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OLMSTED, Clarence Bushnell

Olmsted - Clarence Bushnell Bush Olmsted was born November 26, 1926 in Buffalo, NY. Bush served the Welfare Federation of Cleveland, OH and its successor, United Way of Cleveland, from 1955 until his retirement in 1991. In the 1960s, he professionalized promotion processes, opening advancement paths for women and minorities and worked with industry executives in Greater Cleveland to establish pay equity and leadership mentors for leaders in not-for-profit organizations. Bush grew up in Buffalo, NY, and attended Nichols School, The Hotchkiss School, and Yale. His experiences working with displaced people in Europe after World War II led him into a career in social service. He earned a Master of Social Work at the University of Michigan and an MBA at Western Reserve University. He met the love of his life, Levona Williams Olmsted, MD, on a volunteer project of the Lisle Fellowship, an organization committed to a more just social order in which persons of all cultures, social classes, religious affiliations, nationalities and political persuasions are full participants. They married in 1952 and celebrated their 66th wedding anniversary before she passed. They lived their last decade at Kendal at Oberlin, where their love is legendary. They raised their children, Bob, Sue, Don, Elizabeth, and Marilyn, in Cleveland in the Ludlow community in the Shaker Heights school district. In the 1960s, Ludlow was a nationally renowned demonstration of successful racial integration. Levona and Bush made tremendous volunteer contributions to the Ludlow Community Association and hosted a community caroling event every Christmas. Bush loved animals and had pets and tropical fish all his life. After retirement, he spent many years volunteering in the Wildlife program at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History where he maintained a large salt water aquarium and cared for young or injured animals. Bush and Levona had 15 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren. He will be remembered for his wonderful singing and word play, love of animals, games of ping pong, croquet, bridge, chess, and backgammon, teaching kids to fish, play frisbee, fly kites, and ski, as well as his enthusiastic enjoyment of Levona's accomplishments. Bush passed peacefully on May 1, 2019 surrounded by his children. The family thanks the staff at Kendal and Ohio Living for their loving care. Donations to the Mary E. Flahive Scholarship Fund established by Levona and Bush at The Cleveland Museum of Natural History can be made by contacting Sheryl Hoffman, Director of Individual Philanthropy and Planned Giving at 216-231-4600 x3310 or A Celebration of Bush's life will be held at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History on May 10th at 3pm.

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