President & CEO

Barbara Sykes


Welcome Our New President & CEO

“We welcome the strategic vision, proven record of advocacy, dynamic energy and unique qualifications that Barbara Sykes brings to the Ohio Legislative Black Caucus Foundation,” said Sylvester Patton, chair of the OLBC Foundation Board.  “We have been recruiting Barbara to lead the Foundation for several years because she has a record of raising the profiles and professionalism of any organization she leads.  We are excited about our future under Barbara’s leadership.”

“I am excited to join the OLBC Foundation and build upon the organization’s legacy and further promote the mission of advancing Ohio’s Black community,” Sykes said.  “The OLBC Foundation will set itself apart as the preeminent hub for non-partisan analysis of public policy and its impact upon the Black community in Ohio.  We will use that information to educate and inform legislators and other community leaders and develop the next generation of Black leaders in Ohio.”

Sykes resigned her position as the State Director of AARP Ohio to assume leadership of the OLBC Foundation.  Sykes was also President & CEO of Ohio United Way and served three terms as an Ohio House member representing Akron.  She is the first woman from Summit County to serve on Akron City Council.

The Legislative Black Caucus Foundation is a 501(c)3 that advanced Ohio’s Black Community through educational research, developing community leaders, facilitating public policy development, analyzing issues of social and economic importance and the promotion of diversity and inclusion in the public and private sector.  Sykes will be the first to serve the organization in the role of President & CEO.

The OLBC Foundation offers scholarships to help students of color pursue higher education.

The OLBC Foundation board is comprised of former state members of the Ohio General Assembly and community leaders.