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Burns to retire as CEO of Coleman

KENT — Nelson Burns, president and CEO at Coleman Professional Services, has announced his retirement, effective this summer. The exact date will be determined once his successor is hired and ready to start.

Burns has served as Coleman’s leader for more than 35 years. During his tenure, Coleman has grown from a local, community mental health center to an organization providing not just psychiatry, counseling and case management services, but employment and housing services, among others. He has always considered himself a “servant leader” and under his leadership, Coleman has grown from serving about 1,000 people in one county to serving more than 30,000 in 22 counties across Ohio, including facilities in Steubenville.

Also during that time, Coleman’s budget has grown from $1.3 million to more than $60 million.

“During my 35 years of employment at Coleman, with all of the growth and diversity, I continue to be an everlasting steward and servant to the clients we serve in so many Ohio counties,” Burns said. “I have given every bit of energy to my job for all of these years, and I will forever be grateful to the many people who have helped me along the way.”

Coleman’s board has contracted with an executive search firm specializing in behavioral health care and community health care to conduct a national search to find the best candidate to continue Coleman’s mission as it moves forward.

“We are so grateful for Nelson’s visionary leadership and his unwavering commitment and service to Coleman during the last 35 years,” said Kristine Syrvalin, president of the Coleman board of trustees. “The board appreciates that Nelson has chosen to take his well-earned retirement at a time when Coleman is on a strong, growth-oriented path. He has assembled a strong management team who will certainly provide the needed continuity during this transition time and into the future.”

Coleman Professional Services was founded in Kent in 1978. It offers comprehensive behavioral health, residential, employment and supportive services.

It earned the 2021 Gold Seal of Transparency from Guidestar, the world’s largest source of information on nonprofit organizations. For information, visit ColemanServices.org.

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