(Plain Press, February 2018) On January 10, 2018 the Alcohol Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services Board of Cuyahoga County (ADAMHS) issued the following statement announcing with “great sadness and broken hearts” the untimely passing of its Chief Executive Officer, Valeria A. Harper. Ms. Harper was a staunch advocate for those living with mental illness and substance use disorders in Cuyahoga County for more than 35 years and had been serving as the Board’s Chief Executive Officer since August 1, 2017.
Harper was passionate about her work, but more precious to her than anything else in this world was her family. She was a devoted and loving mother, grandmother, family member, friend and sorority sister to so many. The loss of Ms. Harper is indescribable.
The ADAMHS Board is grateful to the community for its outpouring of support during this trying time. As Valeria recently said, “The community is our greatest asset in addressing the disparities in treatment for those living with mental illness and addiction and in lifting up all those in recovery. When we come together, we can make greatness happen.” She was a wise and wonderful woman and the Board will carry her message forward in all of its work.
Per the ADAMHS Board By-Laws, there was an Executive Committee meeting held this morning to designate an Acting Chief Executive Officer. The Board has chosen Scott Osiecki, who has been with the Board for more than 20 years, and is also the Chief of External Affairs.