Executive Director

Cheryl Liggins

Cheryl Liggins is a successful professional with extensive experience in the banking, insurance, economic development and nonprofit industries.

She most recently served as the state Director of Member Services for Ohio United Way, providing training and education for United Way staff across Ohio. She led leadership engagement for Voices & Choices, an initiative funded by a consortium of Northeast Ohio foundations working to promote regional economic development for 16 counties in Northeast Ohio.

She was Executive Director of the President’s Council, a Cleveland-based membership organization comprised of CEOs of some of the largest African American owned businesses in Northeast Ohio that focused on economic development. She also served as Vice President & Senior Marketing Manager for KeyBank, supporting four of the bank’s fastest growing and most profitable corporate business units.

Liggins earned both a Bachelor Degree and a MBA in marketing from the University of Toledo, and she is a member of the 2004 Class of Leadership Cleveland.

Liggins works directly with the Ohio Legislative Black Caucus Foundation board comprised of former members of the Ohio General Assembly and community leaders from the legal, education, business and labor communities across Ohio.

She is the proud mother of one son, Eric Liggins, his wife, Pamela and three grandchildren from Charlotte, North Carolina.

Board Members

Sylvester D. Patton, Jr.

Sylvester D. Patton, Jr.

Sylvester D. Patton Jr., a lifelong resident of the city of Youngstown, has been a community activist, a family man and a political reformer in the neighborhoods of Youngstown.

Tracy Maxwell Heard

Tracy Maxwell Heard

Heard has an extensive background in leadership roles. She is the former Minority Leader in the Ohio House of Representatives also having served as the first African American female Majority Floor Leader and as Minority Whip consecutively in her eight years of legislative service.

Barbara Sykes

Barbara Sykes

Barbara is a former 3-term State Representative, former Deputy Auditor in Summit County, Past President of the Ohio Legislative Black Caucus, and is the first African-American woman to have served on Akron’s City Council.

C.J. Prentiss

C.J. Prentiss

Retired State Senator C.J. Prentiss (D-Cleveland) Married to Michael Charney for 34 years, represented the 21st Senate District of Ohio. She was first elected to the Senate in 1998.

Derrick Clay

Derrick Clay

Recognized by Ebony Magazine as one of the nation's 30 young leaders of the future, Business First of Columbus as one of its “40 under 40” business leaders and by Smart Magazine as one of its “smart leaders,” Derrick has established his position in politics and business.

Tom Roberts

Tom Roberts

Tom Roberts served as a member of the Ohio General Assembly where he actively represented the interests of residents in the Dayton, Ohio area for more than 22 years.

Petee Talley

Petee Talley

Pierrette “Petee” Talley is Secretary-Treasurer of the Ohio AFL-CIO and the first woman to hold one of the top two offices in the history of the Ohio AFL-CIO.