Vibrant NEO Champion Awards

The 2023 Vibrant neo Champion awards will be ANNOUNCED AFTER THE CALL FOR ENTRIES DEADLINE. stay tuned for more info!
Vibrant NEO annually recognizes projects, programs, and policies conducted by communities, businesses, nonprofits, and civic groups within the 12-county Northeast Ohio region that demonstrate leadership in the advancement of the Vibrant NEO vision and its four major themes:
  • Strengthen Established Communities
  • Increase Transportation Choices
  • Preserve and Protect Natural Resources
  • Promote Collaboration and Efficiency

The 2022 Vibrant NEO Champion Awards Luncheon was held on April 4, 2023. Congratulations to our winners!

2022 Regional champion Awards

City of Cleveland Heights

Complete & Green Streets Policy/Vision Zero

  • “Complete and Green Streets” are roadways designed and operated to safely and comfortably accommodate users of all ages and abilities, and reduce, accommodate and slow stormwater runoff. Green streets are a great way to both increase transportation options and preserve and protect natural resources.
  • The City of Cleveland Heights adopted the Complete and Green Streets and Vision Zero Resolution, which supports the ideals, principles and concepts of Vision Zero for Cleveland Heights, affirming that the acceptable number of annual traffic deaths is ZERO
  • Cleveland Heights’ efforts have included installation of bike parking racks, bike repair stations, curb ramps, and pedestrian and bicyclist amenities on seven major streets, with two more streets being planned.

CHN Housing Partners

Emergency Rental Assistance

  • CHN Housing Partners’ Emergency Rental Assistance program began in July 2020 as a response to the pandemic. It was co-designed by CHN Housing Partners, the City of Cleveland and Cuyahoga County, showcasing fast and efficient collaboration during a health crisis.
  • Through the program, CHN Housing Partners delivered over $84 million in rental assistance with over 18,500 payments to COVID impacted families
  • Of the applicants, 78% were women; 75% were black or African American; and 55% have children

Chagrin Valley Dispatch

Regional Communications Center/Public Safety Services

  • In 2013, seven local governments decided to combine their first responder and dispatch services – a move that some worried would result in decreased quality of services.
  • The original collaboration was so successful that 26 more agencies have joined the Chagrin Valley Dispatch, including various cities and villages, the Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s Department and Cleveland Metroparks, for a total of 33 partners.
  • Together, the member agencies are able to provide professional and efficient safety services to its communities, showcasing collaboration between several government agencies.

Sustainable Community Associates

Scranton Corridor Mixed Use Development

  • Over the last 8 years, Sustainable Community Associates and its partners have invested over $80 million along Scranton Rd in the Tremont neighborhood of Cleveland.
  • Projects including rehabilitating historic buildings for new uses, remediating brownfields, and building mixed-use and mixed-income buildings has improved vibrancy in the area, which is a great example of our theme of strengthening established communities.
  • These projects helped create 10 small businesses, 266 units of multifamily housing, and 45,000 square feet of commercial and office space.

2022 Individual Champion Award Winner

U.S. Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur

U.S. Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur is the longest-serving woman in the history of the US House of Representatives, and has spent her years serving as a leader and advocate for the Great Lakes region and Northeast Ohio communities. Congresswoman Kaptur played an instrumental role in the authorizing funds for Sustainable Communities Partnership, and later for Vibrant NEO.

Through her work, she has truly embodied all four themes of Vibrant NEO. She has Strengthened Established Communities by being a fierce advocate for legacy communities such as Cleveland, Elyria and Lorain, all of which she represented and helped get federal funding. Throughout her tenure, she consistently steered money to projects that Preserve and Protect the Natural Resource that is Lake Erie and the communities around it. Working with both her Democratic and Republican colleagues, she has fought for Increased Transportation Options through Collaboration to get bipartisan support for Amtrak service to advance passenger rail service through Northeast Ohio.

Congresswoman Kaptur has been a leader among Great Lakes and Northeast Ohio communities and been an unequaled partner in advancing the vision of Vibrant NEO. She has spent her entire career serving the public, ensuring the health and welfare of our communities.