Hello, Hamilton County

  E-News for Hamilton County Citizens and Employees

July 29, 2002

  Quote of the Week:  You can do anything if you have enthusiasm. Enthusiasm is the yeast that makes your hopes rise to the stars. . . . Enthusiasm is at the bottom of all progress. With it there is accomplishment. Without it there are only alibis." 
- Henry Ford - 

A Celebration of Dreams:  Fourth-annual event honors foster system graduates


In a moving event on a special evening, 29 young men and women from the Hamilton County foster care system were honored for completing high school.  The fourth-annual "Celebration of Dreams"--a collaborative effort of the Hamilton County Department of Job and Family Services (HCJFS), Lighthouse Youth Services, the Foster Child Enrichment Council and private donors--took place at the Montgomery Inn Banquet Center. 

Journalist and community advocate Courtis Fuller welcomed the gathering and gave closing remarks. Ambrit Millhouse, a former foster child, was keynote speaker. HCJFS Director Suzanne Burke presented scholarship winners and County Commissioner Tom Neyer Jr. gave out certificates. A heart-warming video was shown. 

Caseworker John Wylie and graduate William Burbridge pose with others for a celebration portrait.

  “Being able to focus on and look forward to a tangible goal has helped me overcome (family issues) and other difficulties,” said Michael Smith, one of the graduates.

 Congratulations to the graduates and best wishes in your future endeavors!


  Great American Ball Park to host Group Tours
  Hamilton County has announced a group tour plan for Great American Ball Park. This opportunity will give civic organizations, professional societies and public groups the chance to tour the construction site and see the immediate progress of the ball park and although tour opportunities and size will be limited, Hamilton County wanted to give the public some access to the project.
The group tours will occur the third Wednesday of every month, with the first tour beginning on August 21. Each tour will be 30 minutes long, and each group will be limited to 30 participants. There will be a total of three tours each day with the first tour of the day beginning at 3:30 p.m. The group tour dates are as follows:
bulletAugust 21
bulletNovember 13
bulletSeptember 18
bulletDecember 21
bulletOctober 16
bulletJanuary 15 (2003)


“Our main goals are to complete the project safely, on time and on budget,” said Mike Sieving, Construction Project Executive for Hamilton County. “We are now planning events that will allow the public to tour Great American Ball Park upon its completion in March 2003. At this time, we are pleased to announce that we are offering tours to small groups to see the work in progress.”

Groups interested in signing up for a tour can do so by calling 513-564-0700. Each group will then be required to fill out a group tour registration form. All forms must be returned by noon on the first working day of each month. A random drawing will determine winning entries on that day. The winners will be notified that month. Groups not selected for one month will remain eligible for subsequent tours.


Great American Ball Park will be open for the 2003 season.

Ball Park Update:  On July 15th, the Ball Park project team provided the Board of County Commissioners with the monthly report.  Highlights of the report were:

bulletThe Ball Park is 70% complete and remains on target for Opening Day 2003.
bulletBall Park Plaza and parking remains on target for April 2004 completion. The Reds Hall of Fame building is on track for completion in the summer of 2004.
bulletSmall Business participation remains strong with a total of 26.8% of all contracted committed to small businesses.  A further breakdown shows that 11.8% of contracts are committed to minority-owned businesses and 4.2% to women-owned businesses.
bulletThe safety numbers are also impressive with only four lost work day incidents through May 31, 2002.  The national average is a rate five times higher than GABP's rate thus far.
All's Fair?  On Friday, July 26th, another mile stone was reached when the right field Foul Pole was put in place at Great American Ball Park.  Each pole weighs 8,325 pounds and measures 90 feet from the field surface.  On Saturday, July 27th, the large, illuminated Great American Ball Park sign was installed atop the main scoreboard.

With Opening Day 2003 less than 250 days away, citizens can check the progress of Great American Ball Park by clicking onto the County's Home Page (www.Hamilton-Co.org) or the Ball Park website (www.Hamilton-Co.org/GABP).  Digital photos of the Ball Park site are updated each hour, giving citizens a "real time" view of the construction project.  The Ball Park website also includes weekly "Play By Play" reports about the project, many photos, movies, artists renderings of the Ball Park at completion, and many other interesting and informative features.

On Friday, July 26th, the right field foul pole was put in place at Great American Ball.


Hamilton County Volunteers:  Future Leaders of Tomorrow


The Hamilton County Volunteer Program is pleased to welcome Walnut Hills seniors Kia Grant and John Burns, the newest additions to the Volunteer Program!  Both Kia and John have been working hard at entering information in the Hamilton County Board County Commissioner’s Intranet website.

Kia volunteers her time working in the Commissioner’s Office by scheduling Board Meetings at various locations in the community.

During school, Kia actively participates in the Spanish Club, Cross-Country and Varsity Track, while maintaining a 3.36 GPA.  Her goal is to attend The Ohio State University or University of Michigan.

Walnut Hills student Kia Grant is volunteering with Hamilton County.


John Burns, also of Walnut Hills, is spending part of his summer learning about County government. 

John’s favorite subjects are history and science.  He maintains a 3.4 GPA.  John’s goal is to be accepted into a reputable college in California to study Political Science or Aerospace Engineering.

Hamilton County appreciates the time and contributions of all of its volunteers.





Ball Park Contractors Meeting set for Aug. 6

Small, Minority and Women-owned businesses encouraged to participate

As Great American Ball Park approaches its final construction phase, new contracts – many ideal for small, minority and women-owned businesses – will soon be available for bid.  To help familiarize potential contractors with the bid process and upcoming contracts, the Great American Ball Park project team is hosting a Contractors Information Meeting on Tuesday, August 6th from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. The meeting will be held at the Urban League of Greater Cincinnati, 3458 Reading Road.


Attendees will receive information about the project scope, bid packages, and any scheduled dates of upcoming pre-bid or bid-opening meetings. Although it is open to anyone interested, the Contractors Information Meeting is specifically designed to facilitate participation in the bidding process for members of the small, minority, and women-owned business community.


“We’ve been extremely pleased with small business participation on the project so far—as of May, more than 26% of all contracted work was committed to small businesses.  However, we would like to see that percentage continue to grow,” said Bernice Walker, Director of Hamilton County’s Small Business Program.  “With that in mind, we’ve organized a Contractors Information Meeting to provide these businesses with an opportunity to learn more about the project, the upcoming contracts, and the bidding process.”


Recognizing that small businesses provide employment and economic growth in Hamilton County, the Board of County Commissioners established its Small Business Program 1998.  The program's objective is to increase the participation of small businesses on County projects, such as the construction of Great American Ball Park.

“The Contractors Information Meeting is an example of our small business program’s outreach efforts and is designed to communicate important project information with firms interested in submitting bid proposals,” said Darraugh Butler, president of D. Butler Management Consulting, whose firm was hired by the County’s Construction Manager, Hunt Construction Group, to oversee the new Ball Park’s small business enterprise program.  “Our goal is to provide small, minority and women-owned businesses with the information needed to competitively bid on and win contracts.”

Those interested in attending the meeting or obtaining more information should contact Sonya Walton, at (513) 946-8195. 


  Employee of the Year Profile: Harvey Reed

A 25-year employee of Hamilton County, Harvey Reed has served the past 19 years as the Director of the Probationary Work Detail program.  Through Mr. Reed’s leadership the work detail program provides community services to 75 work sites each week. 


Employee of the Year Harvey Reed of Juvenile Court has worked with youth to provide countless service hours to the community.

 These work sites include Adopt-a-Block, Keep Cincinnati Beautiful, the Cincinnati Zoo, and various area parks and schools.  Harvey has relocated the program’s facilities four times during his career.  Most recently, Mr. Reed took on the challenge of moving to a facility that had been vacant for 10 years and was scheduled for demolition.  Under Harvey’s leadership the renovation and move was completed in December of 2001.  The facility houses the work detail program as well as a GED program and the Hillcrest School aftercare program.  Harvey also gives of his time outside of the workplace volunteering with Keep Cincinnati Beautiful and various youth sports activities.




  Hamilton County Development Company's Main receives Ernst Young Entrepreneur Award 
In the fall of 1982, David Main, a Silverton native, returned to Hamilton County to launch the nonprofit Hamilton County Development Company (HCDC). HCDC set up shop in June 1983.  Since that time, HCDC has become an important resource to the regions entrepreneurs as they strive for success.  
David Main (right) pictured here leading a tour of the HCDC's business incubator was recently named an Entrepreneur of the Year.

In recognition of his leadership and the important role HCDC plays, David Main recently received an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award for Support. Over the years, HCDC has grown to be one of the most proficient small-business lenders in the Tri-State, particularly for young companies that have a hard time securing bank financing.  Since 1983, the company has made Small Business Administration loans to more than 600 companies in and around the Tri-State.  Its current SBA loan portfolio is $80 million, and it ranks first in Ohio in year-to-date lending activity.  

With a solid lending operation in place, Main oversaw the 1989 opening of the Hamilton County Business Center Inc., a business incubator that has since graduated more than 120 companies, more that two-thirds of which are still in business.

Congratulations to David Main and the entire HCDC team for their efforts to build the local economy by helping local entrepreneurs and small businesses succeed!


  Hamilton County Employees offered Grant Writing Seminar
A Grant Writing Seminar for Hamilton County Employees will be offered on Friday, September 6, 2002 at Job and Family Services in Room 6SE401.  The seminar will be from 9-11 a.m. Cindy Weitlauf, Hamilton County Grants Coordinator, will be conducting the seminar.  A copy of the Grants Manual for Hamilton County will be available at the seminar.

Because space is limited, please contact Cindy to reserve a seat.  She may be reached 946-4317.



Don't forget to post Hello, Hamilton County so that everyone can see what's going on!

Have a great day!

Hello, Hamilton County is published twice each month.  It is placed on both the County's internal and external Web pages.  It is designed to enlighten and inform both citizens and employees of Hamilton County.  If you have questions or suggestions for future editions, contact Erica Binford (946-4324), Sharon Booker (946-4428) or Eric Stuckey (946-4432) in the County Administrator's Office or e-mail to eric.stuckey@hamilton-co.org.