Cleveland State Recognizes Individuals Serving Community


Each year Cleveland State Community College recognizes those individuals in our community who exemplify serving community first before self.  The categories of recognition are Arts, Business, Education, Healthcare, Non-Profit Leadership, Philanthropy, Public Service, Volunteer Service and Student Leadership.

Receiving the 2019 awards for Volunteer Service and Non-Profit Leadership are two of BCPEF’s own:  Ron Braam and Lynn Voelz.

Award winners Ron Braam and Lynn Voelz

Ron Braam (above, left) has served on the BCPEF Executive Committee since 2011.  Ron’s community-oriented service has foundational impact on education, healthcare and employment in this community. The depth of his impact began immediately upon moving here as owner and president of a local industry, Manufacturers Chemicals.  His heart for the community is evident as he volunteers tirelessly and serves or has served on many boards of local charitable organizations including United Way, Cleveland State Community College Foundation, Junior Achievement, Bradley Healthcare Foundation, Bradley Cleveland Public Education Foundation (BCPEF), and the Chamber of Commerce. Ron also serves his church, St. Therese of Lisieux Catholic Church, on numerous committees, helping to plan, finance and enhance the campus as it serves its membership. Ron and fellow industrial leaders established Cleveland Associated Industries (CAI) in the 1990s. This organization united local manufacturers to formalize their good corporate citizenship in numerous ways which ultimately impacted local education through Goals 2000, the recruitment of business and industry to our locale and enhanced the workforce and quality of life in our community.

As a BCPEF Executive Committee member and Chairman of the Business/Corporate Committee, Ron led the fundraising team for a STEAM lab at Charleston Elementary School.  Understanding the impact of STEM education on the local future industrial workforce, he currently champions a similar project for Waterville Community Elementary School.  Ron can develop a plan, but he also recruits, inspires and leads teams which see few obstacles and great opportunities. They always accomplish the goal and improve this community with both the present and future in mind. 


Lynn Voelz (above, right) has served as the Executive Director of BCPEF since 2009.  With a background in healthcare, she brings the ability to establish strong relationships with her Board, Educators, community members and donors alike.  Under her leadership and the collaboration with her Board, program support for academic innovation has increased annually.  It reaches local public education classrooms through Teacher grants, major grants for programs and projects and targeted professional development.

Passionate about her role with BCPEF and the organization’s impact, Lynn states, “To be entrusted to lead the Bradley Cleveland Public Education Foundation is an honor and a privilege.  Great public education is, without question, foundational to great communities.  If we want a safer, healthier, more prosperous community, we MUST regard our local public education systems as critical to that objective.  There is no more sound investment. 

Private investment encourages and enhances innovation, provides additional resources, and supports the vision and the plans for our two public education systems. The commitment of the educators in our community to teaching and learning and the impact this has on local students is remarkable.  Every day, teachers and administrators are shaping lives and giving students opportunities for a rewarding life.  This motivates me daily to advocate and gain support for our public education systems, enriching the learning of 16,000 students and furthering the professional expertise of 1,200 teachers.”



Follow this link to see all the 2019 Community First Award Winners