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Russell Schneider Appointed Acting Director of Solon Arts Center

Russell Schneider, who had been leading the Solon Center for the Arts since Karen Prasser's resignation, was appointed as acting director earlier this month.

Longtime city employee Russell Schneider had been serving as interim director of the Solon Center for the Arts since Karen Prasser resigned in September.

Earlier this month, City Council made that role more official by appointing Schneider as acting director and giving him a pay increase.

Schneider will still have some duties as operations manager of the Solon Community Center.

Accompanying Schneider's new job duties will be an increase in pay, as Schneider will now be compensated at a director's level. According to the pay scale, that compensation level pays between $60,000 and $100,000 depending on experience.

Schneider will earn $78,000 plus longevity pay, said Human Resources Director Tom Cornhoff.

Mayor Susan Drucker has said that Schneider is doing a great job leading the arts center, which she says has retained its programming and is adding more programs.

Suzi Castiglione November 29, 2012 at 04:18 PM
No offense to Russ, but really????
Harry November 29, 2012 at 04:39 PM
Suzy, you nailed that one. Prasser made $72,500 and brought all kinds of previous experience to the job (like her or not and regardless of what she allegedly did to be part of this investigation).
Suzi Castiglione November 29, 2012 at 04:51 PM
I have many thoughts here, but will not post them. I WILL say that my first thought turns to the people at SCA who are doing the real work and keeping SCA running throughout a tough situation. My son is involved in theater at SCA and Christine is doing a fabulous job there.
Chris Mazzolini (Editor) November 29, 2012 at 04:54 PM
I received an update from the Solon human resources department: Schneider will make a base salary of $78,000 plus longevity pay.
queen of the may November 29, 2012 at 04:55 PM
did i miss this earlier in the month, or did this just happen? hard to tell from this article. so we go from someone who had a master's degree in arts performance and mega experience in fundraising to running sca basically under the rec dept... there's your answer.
queen of the may November 29, 2012 at 04:56 PM
the staff at sca IS top notch! they have been weathering quite a storm.
Chris Mazzolini (Editor) November 29, 2012 at 04:59 PM
Hi queen: This was voted on by council on Nov. 19. I usually try to post council-related stuff right after the meeting, but with the holidays and being on vacation the story got pushed back.
queen of the may November 29, 2012 at 05:09 PM
thanks, chris. wow!
Solon Resident November 29, 2012 at 06:13 PM
I agree with you Suzi. Where is the experience needed. Running any business still takes a minimum knowledge base. Again no Offense to Russ, since his experience and professional accomplishments have always been around the Solon Community Center. Who will Russ be reporting directly to?? Council? Mayor?
Harry November 29, 2012 at 08:16 PM
A nice pre-retirement gig! How can I get a job like that with the city? I am retired and it beats consulting. I was in the marching band in high school. Does that qualify me?
ND November 29, 2012 at 08:18 PM
Very interesting indeed. The plot thickens.
Harry November 29, 2012 at 08:41 PM
I don't have a stake in this but, if you think FSCA will NOT be implicated in this investigation, past and current Friends should storm the next city council meeting because this is absurd.
ND November 29, 2012 at 10:22 PM
Unbelievable! What a change in leadership. From a seasoned arts administrator with a Masters Degree in Piano to someone who has no experience managing an Arts organization. Why would our Mayor see this as a good thing and compensate Russ Schneider above and beyond what Karen Prasser earned?
Suzi Castiglione November 29, 2012 at 10:38 PM
No wrong-doing by FSCA. Again....no offense to Russ, none at all. But, something is very odd about this.
Harry November 29, 2012 at 11:08 PM
Why is everyone so afraid of this mayor including many on the inside? Is it because she used to be a probation officer? Honest question. Does anyone know?
Suzi Castiglione November 30, 2012 at 12:48 AM
Are people afraid of her? Do you mean city employees? Will Russ continue heading maintenance as well?
John November 30, 2012 at 01:05 AM
I believe he has been the assistant recreation director for quite a few years and handles more than maintenance
Suzi Castiglione November 30, 2012 at 01:18 AM
I was just curious if he had to handle all his previous duties or only interim SCA director.
Dan Georges November 30, 2012 at 01:10 PM
I wasn't there, so I'm only guessing: The city had to do something to keep the center running, and Russ must have been up to the task. Because there was not enough time to do a full search for a director with arts and fundraising experience, the council made him acting director. Let's cut Russ a break here. He's taking on additional responsibilities, so he should be compensated for these.
Harry November 30, 2012 at 03:09 PM
In my opinion it's just not about a long-time city employee like Russ. He's just another chapter to this saga. It's the entire situation and course of events starting with Karen's resignation that is so bizarre.
Suzi Castiglione December 01, 2012 at 01:15 AM
Dan....like we've said numerous times and Harry said above....it's nothing personal with reference to Russ. I like him. Russ is a good guy and has always been willing to do whatever is needed. Honestly, I don't remember ever hearing anything negative about him. I don't dislike our Mayor, our City Council, etc....I just dislike the way things are being handled. We love SCA....and the staff headed by Christine, who is pulling their share and then some. My son is very involved over there, so we've been there quite a bit before and since Karen's resignation. Heck, my son's first class at SCA was when he was less than 2 years old and he's now 10. My eldest son took voice lessons there years ago when he was still in school. SCA has been such a wonderful place our youngest and other children. Karen was a big reason for that. I hope it carries on to be the same comfortable, nurturing place it has been.
queen of the may December 02, 2012 at 09:57 PM
just conjecture, but a lot of these positions serve at the will of the mayor... that can lead to a dictatorship... especially if the mayor rules, not leads.
Jerry L December 30, 2012 at 01:50 AM
HI, I have a Master of Music degree in performance; 15 years experience in Arts Administration working directly with The Cleveland Orchestra, Blossom Music Center and Kent State University; produced hundreds of masterclasses, lectures, rehearsals, studio classes and private lessons along with 100 critically acclaimed professional concerts and over 200 student recitals her in Ohio; maintained annual budgets of $350,000, overseeing multiple foundation accounts, delivering fourteen consecutive balanced budgets, raised 8-10% annual budget through public/private grants, donor cultivation, endowments and corporate giving. I also live right here in Aurora, OH Any chance I should send a resume or letter to someone in Solon City Council? Jerry themusicmail2002@yahoo.com

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