As told by Suzanne Boutros, wife of Dr. Akram Boutros, CEO, MetroHealth Medical Center
In the spring of 2013, as my husband Akram entered the final stages of the selection process for a career opportunity in Cleveland, it was time for me to acquaint myself with Northeast Ohio. Born in New York City and raised on Long Island where I lived for nearly 45 years, I had never visited Cleveland.
The folks from Executive Arrangements scheduled a two day tour to help me get to know the area and learn about all that greater Cleveland has to offer. I truly had no idea what I had been missing! We visited the opulent Playhouse Square with its meticulously restored theaters and then moved on to picturesque Chagrin Falls and its quaint shops and restaurants. The Westside Market was another incredible surprise as were the Tremont and Ohio City neighborhoods. Janice Bilchik of Executive Arrangements was the perfect ambassador welcoming me to what would soon be my home.
With all the beautiful suburbs and a thriving city center, the toughest decision was not whether to come to Cleveland but rather where to live when we arrived. We chose a front row seat to all of the action and today make our home in downtown Cleveland where we are within walking distance of all of the sporting and entertainment venues. With scores of fabulous restaurants and the beautiful new Heinen’s that occupies the rotunda at the old Cleveland Trust, there is no end of options come meal time.
Though our initial plans called for relocation for just my husband and me, our three daughters decided to leave their New York roots and head west. The girls are taking advantage of the fabulous schools here with Jasmine pursuing dual graduate degrees at Case Western Reserve University, Shannon studying design at Cleveland State University and Tess working on a business degree at John Carroll University.
Shannon has already purchased a home of her own in Tremont, and Jasmine is in the final planning stages for the home she wants to build near her sister next spring. Even extended family has joined the fun as my sister and her young family relocated to the Broadview Heights area this summer. In a very short period of time and with the warm welcome we have received from folks like those at Executive Arrangements, Cleveland sure feels like home!