Our History

Founded in 2012, Engage! Cleveland got its start as a collaboration between the business community and young professionals who noticed a need for an initiative that would raise Cleveland’s profile as a top destination for YPs to begin and advance their careers.


What began as an idea in 2010 has since grown into a movement that has captured the attention of Young Professionals all over Cleveland. Take a look at the events and people who have helped shape Engage! Cleveland into what it is today.


·    September 2012 | Engage! Cleveland hires its founding Executive Director, Ashley Basile Oeken·    February 2014 | Engage! Cleveland’s founding Board of Directors signs its Articles of Incorporation and Code of Regulations to register as a legal not-for-profit entity in the State of Ohio.

·    October 6-11, 2014 | Engage! Cleveland hosts its first Cleveland Young Professionals Week – a week full of events geared at exposing Cleveland YPs to all that Cleveland has to offer

·    August 1, 2015, | Engage! Cleveland begins to operate as its own entity hiring its first “official” staff and contractors and moving into its own space

·    August 27, 2015, | Engage! Cleveland hits 10,000 followers on Twitter, showcasing the reach the organization has and the importance of its work

·    November 23, 2015, | Engage! Cleveland receives its 501c3 designation

·    January 2016 | Engage! Cleveland launches a new membership model and creates the Leadership Council

·    March 2016 | Engage! Cleveland wins the Cleveland Business Connects Magazine’s Connectors Choice Award for Business Networking Organization of the Year (Young Professionals).·

·    March 2017 | Engage! Cleveland wins the Cleveland Business Connects Magazine’s Connectors Choice Award for Business Networking Organization of the Year (Young Professionals) for the second year in a row.

·    September 2017 | Engage! Cleveland’s Board of Directors set forth a new strategic plan with 5 signature events to be implemented in 2018
·   September 2018 | Engage! Cleveland releases its inaugural State of the Young Professional Community Report