Ron Soeder

Ron Soeder became president of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Cleveland in 2006. In the first 52 years of his life, he did not know a single person who died as a result of gun violence. In the last 10 years, he has lost more than 50 club members, alumni and staff to this epidemic. Soeder was born in the very neighborhoods where the Clubs are now located, but raised his family in the suburbs of Cleveland. When he first started working for the Boys and Girls Club of Cleveland, he was unsure how the urban community would accept him. He found that he had tremendous empathy and compassion for the youth and families he interacted with. He has developed relationships that have energized him to work harder to help the youth of urban Cleveland survive and be successful, while odds and circumstances are stacked against them.

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