GrowingHeights names new coordinator
GrowingHeights, a Heights-based organization created to connect and grow local community gardens, has added a familiar face to a leadership role. Chris Hanson assumed the role of coordinator on Aug. 1. The position was originally held by Samantha Provencio, who was known for her highly detailed and helpful newsletters and website.
Hanson had his first taste of the Heights as a FutureHeights intern in 2012. He graduated cum laude that year from Cleveland State University with a B.A. in Urban Studies. Wanting to continue service to his community and country, Hanson then enlisted in the Ohio Army National Guard as a combat engineer. He now lives in The Canterbury, a building located in the Cedar Taylor neighborhood of Cleveland Heights.
Hanson said he hopes to expand membership by “getting dirty,” adding, “I’d like to be an active participant in this community and help out in every way I can, even if that means breaking new ground myself. I want to help start more gardens across the Heights area. It’s important.”
GrowingHeights, formerly Heights Community Garden Network, was founded by now-Cleveland Heights Council Member Jeff Coryell and others, to enable the local community gardens to share resources, manpower, interest and knowledge. Under Provencio's helm, the organization its grew membership and presence through popular programs such as seed banking and plant swapping. Provencio also garnered attention for the GrowingHeights newsletter, available at www.growingheights.com.
The organization is now heading back to its roots by focusing on programming that will aid the community with gardening know-how and support. Hanson hopes to expand the resources GrowingHeights offers to the community. Programs in the works include regional speakers, workshops, and classes from a partnership with The Ohio State University Extension of Cuyahoga County.
Jaclyn Mace is a volunteer media specialist with GrowingHeights.