YPoP Supporters, Members, and Friends,

Wow! What a crazy amount of goodwill, excitement, and outpouring of pride we’ve seen in just the first five months of Young Professionals of Parma. I’m very happy as president of YPoP to deliver the first ever end-of-year/new year message.

With endless support from my husband Bill, we started this group without knowing where it would lead. Now, after witnessing firsthand the opinions and passions of the Parma area, we have a better sense of where to head in the future.

So where are we headed? Well, some of that is up to you. And most of it has been determined by those who have attended our events and provided us much-needed feedback. And for that feedback I want to say thank you.

Here are some of things happening short term:

  • As of today, Young Professionals of Parma has a website. Launched just weeks ago, it will serve as a hub of activity for both the group and the Parma area going forward.
  • We have a leadership team— Nikhil Arni, Jeremy Jusek, Matt Orehek, Kathie Zipp, my husband Bill Baraona, and myself. The team is on its way to strategizing our short and long-term future, which include new policies and organizational structure we can use to implement wider, and more effective, impact in the Parma area.
  • Although our long-term goals include making an impact in the Parma area community as a whole, our current focus remains on supporting the needs and wants of Young Professionals. We hope to continue to provide events and programming that not only appeal to YPs in the Parma area, but also attract young visitors from outside the Parma area.
  • We have established three committees: Social Events, Business Outreach, and Marketing & Communication. Please contact us if you would like more information or are interested in volunteering in any of these committees.
  • We want our social events to continue, but we also want to provide support for the “professional” in our name. Starting in February, our Business Outreach Committee will begin providing professional events like workshops, guest speakers, and focus group panels to help working professionals expand their business networks and learn valuable skills. In addition, Business Outreach will be responsible for long-term programs aimed at achieving community unity in the professional sense.
  • We’re partnering with local businesses, city leadership, and the Chamber of Commerce to continue growing in ways that are most beneficial to the group and the Parma area.

What about our long term goals/dreams? Well:

  • We want to be a communication hub for the Parma area.
  • We want to provide valuable services missing in the Parma area.
  • We want to work with the city and local businesses to improve quality of life in the Parma area, as well as our city’s image.

In short, we want to make the Parma area a better place.

Thank you to everyone for your kind support, and overwhelming enthusiasm these past five months. Our group stumbled across an amazing truth: the community really, really wants pride… but up until now, there weren’t a lot of places to channel that positive energy. So let’s channel that energy. Let’s make the Parma area a community we’re proud to live, work, and raise families in.

2017 is setting up to be a great year. Help us kick it off at our Wine Night event on Thursday, January 19th. I look forward to seeing everyone at what is sure to be a great event and year.



Jackie Baraona

President, Young Professionals of Parma