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Cleveland Heights People of the Year: Part I

Find out who was nominated for Patch's Person of the Year in Cleveland Heights. Today we are featuring three of six.

A community is only as good as the people who make it that way.

In Cleveland Heights there are many people who go above and beyond the call to make the city a special place to live.

We asked you to tell us who you thought was deserving of Person of the Year and we got some terrific responses. 

Earlier this week Cleveland Patch highlighted Sean Sullivan who is a teacher at Noble Elementary and teaches kids soccer in the community, named Coach of the Year.

Now we want to recognize the other nominees. Today we are featuring three of the six People of the Year, suggested by you.

Alex and Dawn Quintana

Nominated by: Marissa Ross and Stacey Souther

The Quintnas run an "outstanding" Cleveland Heights business - Quintana's Barbershop & Dream Spa. Alex recently gained his American citizenship and has been described as "one of the kindest people you will ever meet." 

Dawn is involved in many events in Cleveland Heights  She was instrumental in the Cedar Fairmount Festival and played a large role in the Jason West Scholarship Fund.

She is also so giving in their business. Souther had a team in the Komen 3-Day Walk in August, and she did a great fundraiser for their team.  

Erick Kaufmann

Nominated by: Lucene Wisniewski

Erick Kaufmann is the president of Coventry Peace, the organization which cares for Coventry Park.  In this volunteer position, which he has held for the past several years, he organizes volunteers to clean up the park twice a year.  

According to Wisniewski, he and the volunteers work to make the landscape look good and fix any of the broken swings and playground equipment.  

He also works with Coventry Business Association to plan and show the summer movie series at Coventry Park.  Wisniewksi also said:

Erick also serves as treasurer for the music program at Roxboro Middle School, where he worked to secure a grant that will allow the school to purchase more drums for the students. Erick is fun and vital part of our CH community and should be considered a Person of the Year.

Susie Kaeser

Nominated by: Diana Woodbridge

Susie Kaeser retired as Director of Reaching Heights several years ago, but her commitment to educational reform and to the children in the community's public schools has continued unabated, according to Woodbridge.

She volunteers at Boulevard School working directly with kids, and she reads "voraciously" on school reform and then writes to educate the public through thoughtful and layperson-friendly articles in the Heights Observer. 

In addition, she serves on the Board of Home Repair Resource Center and has been instrumental to helping HRRC adjust to significant cuts in federal funding.

She has done this in two ways, one as head of the Development Committee which continues to undertake creative, new ways to broaden public support of HRRC's mission and she has been part of the strategic planning that has led to changes in delivery of programs that has reduced program costs and expanded the reach of HRRC's programs, where possible, to other communities with like needs.  

"Susie's commitment to the community good is unshakeable and well deserving of recognition," Woodbridge said.

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