Butler County Developmental Disabilities superintendent to retire

Board president: Superintendent Guliano ‘is a true example’ of a committed, transformative leader.

Credit: E.L. Hubbard

Credit: E.L. Hubbard

The administrative leader of the Butler County Board of Developmental Disabilities plans to retire this spring, and the agency has already formed a search committee to find her successor.

Butler County Board of Developmental Disabilities Superintendent Lisa Guliano announced this week her intention to retire, and the Board of DD’s president said her management of the county agency “is a true example not only of a committed leader but overall of a transformative one.”

“We are grateful for her professional, passionate and visionary approach expanding services and implementing strategies to better serve our families ― particularly at the most difficult times during COVID-19 and beyond,” said Jacqueline Rioja Velarde, Board of DD president. “Even at this time, she is announcing her retirement, she is making sure that the upcoming superintendent will have strong support from the amazing team she has mentored over her time in this position.”

Guliano, who spent the first part of her career in nursing, has served as the superintendent for Butler of Developmental Disabilities for nearly a dozen years. She entered into the field of developmental disabilities as the nursing coordinator for the Richland County Board in their intermediate care facilities. While there, she earned her master’s degree in business administration and took on several director-level roles.

Her superintendent, Guliano said, was a great mentor who gave her opportunities to learn about that position. She soon became the superintendent in Erie County and was there until she accepted the superintendent position in July 2012.

Guliano said over her tenure, the COVID pandemic was one of the most challenging times in her career. Every county board of Developmental Disabilities serves a population with many who have compromised immune systems. The safety and health of the agency’s clients were her top priorities.

Her staff was also top of mind during the pandemic, she said.

“There was the physical health, but also the mental and emotional health of what everybody was going through with so much unknown,” Guliano said. “Really trying to support them so that they could continue to focus on our mission and support the people that we serve.”

Over her dozen years, she’s really seen her leadership team flourish, responding to issues quickly when necessary, and always together.

“The most rewarding part of my role has been really watching the growth of my leadership team,” Guliano said. “Enjoying seeing them build their teams, how responsive they are to enabling the people that work for them to do the work that they need to do.”

As a result, many ideas proposed by staff have come to fruition.

“There’s so much trust that has been built up in letting our employees really flourish so that they can be innovative and creative,” she said. “My hope for the Butler County Board of Developmental Disabilities is that we continue to travel on the very progressive path that we’re on, continue to allow people to be creative and innovative in their work to support people where they’re at with what it is that they want to do with their lives.”

The superintendent job listing will be posted by the Ohio Association of County Boards on Monday.

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