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Civil Rights Reporter
Ms. Demers earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Ashland University where she graduated magna cum laude. She also graduated with honors and received Order of Curia distinction while earning both a Juris Doctorate and Masters in Business Administration degree at Capital University. Stephanie serves as a member of the Board of Trustees and Alumni Board for Ashland University and is a certified member of the Society of Professional Human Resources.
Ms. Sweeney-Newbern has over 28 years experience in investigating, supervising and managing employment and fair housing charges for the Commission. Upon invitation, she has traveled throughout the United States speaking, teaching and training state and federal law enforcement agencies, judges, attorneys, employers, unions, fair housing advocacy groups, realtors, the NAACP, corporations and members of the general public on employment and fair housing laws.
Ms. Sweeney-Newbern has been an Instructor on fair housing laws and author of two fair housing training manuals for the National Fair Housing Training Academy located in Washington, D.C.. She is a popular motivational speaker who has presented at national and international conferences throughout the United States. During the Obama administration, she met at the White House and in Ohio with senior staff to discuss national housing policy reform.
Ms. Sweeney-Newbern has investigated or consulted in many notable cases, including a $4.3 million settlement in a redlining case against Farmers Insurance in Toledo and an $850,000 settlement in a race and familial status discrimination case involving a Massillon, Ohio landlord who limited the number of African American tenants in his properties.
Ms. Sweeney-Newbern sits on numerous boards and committees including the Northern Ohio Development Agency (NODA), the Toledo Chapter of the NAACP, Toledo Community Coalition, the Toledo Chief of Police Advisory Board, Dialogue to Change and State of the State Conference Committee. Ms. Sweeney-Newbern is the recipient of various awards including The Rev. Fred L. Shuttlesworth Humanitarian Award, Shanna L. Smith-Spirit of Fair Housing Award, Ohio Civil Rights Commission's “Rosa Parks Medal,” the NAACP Outstanding Community Leadership Award and, the “Keeping the Dream Alive Award” for brokering the Farmers Insurance case settlement.
Mary Turocy began at OCRC in August 2015 and is responsible for overseeing legislative affairs, communications and media relations, outreach and education, and coordinating Commission events like the Ohio Civil Rights Hall of Fame and the Martin Luther King, Jr. Art, Writing, and Multimedia Contest. Before starting at OCRC, Ms. Turocy served as Senior Fiscal Analyst for the Ohio Legislative Service Commission, where she specialized in higher education, conducting research and drafting budget bills for the Ohio General Assembly. Ms. Turocy also served as Senior Policy Analyst for Disability Rights Ohio, where she helped educate and inform policymakers and the public about the issues facing Ohioans with disabilities.
Ms. Turocy attended Denison University and graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science. She then attended the London School of Economics and Political Science in the United Kingdom, earning a Master of Sciences (with Distinction) in Gender, Development, and Globalisation.