Cuyahoga County Councilman Pernel Jones, Jr. was unanimously elected Monday afternoon as the body's new president. He will succeed the retiring Dan Brady as leader of the county legislature.
Jones, who represents council District 8, (an area that spans Cleveland's southeast side and the suburbs of Newburgh Heights and Garfield Heights), was nominated by County Councilwoman Shontel Brown. In prepared remarks, she said that Jones has served with "compassion and conviction" over the past decade. As a businessman himself, Brown said, Jones' experience on issues of economic development would be critical as council strives to pass legislation and provide financial oversight. Jones has also been the body's Vice President since 2015.
With no additional nominees, council voted for Jones 10-0.
Councilwoman Sunny Simon then nominated Cheryl Stevens to become council's vice president. Stephens, too, was elected unanimously without additional nominees. She represents council district 10, which covers a number of inner ring east side suburbs.
Stephens previously served as the Mayor of Cleveland Heights. She said she would be a committed leader and asked her colleagues to be supportive of each other in the new year. "I will go from Westlake to Bainbridge to make things work for Cuyahoga County," she said.
County Executive Armond Budish sat in on the Zoom call and offered his congratulations to the newly elected officers. He said council had made wise choices and was eager to hit the ground running in 2021.
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