Inajo Davis Chappell Joins Cleveland Foundation Board of Directors

Release Date: 07.16.2010

The board of directors of the Cleveland Foundation today announced that Inajo Davis Chappell, partner at the law firm of Ulmer & Berne, has joined the board effective June 29, 2010. She will fill the unexpired term of Terri Hamilton Brown, who left the board to pursue elected political office.

Chappell serves as chair of Ulmer & Berne’s Nonprofit Group, representing a wide range of nonprofit organizations as well as for-profit businesses and public institutions. Her legal expertise focuses on various aspects of corporate law and governance, general business transactions, and commercial real estate acquisition, development, construction, and financing. In addition to filling the role of bond and company counsel to various governmental and corporate clients, she has particular experience representing school districts in the provision of educational programming and services to disabled students.

“We are extraordinarily fortunate to add Inajo Davis Chappell to our board of directors,” said Ronn Richard, president and CEO of the Cleveland Foundation. “Her professional experience and accomplishments are impressive, and her particular combination of the highest personal integrity, community knowledge and involvement, and passion for revitalizing our city make her the perfect person to help the foundation fulfill its mission of improving the lives of all Clevelanders.”

Chappell serves on the boards of several nonprofit organizations, including the Cleveland Leadership Center, Ohio Board of Voting Machine Examiners, Cuyahoga County Board of Elections, and Medical Mutual of Ohio Charitable Foundation. She has received the Helen K. Jones Woman of Strength Memorial Award, the Northern Ohio Live Rainmaker Award, and the YWCA Women of Achievement Award. She was also named as one of the 2010 Crain’s Cleveland Business “Women of Note.” Chappell received her bachelor’s degree from Yale University and her juris doctorate from Columbia Law School.

Chappell is filling the spot on the board formerly occupied by Hamilton Brown, who is running for the office of Cuyahoga County Executive. The term expires in March 2011, at which point she will be eligible for reappointment. The Cleveland Foundation’s board of directors comprises 15 well-respected individuals who govern the foundation, establish policy, set priorities, and make final grant decisions. All members are unpaid volunteers serving staggered five-year terms, for a maximum of 10 years. The foundation’s appointment process ensures that the board represents a diverse range of views and knowledge.


Ulmer & Berne, established in 1908, is a full-service Midwest regional firm with 175 attorneys in Cleveland, Columbus, Cincinnati, and Chicago. Ulmer & Berne represents publicly traded and privately held companies, financial institutions, pharmaceutical and other life science companies, family businesses, international joint ventures and affiliations, institutional investors, venture and emerging businesses, public bodies, and nonprofit organizations. For more information, visit


Established in 1914, the Cleveland Foundation is the world’s first community foundation and the nation’s second-largest today, with assets of $1.8 billion and 2009 grants of $79 million. The foundation improves the lives of Greater Clevelanders by building community endowment, addressing needs through grantmaking, and providing leadership on vital issues. Currently the foundation proactively directs two-thirds of its flexible grant dollars to the community’s greatest needs: economic transformation (including advanced energy and globalization), public school improvement, human services and youth development, neighborhoods and housing, and arts advancement.
For more information on the Cleveland Foundation, please visit