverage, including:
A gallery of images from film festivals past
Historic program guide covers and behind-the-scene photos
Video promotions from the CIFF’s early days
Daily featured films with trailers
12:03 PM
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MARCH 17 - 23, 2014
L-R: Bill Guentzler, Beth Steele Radisek, Debby Samples, Debbie “Sheepie” Marshall, Mallory Martin, Patrick Shepherd, Marcie Goodman
A closer look at the people who make the festival possible
ou don’t have to be crazy to work here. We’ll train
you.” Those words appear on a small plaque that
hangs in the entrance to the Cleveland International Film Festival’s modest office space in Ohio City.
Given to the staff by longtime volunteer Thom Duke, who
recently died, the conversation piece is located just below a
display case — filled with Pez dispensers.
If you spend any amount of time with the seven full-time
staffers who orchestrate the never-ending details of the film
festival, it doesn’t take long to realize that no truer words
could be used to describe this office and the people in it.
Don’t worry, though. It’s hard to believe that anyone among
this close-knit, inside-joke-fueled group would take offense.
Working under the direction of executive director Marcie
Goodman, this gang — which includes Patrick Shepherd, Mallory Martin, Bill Guentzler, Debby Samples, Debbie "Sheepie"
Marshall and Beth Steele Radisek — spends nearly every
waking moment together from January until March putting together film aficionados’ annual rite of spring.
The rest of the year? They take walks, travel, go bowling, go out
to dinner and generally can’t stay away from each other.
When they aren’t crafting goofy nicknames for each other
— like “Pat-cie” (the combination of Shepherd and Goodman),
or “Billy Puppy” (Guentzler) — they use a word like family to
Years at film festival:
1987-1994 and 1998-present
Primary responsibilities: Nagging
Favorite part of the festival: Closing night
Biggest surprise from last year: We were
blown away by our audience’s willingness to “figure it out” with regard to parking. So many patrons took the RTA, which remains “the easy way”
for traveling to this year’s festival.
Years at film festival: 11
Primary responsibilities:
Spreading the word on the CIFF
Favorite part of the festival: Just being at
the festival with people from all parts of the
community and with guests from all over the
world. The energy is so positive.
Most memorable filmmaker visit: It’s not
possible for me to choose. We are fortunate to
have an audience that truly loves independent
film, and our guest filmmakers can see that in the
packed theaters and hear it in the questions
asked at the Q&As following their screenings.
Because of that connection, our guest filmmakers
are nothing short of extraordinary when interacting with our audience, volunteers and staff.
describe their relationships.
“What’s better than working with some of your best friends,”
said Marshall (whose nickname, “Sheepie,” is the only one to
make it on her business card.)
As for Goodman, her belief in her staff is unwavering —
even if it means a fight now and then. “I have complete faith in
everything my staff does,” Goodman said. “I watch in astonishment with what these six people do.”
And she — and the rest of the staff — know that what they
share with their co-workers is something special.
"We all realize this is a once-in-a-lifetime experience," she
said. — Amy Ann Stoessel
Years at film festival: 7
Years at film festival: 3 years full time
(14 years volunteering/seasonal staff)
Primary responsibilities: Keeping the wheels
greased and the members happy
Primary responsibilities: Volunteer coordinator,
FilmSlam director, entry coordinator
Favorite part of the festival: The energy you
feel just walking into Tower City Center
Favorite part of the festival: Far and above,
FilmSlam (an education program )
Most memorable CIFF moment:
In April 2010, my dad passed away unexpectedly.
At the following 35th CIFF, the festival was
gracious enough to let me … dedicate one of the
films in the program to his memory. I chose
“The Hedgehog,” a film based on a book and
with a main character whose greatest pleasure
in life was reading. I thought this was very fitting
and with the overarching message of the film
being to live life to the fullest. As part of the
dedication I introduced the film before each
screening and explained a little bit why I chose it
to honor the memory of my dad. There were
some former students of my dad (a former
English teacher) in the audience who sought me
out after the screening to share … their
memories of him. Even complete strangers with
no connection to me or my family found me to
tell me what a beautiful film I had chosen. Not
only was this personally very touching, but I
think it really speaks to our amazing and loving
audience and to the all-inclusive and embracing
community that the festival brings together and
builds among our audiences. I think that is
something very unique to our film festival.
One country not represented in a film that
you would like to see: Vatican City. I would love
to see a film in our festival from the smallest
country in the world. As far as I know, we have
never even had one submitted. I would be
intrigued to see what someone from Vatican City
would make — a short, documentary or feature?
And what the heck would it be about?
Years at
film festival: 15
Watching movies
Favorite part of the festival:
Watching movies
Number of movies watched in a year:
More than 600.
Years at film festival: 3 full time/2 seasonal
Primary responsibilities:Programming the
festival along with artistic director Bill Guentzler
and choreographing the projection of films in
the booth at Tower City Cinemas
Years at film festival: 16
Primary responsibilities:
Fundraising and community engagement.
Favorite part of the festival: Our programming
enables us to bring people from every walk of life
to downtown Cleveland every spring.
Without the film festival, Clevelanders
would be: Less sleep-deprived for 12 days
every spring. Many of our patrons see six or
seven films a day from 9 a.m. until 1 a.m.
I don’t know how they do it.
Favorite part of the festival: Meeting all the
visiting filmmakers and seeing how amazed
they are at their packed screenings.
If you were a film director, you would be:
Miranda July, because she’s awesome —
writer, director, actress and artist who I can’t
wait to see more films from.
— Compiled by Kathy Ames Carr
Responses were edited for brevity and clarity
The staff of the film festival effectively grows from sevHe balances his film festival duties with his job
en full-time staffers to more than 1,000 in the days and
as a teaching artist for the Center for Artsweeks leading up to the event.
Inspired Learning. He also has a studio in CleveIn all, there are more than 800 volunteers and 200
land’s ArtCraft Building.
seasonal staffers lending a hand this year to put on the
His 40-hour pre-festival workweeks begin in Deannual festival. Their efforts range from support on the
cember and turn into 12-hour days during the 12office side to working with the crowds at Tower City.
day festival, with usually one day off during that
Mark Yasenchack, for example, started as a volunteer
stretch. “Believe it or not, I actually don’t get to
in 2000, but has since expanded his duties, becoming
watch many films,” Yasenchack says.
business operations manager in 2003.
Barb Wynveen, meanwhile, is an example of
“I was hooked,” says Yasenchack, who works in a seasonal cathe hundreds of volunteers who help coordinate other festival logispacity overseeing a staff of 50 involved with ticket sales.
tics, including those that take place during the actual course of the
As a “Movie Mogul” seat holder, Wynveen — who signs
up for three shifts of four hours — makes sure seats are
vacant for top-tier donation level guests. “The VIPs pay a
lot of money to have their seat held until they show up,”
she says. She also ushers in attendees and keep lines organized.
“This is a finely tuned machine; it’s so organized in every
capacity,” says Wynveen, who also works as a patient navigator for Cleveland-based Carmella Rose Health Foundation. “Every volunteer is slotted carefully. There’s no waste of
— Kathy Ames Carr
1:59 PM
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MARCH 17 - 23, 2014
It’s a hit! Annual impact pushes $5 million
[email protected]
Imagine this report were a documentary instead, filmed to illustrate
the economic impact of the Cleveland International Film Festival. It
might start with a close-up of the
potato-crusted quiche at the J.
Palen House bed and breakfast,
where 11 of 12 rooms occupied on
the weekends during last year’s festival were booked by people headed
to the annual event.
A wide shot of the Rapid traveling
toward downtown might be next, as
it’s filled on average with thousands
more riders, and a tracking shot following a server, juggling the demands of a larger-than-normal
crowd, could reflect what many a
restaurateur says is their reality during the 12-day festival.
For some, such as The Ritz-Carlton, Cleveland, the economic impact of the event can be measured
in rooms that sell out at a rate not
seen during other wintery weeks.
For the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority, the impact
was evident last year in a 13% increase in ridership on rail lines during the festival: 20,000 more passengers on its Red Line, compared to
average ridership, and 6,600 more
on its Blue and Green lines.
For restaurants in Tower City and
elsewhere, it’s additional meals and
drinks served.
“When you get 100,000-some
people to leave their house (and go
to the city), you’re automatically
strongly impacting every business
there,” said Alan Glazen, president
of A-Z Taverns Inc., which owns
Ontario Street Cafe downtown, XYZ
the Tavern in Cleveland’s Gordon
Square neighborhood and ABC the
Tavern (Ohio City/Uptown). “The
winter’s over, and here comes
spring, and the film festival gives us
a good start.”
‘It’s a lot of new faces’
As the number of people flocking
to the festival has risen to recordbreaking numbers, the economic
impact of the film festival has
grown, according to Cypress Research, a statistical consulting firm
out of Shaker Heights.
It estimated as of 2013 that the
windfall for the city of Cleveland
had climbed roughly 77% to $4.8
million from $2.7 million in 2007,
and had doubled for Cuyahoga
County to $2.8 million from $1.4
million during the same period.
The woman serving the potatocrusted quiches at J. Palen House in
Ohio City will tell you the impact is
tremendous and growing for her
inn. Four years ago, owner Diane
Miller said she could attribute
maybe two weekend bookings to
festival-goers. Last year, she could
attribute 11 of 12 weekend bookings
during the event to people involved
in it. One hailed from Germany.
Unlike a Cleveland Browns game,
to which visitors may dedicate only
part of one day, film festival patrons, “while they’re here in Cleveland, they go to that festival the
whole time,” said Pat Cirillo, president of Cypress Research.
“We can attribute a lot of the
spending that they do while they’re
here to the festival,” she said. “Most
of the money that people spend almost exclusively is in Cleveland.”
And, all of it occurs at a particular-
ly beneficial time, small business
owners say, given how winter tends to
slow business.
Only one Rapid stop away from
downtown, Ohio City bustles with
festival traffic, said Sam McNulty,
who owns five restaurants there
that get “noticeably busier.”
“Even more importantly, it brings
a lot of folks who are new to the
city,” said McNulty, owner of The
Market Garden Brewery, Nano
Brew Cleveland, Bier Markt,
Speakeasy and Bar Cento. “It’s a lot
of new faces, which we’re always
happy to see.”
Return on investment
Important to consider along with
the dollars spent by festival-goers is
the money it costs to produce the
film festival, Cypress Research’s Cirillo said. If it cost $10 million and
generated less than half that in impact, for example, Cirillo would argue it’s not successful.
According to film festival staff,
the festival’s total revenue and support for fiscal year 2013 totaled $2.7
If you narrow it down to just the
$206,535 in government grants the
festival received, about which the
average taxpayer would care most,
“the ROI (return on investment) is
fantastic — at least a 1,000% return,” Cirillo wrote in an email. Factor in also $757,000 in foundation
support, since that money theoretically could support other causes
such as education, and the return
on investment still is two to three
times — “which any corporation I
know of would take in a heartbeat,”
she wrote.
“So, (it’s) easy to argue that the
city/county is better off if the CIFF
exists than if it didn’t,” Cirillo continued. “Would the city/county
collapse if the CIFF did? No. But all
things like this require investment,
and these numbers suggest that the
CIFF is a good investment.”
Even though 95% of festival patrons are from the Buckeye State, a
surprising number still book hotels
and make a “staycation” of it, according to Patrick Shepherd, associate director of the festival.
Leah Knapp has done it. The
public relations manager for Erie
Insurance and her husband for several years have taken a few days off
work and, in a good year, see 20
movies, she said. The University
Heights residents tended — before
their infant daughter was born — to
even stay downtown, and try to eat
at locally owned restaurants, Knapp
Their spending decisions echo
what the economic impact study
done in 2007 revealed: It found that,
on the aggregate, patrons spent the
most money at restaurants, then
hotels, then other activities while in
“Getting the extra business during the slower time helps smooth
out the demand for the year,” said
Mark Raymond, owner and operator of The Cleveland Hostel, which
opened 18 months ago in Ohio City
and counted 25 bookings last year
by film festival patrons, and 18 as of
early March for this year.
The hostel has 15 rooms, including 10 that are private.
On the other end of the spectrum,
the 205-room Ritz-Carlton regularly sells out during the event, accord-
ing to Lynn Coletto, director of sales
and marketing.
Businesses in and around Tower
City, such as the Ritz, benefit the
most, said Shepherd, but as the festival adds and/or retains screenings
at other places, such as the Beachland Ballroom and Capitol Theatre
in Cleveland’s Gordon Square district, he said the economic impact
theoretically expands.
Glazen, a co-founder of the festival
and a funder now, says it definitely
does. His restaurant, XYZ the Tavern
near Capitol Theatre, “definitely is
impacted” and staffs up for dinner
early and drinks late during the film
festival. His Ontario Street Cafe
across the street from Tower City also
sees business rise roughly 30% thanks
to festival-goers, he said.
80% increase in bookings on weekdays when the festival is taking
place compared to a regular week,
according to Miller. That tends to
mean a 50% more profitable
month, she estimated.
The 75 merchants at Tower City,
which includes local, regional and
national restaurants and shops, see
“nice monthly increases” in their
Dollars, cents and more
Some can cite hard numbers for
the economic impact they enjoy.
All the extra Rapid passes sold
during the film festival generate
probably $130,000 for the Greater
Cleveland RTA, spokesman Jerry
Masek said.
The J. Palen House sees about an
sales, said Lisa A. Kreiger, Tower
City’s general manager for retail
and a film festival board member.
“When the film festival is here,
there’s just a buzz and an energy in
the center,” she said. “The merchants look so forward to the film
festival each year. A lot of the guests
do spend money at Tower City.”
While a Horseshoe Cleveland
spokeswoman said it’s difficult to determine the reason people visit the
casino, which opened in May 2012,
Kreiger said she saw it herself: people
with festival lanyards walking the
casino’s bright, blinking interior.
“It used to be after midnight,
there was nothing to do, and so
now with the casino being open
24/7, they (festival-goers) can see a
movie and then they can go and
they can gamble,” she said.
Many business owners described, too, the festival’s impact
beyond dollars and cents.
“It’s one of those cultural events
that the ripple effects are seen citywide — both economically and in a
way, spiritually,” Ohio City restaurateur McNulty said. “It’s great for
the psyche of Cleveland to have this
nationally renowned film festival.”
Boast. Be a show-off.
Toot your horn to Cleveland’s best business audience in town.
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12:05 PM
Page 1
MARCH 17 - 23, 2014
Festival’s goal is to be ‘better, not bigger’
[email protected]
lobby and adjacent walkway.
“This is a passionate group of
people who love the festival,”
Goodman said of the volunteers.
“It’s important for us all to be on
the same page with customer service. The customer’s always right,
and whatever we can do to make it
better, we want to do it.”
oviegoers at the Cleveland
International Film Festival
can see a lot of what the
world cinema has to offer — 185 feature films and 168 short subjects, representing 68 countries, over 12 days
of fun with the lights off.
What they don’t see: All the work
that goes into pulling off an event
that has seen attendance rise 165% in
the past decade and that now boasts
an annual budget of $2.5 million.
Executive director Marcie Goodman, associate director Patrick
Shepherd and five other full-time
staffers operate with a simple
mantra: “Better, not bigger.”
It’s one that they simultaneously
manage to achieve and subvert.
The festival continues to program
better films and provides an experience in which 89% of 2013 festival
attendees had been to a previous
year’s festival, according to a 2013
survey by Patricia J. Cirillo/Cypress
Research Group. At the same time,
the event does get bigger each year.
Last year, it added a day, and this
year, more satellite venues.
And it all comes together quickly.
It’s a year-round effort with a crush of
intense work from January through
the end of the festival, which this year
runs from March 19-30.
Artistic director Bill Guentzler and
associate programmer Mallory Martin travel to film festivals in the Unit-
In love with the movies
ed States and around the world to
find material for Cleveland’s festival.
But, as Shepherd notes, the “tight
windows” of working with film distributors to book the “newest and
best” films compresses the work cycle for the staff.
“I’m jealous of the organizations
that have six- to 12-month lead
times,” Shepherd said.
The tight-knit CIFF staff “goes
from seven to more than 700” employees “almost overnight,” Goodman said, when it adds seasonal
staff and volunteers who handle
duties such as helping festival attendees get to where they need to
be and managing the lines snaking
through the Tower City Cinemas
Getting better is what CIFF has
been doing since 2003, a year when
the festival opened a day after the
start of the war in Iraq and attendance fell 13% to about 35,000 admissions. Goodman said a combination of cost-cutting, more
aggressive fundraising efforts and
new programming strategies
helped get the festival back on solid ground, and last year, more than
93,000 people attended the event.
A fun way to raise money, she said,
has been through “Film Feasts,” a series of themed parties and gatherings
for film lovers — often in a supporter’s home — to celebrate movies. All
proceeds from those events directly
benefit the film festival.
Shepherd said about 40% of the
$2.5 million budget comes from
earned income, comprising ticket
sales, CIFF memberships (ranging in
price from $25 to $950) and filmmakers’ entry fees. The rest of the budget
is filled by contributed income, from
corporations — the festival’s lead
sponsor, once again, is Dollar Bank
— as well as foundations, individual
donors and government sources.
Cuyahoga County’s arts tax, for example, provides about $150,000 to
the film festival, Goodman said.
The tax money helps to serve an
event that draws substantial support
from Cuyahoga County residents.
According to 2013 attendee data,
25% of the 93,235 attendees were
from the city of Cleveland, and 69%
were from Cuyahoga County. More
than 90% of festival attendees are
from Northeast Ohio.
And it’s a dedicated group. In the
survey measuring the engagement
of last year’s festival attendees, 22%
said they viewed films for just one
day of the festival — which means
78% came for two days or more.
Four percent — about 3,700 people
— attended every day of the festival.
“Cleveland’s a remarkable movie
town,” Goodman said.
Cleveland — and beyond
Shepherd said the city of Cleveland has “assets that few other places
have” for a film festival, most notably
a venue, in Tower City Cinemas,
where “90% of our programming is
under one roof in the center city.”
Tower City presents one big
challenge for CIFF — parking is always in short supply during festival
days. However, a partnership with
the Greater Cleveland Regional
Transit Authority helps mitigate
those problems. There’s a full page
of RTA information in the CIFF program guide, and RTA fare cards can
be bought on the festival’s website.
CIFF draws its content from all
over the world, so it’s only appropriate that the festival itself branch out
a bit with screenings of films outside
Tower City. Many of the Cleveland
Cinemas theaters — the Cedar Lee in
Cleveland Heights, the Capitol on
the West Side and the Apollo in
Oberlin, for instance — will host
CIFF screenings, as will the Beachland Ballroom in the Waterloo District on Cleveland’s East Side and the
Hanna Theatre at PlayhouseSquare.
One of CIFF’s most ambitious
programming efforts outside Tower City takes place in Akron.
On Thursday, March 27, CIFF
will present its second annual Day
and Knight in Akron, a full day of
programming that includes eight
screenings taking place at the
Akron Art Museum and the AkronSummit County Public Library.
That event is presented with the
lead support from the John S. and
James L. Knight Foundation, with additional support from the Akron
Community Foundation and the
GAR Foundation.
Dennis Scholl, vice president/arts
for the Knight Foundation, said the
Akron event last year was a big hit.
“If you didn’t buy early, you
couldn’t get a seat to any of those
screenings,” Scholl said, noting that
he stood in the back of the theater
to watch some films.
12:10 PM
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MARCH 17 - 23, 2014
Tech upgrades, new sites for 2014
[email protected]
Phyllis Harris is executive director of the LGBT Community Center of
Greater Cleveland.
Community partners offer
extra boost to programming
The Cleveland International Film
Festival’s community partnership
program allows local organizations
to support films that address topics
related to their missions.
For instance, at this month’s festival, the LGBT Community Center of
Greater Cleveland is supporting
“The New Black,” a documentary
about marriage equality and the
African-American community.
Phyllis Harris, the LGBT organization’s executive director, said the
group traditionally supports films
from CIFF’s “10% Cinema” sidebar,
featuring work of particular interest
to the gay, lesbian, bisexual and
transgender community. The organization is using social media and
its database or more than 5,000
email addresses to spread the
word about “The New Black,” which
she said offers a strong message
about marriage equality “and that
fact that these are basic rights, not
special rights.”
She’ll have a chance to speak before the film, so the program gives
the organization a chance to reach
out to all audience members —
those already affiliated with the
group and those with no ties.
“It’s a great opportunity to expose people to ideas,” Harris said.
The program carries similar benefits for the Cleveland chapter of The
Links, a volunteer service organization focused on enriching and sustaining the culture of African-Americans. That organization is a
community sponsor in support of “Alice Walker: Beauty in Truth,” about
the Pulitzer Prize-winning activist-author of “The Color Purple.”
Jennifer Coleman, a member of
The Links’ Cleveland chapter and its
past president, said she has been
attending the CIFF for more than 20
years and always finds “wonderful,
diverse programming.” Movies are
both a great setting for discussion
of meaty topics and for casual conversation among friends.
Last year, Coleman said, the organization supported a documentary about Anita Hill, who came to
Cleveland and ultimately took part
in a small reception after the film at
the Renaissance Hotel.
“That was a pretty memorable
discussion,” she said.
— Scott Suttell
Marcie Goodman knows the time
is coming when the Cleveland International Film Festival, which has
seen attendance rise 165%, to
93,235 in 2013 from 35,173 in 2003,
no longer keeps drawing ever-larger crowds.
And she’s fine with that.
“Growth is expensive,” says
Goodman, the film festival’s executive director. “We love seeing more
people come to (the festival) every
year. But we know that it’s not always going to keep climbing, and
that’s OK. That’s not the only measure of a successful event.”
Indeed, Goodman says, “If everyone who comes (to the film festival)
has a great experience, then we
were successful.” She and the fulltime film festival staff, including associate director Patrick Shepherd,
have been working 90-hour weeks
since Jan. 2 to fine-tune that experience for visitors this year and beyond.
“We already have a list of what
we can do better in 2015,” Shepherd says.
For 2014, though, a big change
already is in place that should enhance the experience of filmgoers
— and bolster the film festival’s
bottom line going forward.
The festival has converted nine
theaters at Tower City Cinemas to
digital projection, an undertaking
made possible by a $500,000 loan
from the George Gund Foundation.
The project also includes new
sound systems and screens, further
optimizing the viewing experience.
CIFF owns the equipment, which
is housed at Tower City Cinemas on
a year-round basis. Tower City Cin-
‘Augmented reality’ adds
twist to traditional film guide
A less-grandiose technological
upgrade this year, but one that’s
fun and a little whimsical for the
smart phone generation, involves
an old-fashioned film festival staple:
the printed program guide.
The guide this year makes use of
“augmented reality,” a technology
that enables mobile devices to recognize live objects and then activate video or graphics. The Wall
Street Journal reported in March
that marketers, print publishers and
retailers increasingly are using augmented reality to “test new ways to
promote their brands on ever-present mobile devices.”
For the Cleveland film festival,
digitally curious users can download an app called Layar, point their
smart phones at the festival proemas pays CIFF a rental fee to use
the equipment for the 353 days of
the year it’s not used by the festival.
Tower City Cinemas, which is run
by Cleveland Cinemas, has 11 theaters, 10 of which the film festival
uses each year. (One already had
been converted.) It’s an expensive
undertaking, Goodman said, but it’s
a necessary one, as the digital revolution in the film world makes it impossible to program a large film festival such as Cleveland’s without the
latest technology.
Without the Gund loan, the festival would have had to rent digital
equipment, Goodman said. The
festival expects to be able to cover
the cost of the loan in two festival
Deena Epstein, senior program
guide and
video and
unfurl on
top of the
objects on
screen. (And
make sure the sound is up on your
phone, too; there’s a fun song that
goes with the presentation.)
On your phone’s home screen,
you can put the Layar app next to
the film festival’s own app, which offers news updates on CIFF, descriptions of all films, the full film schedule, a customizable “my schedule”
feature, and a daily blog.
— Scott Suttell
officer at the Gund Foundation,
which has been a financial supporter of the film festival since the
1980s, said foundation officials
meet periodically with CIFF staff
members to discuss ways to
strengthen the event. When the
prospect of a loan to cover the digital conversion was raised, Epstein
said, “It seemed like such a logical
fit, both financially and for programming.”
But wait, there’s more
Out of the realm of technology,
the festival aims to improve the
viewer experience this year by offering more neighborhood screenings than ever before. Besides reSee NEW, Page 19
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12:18 PM
Page 1
MARCH 17 - 23, 2014
As the curtains close on one festival,
planning for the next has already begun...
12:22 PM
Page 1
MARCH 17 - 23, 2014
Festival scores rave reviews nationally
[email protected]
As is the case with most of the
cultural assets in Northeast Ohio,
too many of us don’t realize what
we have right under our noses.
The Cleveland International Film
Festival is no different — it’s regarded by many outside of our region as one of the strongest film festivals in the country, and it is larger
in the sheer number of films
screened than even the iconic Sundance Film Festival in Park City,
“(CIFF is) known as a very strong
festival,” says Susan Halpern, executive director of the Columbus Film
Council and a former filmmaker.
“The fact that they’ve built an audience that will see six films a week is
hard to do. I am in awe of them.”
Halpern hasn’t visited CIFF in a
while, but she’s observed its growth
over the years into an event that
fills a unique niche in the U.S. film
festival circuit. Halpern and Steve
Felix, executive director of the
Akron Film and Pixel Festival, are
hard-pressed to even name an
event that might be considered
competition for the CIFF.
Lots of diverse films, enthusiastic
audiences and a true indie vibe are
what helped CIFF land on IndieWire’s list of the top 50 film festivals in the world, which praised
the event’s “hospitality and eager
These factors also are what
Halpern and Felix say places the
Cleveland International Film Festival in a category of its own.
“I would have a hard time thinking of a comparably-sized city that
has a festival that’s so well-attend-
ed,” said Felix. “By the numbers,
they’re second to none based on
how they support a film festival.”
Filmmakers welcomed here
Director Carlo Guillermo Proto
traveled to more than 30 film festivals with his film “El Huaso,” including to CIFF in 2013. Getting a
film selected here had been a goal
of Proto’s since film school, when
his professor spoke highly of it.
“Cleveland is very down to
earth,” he said. “It’s an incredibly
humble and nonpretentious city
and that reflects on the festival itself.”
That’s the same kind of sentiment Halpern hears from filmmak-
New: Free day this year
continued from PAGE 17
turning to venues such as the Akron
Art Museum and the Capitol Theatre on Cleveland’s West Side, this
year’s festival is adding screenings
at the Beachland Ballroom on the
East Side, the Hanna Theatre downtown and the Valley View Cinemark
theater. The latter represents the
first time the festival has ventured
into a chain cinema.
“It’s a big part of our mission to
serve a diverse community, and
(these screenings) are a great way to
reach out to new audiences,” Shepherd said.
Another new element of this
year’s film festival is something
everyone can embrace: free movies.
The Cleveland Foundation, as
part of its series of gifts to the community in celebration of its centennial, is underwriting a free day at the
festival on Monday, March 24. More
than 40 different films — half of
which will start at 5 p.m. or later —
will be shown that day on eight
screens at Tower City. Tickets are
required to attend screenings that
day; those wishing to attend can reserve two tickets per movie for a
maximum of four films.
Robert E. Eckardt, executive vice
president for programs and evaluation at the Cleveland Foundation,
said other film festivals across the
country have experimented with
free days, to great success in terms
of building future audiences.
“It’s an opportunity to tell your
story differently, and to a new
group” of attendees, Eckardt said.
Like Epstein at the Gund Foundation, Eckardt said the chance to introduce an innovation at the film
festival is particularly exciting because of the event’s primacy in the
region’s cultural landscape.
“There’s an incredible vitality to
this event,” he said.
Making it a destination
Laurie Kirby, president and chief
creative officer of the International
Film Festival Summit, which
describes itself as “the largest international organization representing the
film festival industry” and runs an
annual conference examining trends
in the festival business, said Cleveland’s innovations are encouraging
and continue what she called “the
great success story” of the festival.
Nationwide, she said, film festival
best practices are capitalizing on
technology. For instance, some are
using smart phone apps to improve
ticketing practices and the logistics
of crowd management. Cleveland’s
festival also features more than 200
guest filmmakers who will speak before or after screenings.
“It’s all about making a festival a
destination and giving people a reason to leave the home theater and
see movies and talk with a movieloving crowd,” she said.
ers who participate in the Columbus International Film + Video Festival.
“Filmmakers say, ‘Everyone is so
nice here,’ but that’s what we do.
We’re the Midwest,” she said. “Midwest audiences want to talk to the
filmmaker. They want to engage.
That’s something they may not find
in New York or Los Angeles.”
Filmmakers spend a lot of money traveling to film festivals, said
Halpern, so finding such a hospitable environment at CIFF makes
it an appealing place to appear.
“The whole pretension of filmmaking and festivals is out the window in Cleveland,” said Proto. “I
enjoy that and appreciate that.”
Big film festivals like Sundance
may draw independent films, but
they’re often powered by Hollywood talent and quickly picked up
by major studios.
“Cleveland is more diverse, more
of a true indie film festival,” Felix
says. “There’s more opportunity
here for filmmakers who are just
coming up.”
Case in point — a 2011 grant of
$150,000 from The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences allowed CIFF to create the Focus on
Filmmakers program to spotlight
minority or less visible filmmakers.
This year, the grant will be used to
emphasize films from the lesbian,
gay, bisexual and transgender
(LGBT) community.
The Local Heroes Competition
supports films about Ohio, made in
Ohio or by Ohioans, while the Central and Eastern European Film
Competition highlights films from
those regions.
“Cleveland is definitely at the top
for a festival to attend as a filmmaker,” said Proto. “They treat filmmakers really well, and I’m looking
forward to hopefully coming back.”
A regional draw
Felix knows plenty of film lovers
from the Akron-Canton area who
take off a week of work and get a
hotel in Cleveland to immerse
themselves in the CIFF screenings.
It’s not just a fun pastime, he
said. It’s a point of regional pride.
“When I go, it makes me feel
good about Cleveland and Northeast Ohio in general,” Felix said. “It
raises the spirits of the city, and I
think that lasts all year round. It’s
something to look forward to all
Past participants talk about
what makes CIFF special
Producer, “Love,
Sex and Missed
“I remember walking into
the theater the first time
our film had been screened at the 2012
Cleveland International Film Festival and
wondering what all these people were
doing there. Why are they here to see
our little movie? The next screening, the
line was out the theater, then they added
a theater and another date.”
“Good Ol’ Freda”
“I probably traveled to
about 25 film festivals with
‘Good Ol’ Freda,’ and I’d
have to say the thing that made CIFF
really unique were the audiences. The
crowds were extremely passionate about
not just my film, but all the films I saw. ...
I’m pretty sure nobody left the room during the credits. Freda (Kelly, 11-year
secretary for The Beatles) still talks about
the fest and the people there a year later.”
Director, “El Huaso”
“I’d always wanted to present at the Cleveland International Film Festival.
My professor in film school in Montreal
always spoke highly of it. It’s a filmmaker’s festival. They really focus on the filmmakers ... When you are making films,
you usually have your head down and
there aren’t a lot of resources or people
to talk to. Cleveland makes it possible
for you to do that.”
— As told to Jennifer Keirn
2:48 PM
Page 1
MARCH 17 - 23, 2014
Baldwin Wallace names leader of business admin division
[email protected]
Baldwin Wallace University has
tapped John P. Lanigan to lead its
division of business administration
after Linda Bluso said she would
vacate the post after less than three
years to pursue other opportunities
in business and law.
At present, Lanigan serves as director of Baldwin Wallace’s Center
for Innovation and Growth. Before
joining Baldwin Wallace last year,
Lanigan retired as an executive vice
president and chief marketing officer for BSNF Railway Co., a Berk-
ON THE WEB Story from:
shire Hathaway company headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas. His
appointment is effective March 31.
Lanigan, a graduate of the U.S.
Coast Guard Academy, earned his
MBA from Baldwin Wallace. Besides
his work at BSNF, Lanigan held
posts at Schneider National Inc., a
large truckload motor carrier. He
also served as president and CEO of
Logistics.com from 2000 until 2002.
The company eventually was sold to
Manhattan Associates, a publicly
traded logistics software firm.
“He brings an impressive background of leadership in military service, large publicly held companies
and a technology startup that will
serve us well in this important position,” said Baldwin Wallace president Robert Helmer in a statement.
Baldwin Wallace did not say
where Bluso would be headed, but
indicated she would available to assist with the transition. Bluso
joined the university in April 2011.
Previously, she was partner-incharge for the Cleveland office of
law firm Brouse McDowell.
“He brings an impressive
background of leadership
in military service, large
publicly held companies
and a technology startup
that will serve us well in
this important position.”
– Robert Helmer, president,
Baldwin Wallace University,
on John P. Lanigan
“We are grateful for the leadership Linda Bluso has provided during her time here,” Helmer said in
the statement. “In just under three
years, she has led efforts to reshape
the physical setting for our programs, refine our academic programs in business and to connect
the business community and our
alumni with our business program.
She also has provided helpful insights for strategic planning for the
business program and the broader
university. We wish her well.”
Meanwhile, Baldwin Wallace
named Lacey Kogelnik interim director of the Center for Innovation
& Growth. Kogelnik has served as
the center’s growth practice director since 2011.
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Michael Voinovich
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Michael Voinovich
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Mergers and acquisitions advisory services, debt and
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Michael E. Gibbons
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Bruml Capital Corp.
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Merger advisory services, sell-side and buy-side
transaction advisory services, raising private capital,
valuation and fairness opinions
Robert W. Bruml
Andrew S. Gelfand
James R. Deitzer
Robert W. Bruml
Candlewood Partners LLC
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Capital formation, real estate, intellectual property,
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William Vogelgesang
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M&A advisory (sell-side), capital raising and valuation
Paul H. Carleton
Christopher J. McKenna
Dominic M. Brault
Paul H. Carleton, managing
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Manufacturing, distribution, technology, chemicals,
transportation, industrial products, health care
Thomas Zucker
Dan Weinmann
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Emprise Partners
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board advisory, private placements and capital markets William P. Watkins
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Jeff Boyle
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Vetus Partners
1300 E. Ninth St., Suite 600, Cleveland 44114
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listings are complete or accurate. We welcome all responses to our lists and will include omitted information or clarifications in coming issues. Individual lists and The Book of
Lists are available to purchase at www.crainscleveland.com. (1) Numbers as of Jan. 1, 2014. (2) Office opened in January 2013.
Mathew J. Hanson
managing director
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3:19 PM
Page 1
MARCH 17 - 23, 2014
Order: There is ‘no one formula’ for success in NFL, analyst says
continued from PAGE 5
Different roads to winning
There were reports of turmoil between Banner and Lombardi, and
national media criticism of the
Browns reached its highest point
during the team’s 25-day search for
Chudzinski’s replacement.
Scheiner — who joined Haslam,
Banner and Lombardi as part of the
Browns’ traveling party during a
quest that dragged on almost as long
as some of the team’s quarterback
controversies — said he didn’t sense
that big changes in the executive
suite were imminent after Mike Pettine was hired as head coach.
“I was surprised, but I will say
this: Any time you have the type of
change we had at the end of this
season, it’s not unreasonable to ask,
‘OK, are we properly structured?’”
Scheiner said.
Haslam’s answer to that question
came just 18 days after the owner
and Banner — the then-CEO who
was viewed by many fans as someone who is every bit as power hungry
as he is intelligent — introduced Pettine to the Northeast Ohio media.
“Our fans just want us to win,”
Scheiner said. “I think they’re savvy
enough to know that if there are any
obstacles internally to us doing
well, then they will probably embrace some change. I think Joe and
Mike are both really capable people. I think Joe is incredibly smart
— one of the smartest people you’ll
meet in the NFL.
“But Jimmy also had a vision of
how he wanted his company to op-
erate, and I think it’s really important to Jimmy that we collaborate
really well and we have a defined
scope of responsibilities,” Scheiner
said. “I think if you look at it now,
you’ll see it is clearer and you can
see how this will work.”
Brandt, who negotiated player
contracts and managed the Packers’ salary cap during a nine-year
tenure that ended in 2008, said in
his experience the two sides of an
organization — football and business — most often are allowed to
work on their own.
But, Brandt said, “there’s no one
formula” for success.
Last season’s Super Bowl teams —
the champion Seattle Seahawks and
the runner-up Denver Broncos —
have a similar setup to the Browns’
current regime. The Seahawks and
Broncos each have a business head
McLoughlin and Broncos president
Joe Ellis) and an executive VP and
general manager (Seattle’s John
Schneider and Denver’s John Elway).
The only difference: The Seahawks have a head coach, Pete Carroll, who controls the roster during
the season. Schneider, the GM,
runs the draft and free agency.
“Look, it can be structured both
ways,” Scheiner said. “But because
our owner likes to be involved —
he’s not involved to the level of
(Dallas Cowboys owner) Jerry Jones
or someone like that — I think it’s
easier for him to have three people
report to him (Scheiner, Farmer
and Pettine) as opposed to one
Cowboys connection
Scheiner has worked in a front
office that is structured almost as
uniquely as the setup that was preferred by Banner.
Prior to Banner luring him to
Cleveland in December 2012,
Scheiner spent eight seasons with
the Cowboys, the last five as Dallas’
senior VP and general counsel.
“America’s Team” has an owner,
Jones, who is president and general manager. Jerry Jones’ son,
Stephen, is chief operating officer
and director of player personnel.
Scheiner said he believes Haslam
and Jones have two important characteristics in common — they are
“dynamic” and “engaged.”
“At some level, you could say that
there are some roles that are better
left to some people,” Scheiner said
when asked about Jerry Jones’ doit-all approach. “You could argue
that. But it is, in my opinion, very
important that your owner is physical and engaged. Where I think
Jimmy is really good is he’s very engaged, but he allows people to do
their jobs.”
Scheiner said Banner was “really
helpful” in handling the Browns’
business matters during his abbreviated tenure, “but he was involved
in football, too.”
Banner was an outlier in a copycat
league. He admitted as much in his
first interview after his firing, when he
told the Philadelphia Inquirer that he
doesn’t “fit” in “every sense.”
“I’m 5-foot-5. I weigh 130 pounds,”
Banner told the newspaper. “The ré-
sumé, the presence, the history do not
fit what most would define as the right
makeup for the job.”
In Cleveland, it wasn’t Banner’s
physical stature as much as the
manner in which he presided over
the front office that didn’t sit well
with many fans.
Of course, the Browns in the past
have had traditional organizational
structures that didn’t work, either.
Scheiner, who is now the clear leader
of a business operation that is overseeing a $120 million facelift of
FirstEnergy Stadium and working on
a redesign of the team’s uniforms, believes this one is different, however.
“We’ve hired a lot of good people
here,” Scheiner said. “It’s not hard
to see Mike Pettine and Ray Farmer
and feel really excited about us. I
feel great about our future.”
2:51 PM
Page 1
MARCH 17 - 23, 2014
Rockin’: Lucas says Rocksino can fill void left by The Front Row
continued from PAGE 1
Rocksino officials said each show
held at the 2,000-seat concert hall
nestled inside the newly minted
casino since its Dec. 18 opening has
sold out. Coming gigs with progressive rock pioneer Todd Rundgren
and the Experience Hendrix Project, a tribute act featuring blues
pickers Buddy Guy and Jonny Lang
and others, also sold out. Plus, few
tickets remain for a show in late
May with soft rock giants Chicago.
The Rocksino’s blazing entrance
onto the local music scene comes
at a particularly healthy time for the
concert industry. Although concert
attendance soured on the heels of
the recession, ticket sales appear to
be on the upswing. Pollstar, a concert industry trade publication, estimates the North American concert business grossed a record $5.1
billion in 2013. In 2000, that number was $1.7 billion.
Still, it hasn’t been an easy go for
the concert business in the Cleveland market over the last several
years, as the region’s stagnant population hasn’t been able to support
the number of venues it once
The Odeon in Cleveland’s Flats,
for one, closed in 2006, and the Time
Warner Cable Amphitheater on the
east bank of the Cuyahoga River
shuttered in 2011. Also, The Agora,
the venerable concert club on Euclid
Avenue on the East Side of the city,
is a vestige of its former self.
Lucas, however, is determined to
buck that trend.
“It’s not just about this venue,”
Lucas said. “It’s about this whole
facility and how to keep it relevant.
Our job is to keep it fresh and keep
fresh acts coming in.”
The full package
Lucas said the Rocksino’s Hard
Rock Live venue fills a void in the
eastern suburbs left by The Front
Row, the legendary theater in Highland Heights with a revolving stage
that closed in 1993. The Front Row,
which hosted acts such as Sammy
Davis Jr. and The Jackson 5, merged
its operations with PlayhouseSquare to help bolster the theater
district’s concert calendar and attendance.
With The Front Row situated so
deep in the eastern suburbs, it felt
in some ways like the “poor stepsister” of Cleveland’s entertainment scene, said Jeannie Emser,
who worked as the theater’s marketing director for 19 years. Emser
said the theater’s owner, the late
Larry Dolin, felt downtown was
where everything was going to hap-
pen in the future.
“PlayhouseSquare had been
courting us for some time to move
our successful concert and speaker’s business to their facilities to
help boost PlayhouseSquare attendance to more than a million annually,” said Emser, now PlayhouseSquare’s marketing and publicity
manager. “Our move here accomplished that with flying colors.”
PlayhouseSquare says its ticket
sales and ability to secure acts so far
have been unfazed by the entrance
of the Rocksino in the market.
“We are undergoing a dramatic
makeover to our district,” said Cindi Szymanski, manager of brand
communications for PlayhouseSquare. “That will set us apart
from all other venues. As far as
competition goes, there is already
competition in the market”
The success of the Rocksino, of
course, isn’t squarely in the concert
business. Gambling is the heart of
the enterprise, though Lucas said
the entertainment options are expected to feed that side of the business and vice versa.
Besides its 2,200 video slot machines, the Rocksino has a number
of dining options, including Bernie
Kosar’s steakhouse. The Rocksino
also recently announced it would
open Club Velvet, a smaller club
within the building that will host
comedians, magicians and acoustic
“It’s not like you’re just going to
Jacobs Pavilion or PlayhouseSquare
or The Front Row that used to be
here,” Lucas said. “We have all these
other amenities here.”
Cindy Barber, a longtime observer of Northeast Ohio’s concert
scene and co-owner of the Beachland Ballroom concert club in
Cleveland’s Collinwood neighborhood, said the Rocksino seems to
be an appropriate venue for what
she called soft-ticket acts that have
played casinos for years.
The Beachland, on the other
hand, tends to host more eclectic
acts and up-and-coming artists.
However, Barber said the competition for patrons remains fierce.
“There are too few people in
Cleveland for the amount of choices we have,” Barber said. “We all
have to fight for every audience
member we get.”
A leg up?
Lucas said the bevy of entertainment options available beyond
gambling at the Rocksino should
give it a leg up on its competition,
including Horseshoe Casino in
downtown Cleveland and Thistle-
down Racino in North Randall.
That said, those other gambling
outfits aren’t turning their backs on
live entertainment, though they
don’t necessarily have a 2,000-seat
concert hall to snag big-ticket acts.
The Horseshoe, for instance, introduced live entertainment at its
second-floor Vintage 51 bar on Saturdays last summer, which was a
“huge success,” according to casino spokeswoman Shannon Mortland. As a result, the Horseshoe
added live shows on Thursdays and
Fridays last fall. ThistleDown also
boasts live entertainment at its
Slush Bar five nights a week.
Lucas said he believes hosting a
diverse offering of shows is what
will keep the entertainment side of
the Rocksino from going stale.
Lucas noted that the Rocksino isn’t interested in just attracting acts
such as Huey Lewis and Engelbert
Humperdinck that have played
casinos for years. As proof, he said
the Rocksino recently announced
shows featuring liberal comedian
Bill Maher and Alabama Shakes,
relative newcomers to the roots
rock scene, both of which should
draw a younger crowd.
“We’ve really tried to have a diverse selection of shows, so we’re
not tapping the same pocketbook,
so to speak,” Lucas said.
Phone: (216) 522-1383 Fax: (216) 694-4264
Contact: Denise Donaldson
E-mail: [email protected]
Stoneworks Granite & Tile
5194 Richmond Rd., Bedford Heights, OH
Preview Mon. 3/17 thru Wed. 3/19 10AM-3PM
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(855) 707-1944
List your Industrial,
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Crain’s Cleveland Business’ classifieds will
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Contact Denise Donaldson at
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(412) 281-2700
Crain’s Cleveland Business
on-line @
For all the latest business
Also available:
Signs & Printing:
Original cost over $125,000.00
new. $19,500 OBO.
Locally Made
ProMark Cabinets
Call Mr. King for
complete details and pictures.
(216) 453-3654
330 777-5203
Warehouse Moving Sale
(330) 777-5203
Profit $275,000. Ask $850K.
Fuller & Associates, Inc.
(serving No. Ohio for 33 years)
Engine & Gear Oils, Antifreeze
PSF, in Totes & 55 Gal. Drums.
Also re-con 55 gallon drums,
5 gallon cans, HT pallets, misc. items.
Very low prices. Bob.
B-to-B Service Business in Stark County
Sales > $800,000.
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20 acres, flat
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Original cost over $125,000.00
new. $19,500 OBO.
Call Mr. King for
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330 777-5203
[email protected]
Local company looking for
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1:39 PM
Page 1
MARCH 17 - 23, 2014
MARCH 10 – 16
The big story: PolyOne Corp. announced a
coming change at the top of the producer of specialty polymers that is based
in Avon Lake. PolyOne’s
board named Robert M. Patterson, 41, as its president
and chief executive officer,
effective May 15. Patterson
will succeed Stephen D.
Newlin, 61, who will retire as
president and CEO after
more than eight years in the Patterson
top job but will remain executive chairman of the PolyOne board. Patterson
currently serves as PolyOne’s executive vice
president and chief operating officer,
Otto-matic: In a deal that will allow the company to exit Brazil, DDR Corp. agreed to sell its 50%
ownership interest in its Brazilian joint venture to
its largest shareholder, Alexander Otto, and his affiliates for $343.6 million. The Beachwood-based
real estate investment trust that specializes in
shopping centers said the portfolio of the joint
venture, Sonae Sierra Brasil, consists of 10 regional malls totaling 4.6 million square feet. DDR said
its original investment in the joint venture in 2006
was $147.6 million, with an additional $52.6 million financed from 2007 through 2009.
New frontiers: Frontier Airlines is growing
its Cleveland presence again. The discount airline announced six new nonstop destinations
from Cleveland Hopkins International Airport,
rapidly trying to capture passengers who until
now had been flying on United Airlines. The new
service will begin June 13 and will take Cleveland
passengers to Atlanta; Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; Fort
Myers, Fla.; Phoenix; Raleigh-Durham, N.C.; and
Tampa, Fla.
MetroHealth looks to get
insurance enrollment rolling
■ MetroHealth’s effort to get people to enroll in Medicaid or buy insurance on HealthCare.gov is hitting the road.
This week, MetroHealth will unveil its
“Enrollment on Wheels” — an RV the health
system will parade around Cuyahoga County to encourage people to
sign up for coverage.
In an interview last
CEO Dr. Akram Boutros
hinted at the effort and
said it isn’t a market play
designed to pump more
paying patients into the
health system. Instead, it Boutros
will benefit all the county’s health care providers.
Unlike its experimental CarePlus Medicaid
waiver program, patients who enroll won’t be
required to go to MetroHealth for care.
“The great thing is this will help all
providers,” Boutros said. “These patients
won’t have to just go to Metro.”
— Timothy Magaw
Ending distribution: The former headquarters of Barnes Distribution North America officially will close on or near Aug. 1, the owner of
the operation said in a letter to the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services. In 2013, the
Cleveland-based Barnes business was sold to
MSC Industrial Supply Co., a distributor of metalworking and maintenance supplies. MSC last
July announced plans to shut the operation at
1301 E. Ninth St. According to the March 3 letter,
97 employees’ jobs will be terminated. The layoffs are expected to take place between May 2
and Aug. 1.
This and that: University Hospitals said it
will invest $3.8 million into its 226-bed medical
center in Geauga County. UH said the investments will support a revamped Orthopaedic
Center, which includes a 12-bed unit on the hospital’s first floor. All the patient rooms will be private. … Materion Corp. received a letter from
Gamco Asset Management Inc., a vehicle of
well-known investor and money manager Mario
Gabelli, stating its intention to nominate two director candidates for Materion’s board at the
company’s annual meeting of shareholders,
which is set for May 7.
Software lets students put
best foot forward online
■ The Cleveland Clinic continues to be the
dominating fundraiser in the health care
arena in Northeast Ohio.
Last year, the health system, which boasts
about $6.5 billion in annual operating revenue, brought in a healthy $173 million — a
nearly 17% increase over 2012’s total of $148
■ “Answer with Webcam” doesn’t let college
officials give prospective students a hearty
However, the software should give those
officials a sense of how students speak and
carry themselves, even if they can’t meet in
person, according to a news release from
The provider of application management
software in Lakewood now offers Answer
with Webcam through a partnership with
LikeLive of Woodland Hills, Calif. Colleges
that use the software create questions that
Clinic, UH keep
raking in the gifts
Excerpts from recent blog entries on
In the money: Kent State University’s trustees
signed off on a number of measures, including
raising room and board rates and a large performance-based bonus for its departing president,
Lester Lefton. Lefton’s bonus — $106,538.92, or
25% of his base salary — will be paid July 1, the
day after his retirement. With his retirement, Lefton will not be eligible for a longevity bonus. Lefton joined Kent State in July 2006 and will be replaced by Beverly Warren, the current provost at
Virginia Commonwealth University. Trustees
also approved an overall 3.9% increase in the
standard, undergraduate double-room and board
rates for next fall. The university said the increases would help offset the rising costs of maintenance, repairs, utilities and food.
University Hospitals, the Clinic’s chief rival and the region’s second-largest health
system, raised $118 million in 2013. UH is in
the midst of a massive fundraising campaign it publicly launched in 2010. The
health system had been looking to raise $1
billion but expanded its goal by $500 million
in late 2012.
The Clinic completed its own major
fundraising campaign in 2010 with about
$1.41 billion in its coffers. After the campaign, the Clinic’s annual haul declined significantly from its peak of about $180 million in 2008, but it has been climbing since
According to Crain’s research, the Clinic
brought in the largest gift among local
health systems in 2013. Last March, it received a $10 million gift from an anonymous
donor to support its heart and vascular program.
— Timothy Magaw
Reinventing Cleveland, and
COMPANY: TPC Wire & Cable
Corp., Macedonia
PRODUCT: Super-Trex Heavy-Duty
Flex Crane Cable
TPC, a supplier of wire, cable and connectors, has expanded its Super-Trex line of
cables designed to work in harsh industrial
The company says the Super-Trex HeavyDuty Flex Crane Cable was designed specifically for crane and reeling use.
Its heavy-duty, dual-pass jacket “contains a
reinforcing aramid braid between the layers
providing added strength and improving cable
resistance to pulling and torsional forces,”
according to TPC. The braid provides greater
than 1,920 pounds of tensile load capability,
which the company says “helps reduce ‘corkscrewing,’ or the twisting that causes a cable
to bend abnormally and fail under tension, as
well as premature cable failure common to
standard multi-conductor cables.”
The internal design is constructed with
“finely stranded tinned copper conductors
which are assembled with low-friction separators and left-hand conductor lay, and laylengths that are optimized for longer flex life
and corrosion resistance,” TPC says.
Product manager David Sedivy says the
new reeling cable was designed “as a direct
response to field failures.” He says it’s suitable
for use in harsh industrial environments such
as steel mills, wood and paper product manufacturing plants, and shipping/container ports.
For information, visit www.tpcwire.com.
■ Josh Linkner, CEO of Dan Gilbert’s Detroit Venture Partners, shared some
thoughts about the Midwestern economy
and its future in a Forbes.com interview
ahead of his appearance later this month at
the magazine’s Reinventing America Summit in Chicago.
Asked to rate his level of optimism about
the U.S. economy on a scale of 1 to 5, Linkner told Forbes.com, “I’m at a 3 and 1/2.”
Nonetheless, he says he’s “very optimistic
that startups and technology will continue
to create jobs and drive the economy, especially in non-traditional markets such as
Detroit and Cleveland.”
In those markets and elsewhere, he said,
tech startups — particularly in the health
care IT sector, a strong area for Cleveland —
need to be the focus of economic development efforts.
“We are on the verge on incredible innovation breakthroughs and this is the place
to create wealth and opportunity,” Linkner
told the website.
He said policymakers — from President
Barack Obama all the way down to the local
level — and monied interests should “support entrepreneurs in every possible way.
Provide capital and support to drive small
business growth.”
But there is one area of the tech sector
that doesn’t excite Linkner.
“I think social media is over-hyped,” he
This beer is the bomb
■ There’s a whiff of 1970s-era Cleveland in
a new beer brewed by 3 Stars Brewing Co. of
Washington, D.C.
candidates answer while they’re recorded
by a computer’s camera.
“The resulting video is embedded in the
student’s online application, serving as a
permanent record of his or her language
skills, presentation and demeanor,” the release stated.
DecisionDesk clients can license the software by itself or as an additional tool within
the Lakewood company’s suite of application management products. — Chuck Soder
From a hot list in D.C.
to a hot job in Cleveland
■ A member of National Journal’s “Hill Hot
List” in 2012 is the first executive director of
the Group Plan Commission, the nonprofit
that will implement the plan to make downtown Cleveland a more inviting place to explore.
Jeremy Paris, a Shaker Heights native, returned to Cleveland more than a year ago
from Washington, D.C., after serving as chief
counsel for nominations and oversight for
the Senate Judiciary Committee. There, he
earned his place on the National Journal’s
list of the top 15 attorneys guiding legislation through Congress.
But Paris’ heart was in Cleveland, so he
returned in 2012 to work as a special assistant to Cuyahoga County Executive Ed
At the top of Paris’ to-do list is hoping that
Gov. John Kasich will include money in the
coming state capital budget for a key Group
Plan goal — building a pedestrian bridge from
the Mall, across railroad tracks and the Shoreway, to the lakefront museums. — Jay Miller
The Washington Post
reported that 3 Stars on
March 7 introduced Danny Greene Double IPA, a
collaboration with Tim
Adams of Maine’s Oxbow
It’s named after Danny
Greene, the Cleveland mobster turned FBI informant
who was killed by a mafia car
bomb in 1977.
“It’s something we were
talking about while brewing
with Tim,” said 3 Stars coowner Dave Coleman, a Cleveland native.
“He hadn’t heard the story, and was a bit
The Post said the beer uses Azacca, Amarillo and Centennial hops.
C’mon get happy
■ Cleveland might be a factory of sadness,
as comedian Mike Polk Jr. says, but the
whole state is pretty much in the dumps.
The Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index
since 2008 has looked at 55 measurements
of physical and emotional well-being to
gauge happiness in all 50 states.
There’s a clear pattern for Ohio, which
ranked 46th in 2013. In the last five years, the
state has ranked no higher than 44th and no
lower than 47th. So in short, we’re pretty consistently unhappy.
In the latest rankings, Ohio was 48th in
“life evaluation,” 44th in “emotional health,”
40th in “work environment,” 42nd in “physical
health,” 45th in “healthy behaviors” and 28th
in basic access to health care.
But at least we’re not West Virginia! That
state has ranked 50th in the index for each of
the last five years.
The five happiest states this year are
North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska,
Minnesota and Montana.
3:23 PM
Page 1