A Hudson resident is the new leader of a newly merged Junior Achievement organization.

Lori McCleese was recently named the new president of Junior Achievement of North Central Ohio. McCleese, who lives in Hudson, is the former president of the Hudson Community Foundation.

As president of the newly merged organization that was formerly JA of East Central Ohio and JA of North Central Ohio, McCleese will manage the JA’s work readiness, entrepreneurship, and financial literacy programs that currently reach 37,000 K-12 students in the 15-county chapter area. The newly consolidated chapter will maintain the JA of North Central Ohio name and be located in the JA of East Central Ohio office in North Canton.

"We are excited about the appointment of Lori," stated Brian Steere, chairman of the Junior Achievement of North Central Ohio Board of Directors. "We believe Lori’s diverse professional background as well as her enthusiasm and proven community leadership will help move the JA mission forward in the communities we serve."

After spending nearly 15 years in the banking industry, McCleese moved into nonprofit work in 2010 when she served as the Director of Development for the Alzheimer’s Association Greater East Ohio Area Chapter.

A Cincinnati native, McCleese moved to the Hudson area in 2005 and has been an active member of the Summit County community since then. She currently lives in Hudson with her two teenage children.

"I am proud and honored to join a prominent organization like JA with such an important mission," said McCleese. "JA educates and inspires young people to value free enterprise, business, and economics to improve the quality of their lives. I will work hard to ensure students experience JA’s high-quality programs so they can gain the skills relevant to success in their future careers and lives."