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Longtime Ohio state representative and former Cleveland Hts. mayor Barbara Boyd dies, Boyd a trailblazer for Black and other women and a founding member of the Black Women's PAC....By and Kathy Wray

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CLEVELAND HEIGHTS, Ohio-Former Ohio state representative Barbara Boyd (pictured) of Cleveland Hts, a Democrat and also a former mayor of Cleveland Hts, has died at 80-years-old, passing away on Sat, Nov 5, 2022 surrounded by her beloved husband and other close family members. She is the mother of former state representative Janine Boyd, also of Cleveland Hts.


Funeral arrangements are pending, and this is a developing story.


Barbara Boyd (born April 24, 1942) was an American politician. She served twice as a Democratic member of the Ohio House of Representatives, serving the 9th district from 2007 to 2014, and the same district from 1993 until 2000. Her daughter Janine succeeded her into office in 2015 and served in the Ohio House of Representative until April of 2022.


A product of Cleveland's public schools who graduated from Glenville High School and a former elementary school teacher, Barbara Boyd worked on President Jimmy Carter's campaign as a start to politics. She became the first African American elected to Cleveland Heights City Council in 1983, where she would ultimately serve as mayor. Boyd also worked with the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, as well as with the Children's Defense Fund. She was a dedicated member of Saint Andrews Episcopal Church in Cleveland, and a founding member of the Black Women's Political Action Committee of Ohio and Greater Cleveland.


In July of 2018, Cleveland Hts City Council voted to rename Caledonia Park, which straddles the border with neighboring East Cleveland, in her honor.


Cleveland Hts is a middle class Cleveland suburb of some 44,000 people. It is the eighth largest city in greater Cleveland and the 20th largest in Ohio, and is roughly 40 percent Black.


Black Women's PAC President Elaine Gohlstin said that Boyd "was a trailblazer for Black and other women and will be sorely missed."


Dr Mary Rice, a PAC member and a member of the East Cleveland Board Education, agreed.


"Practically every Democratic politician of substance sought her advice and support and as our representative in the state legislature she was a fierce advocate for her constituents." said Rice, a retired principal of John F. Kennedy High School in Cleveland.


East Cleveland School Board President Una H.R. Keenon, also a retired East Cleveland judge and a founding member of the PAC, said that "we love her and are certainly going to miss her [Barbara Boyd], and she taught us a lot."


In addition to her daughter, Janine Boyd, Barbara Boyd is survived by her longtime husband, Robert Boyd, a grandchild, and a host of other relatives, friends, and associates.


By Kathy Wray Coleman, associate publisher, editor-in-chief (Coleman is a former biology teacher and a seasoned Black journalist, and an investigative, legal, scientific, and political reporter who trained for 17 years at the Call and Post Newspaper in Cleveland, Ohio). and the most read Black digital newspaper and blog in Ohio and in the Midwest Tel: (216) 659-0473. Email: We interviewed former president Barack Obama one-on-one when he was campaigning for president. As to the Obama interview, CLICK HERE TO READ THE ENTIRE ARTICLE AT CLEVELAND URBAN NEWS.COM, OHIO'S LEADER IN BLACK DIGITAL NEWS.





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