Longtime Cleveland financial executive and community trailblazer Paul Clark was presented with the 2017 In Tribute to the Public Service Award at a ceremony October 10. The honor is sponsored by Cleveland State University’s Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs and recognizes local public servants for their efforts to promote community development, economic investment and good governance in the Greater Cleveland Region.
“Paul Clark is an innovative business leader and a tremendous asset to our community,” says Roland Anglin, dean of the Levin College. “He represents everything the In Tribute Award seeks to honor and we are very proud to present him with this year’s award.”
Clark currently serves as Cleveland regional president for PNC Bank and was previously president of Northern Ohio banking for National City Bank. In his current role, he helps lead PNC’s Grow Up Great initiative, which seeks to promote early childhood education in Northeast Ohio. Additionally, Clark is an active supporter of the Cuyahoga Community College Foundation, Greater Cleveland Partnership and Cuyahoga County Invest in Children, among other community organizations. PNC and CSU have collaborated frequently to improve educational opportunity and community development. This includes the PNC Scholars and Mentoring program which seeks to improve mentoring programs for college freshmen and enhance scholarship opportunities for senior students.
The In Tribute to the Public Service Award was established in 1984 by the Visiting Committee of the Levin College. Previous award winners include Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson, former U.S. Senator George Voinovich and former Cleveland Foundation president Steven Minter. The annual awards event helps to fund the Mercedes Cotner Scholarship, which is awarded annually to undergraduate and graduate students in the Levin College who are committed to public service. In 2017, 26 students were awarded a total of $38,650. The scholarship is named in honor of Mercedes Cotner, a prominent advocate for the community who served on Cleveland City Council for over 25 years. She was the first recipient of the In Tribute Award in 1985.