Much of the growth and improvements at Bessie Benner Metzenbaum Center in Chesterland can be traced to the leadership of its first superintendent, George Clemens. A graduate of Hiram College and Kent State University, he was an elementary schoolteacher in Chagrin Falls for three years before embarking on a long career in special education. In 1965, he was appointed Director of Retarded Childrens Program in Geauga County. During that same year, Metzenbaum Opportunity School opened its doors to 59 children, and George was named as its first superintendent. During his tenure, Metzenbaum Sheltered Industries came into existence. Four residential houses and a new pavilion and greenhouse were also constructed. He was instrumental in beginning the Middlefield Care Center, an Amish birthing center. But, of course, it is his former students and staff members who remember him fondly. George’s best remembrance of Chagrin is of all the people who helped him with his education. As a student at CFHS, he was very active in athletics, captaining the 1939 football team. In 1987, he retired from education after serving 22 years as Metzenbaum’s superintendent. Today, he volunteers at Metzenbaum and welcomes its children to his farm during field trips.