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Published: Friday, 4/22/2011

Lee Fisher gets job with CEOs for Cities

Ohio Dem to be president, chief exec

Failed Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Lee Fisher has found a job heading up a national organization of American cities.

He will be president and chief executive officer of CEOs for Cities, Paul Grogan, board chairman of CEOs for Cities, announced Thursday.

The organization is seeking to launch a movement to advance the next generation of great American cities. Mr. Grogan, who is president and CEO of the Boston Foundation, started the organization with Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley in 2001. It is headquartered in Chicago, with offices in Washington and Boston.

Mr. Fisher will be introduced to the national network at its meeting next week in Portland, Ore.

"[Mr. Fisher's] unique leadership experience in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors and his exceptional record as director of economic development for Ohio and chairman of the Ohio Third Frontier Commission uniquely qualify him for this very important national role," Mr. Grogan said, in a prepared statement.

Mr. Fisher, 59, ran unsuccessfully in 2010 against Republican Rob Portman for the U.S. Senate seat previously held by Republican George Voinovich. He is a former state legislator from Cleveland, former Ohio attorney general, and former Ohio lieutenant governor under former Gov. Ted Strickland.

He said, "I'm honored and excited to lead such a dynamic, well respected national organization. I believe that we must have strong cities to have a strong America."

CEOs for Cities works to develop cities through networking and research, according to its Web site. A current project of CEOs for Cities is its "Talent Dividend Competition," a $1 million prize to encourage college attainment in America's major metros. The award will go to the metropolitan area that exhibits the greatest increase in the number of postsecondary degrees granted per capita over a four-year period.

The nonprofit organization reported 2009 revenues of $1.37 million and expenditures of $1.45 million.

Mr. Fisher succeeds Carol Coletta, who was president and CEO from 2005 to 2011.

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