blaine a. griffin- the whole city is behind him

blaine a. griffin- the whole city is behind him

photo by steed media service

Director, Department of Community Relations, City of Cleveland

For the past two and a half years, Blaine A. Griffin has been working at his dream job. As director of the department of community relations in Cleveland, Griffin and his staff act as ambassadors between City Hall and the community.

Like his idol, 2001 Nobel Peace Prize co-recipient, Kofi Annan, Griffin’s continual effort to handle the entire spectrum of issues in his city and outlying community is what drives his work. “[We are] trying to put together good programming for youth and youth development and [we are] also providing the platform for police and community residents to have a good, proactive dialogue so that we can have good partnerships to address some of the ills that plague our community,” says the proud husband and father of three children.

A Youngstown, Ohio native and former college basketball star, Griffin has made it his mission to bridge the gap between Cleveland’s youth and longtime residents. “We focus hard with Mayor Jackson’s plans so that we can try to stop that senseless violence [affecting] young people,” he says. “If I have one downside of the job, it’s [watching] some of those young people perish as a result of foolishness in the community.”

“Sometimes we get these labels as if we’re the seventh most dangerous or we’re the poorest community and some of those labels that we get are misconceptions,” he says. “I can tell you that the city of Cleveland [has] good people and there’s a strong [sense of] community …” – gavin philip godfrey

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