The Board of Directors for Cleveland Neighborhood Progress (CNP) announced today that it has approved the selection of Tania Menesse as its new President and CEO. She will succeed Joel Ratner, who announced his departure from the organization earlier this year.
Menesse will be leaving her current role as Director of Community Development for the City of Cleveland at the end of October and subsequently assuming her new position with CNP. At the City, she was responsible for the city’s housing and neighborhood commercial redevelopment programs and its efforts to develop neighborhood strategies. She also managed the Office of Fair Housing and Consumer Affairs, which enforces Cleveland’s Consumer Protection Code and fosters relationships with the lending community. During Menesse’s tenure at the city, she led Cleveland’s equitable development taskforce, started the Middle Neighborhoods initiative, was an active participant in establishing the Lead Safe Home Fund and initiated the city’s Ten-Year Housing and Investment Plan. Prior to joining the City of Cleveland, Menesse was the director of economic development for the City of Shaker Heights.
“Tania Menesse has demonstrated a strong commitment and passion for community and economic development,” said Grace Gallucci, Cleveland Neighborhood Progress board chair. “As a highly respected leader who is known for her collaborative leadership style and ability to build partnerships, Tania will be an enormous asset to CNP as we continue to build on existing efforts to strengthen Cleveland’s neighborhoods.”
“I want to thank Tania Menesse for her service to the City of Cleveland as Director of Community Development,” said Mayor Frank G. Jackson. “Her work to implement programs and strategies to revitalize our neighborhoods has contributed to improvements for both residents and businesses alike. I wish her well in her new role with Cleveland Neighborhood Progress.”
“I’m very grateful to Mayor Jackson for allowing me to serve in his administration,” said Menesse. “My time with the Community Development Department enabled me to see close-up how transformational this work can be for the residents of Cleveland. Taking the helm of Cleveland Neighborhood Progress, the department’s most strategic partner, will allow me to continue that critical work. Fostering inclusive communities of choice and creating opportunity for all residents is more important than ever as Cleveland rebuilds from the impact of COVID-19 and attempts to address the racial inequities in our community. I am honored and humbled to lead CNP as it embarks on its next chapter.”
Gallucci said that one of Menesse’s first assignments will be to work with the board of CNP to develop a new strategic plan for the organization that will build on its historical work strengthening the neighborhoods of the City of Cleveland, while now focusing on embedding racial equity within its core vision.
Menesse was selected following a national search that included input from stakeholders, partners, grantees, and representation from various community and philanthropic organizations. It was led by Washington-based Sally Sterling Executive Search and CNP Vice-chair Jeff Patterson, CEO of CMHA.