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Step Forward teacher honored at Who's Who in Black Cleveland

Step Forward is proud to announce that one of our very own was honored Monday at Who’s Who in Black Cleveland.


Who’s Who in Black Cleveland honors African American achievement citywide. Each year, hundreds of people from a variety of industries gather to celebrate and network with a community of pioneers and change-makers throughout Greater Cleveland. The event has continued for 15 years, but just returned in-person following the COVID-19 pandemic.

Who’s Who in Black Cleveland features each honoree by highlighting their unwavering commitment to success and remarkable achievements that have elevated them to a position of prominence in Greater Cleveland. The program shines a spotlight on the impact he or she has on their organization and within the community.

LaVesha Draper was recognized as a leader who has made her mark in early education. Draper is a teacher at Step Forward’s Union Miles Early Learning Center. She has been in early childhood education for more than 20 years; she has been with the agency for nearly ten years.

“Being a Head Start teacher, I try to inspire each child individually. I cultivate their needs, nurture the whole child and bridge the gap with the families,” Draper said. “I inspire them to dream big and tell each student that they can do and be anything they put their minds to, as long as they believe in themselves.”

In 2017, Draper launched her own brand, Classy, Confident, Curvy Ladies, LLC. She empowers people to embrace self-love, confidence, and self-acceptance. Draper serves others by motivating women and adolescent girls to embrace a positive body image.

“Being honored at one of Who’s Who in Black Cleveland is an incredible validation of my journey, passion, and commitment to making a positive impact on others,” Draper said. “I have not lost sight of my purpose, which is to serve the community through hosting workshops and speaking into the lives of youth and adults to help them on their journey.”

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