School of Social Work

Valarie J. McCall receives Honorary Doctorate

On May 12th, 2012 at the Cleveland State University’s commencement, Valarie L. McCall, a Social Work graduate will be presented with an Honorary Doctorate Degree.

Valarie J. McCall was named Chief of Government Affairs by Mayor Frank G. Jackson at the onset of his administration. An asset to the Jackson Administration, McCall serves as the Administration’s primary liaison to the state government, where she is the registered lobbyist for the City, and all federal entities. She is also responsible for monitoring the Jackson Administration’s appointments to internal and external boards and commissions and managing all of the City of Cleveland’s International Programs, including International Sister City Agreements.

McCall is the Mayor’s primary representative to several national organizations, including the United States Conference of Mayors; National Conference of Black Mayors; Sister Cities International; National League of Cities and the National Black Caucus of Local and Elected Officials.

Previously, McCall served as Clerk of Council, the youngest in City history. She streamlined the processing of legislation and reorganized the daily operations of Cleveland City Council to maximize office efficiency. She oversaw a staff of 41 and effectively interacted with 21 Council Members and their assistants. Prior to taking the position with Cleveland City Council, she was Director of the Cleveland Empowerment Zone, where she was responsible for a $200 million budget and supervised the distribution of funds for job training and placement programs as well as for direct lending programs that assisted businesses in four targeted neighborhoods.

In 2003, McCall became an American Marshall Fellow of the German Marshall Fund, which fosters transatlantic partnerships to build international relations. She traveled to Japan with the American Council of Young Political Leaders in 2005 and is a graduate of the Leadership Cleveland Class of 2007.

McCall serves on the boards of Cleveland Leadership Center; Opera Cleveland; The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and Museum; Positively Cleveland (CVB); The Downtown Cleveland Improvement District; The Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority and PolicyBridge. She also represents Mayor Jackson on the boards of the Ohio Municipal League, Northeast Ohio Area-Wide Coordinating Agency (NOACA), Cuyahoga County Mayors and Managers Association, and the Northeast Ohio Mayors & Managers Association.

McCall is an active member of the National Black Caucus of Local Elected Officials, the advisory board of Cleveland State University's Center for Nonprofit Policy & Practice and the National League of Cities’ City Futures Panel on Equity and Opportunity, where she served as Vice Chair and is still an active member.

Most recently, McCall has been named the Women of Color Foundation’s Board of Trustees 2007 “STAR” Professional Woman of the Year Award. McCall was named to the prestigious 2007 “Women of Excellence” Panel and her achievements earned her an Alumni Emerging Leadership Award from Cleveland State University (CSU). She was recognized by Ebony Magazine as a 2002-2003 Young Leader of the Future and was featured as one of Crain’s Cleveland Business’ 40 Under 40 and Kaleidoscope Magazine’s 40/40 Club in 2002. McCall was voted as the “2006 Young Public Administrator of the Year” by the Alumni Association of Cleveland State University’s Student ASPA Chapter.

McCall grew up in the Glenville neighborhood and graduated from Cleveland public schools. She has a bachelor’s degree in social work from Cleveland State University.