Laura and Marty Uhle with Maureen Stanton and Andy Trares

Angela Vannucci, Rick Kemm and Alexa Marinos

Thousands of bright LED lights glowed on the evergreen trees at May Dugan Center, sending out a message of hope and cheer to the near West Side neighborhoods.
The 14th Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony on Bridge Ave. in Ohio City began with tours of the newly renovated center. A major funding campaign raised nearly $7 million to renovate, replace and upgrade building systems. Families in attendance enjoyed holiday music, a cocoa and cookie bar and a visit from Santa Claus. Entertainment was provided by the May Dugan Seniors on the Move Music Group and the Urban Community School
For more than 50 years, the May Dugan Center has provided services that include food, clothing, behavioral health counseling, adult

Dante Basista, Bob Rotatori, Patrick Reynolds and Beth Ann

education, job searches, victim services and trauma counseling. The May Dugan Center, like many human service nonprofit organizations, has experienced a massive demand for food aid and other essential programs. Board member Bob Rotatori noted that the May Dugan Center offered food assistance for 20,000 unduplicated individuals in 2022. He said that food was provided for close to 1,000 families at
The May Dugan Center was built in 1974 with the support from the City of Cleveland’s Department of Community Development. It was named the May Dugan Multi-Service Center to honor the late May Dugan, a long-time resident of the neighborhood who had been a one-person advocate and counselor for her neighbors in need. Today, the center continues the tradition of its namesake by providing programs to people that improve their quality of life and strengthen the community. STORY BY CYNTHIA SCHUSTER EAKIN/PHOTOGRAPS BY ERIC EAKIN