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Council member Cimperman recommends successor

Posted at 4:58 PM, Mar 18, 2016

Council member Joe Cimperman announced Friday the person he wants to replace him when he leaves his post this month.

According to a release, Cimperman recommended Ohio City Incorporated's Kerry McCormack as his replacement to represent Ward 3, comprised of the downtown business district, the Flats, Ohio City, Tremont, and a portion of Clark-Fulton as well as the Stockyards. 

McCormack, 27, is currently the Ohio City Inc. Director of Community Affairs, the neighborhood community development corporation. With the organization, he worked with area businesses, residents, non-profits and elected officials on both economic development as well as quality of life issues, the release stated. 

During McCormack's tenure at Ohio City Inc., he created new community-based programming as well as strengthened existing ones including the Near West Recreation League that includes 1,000 children from the near west side participating in a number of different sports, the release explained. 

McCormack worked to expand and grow the Ohio City Fresh Food Collaborative, the six acre farm, and farmers market near downtown Cleveland, the release said. He also developed Ohio City Nonprofit Dialogues and the Ohio City LGBT Neighborhood Initiative. 

“I am honored to have been selected by Councilman Cimperman to succeed him,” McCormack said. “As great as he’s been, it gives me a challenge to add to all the accomplishments Joe’s had."

“I am committed to continue his legacy and build upon that.”

Cimperman was elected to council in 1997 when he was also 27, and took office in 1998. He announced his resignation from council in January to head Global Cleveland, a non-profit that recruits immigrants and refugees as well as foreign investment and businesses to Greater Cleveland. 

The release stated while working to bring back the East Bank of the Flats and striving to make Ohio City and Tremont destinations for living and entertainment, Cimperman also championed the city's now nationally recognized urban agricultural projects. 

“Kerry McCormack already works with constituents, from newcomers in condos to our residents at Riverview and Lakeview Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority estates. He can work collaboratively and effectively with all the citizens,” Cimperman said. “He has the heart of service and has my full faith and support."

“I know the people of Ward 3 will feel as lucky as I do to work with him.”

McCormack is a Cleveland native and the son of Cuyahoga Common Pleas Court Judge Timothy McCormack. 

McCormack will be introduced to council on April 4 when the caucus takes a preliminary vote. Cimperman's resignation will also be officially read into the record that evening. Then, the council will vote on his replacement. 

Under Cleveland’s City Charter, because the appointment comes with less than two years left in the term, McCormack, if appointed, will not have to run for the seat in a special election. Instead he will run for re-election with the rest of council in 2017.