Twelve residents apply for open CH City Council seat

The City of Cleveland Heights announced on its website on Feb. 11 that it had received 12 applications for the open city council seat vacated by former Council Member Jeff Coryell, who resigned from council effective Dec. 31, 2015.

Whomever council chooses to fill the vacancy will serve out Coryell's remaining term. The term of service is from the time of appointment until Dec. 31, 2017. The seat will be up for election in the next municipal election, in November 2017.

According to the city charter, when a council member resigns before the end of a term, the vacancy “shall be filled by a majority of the remaining members of the Council.”

Council announced on Jan. 8 that it was accepting applications for the council seat, and set an application deadline of Feb. 5. Council members plan to discuss next steps in the process of choosing a new council member at the Feb. 16 council meeting.

The city has posted the applications on its website,

The 12 applicants are listed below, along with their current or most recent work experience, and the number of years each has been a resident of Cleveland Heights:

  • Gary A. Benjamin, advocacy director at Community Legal Aid Services, 8-year resident
  • Mike Gaynier, consultant at, 9-year resident
  • Angela Isom, director of Henry Johnson Academy, 2-year resident
  • Julie Love, self-employed (sales), 13-year resident
  • Gretchen G. Mettler, professor and certified nurse midwife at Case Western Reserve University, 36-year resident
  • T. Nadas, project manager at the Cleveland Clinic, 11-year resident
  • Thomas H. Pecora, servicing officer at Keybank, 40-year resident
  • James K. Roosa, attorney at Roosa Co. LPA  and adjuct law professor at Cleveland State University, 12-year resident
  • Russell Rucky, retired Cleveland State University systems administrator, 35-year resident
  • Keba Sylla, professor at Baldwin Wallace University, 18-year resident
  • Michael N. Ungar, partner at Ulmer & Berne LLP, 29-year resident
  • Danny R. Williams, executive director of the Free Medical Clinic of Greater Cleveland, 25-year resident

Applicants Love, Nadas and Sylla were among the six candidates who ran for three Cleveland Heights City Council seats in the November 2015 election. Those three seats were filled by Mary Dunbar, who was re-elected; Kahlil Seren, who was elected to council after previously having been appointed to serve out an unexpired term; and Carol Roe.

Coryell completed two years of a four-year term on council that began in January 2014.

Kim Sergio Inglis

Kim Sergio Inglis is editor-in-chief of the Heights Observer. She lives in the Shaker Farm Historic District in Cleveland Heights.

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Volume 9, Issue 3, Posted 11:36 AM, 02.16.2016