Education Foundation Gala
Rock. Paper. Scissors. supports educational excellence
Intended to join the new with the old, Rock. Paper. Scissors., the Grandview Heights/Marble Cliff Education Foundation’s annual Gala, will be held Saturday, February 2. Local favorite Paul’s on Fifth will cater a gourmet dinner and Watershed Distillery will again create a signature drink for the evening. The event will move to a new venue, The LC Pavilion in the Arena District, 405 Neil Ave.
This year’s auction will introduce an innovative automated bidding, donations and payment process. Mirroring the increased use of technology within the school district, BidPal offers attendees an easy and fun approach to bidding through the use of handheld devices, and offers increased opportunities for sponsors to reach attendees. Strong partnerships among businesses, community members and schools are an integral part of a successful community.
The Gala is also a time to honor the Grandview Heights Teacher of the Year and other special guests. The Foundation complements our outstanding school system by supporting educational excellence by funding projects, resources and materials not available through district operating budgets.
The auction co-chairs this year are Elaine Broderick, Sharla Thomas and Janet Callison.
For information about sponsorships, attending the event or to donating items to the auction, please contact the co-chairs at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Industrial parts distributor achieves 100 years of success
A century is a long time, no matter how you measure it – and Grandview Heights-based W. W. Williams hopes that it is just the start of its long-term success.
W. W. Williams, founded in 1912, is a leading distributor of industrial products to customers around the country. The company provides parts, services and repairs to companies such as Carrier, Isuzu and Mercedes-Benz, and also provides logistical solutions, including warehousing and powertrain component remanufacturing.
Current Chairman and CEO Bill Williams is the great-grandson of founder William Wallace Williams, Sr.
Though highly successful now, the company had a humble beginning, Williams says.
“We started out with a single office down on Spring and High (streets) Downtown selling construction equipment,” says Williams.
In 1920, the company expanded to its current location at 835 Goodale Blvd., which serves as the corporate headquarters. Williams says Grandview has been a comfortable and convenient location for the company to call home, noting its central location, easy accessibility and “great infrastructure in terms of support services.”
While the company was small at first, events over the past century have allowed W. W. Williams to increase the span of services it provides.
In the 1960s, highway projects and coal mining propelled the company into significant growth. Then, in the 1970s and ’80s, the company shifted its focus to diesel engines and automatic transmissions, Williams says.
“With that, it’s led us into various other areas,” says Williams. “We sort of used our core diesel engine business as an opportunity to find new fields that are related, both product-wise and geographically.”
W. W. Williams has now grown to have more than 30 locations across the U.S. and northern Mexico and has more than 1,000 employees, including five family members who work full-time. Williams says family has remained a constant in the business.
“At the top has always been family leadership,” says Williams. “We’ve been very fortunate.”
The company commemorated its centennial anniversary in December. Williams says the company was opened in 1912 – a bit ahead of schedule – at the request of his great-grandmother. She was very superstitious, Williams says, and did not want the company to be founded in a year that included the number “13.”
Because the company couldn’t find record of the exact date on which it opened for business, the employees settled on Dec. 12, 2012 as the day to celebrate – 12-12-12. At the headquarters’ open house, employees, shareholders and customers were invited to honor the company’s success. W. W. Williams also held a celebratory luncheon at which one customer won a Harley-Davidson motorcycle.
As for the future, Williams is already working out the details for the next 100 years. He says the company has taken on new product lines and is actively looking for other companies to acquire. He also has hopes of breaking into a new sector of the industry.
“We are working to get involved with the natural gas industry, both from the exploration side, (and) we’re also reaching out to convert diesel engines and automobiles to run on natural gas,” says Williams.
Rose Davidson is a contributing writer. Feedback welcome at email@example.com.
Frank Monaco: A Life of Service above Self
It has taken many people to help Marble Cliff become the wonderful village it is today. One of those people is Frank Monaco, who gave 32 years of service to the Village as councilman, treasurer, council president and mayor. Upon his retirement from his own career in the early 1970s and with available free time, Frank was asked by then-Mayor Paul Falco to serve as Village treasurer.
“I told Paul I had a lot to learn but would give it a shot,” Frank says.
“By the time I retired from the Village, I think I had held every job. The jobs took time to do them right, and I enjoyed every moment. Back then, there was no Village Hall like there is today on Fernwood Avenue. Our records were stored at Gus’ Restaurant on Dublin Road. Council would meet for dinner there and adjourn upstairs for meetings. We had great camaraderie and served out of pride for community, certainly not for the $5-10 pay! Things were simpler then; a time when Mayor Falco and I would walk the Village to find repairs needing attention.
“For 28 years, our one-man ‘service department,’ W. A. ‘Dutch’ Biemesderfer, dependably did anything to keep the Village neat and orderly, such as snow removal, leaf pickup, and trash collection. There were some tough times, but we did what we had to do. Of course, the cooperation we received from the City of Grandview Heights and the Grandview school district certainly helped!”
Frank fondly remembers the Village picnics held in August, the Village Christmas trees and holiday parties, and the annual Music in the Park summer music series. Not only did Frank start the music series, he presided over the Village’s Mayor’s Court. He is particularly proud of the fountain installed on Cambridge Island.
“I felt our nice Village should have a fountain just like all the villages in the old country (Italy),” Frank says.
Born in Columbus of Italian immigrant parents, Frank was raised near Cleveland Avenue and East Fifth Avenue, graduating from Aquinas High School. While his wife, Mary, and daughter Carol stayed in Columbus, Frank served in the Navy and Marine Corps for three and a half years as a Pharmacist Mate 2nd Class during WWII. Upon discharge, he returned to Columbus and worked in the State Auditor’s Office.
He then joined the Prudential Life Insurance Company and worked in sales for 30 years before retiring and taking on the role of Village treasurer.
During that span, he and Mary moved to their home on Cambridge Boulevard in Marble Cliff and raised Carol, Frank Jr. (who was a Marble Cliff Councilman), Cathy and Mary Lynn “DeeDee” Monaco. He and Mary welcomed 28 grandchildren and more than 15 great-grandchildren during their 63 years together, mostly spent on Cambridge Boulevard, until Mary passed away in 2005. At age 92, Frank now comfortably resides at First Community Village.
“I wish I was 15-20 years younger and could serve the Village again. I encourage residents to take pride in their community and serve when called upon. If they do, they should put service over personal ambition or desires in order to move their community forward,” he says.
Kids Combat Community Hunger
UA teacher earns grant to fund service-learning program
If knowledge is power, then Molly Miely’s sixth grade class at Jones Middle School is well-equipped to fight childhood hunger.
Miely, a language arts and reading teacher, recently received a $5,000 Sodexo Foundation School Engagement Grant to lead her students in a semester-long service-learning program to help study and address childhood hunger in the community.
The program officially kicked off during Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week Nov. 10-18, 2012 and runs through the end of April, coinciding with Global Youth Service Day. But students started learning about hunger even sooner, beginning with Packing the Streets, a service-learning day project in September, during which they packed 120 meals for the homeless.
Packing the Streets was created seven years ago by Jones teachers. Students have always loved this program, Miely says, and it inspired her to focus on hunger and see what else the kids could do.
“I think our kids are really great resources, and we need to tap into that,” Miely says.
Students from Jones and Buckeye middle schools participated in a Youth Summit on Hunger at Mid-Ohio Foodbank. First, the students took a tour of the food pantry, participated in icebreaker activities and together responded to scenarios involving hunger. The students then responded to the question, “What can we do to make sure no one goes hungry?”
The students generated lots of ideas and solutions to combat childhood hunger, Miely says.
One specific idea was to offer free popcorn to attendees at a Columbus Clippers baseball game in exchange for a donation of one canned good. Sodexo would provide the popcorn, and the donations would benefit the Mid-Ohio Foodbank. This event may take place in April close to Global Youth Service Day.
Miely’s students will continue to build off these ideas throughout the year and carry out some of the students’ ideas.
On Feb. 13, 250 sixth graders will tour the food bank and participate in another planning session, and in March, the food bank will host a Critical Issues Summit for students from several schools, adults, community agencies and Americorps to tackle the issue of childhood hunger and homelessness.
Throughout the spring, Miely’s students will work together to create flyers, coupons, brochures, posters and public service announcements that address the issue of hunger. The kids will distribute their projects to the community, inviting donations for the school’s “food line” on April 26, when Miely and her students will walk together to the local food pantry, picking up donations along the way. At the pantry, the kids will sort, count and load the shelves.
Miely says service-learning projects like these make the kids feel good, and they want to continue to help others. As an added benefit, the service-learning ties into the curriculum at Jones, giving teachers the chance to enrich the curriculum and work with the students on issues they are passionate about. As an example, the students are writing about their project’s impact and reflecting on what hunger means to them.
“The learning is deeper. The kids are more engaged because they feel like they are making a difference,” Miely says. “It’s great when kids can change the world, and that’s what service-learning does.”
Alex Wallace is a contributing writer. Feedback welcome at firstname.lastname@example.org.