Last summer, members of the Leadership Hudson Class of 2018 began selling copies of the Hudson Farmers Market Cookbook, a compilation of community recipes assembled in partnership with vendors from the Hudson Farmers Market, local businesses and other sponsors. The aim was to not only to share fresh flavors from across the city, but to raise money for noble causes throughout the community.

Now, the group has announced their final round of donations to a variety of organizations, bringing the total amount donated from cookbook sales to $23,650. Organization recipients included Hudson City Schools, Seton Catholic School, Hudson Montessori School, city of Hudson Parks, Western Reserve Big Band, Hudson Farmers Market and Leadership Hudson.

The first new donation announced by the Leadership Hudson Class of 2018 is $4,500 for literacy and sensory materials to support social-emotional learning for students across Hudson City Schools elementary schools (Evamere, Ellsworth Hill, McDowell and East Woods), Seton Catholic School and Hudson Montessori School.

"Having two school administrators in our class and having had the chance to visit each school system in our community, making investments in the future of our city via the students just made sense," said Beth Trivelli, principal of Evamere Elementary School and member of the Leadership Hudson Class of 2018. "We are pleased to be able to commit $4,500 to our local pre-K through fifth grade public and private elementary schools to help buy books focused on Zones of Thinking and Social Thinking Materials, which help students take crucial steps toward developing prosocial behavior at a young age."

$3,000 for AED in Barlow Farm Park

The group also donated $3,000 to the city of Hudson to sponsor one of their new portable AED units in Barlow Farm Park, one of the most used parks in Hudson. Adjacent to the Case-Barlow Farm, the park attracts all ages and features ball fields, walking trails and play areas that will now benefit from a defibrillator unit designed to help residents survive cardiac arrest — the leading cause of death in the U.S.

The AED requires no training to use and will be housed in a climate-controlled cabinet that takes photos of users and establishes a direct voice connection to emergency services personnel.

$1,000 for Western Reserve Big Band

Another grant of $1,000 was made to the Western Reserve Big Band, a 20-member subgroup of the Western Reserve Community Band dedicated to providing free musical entertainment for residents of Hudson and other Northeast Ohio communities. The bands comprise adult, non-professional, volunteer musicians from Hudson and 19 surrounding communities.

"The WRBB performs approximately a dozen concerts throughout the year for different occasions and audiences and prides itself on providing a unique experience for listeners at each performance," said M.J. Lehman of the Leadership Hudson Class of 2018. "They are always striving to add new songs to their repertoire, but the expenses of doing so add up. Our $1,000 grant will be used by the WRBB to purchase of 15 full band musical arrangements for its permanent library, allowing them to continue providing cultural enrichment for the community."

Donations made to Hudson Farmers Market, Leadership Hudson

In a final move, the reprinting rights to the Farmers Market Cookbook were turned over to the Hudson Farmers Market, along with a final payment of $1,300 toward the organization’s scholarship fund for students interested in studying agriculture. This brings the total donated to the Hudson Farmers Market by the Leadership Hudson Class of 2018 to $6,000 when combined with a previous round of funding.

To close out all accounts, a donation of $650 will also be made to support the continuity of the Leadership Hudson program that inspired the community cookbook project. In total, the nearly $24,000 raised in one year was record breaking for a Leadership Hudson class.

A short-term project, a lasting impact

While the bulk of Farmers Market Cookbook sales were conducted over the course of a few months in the summer of 2018, the Leadership Hudson Class of 2018 hopes that the impact of the donated funds will last well into the future.

"We chose to spread donations around to the Hudson Farmers Market, Drug Free Club of Hudson, Cover 2 Resources, Summit County Victim’s Assistance Program, Hudson Ministerial Association, Hudson City Schools, Seton Catholic School, Hudson Montessori School, City of Hudson Parks, Western Reserve Big Band and the Leadership Hudson program because these groups are already benefiting the community," said Lukas Treu, another member of the Leadership Hudson Class of 2018. "We simply wanted to play a small part in empowering them to keep up the good work."

"Our class never could have accomplished all this without all our support from generous sponsors, family members, friends, and the local businesses that helped us sell the books," Lehman said. "We want to give a special shout-out to Learned Owl Bookstore, Destination Hudson, Simply Swank, Vignettes and Summa Health and Wellness Center for being wonderful partners throughout this process, and to everyone else in the community who supported our efforts.

"We also want to extend our best wishes to all of the organizations that have received donations — we appreciate all you’re doing to make Hudson a great place to live."

Leadership Hudson is a nine-month program that introduces participants to Hudson, business and community leaders with the goal that at the program conclusion, participants will serve Hudson in future leadership positions.  For more information visit www.leadershiphudson.com.