Jim Szpak recalls that he and his wife had been loyal supporters of HRRC – and had utilized several of its services in repairing their home – when he struck up a conversation with previous Board member Vikki Nowak about how HRRC helps the community and how he could get more involved with the organization. As a result, he joined HRRC’s Board two years ago and, since then, has loved hearing “testimonials from homeowners who have been empowered to stay in their home, repair their home themselves, or gain the confidence and know-how to hire a contractor the right way.”
Jim feels that HRRC has a real opportunity to impact the larger community and challenge current thinking. “When anything breaks,” he explains, “we increasingly buy a new one rather than repair it. We need turn this trend on its head when it comes to our homes and cities. There is tremendous value in maintaining our historic neighborhoods and even greater societal costs to abandoning them. This task is difficult, but I think the timing is right for HRRC to take on a greater regional role in homeowner education, legislation, and delivery of services.”
Jim grew up “on the other side of town” and moved east 20 years ago to attend CWRU. He and his wife Beth have two children and live in a 98-year-old home Cleveland Heights. Jim works at Nottingham Spirk on Overlook Road as an Electrical Engineer.