Recently we noted that when the Cuyahoga County Board of Mental Health and the Board of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Services of Cuyahoga County merge, they'll be headed not by a medical professional but by a career bureaucrat, William Denihan. Well, let the record show that Mr. Denihan has fans.
I appreciate the opportunity to respond to your recent article, discussing the decision to appoint William Denihan Chief of the new ADAMHS Board, effective July 1. As an employee of Recovery Resources, an agency that is dually certified by both the current Cuyahoga County Community Mental Health Board and the Alcohol and Drug Addiction Services Board of Cuyahoga County, I have had the pleasure of working with both Chief Denihan and Dr. [Russell] Kaye for several years. As a provider in the system, it is my belief that both gentlemen were qualified for the position as head of the merged Board, but, as Dr. Kaye eloquently stated, the selection committee believed that the skills Mr. Denihan brought to the table were what the agency required at this time. As for Bill Denihan being well-connected politically, both Mr. Denihan and Dr. Kaye brought their considerable political connections and savvy to a system that desperately needs advocates and supporters. This worked in favor of the men, women and children we serve who have no one speaking up for them — I consider this a strength.
I do not believe that Chief Denihan will allow substance abuse prevention and treatment services to be overshadowed by the mental health system of care, any more than I believe Dr. Kaye would have allowed the opposite to occur. The bottom line is that we are at perhaps the most critical funding juncture this county has seen in several decades, and without all of us pushing together — from the same side — we will risk losing the safety net we have worked so hard to weave. And who are the real losers in this proposition? Those that need the safety net most of all. This community needs champions right now, and any activity that directs our attention elsewhere is attention misdirected. I implore us to push from the same side.
Debora A. Rodriguez, MRC
President & CEO, Recovery Resources
Just one week after the Cleveland Museum of Art celebrated the Solstice and the opening of its new Rafael Vinoly-designed East Wing, executive director Timothy Rub has announced his resignation. Rub, who took the job in January 2006, and agreed to a pay cut as the museum’s endowment was hit hard (as endowments have been across the board this year) will take over as executive director of the Philadelphia Museum of Art in September, according to a press release from the Museum.
In Philadelphia he’ll replace the late Anne d’Harnoncourt, who died of a heart attack last year. He leaves the Cleveland museum at the halfway point of construction in its $350 million expansion. To date, the museum has raised $212 toward that campaign, about $80 million of which was raised during Rub’s brief tenure.
Rub leaves one major architectural project for another: the Philadelphia Museum of Art is in the midst of its own renovation and reorganization, under the architectural guidance of Frank Gehry.
“We are sorry to see Timothy go and wish him well,” said Alfred M. Rankin, Jr., president of the museum’s Board of Trustees in a press release issued by the Museum.
“Following Timothy’s departure in September, the museum will be well served by senior managers who are both experienced and resourceful. With their assistance and the implementation of a transition plan that we are already developing, I am confident that the museum will continue to operate smoothly and that its momentum, including our renovation and expansion project and capital campaign, will continue,” Rankin said.
The search for his successor will begin shortly. — Michael Gill
Cleveland Metroparks Zoo have found a new use for old phone books, hiding treats in them and giving them to the primates to forage through. The swamp monkeys (pictured below) speedily flip through the big books page by page, while the Hamadryas baboons (next page) take a slower, more cautious approach.
Ultimately, both species ended up finding all the hidden food. The phone books and other household items serve as enrichment tools for the animals, encouraging them to engage with new objects and keeping their minds stimulated.
The swamp monkeys and baboons are on exhibit daily at the Zoo's Primate, Cat & Aquatics Building. More photos after the jump.
Welcome to TRASHED: THE WEBCOMIC, my first foray into a web-only feature.
This is a tale of a shit job. Literally. I first detailed my experiences as a garbageman eight years ago in my second graphic novel, the Eisner-nominated TRASHED. But there were tales left to tell and I always felt I'd return to it someday. Now I have.
TRASHED: THE WEBCOMIC is not really a memoir, like the original TRASHED. It's based on truth, but I've added fictional characters and situations. It didn't really happen but, trust me, it's all too real.
Via Mother Jones: A former health insurance flak reveals the industry's dirty secrets to Columbia Journalism Review:
Trudy Lieberman: Why did you leave CIGNA?
Wendell Potter: I didn’t want to be part of another health insurance industry effort to shape reform that would benefit the industry at the expense of the public.
TL: Was there anything in particular that turned you against the industry?
WP: A couple of years ago I was in Tennessee and saw an ad for a health expedition in the nearby town of Wise, Virginia. Out of curiosity I went and was overwhelmed by what I saw. Hundreds of people were standing in line to get free medical care in animal stalls. Some had camped out the night before in the rain. It was like being in a different country. It moved me to tears. Shortly afterward I was flying in a corporate jet and realized someone’s insurance premiums were paying for me to fly that way. I knew it wasn’t long before I had to leave the industry. It was like my road to Damascus.
Potter goes on to describe how insurance companies will claim to support reform but fight it viciously behind the scenes: "They will work through what they refer to as 'third-party advocates' — people and groups that are ideologically aligned with them — and use their PR firms and lobbyists to do that work. These surrogates will reach out to radio and TV talk show hosts and conservative editorial writers."
He also explains why the media are woefully unprepared to counter this offensive.
Read the whole thing. It's part of an ongoing effort by CJR to broaden the coverage of healthcare reform. — Frank Lewis
County Commissioner Jimmy Dimora went off on county Republican Party Chairman Rob Frost at the end of Thursday’s regular meeting.
Dimora, who stepped aside as Dem party chairman on Tuesday in favor of behind-closed-doors-lever-pulling, said his attorney finally was cool with him going head-to-head in a public setting with Frost, as well as Parma Heights Mayor Martin Zanotti — the two leaders of the county reform movement that’s using Dimora’s central role in the federal corruption probe as evidence of the need for a new system even more responsive to the region’s business elite.
In his tirade Dimora slammed Zanotti, who sat in the front row, for traveling to Vegas on his own junkets with key Republicans and J. Kevin Kelley, the alleged bag man in the most recent federal indictments. Zanotti didn’t dispute it. He didn’t even make a face like he disputed it.
Dimora left out few of his Republican enemies, even alluding to collusion among ex-state Republican chairman (and ex-county elections board chairman) Bob Bennett and Plain Dealer editor Susan Goldberg and her former editorial page editor, who he saw lunching together last year and assumed they were plotting against him. (Paranoid much?) Then he slammed Bennett’s decision to champion the purchase of $30 million worth of Diebold voting machines, which still sit in a Lorain County warehouse. The county could try to recoup the loss, he said, if it weren’t for Bennett arranging for documents associated with the deal to disappear. Dimora asked: And who’s boss was Bennett, Mr. Frost, with your $110,000 paycheck?
"I know my family and myself have been living through hell for the past year,” Dimora told Frost. “And I don’t wish that on my worst enemy. And I guess that would be you.” — Dan Harkins
Charlie's Angel Farah Fawcett, 62, died today after a long battle with cancer. Four years ago, Scene writer Kevin Hoffman chronicled the twisting saga behind her iconic poster, a landmark of ’70s sexiness. Read the whole story here. — D.X. Ferris