At the OMNIA gala on October 14, the Cleveland Lutheran High School Association (CLHSA) recognized the 2023 Class of Distinguished Alumni. Five Lutheran West alumni were inducted, along with one alumnus from the original Lutheran High School (Downtown). Pictured to the right are the inductees at the event, along with five inductees from Lutheran High School East.
Inducted in the 2023 class were Charlene A. Coughlin '01, Dr. Arlene Hayne '67, Dr. James Heidmann '82, Mark Minnick '70, Col. Ronald Schwachenwald '56 (Lutheran High School Downtown), and Greg Steinberg '91.
Charlene A. Coughlin is a graduate of Lutheran West in the Class of 2001, and went on to attend Bluffton College, studying Communications, Marketing, and PR. She has had a notable career in marketing and advertising, working for some of Cleveland’s premier agencies. Currently, Charlene is President & Partner at TWIST Creative. She is an expert in verticals including B2B, B2C, retail, education, nonprofit & community organizations, and more. She has been named an Adweek Executive Mentee and Woman Trailblazer, and is a speaker and voice writer for Adweek. Charlene has served as Vice President of Programming for the American Advertising Federation Cleveland, and currently serves the CLHSA as Vice Chair of the Lutheran West Operating Board and Chair of the OMNIA gala committee. Charlene was also the commencement speaker at the Lutheran West graduation ceremony for the Class of 2023 in May.
Dr. Arlene (Nash) Hayne is a 1967 graduate of Lutheran High School West. She has had an incredible career in the field of nursing and healthcare administration. She is a graduate of the Lutheran Hospital School of Nursing, the University of Cincinnati with her BSN, and the University of Alabama with her MSN and her PhD. She has managed emergency rooms, ICUs, and nursing staffs numbering over 300. Dr. Hayne is the published author of textbooks and industry publications, and has served as a sought-after consultant for hospitals and other organizations on the topics of strategic planning, leadership development, organizational assessment, and education. She was also an esteemed professor of Nursing Administration at Samford University in Alabama.
Dr. James Heidmann is a member of the Class of 1982. He holds a Bachelor's degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Toledo, a Master's in Mechanical Engineering from Purdue University, and a PhD in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering from Case Western Reserve University. Dr. Heidmann is the Chief of NASA's Turbomachinery Branch, leading a $300 million annual investment by NASA in the development of air vehicle technology. He is the author of over 20 published research papers and journal articles on aircraft engine turbomachinery. He was named Fellow of the American Society of Mechnical Engineers, and has received Purdue University's Outstanding Mechanical Engineer award. Dr. Heidmann is also an accomplished marathon and half-marathon runner.
Mark Minnick is a 1970 graduate of Lutheran High School West and a graduate of Concordia Junior College in Ann Arbor and Concordia Senior College in Fort Wayne. He has built a successful career in the manufacturing industry, and his business entities now operate four manufacturing facilities and five distribution centers in Indiana and Northeast Illinois. In the 1990s, Mark also earned a Masters of Divinity from The Lutheran School of Theology and established two not-for-profit entities in the Fort Wayne area: an entertainment music venue and a ministry program called Come2Go Ministries. His work in ministry has focused on outreach and taking action to serve others.
Colonel Ron Schwachenwald is a 1956 graduate of the original Lutheran High School (downtown). After graduating from the University of Tampa with a degree in Business, Ron entered the United States Army and served our nation for 35 years. His impactful projects with the Department of Defense and in other notable assignments are too numerous to count. He is a decorated veteran with an incredible number of awards and achievements. Ron has worked as a civilian in government, non-profit, business, and community organizations. He serves as a sought-after consultant for both for-profit and non-profit organizations in Northeast Ohio and generously gives his time and insight to a number of community, civic, and veterans' affairs organizations. The entire CLHSA commmunity thanks Ron and his family for their service to our country.
Greg Steinberg is a 1991 graduate of Lutheran West and a graduate of Cleveland State University with his BS in Finance and his MBA. His notable professional career included serving as the Chief Financial Officer for Cleveland-based American Greetings, where he was instrumental in the company’s trajectory. He has been a speaker and consultant in the finance and banking industry, covering topics such as strategy, leadership, and capital allocation. After American Greetings, Greg decided to teach, and now teaches business courses at the University of Akron and John Carroll. He is a dedicated and involved Lutheran community member, having served on boards and committees for Lutheran Metropolitan Ministries and the CLHSA, currently as President. Greg also serves on the boards of FM Global, one of the world’s largest commercial property insurance firms, and the Cleveland Triathlon Club.
More extensive bios for each Distinguished Alumnus (this class and previously inducted classes) can be found here.