The City of Mentor is pleased to introduce Kevin Malecek as incoming Director of Economic Development. He replaces Ronald M. Traub who retired last month after 29 years of service.
“Ron’s impact on Mentor over the past three decades is almost without measure,” says Kenneth J. Filipiak, Mentor City Manager, “when he joined the city in 1989, we were in many ways, economically uncertain. His efforts have helped develop a robust and diverse business base as well as a stable platform for future planning initiatives.
“I am thrilled to join the City of Mentor as Director of Economic Development. I look forward to continuing the city’s success that was engineered by my predecessor, Ron Traub, and also look forward to working with Council, the business community, and developers to ensure Mentor’s economy remains vibrant” says Malecek.
Mr. Malecek brings considerable experience to the position, having held leadership and development roles for the past 16 years. He most recently served as Senior Development Officer for the Lakeland Foundation and Lakeland Community College.
“Kevin’s unique blend of public and private sector experience, as well as his familiarity with the Mentor business community and our growth initiatives, will help fuel continued success” says Filipiak.
Malecek is well-acquainted with Mentor area businesses, having served as President and CEO of the Mentor Area Chamber of Commerce from 2011 to 2015. During that time, he worked with the City to promote instructional trade seminars and to organize the first overseas delegation with member businesses to pursue international economic development opportunities. The Mentor Area Chamber of Commerce is the largest in Lake County, with over 600 members including small businesses as well as Fortune 500 companies.
He is also experienced with the innerworkings of local government, having served as Lake County Commissioner from 2015 through 2017 as well as Willoughby Hills Councilman from 2004 through 2013, including two terms as Council President.
“My professional experiences in both the private and public sector in working with businesses, communities, and residents have provided me unique insight that I hope will continue to bring Mentor prosperity and growth,” says Malecek.
He was a member of the Laketran Board of Trustees for ten years and served as President from 2010 until 2015. Under his leadership, Laketran successfully implemented a financial recovery plan, restored limited evening services to working, elderly, and disabled passengers, and successfully negotiated a new labor contract with the UAW.
Malecek was the also Director of the nationally-ranked Part-Time MBA Program at the Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve University. While Director of the Part-Time MBA Program, he engineered corporate partnerships with organizations like the Cleveland Clinic and Alcoa.
Malecek earned a Master of Arts in Government: Applied Politics and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and History from American University in Washington, DC.
Deeply involved in the community, Malecek has volunteered his time with Project HOPE for the Homeless, the Lake County United Way, and is a Board member for the Fine Arts Association of Willoughby, Ohio and the Lake County Energy Special Improvement District. Malecek has lectured at the Ray C. Bliss Institute of Applied Politics at the University of Akron, Mount Union College, and currently holds an adjunct lecturer position at American University in Washington, DC.
In 2009, Malecek was honored with the Crain’s Cleveland Business “Twenty in Their 20s” Award, recognizing up and coming professionals in the Greater Cleveland area, and was awarded American University’s “Rising Star” award for young alumni in 2010.
Malecek’s start date is September 4th.