Marian retiring as director of Mahoning mental-health board

By William K. Alcorn


Ronald A. Marian, executive director of the Mahoning County Mental Health Board, is retiring after 40 years with agency, 36 as its director.

Marian, 72, said his “target” date for leaving the agency is April 1, 2014.

It might be sooner, he said at Wednesday’s meeting of the mental-health board, when he officially announced his intention to retire.

It depends on what information about the length of the retirement process “and where I stand” that he receives during a personal visit in the near future to the Public Employees Retirement System in Columbus.

Marian came to the mental-health board Jan. 1, 1974, as community relations director. After receiving a master of science degree in counseling from Youngstown State University, he was named executive director in 1978.

Marian said he initially intended to retire last July, but wanted to stay until after the Nov. 5 general election vote on a 0.85-mill property tax levy, one of two levies that help support the board-funded agencies.

He thanked the voters of Mahoning County for approving the levy 70.33 percent to 29.67 percent, the highest win margin in the state.

The levy passed because of the mental-health agencies doing their work throughout the year; they touch a lot of people, Marian said.

“Someone you love needs our help” is the mental-health board’s motto, said Toni Notaro, administrative director.

Regarding his upcoming retirement, Marian said it is time.

“I have a gun and fishing rods all sitting there waiting for me,” he said.

“The executive director’s job is not what people might think it is. I’m visible and it’s my job to communicate with the board, with mental-health agencies and the political system and the public. It’s not Ron Marian. It’s the position,” he said.

Marian said a committee, headed by Laura Lyden, former mental-health board president, will conduct a statewide search for his replacement.

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