School board considers expanding facility naming rights to include financial, commercial contributions

By Melissa Martin

Dec. 6 school board meeting

The Brecksville-Broadview Heights Board of Education is in the process of approving legislation to allow individuals and businesses to purchase naming rights to district facilities.

During the proposed policy’s first reading, board President Mark Dosen said this will be the first time the district has amended its naming rights policy since 2007. Under the old board policy, the district allowed a building or facility to bear an individual’s name only after that person had made a significant contribution to education or to the well-being of the district. Employees had to be deceased or no longer employed by the district to be considered for the honor.

Dosen said those stipulations have been amended and that the new policy, if passed, will detail how the district can name a stadium, field, building or other facility for monetary considerations, at the board’s discretion.

Dosen said Superintendent Jeffrey Harrison showed the board policies adopted by school districts in surrounding communities as a guide for BBH schools. He said pieces of those policies were used to fit the district’s needs.

The new policy stipulates two circumstances by which naming rights can be granted: purchased naming rights and naming rights to recognize honorees.

The proposed policy grants naming rights in return for financial contributions, including equipment, materials, land or services. Also, naming rights can be granted to recognize individuals who have made a significant impact to the district by their service or other forms of assistance.

The board is expected to further discuss the policy before voting after a third reading next month.

Fond farewells

The board recognized members who are not returning for another term, including Kathleen Mack and Brittany Wigman. Neither was in attendance.

Wigman, who was diagnosed with COVID-19, sent a statement that was read to the board, thanking her colleagues for their help navigating through the pandemic.

“To be witness to the tremendous amount of work that our dedicated educators, tireless staff and inspirational students are doing to achieve success is nothing short of awe-inspiring,” Wigman said. “The outstanding accomplishments that occur in our halls, in our buildings and on our fields cultivates a sense of pride in our pursuit of excellence.”

Dosen, who noted that Wigman joined the board just before the pandemic, thanked her for her service.

“It was a challenging time for everyone. You helped us move through that time and get through to the other side,” he said. “Your service was appreciated, especially given all of it was through the pandemic.”

Dosen also thanked Mack, who was reelected three times, for 13 years of dedication to the district.

“You brought the same passions, caring and advocacy for our students, parents and employees from day one to the end of your term,” he said. “We didn’t always agree, but we had tremendous respect for each other.”

Board member Tish Kwiatkowski, who served with Wigman and Mack for two years, echoed his sentiments.

“[Wigman] served in an intelligent way,” Kwiatkowski said. “I’m better for knowing her and for serving with her. I’ve known Kathleen as a mother to preschoolers, as a wife and an as a friend. Thank you for your 13 years of service to the community. It’s been a privilege and an honor to know you through all three stages.”

New CVCC representation

The board thanked Jim Gilbride, who served as the district’s representative to the Cuyahoga Valley Career Center for the past three years. The board approved Rachel Malec as the new CVCC representative for a three-year term beginning Jan. 1. She will report monthly to the board regarding news, events and other activities at the career center.

Malec was one of 13 Brecksville and Broadview Heights residents who volunteered for the post. The board interviewed all 13 before electing Malec, whom Dosen said brings “a lot of energy and enthusiasm to the table.”

“There were a lot of new faces in the room, and we had a tremendous number of qualified candidates,” Dosen said, noting that Malec has children  in district schools and is a nurse who serves as an adult education instructor at CVCC. “We couldn’t have made a mistake in my opinion,” he said. ∞