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OCCD Annual Award Winners to be Announced at Summer Meeting

July 01, 2022

Ohio Conference of Community Development (OCCD), a statewide association of community and economic development practitioners, announced the winners of the 10th Annual OCCD Member Awards, the President’s Award for Innovative Practices, and this year’s Public Service Scholarships.

The 2022 honorees for the annual OCCD Member Awards are as follows:

         Legacy Awards – In recognition of individuals who have advanced community development programs with particular ardor and creativity throughout their careers, and where long-term benefits are demonstrable and noteworthy.

2022 Recipients:  Bill Faith and Rollin Seward

         The George Voinovich Distinguished Public Service Award – In recognition of individuals who have devoted much of their lives to the benefit of society through careers in community development in the public and/or private sectors.

2022 Recipient:  Rev. John Edgar

         Community Development Partner of the Year Award – In recognition of a non-profit or faith-based organization, individual, business, financial institution, foundation, intermediary, government agency, or other entity that has provided exceptional support to the community development industry.

2022 Recipient:  Ohio Association of Food Banks

         Community Development Professional of the Year – In recognition of community development professionals whose work on a project or program had a major impact on their community.

2022 Recipients:  Paul Tecpanecatl, Poggemeyer/Kleinfelder and Tawana Jones, Montgomery County

         Young Community Development Professional of the Year – In recognition of young community development professionals whose work on a project or program had a major impact on their community. This is the inaugural year of this award that recognizes community development professionals under the age of 35.

 2022 Recipient:  Christian Bennett-Mosley

         Community Development Department of the Year – In recognition of a department whose programs collectively or one program singly has made a significant impact in their community.

2022 Recipient:  City of Kettering

In addition to the Member Awards, OCCD created the Public Service Scholarship Fund in 2012 to support students who are passionate about the field of community development. The scholarship fund was established in honor of William Graves and Gary Locke, and in 2017 was expanded to include Karen Kerns Dresser, who committed their careers to community development and public service in Ohio. Recipients of $2,000 scholarships will include:  Taylor Jones, a graduate student majoring in Public Policy at Harvard University John F. Kennedy School of Government; and Madison DeMay, an undergraduate student majoring in Urban Planning at the University of Cincinnati.

The winner of the 2022 OCCD President’s Award for Innovative Practices is the New Leaf – Survivor Advocacy Outreach Program.

New Leaf is helping communities in Southeast Ohio thrive and break the cycles of trauma, poverty, and community decline – working toward prevention of violence, substance misuse and a safer community for all.  Each New Leaf Community has the facilities and staffing to provide all services at no cost – community components include housing, living wage employment / workplace development, transportation, counseling/recovery, childcare and advocacy / case management.

New Leaf is receiving this award for addressing the needs of those who have been traumatized and encountered substance misuse, by creating pathways to empowerment, education and economic justice in Southeast Ohio through their Survivor Advocacy Outreach Program.

This program reflects outstanding performance in addressing significant and immediate needs in the region.

OCCD is an association of more than 175 community and economic development professionals representing cities, counties, villages, non-profit organizations and consulting firms across Ohio. Its members are dedicated to improving the livability of their communities through various initiatives and collaborations that aim to eliminate urban blight and encourage planning practices that enable a healthy, sustainable, and equitable way of life for all citizens. The OCCD Member Awards were created to formally recognize those community development professionals who have made the greatest difference in their communities and in Ohio.

The 2022 award and scholarship recipients will be honored at OCCD’s Hybrid Annual Summer Meeting held July 27, 2022.  For meeting details, go to

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