Annie DePerro joined EA’s staff in 2018 as a Project Manager. She organizes guided explorations of Northeast Ohio and serves as a regional guide for candidates and families considering a relocation to Cleveland or Akron. Annie brings a lot to the table with her extensive knowledge of Northeast Ohio and her passion for our region. And in her own words, here is a bit more about her.
How long and where have you lived in Northeast Ohio?
“I have lived in Northeast Ohio since 1991…so 28 years…which means I have lived here longer than I haven’t lived here. My longest location was in Canton, Ohio (2004-2015) where I still play tennis, attend book club events, work out at my favorite gym Elevation Performance Training, and visit my best friends. Prior to living in Canton, I lived in Cleveland’s Little Italy neighborhood after college, spent one year in the southeastern suburb of Aurora while I was a graduate student at Kent State University, and lived in Russell from 2000-2004 after having two children. We moved to Hudson from 2015-2018. And, currently, I live in in west Akron (Fairlawn Heights), which is in close proximity to both of my children’s schools, and I plan to stay put for the next five years at least through my children’s high school years.”
Where have you lived outside of Northeast Ohio?
“I grew up in Columbus, Ohio. I moved to the Cleveland area during my college years when I was a student at John Carroll University. I studied for a semester in London during college, which inspired my love of travel and made me appreciate the uniqueness of a smaller city. During my children’s young years, my former husband’s family shared a mountain house near Avon, Colorado. We spent parts of many summers and winters in Colorado when our children were small. It was there that my children learned how to ski and my daughter developed a passion for horses. That passion translated into lessons and a short youth show career for our daughter.”
Now that you have worked on a few projects here at EA, what is something memorable that has happened during a guided exploration with a candidate and their family?
“One memorable experience during an EA orientation day was taking a candidate to a barn on the far east side of Cleveland. The candidate had a passion for riding, and I had experienced many horse shows with my daughter and was able to show the depth of Cleveland’s equestrian community which I think surprised the candidate. But, more importantly, she was wowed that we were able to tap into her passion and offer an insider’s perspective of her hobby.”
What have you learned on the job?
“I love learning about all the cool things Clevelanders are doing from our EA University continuing education days, and I really appreciate the invaluable tours of buildings and businesses unique to Cleveland.”
What has surprised you the most about the job or what is something that you didn’t know about Northeast Ohio prior to this job?
“One thing that has been eye opening for me is how resourceful the people of Cleveland are, particularly when it comes to reinventing tired old buildings or mansions. One great example of that is the Children’s Museum of Cleveland. I am super impressed by the Hamilton Collaborative and businesses like Rebuilders XChange, SoulCraft, and Skidmark Garage. The warehouse district apartment and condos in buildings like Worthington Yards and The Cloak Factory are very innovative living options for people who want to live in the city. And, places like the 5th Street Arcades are always impressive to out-of-town guests who think of arcades as places to go play video games and not necessarily cool venues for small businesses to sell their products. Even the Heinen’s on 9th and Euclid in an old bank building is an impressive re-imagined space that takes advantage of the architecture and painted domed ceiling.”
What made you excited about joining the EA team?
“Working with a team of people that is as interested in our world and being part of the energy of the city as I am. Every time I talk about Executive Arrangements, people say to me, “Oh, that is the perfect job for you.” When your job is to learn about the city, its people, its culture, its food, its art, its businesses and then to share it with folks that will potentially live here, it doesn’t feel like work. It is exciting, it is fun, and it keeps me happy.”