Former Executive Director and Board Member Jerome “Jerry” Manuel passed away on Saturday, February 12, 2022. He had been a part of the OVI team since David Green recruited him as a Board member following a Knights of Columbus meeting shortly after he and his wife Corliss moved to Hilton Head Plantation in 2013. David recalls tapping him on the shoulder after he introduced himself to the Council and saying, “You might be interested in a project that we are working on …” The rest is history, as Corliss encouraged him to get involved with OVI (along with golfing and bocce, of course).
Jerry served on the Board, including serving as Board Chair for several years, then stepped into the Executive Director role in early 2017 when our previous E.D. moved to Florida to care for ill parents. Jerry played a critical role for the next 5 years in stabilizing our programs and formulating our housing development plans. He also was able to work with our local legislators to get special state funding to help move our project forward.
Jerry had over 40 years of experience in working with people with intellectual and developmental disabilities in Ohio, serving as superintendent of the Marion County Board of Developmental Disabilities. In 1992 Governor George Voinovich chose him to serve in his state cabinet as the Director of the Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities. He served in this capacity for the eight years prior to his retirement and subsequent move to Hilton Head Island.
Our Osprey Village family has greatly benefited from his experience and wise direction and will be forever grateful for his service to our organization. His full obituary is available online here.