CWRU Links

WADSWORTH, HOMER C.

WADSWORTH, HOMER C. (3 Apr. 1913-13 Apr. 1994) spent most of his career in community planning and trust work, including ten years as the director of the CLEVELAND FOUNDATION. Born to Leon K. and Ethel Raynor Wadsworth in Pittsburgh, PA, Homer attended local schools and earned his bachelor's degree from the University of Pittsburgh in 1935, with graduate work at a number of other schools, including the University of Chicago, University of Minnesota, and University of Missouri.

He worked for the City of Pittsburgh in a variety of positions from 1937-1946. Then after a stint at the New School for Social Research in New York City, in 1949 he moved to Kansas City, MO, where he served as executive director and president of the Kansas City Association of Trusts and Foundations. He held that post for twenty-five years. Wadsworth became director of the Cleveland Foundation in Jan. 1974, accepting a ten-year contract for the position. During his term as director, he played a major role in the city's downtown rennaissance. Cleveland Foundation supported the forming of the CLEVELAND BALLET and CLEVELAND OPERA companies, and played a pivotal role in the preservation and revitalization of the PLAYHOUSE SQUARE Theater District.

Besides his foundation work, Wadsworth was involved in many other civic projects. Among them, locally he served on the boards of the Metrohealth Foundation and NORTH COAST HARBOR, and nationally for the Council for Foundations, the National Endowment for the Arts and Humanities, and the National Institutes of Health. In Cleveland the GREATER CLEVELAND GROWTH ASSOC. honored his achievements, and nationally he was named the 1986 Distinguished Grant Maker.

On 11 Nov. 1939 Wadsworth married Alice Crutchfield; she served as director of the Vocational Guidance Rehabilitation Services until her death on 29 Jan. 1995. They had seven children: Robert, Harriet (Orlock), Alice, Homer, Ethel (Mirviss), Marjorie (De Leo), and James.


Cleveland Family Oral History Collection, WRHS.