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Grace Drake was a public servant with CSU students at heart

As the founder of the Ohio Center for the Advancement of Women in Public Service, former state senator Grace Drake, who passed away on December 30, 2020, worked tirelessly for close to 20 years promoting the advancement of Levin students in public sector careers. Her efforts partnered close to 1,000 students with public and nonprofit mentors through the center’s flagship mentoring program, many of whom have gone on to build successful careers, making significant contributions to our community.

Following her retirement, she continued to serve as executive-in-residence in the Levin College, championing program activities and serving as a mentor and advisor. She was also the inspiration for the college’s “Women’s Leadership Series” that features professional development workshops and showcases women in leadership positions.

Before joining CSU as executive-in-residence in 2001, Drake served in the Ohio Senate for 16 and a half years, representing Wayne, Medina and the southeast areas of Cuyahoga County. She was one of two women in the Ohio Senate when she took office in 1984, and while in office chaired committees on small business and economic development, health and human services and aging.

Focused on student success, Senator Drake used her vast network of connections to ensure the successful progression of CSU students, opening doors across the state to help start and advance their careers.

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Cleveland State University Alumni Association
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