A Message from Jennie Church, 2019 CREW Cleveland President

January 2, 2020
Written by: Jennie Church
It was an honor and a pleasure to serve as CREW Cleveland’s president in 2019, which was another successful year for our chapter thanks to the hard work of our 2019 Board of Directors and Champions, our dedicated committees and our active and engaged membership.  And a special thanks to our 2019 annual and event sponsors, coordinated by Mary Gerding, Past President and head of Sponsorship, who provided such valuable support.

Despite a year of transition on the membership committee, we welcomed over 25 new members to our ranks – special thanks to Diane Davies for stepping in as interim director. 

Thanks to the persistent efforts of our Foundation Champion, Diane Strojin, CREW Cleveland hit the “Network trifecta” – 100% board donations, 50% membership donations and a $1,000 chapter donation – for the first time in our history!  Let’s make 2020 the second trifecta – send in your donation today!  To date, CREW Foundation has awarded 146 scholarships totaling almost $900,000 to assist young women studying in the field of commercial real estate.  CREW Cleveland did its part this year in this area as Lori Crow and Diane Strojin headed up a contingent of CREW Cleveland members who spoke at the St. Joseph’s Academy career symposium about the many varied careers that exist in commercial real estate.

Thanks to Amy Whitacre and the Programs committee, we had a full slate of interesting and timely programs that saw us do everything from touring the Van Sweringen brothers’ private apartments at the redone Terminal Tower, to meeting with our Akron counterparts for some networking, to learning about the current effect of #MeToo on the workplace, to hearing directly from the main players in the debate over the future of Shaker Square in the days after it made front page news, and many other events in between.  Our Communications committee, led by Molly Woeste, continues to advance our chapter’s social media presence to connect our members and the chapter.  And behind the scenes, we had yet another successful financial year, remaining on budget thanks to the efforts of our Finance director, Judy Mondry. 

Our chapter also continued to be closely involved in CREW Network as supported by the local Network Liaison role, filled by Callie Cripps.  We received a visit from our Network Board liaison Christine Chipurnoi and also had 16 members attend the CREW National Convention in Orlando to soak up the sun, which is a fantastic turnout for a chapter of our size.  The 2020 CREW National Convention is September 15-17 in Austin, Texas – it will be here before you know it!

In the New Year, we welcome Liz Dunlap as our Chapter president and I cannot wait to see what 2020 has in store for CREW Cleveland!