Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Jay Westbrook Leaves City Hall, But Not The City

Jay Westbrook served on Cleveland City Council for 34 years, and was council president during the decade of the 1990s, when projects like Gateway, The Rock Hall, and the Science Center were built.

In this interview, the retiring Ward 16 councilman talks about life after city hall, how he got there from the University of Kentucky in the 1970s, and what he considers to be his most significant contributions to the city of Cleveland.

He also offers a prediction about the future political make-up of Cleveland City Council.

Monday, December 30, 2013

Hot In Cleveland On New Years Eve With Hotcards' Help

Cleveland Rocks New Year's Eve, a production of Ohio Homecoming, will be held on Public Square to ring out 2013 and ring in 2014.  Drew Carey will count down to midnight, and fireworks will help usher in the new year.

The event is free, thanks to the help of many sponsors, including Hotcards.com.  The owner and CEO of the printing company in downtown Cleveland is helping promote the New Year's Eve festivities. John Gadd is no stranger to promoting events;  he organized the Human Torch stunt earlier this year, helping set a Guinness World Record by having 21 people lit ablaze simultaneously.  The event raised $10,000 for charity, and helped put Cleveland on a worldwide stage.

Gadd is confident Cleveland Rocks New Year's Eve will become an annual event.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Warm Up With Gail Ghetia Bellamy's New Book

Gail Bellamy has followed-up her informative and entertaining book Cleveland Christmas Memories with Cleveland Summertime Memories: A Warm Look Back.

From beaches to baseball, Gail covers a wide range of summertime activities, and solicits favorite memories from a number of readers who grew up in Northeast Ohio.  Reading their recollections is a pleasant way to escape the winter weather.

In this interview, Gail also talks about last year's book, Cleveland Christmas Memories: Looking Back at Holidays Past. And husband Steve makes a special guest appearance.

YWCA Assists Youth Aging-Out of Foster Care

The YWCA of Greater Cleveland is one of the few organizations that helps children who age-out of the foster care system.  25% of foster children who turn 18 become homeless. Margaret Mitchell, President and CEO of the YWCA of Greater Cleveland says the Y's Nurturing Independence and Aspirations program addresses that issue by offering 23 apartments at Independence Place.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Caregifted Helps Care Givers Get Away For A While

Heather McHugh, Founder of Caregifted, and Berenice Kleiman of Shaker Heights

Caregifted, an organization formed to help long-term, full-time caregivers take a break from their daily duties with an all-expenses paid, week-long vacation, was founded by poet Heather McHugh.  She describes who qualifies for the getaways, which she hosts on both coasts.  And she explains what inspired her to give up teaching to develop Caregifted.

Heather also talks about Berenice Kleiman, the Shaker Heights woman who was given a break from caring for her husband Herb, who suffered a debilitating stroke 12 years ago.  Berenice was a guest on The 11th Hour recently, telling us about her journey as a care giver.

Encouraging Brain Gain In NEO With Intern In Ohio

Bernie Gosky and Jim McIntyre
Photo Credit:  AM 1420 The Answer

Intern In Ohio is a win-win program for college students and companies in need of the students skills. The program, developed last spring with the help of the University of Toledo, is meant to staunch brain drain, and to keep talented college graduates in Northeast Ohio (NEO.)

Bernie Gosky, Executive Director of Intern in Ohio, says it takes only a few seconds for the software developed by UT to come up with seven qualified candidates for each position.

Before heading up Intern in Ohio, Bernie was director of Summer on the Cuyahoga, a program with similar goals.

Friday, December 20, 2013

OSU Prof Explains Why Canadians Have More Freedom

Canadians have more economic freedom than residents of the United States.  Ohio State University economics professor Todd Nesbit explains how economic freedom is measured, and why the U.S. is inferior to its northern neighbor.  The study was done before Obamacare was implemented, and professor Nesbit   explains why Ohio has fallen in ranking when it comes to economic freedom.

He also explains why raising the minimum wage would be bad for long-term workforce development, even though only 97% of workers make more than the minimum wage.

The 20-20 Campaign For Ronald McDonald House

A recent expansion project at Ronald McDonald House in Cleveland now allows 55 families to spend the night close to their hospitalized children.  Development Director Mary Horoszko explains how the charity's 20/20 drive works, and how volunteers help make the place tick.

Maury Feren's Life So Far. He's Only 98!

Jim McIntyre and Maury Feren

Maury Feren was green before it was trendy.  Once known as The Green Grocer on local radio and television, 98-year old Maury has written a book.  My Life So Far is a series of vignettes about life as Maury lived it, as a produce-man at the Northern Ohio Food Terminal, and as a Jewish American living in Cleveland, a city he adores.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Pope Francis Spreads The Joy of the Gospel

Pope Francis isn't just the Time Magazine Person of the Year.

The gay rights magazine The Advocate today named the pope its Person of the Year for 2013 as well.

Some conservatives expressed outrage at Pope Francis' Apostolic Exhortation, released on November 24th, for his perspective on how the poor are treated. Sister Kathleen Ryan of the Diocese of Cleveland Social Action Office offers some analysis on the Holy Father's views.

Proving the pontiff practices what he preaches, he invited four homeless men to breakfast on his 77th birthday on December 17th.   And the Vatican released an interactive birthday card, featuring photos and quotes from many of his homilies since his election as pope earlier this year.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Cornerstone of Hope Offers Help to Those Who Grieve

Mark Tripodi talks about how he and wife Christi founded Cornerstone of Hope
a dozen years ago, to help people cope with the grief associated with losing a loved one.
He says this time of year is especially hard on grieving people.

Carrie Crawford Creates The Comfy Cradle

Former elementary school teacher Carrie Crawford invented the Comfy-Cradle when her arm grew tired while feeding her first child.  Now, the mother of two from Northeast Ohio has a growing company, which sells the Comfy Cradle in stores and online.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Margaret Bernstein Urges Bigs & Littles to Reunite Now

Photo credit:  Press Club of Cleveland

Former Plain Dealer columnist Margaret Bernstein is arguably one of the world's most enthusiastic proponents of mentoring.  She is a big sister through Big Brothers and Big Sisters of America.
Her (biological) big brother Alan inspired her, by mentoring a little brother when the Bernsteins were growing up in California.

Margaret's passion for Big Brothers and Big Sisters has driven her to help the national organization appeal to past big brothers and sisters, and to those who benefited from their mentoring, to take part in the Reunite Now campaign.

Neil Zaza's 2013 Christmas Shows in Smaller Venues

Lori Triplett and Neil Zaza with Jim McIntyre
Photo Credit: AM 1420 The Answer
Internationally renown guitar virtuoso Neil Zaza performs his Christmas show tonight and tomorrow, December 14th and 15th at Stampers Bar in Fairview Park, and at Scoundrels Bar and Grill in Berea Saturday, December 21st.

Neil stopped by the AM 1420 studios this week with singer-keyboard player Lori Triplett, and performed a moving rendition of "Silent Night," with Neil's signature soaring guitar fills. In this interview, Neil explains that because he was touring and performing in China this fall, he was unable to produce "One Silent Night," the full scale Christmas show he normally performs at Playhouse Square.

Tickets are available for both appearances.

Friday, December 13, 2013

A Veteran Remembers His Service in Vietnam

Mack Payne finally decided to chronicle his adventures in Vietnam.  The result is Vietnam Veteran Memoirs, a Book of Miracles His recollections are informative and entertaining, and offer a alternative perspective on the U. S. Army's participation in the Vietnam War.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Sun Spots, Venus, and the Geminid Meteor Shower

Jay Reynolds
Photo Credit: NASA Speakers Bureau

The Perseid meteor shower isn't the only show in the sky.  Cleveland State University astronomy instructor and NASA Solar System Ambassador Jay Reynolds says on a clear night in mid-December, you can see the Geminid meteors.

Jay also explains why the comet, which had the potential to produce a spectacular light show Thanksgiving weekend fizzled out.  And how China wants to put a man on the moon.

Local Law Instructor Recalls Working With Mandela

Senior Instructor Michael Benza, of the Case Western Reserve University School of Law worked for a year at Nelson Mandela's Legal Resources Center in South Africa not long after Mandela was freed from prison. He offered his impressions of Mandela as a lawyer

Local Salvation Army Major Worked With Mandela

Major Lurlene-Kay M. Johnson is counting on the legendary generosity of Greater Clevelanders to help the Salvation Army reach its goal of almost $700,000 at the red kettles throughout the area.  It's going to take some doing: slightly more than two weeks before Christmas, only $144,000 had been collected.

Major Johnson says the Salvation Army's Harbor Lights shelter is one of the only facilities that houses whole families, and explains how labor intensive it is to operate.

She also recalls the time she spent working at an orphanage in South Africa, where Nelson Mandela would visit, to not only promote the good work of the Salvation Army, but also to provide HIV education.

Local Business Owner and His Employees Give Back

A local franchise owner of this house cleaning service has won the 2013 corporate Helping Hands Award.  Mike Fransko explains how he instills in his employees a strong work ethic, and how he tries to get them to give back.

The Cleaning Authority Cleveland employs nearly three dozen full-time workers.  They collected food and clothing for Thanksgiving at the St. Augustine Hunger Center in Tremont, and they help cancer patients with free house cleaning services.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Pearl Harbor Memorial Service at the USS Cod

Photo credit: usscod.org

December 7, 1941, the date that lives in infamy will be memorialized 72 years later, when veterans of WWII, including one who was at Pearl Harbor on that fateful day.  Jack Fickle has been invited to throw a wreath into the water from the deck of the USS Cod, to honor the memory of the 2,402 American military personnel who lost their lives in the attack.

Paul Farace, Director of the USS Cod Memorial, is a World War Two historian as well as caretaker of the submarine.  In this interview, he explains how the Cod wound up in Cleveland, and tells a story of seeming supernatural intervention during one Pearl Harbor ceremony.

One Stroke, Two Survivors: The Kleimans Thrive

Photo credit: onestroketwosurvivors.com

Berenice Kleiman of Shaker Heights has been her husband Herb's caregiver ever since Herb suffered a stroke in 2001.  She explains how much effort it takes to provide the highest quality of life possible for Herb.

And she and Herb are making that effort.
Doctors initially said Herb would need to live in a nursing home with full-time care, and that if he didn't make progress within five months, he never would.  Neither was true. A team of medical and rehabilitation specialists, including a rehab psychologist helped Herb accept his disability, compensate for it, and go on living in a different way.  And a speech therapist, who helped Herb connect his thoughts with words.

"It's a constant effort, and if you give up, it's over." 

Berenice and Herb have written two books: One Stroke, Two Survivors, and Lessons Learned: Stroke Rehab from a Caregiver's Perspective. She says the Cleveland Stroke Club and other such clubs based at area hospitals offer support to caregivers.

"I've been gifted with my husband, and his life that has continued, and it's payback time."

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Open House Today At The City Club Cleveland

There's an open house this afternoon at the Citadel of Free Speech, the City Club of Cleveland.
The new CEO, Dan Moulthrop discusses the City Club's storied past as he guides the oldest continuous free speech forum forward.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Lisa Umina-Halo Publishing International's Angel

Lisa Umina and Jim McIntyre-Photo credit: AM 1420 WHK


Lisa Umina has helped dozens of people publish their first books through her company, Halo Publishing International.  The Nordonia High School graduate gained her skills after she self-published her first book, Milo and the Halo.  Since then, her journey has taken her to Mexico City, where her company is now based.

Lisa came back home for Thanksgiving (and the annual Turkey Trot,) and stopped by the AM 1420 studios to talk with Jim about publishing the books of authors like Lori Demonia, JJ DiGeronimo, and 19 Action News reporter Denise Zarella, whose book Not Even the Sky is the Limit was inspired by her daughter, and highlights the abilities of children and adults with Down Syndrome.