Musicians, nonprofit executive and small business owners join Kenmore Neighborhood Alliance board

On Monday, Jan. 23, Kenmore Neighborhood Alliance welcomed five new members to its board. Each was elected to a three-year term and will provide guidance, oversight and support to the neighborhood’s community development corporation, the primary service area of which is the Kenmore Boulevard Historic District, the largest neighborhood business district in Akron.

Tom Fuller served as the executive director of Alpha Phi Alpha Homes, a nonprofit housing developer, for 45 years. A graduate of Akron’s St. Vincent High School and the University of Akron, Fuller worked previously for United Way, where he developed InfoLine, the county’s comprehensive information and referral resource. A longtime Summit Lake advocate, Fuller sees value in preserving Kenmore Boulevard and connecting it to its neighbors.

Recording artist Marc Lee Shannon is a musician, author and the former lead guitarist for Michael Stanley and the Resonators. An Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services Certified Peer Recovery Supporter, Shannon is a member of the Summit County Alcohol, Drug and Mental Health Board and works to reduce substance abuse in many communities, including Kenmore. “My mother is a graduate of Kenmore High School…and things just came together, like, I should be here. Maybe for her,” he said.

For more than 15 years, Dennis Reynolds was a professor of music at the Oberlin Conservatory. He is currently the artistic director of the Jazz Heritage Orchestra and an instructor with Open Tone Music Academy. Before that, Reynolds played trumpet in Count Basie’s and Clark Terry’s big bands. He is a pastor at Compass Christian Church and lives on Kenmore Boulevard. A former Ohio City resident, Reynolds has seen the positive negative sides of revitalization and is eager to share his experiences with the KNA board.

Norton High School graduate Seth Vaill, CFO of Just a Dream Entertainment, purchased and renovated the Rialto Theatre in 2010 with his brother, Nate. Today, the Rialto hosts local, regional and national acts as well as local nonprofit and community events. Vaill is a member of the Kenmore Chamber of Commerce and a recipient of the organization’s McCutchan Award for community service. While touring the country with A Band Named Ashes, Seth and his brother saw firsthand how multiple high-attraction businesses and cultural venues can bring vibrancy to a place and is eager to implement it in Kenmore.

“It’s going to help our business district if we are able to get the community involved in patronizing our places,” Vaill said. “I think Kenmore Neighborhood Alliance is key to making that happen, which is why I’m here.”

Miranda Zenner is a third-generation, lifelong Kenmore resident and owner of The Pegasus Pub. A Kenmore High School graduate, Zenner supports many neighborhood organizations, including Kenmore youth sports, and has volunteered for community causes like KNA’s 2017 Kenmore Better Block event.

In addition to building community at The Pegasus Pub, Zenner has spearheaded many successful fundraising efforts at for neighborhood victims of tragedy and loss. “I am happy to continue to serve my community and am excited to serve on the KNA board,” she said. “I plan to live my days out as a (Kenmore) cardinal, so I might as well get my hands dirty.”

In addition, the board approved the appointment of a new treasurer, Kenmore Branch Library Manager Wendy Zarara. Since joining the branch, Wendy has increased community-friendly musical, cultural and educational programming. She also serves on the board of the Maritime Museum of Sandusky. She will serve a two-year term.

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