2021 Northeast Ohio Heroes honored for courage displayed during COVID

The Haslam family and the Cleveland Browns also honored with Community Leader Award

The American Red Cross of Northeast Ohio is proud to announce the individuals and organizations who have been honored as the 2021 Northeast Ohio Hero Award winners.

This year the winners were honored for their work during the COVID-19 pandemic. The presentation was hosted by veteran journalist Leon Bibb of WKYC News 3. You can view the video here.

The 2021 Greater Cleveland Hero Awards honorees include:

  • Biomedical Heroes: The Cuyahoga County Library System and Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse were honored for hosting blood drives throughout the pandemic. Bill Kelly and Theresa Brightman represented the County Libraries, and Jeff Kadlup and Brooke Bockleman represented Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse.

Top photo: Jeff Kadlup and Brooke Bockleman of Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse.
Bottom photo Bill Kelly and Theresa Brightman of the Cuyahoga County Library System

  • Essential Services Heroes: Employees of supermarkets, pharmacies and other retail establishments who risked their health and continued to go to work during the shutdown.
  • Nonprofit Partner Heroes: The Greater Cleveland Foodbank, represented by President and CEO Kristin Warzocha for their ongoing efforts to feed families throughout the pandemic. Edwins Leadership and Restaurant Institute for continuing to serve recently incarcerated men and women, under the leadership of founder Brandon Chrostowski.

Kristin Warzocha, left, and Brandon Chrostowski

Dr. Joanne McKell and Nurse Anita White

  • Frontline Heroes: Medical professionals like Dr. Joanne McKell and Acute Care Clinical Nurse Specialist Anita White of the VA Northeast Ohio Healthcare System, who worked tirelessly to care for and protect patients throughout the pandemic.
Jackie Otte, American Red Cross Volunteer
  • Volunteer Heroes: Red Cross workers like Jackie Otte who led efforts to provide compassion, comfort and access to resources for people suffering from the physical and emotional effects of COVID-19.
  • First Responder Heroes: Allen Morinec and Michael Kuznik of Cleveland’s Old Brooklyn neighborhood who, forced to return home from college during the lockdown, responded to a fire at a neighbor’s home.

Allen Morinec and Michael Kuznik

In addition to honoring local residents who have shown courage during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Red Cross also honored the Haslam family and the Cleveland Browns with the Community Leader Award, for serving the northeast Ohio community with outstanding leadership, vision and a commitment to the health and well-being of our region.

Jimmy and Dee Haslam

Please watch this video for a list of the generous sponsors who supported the 2021 Northeast Ohio Hero Awards. Special thanks to event chair Vic DiGeronimo of the DiGeronimo companies for his tremendous support.

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