Resident Spotlight: Madeline Cain
I am so grateful to be part of the Normandy community. Having arrived in mid January, I already feel very much at home. So let me briefly tell you about where I came from and a bit about my life journey.
While I never married, family is the most important influence and enjoyment of my life. I am the daughter of two wonderful parents, one the quiet Irishman, a product of Cleveland’s near West Side Irish Town Bend neighborhood who, after attending night school for high school, college and law school, rose to Chief Prosecutor for the City of Cleveland, and the other, my spirited mom, the strong, determined “Maureen O’Hara” version of the Irish mother. Both remain my guideposts. And my best friends remain my three sisters. I was the “middle child” of a family of four children. How? Because I was followed by twins! I am indeed the quintessential middle child. Recognizing my independent personality, my parents throughout my life encouraged me and “gave me wings.” And the rest is history.
At fifteen years old I told them that I was going to volunteer at the old St. John Hospital on Detroit Avenue and W80th Street, about a two mile walk from my home…an experience that also influenced my life choices. After high school at St. Augustine Academy in Lakewood, I entered the Sisters of Charity of St. Augustine, graduated from Ursuline College and became a teacher of English at my alma mater. Several years later, I left the community with only the greatest respect, gratitude and love for my fellow sisters. Many who remained and those who like me moved on are still very much a part of my life.
Soon after, as I focused on social and professional “re-entry”, I became involved in local politics and made the decision that I would pursue a Masters Degree in Public Administration at Cleveland State University. And I relied on my three wonderful sisters to re-introduce me to the Cleveland social scene. My public service professional career in government and politics began as Legislative Aide for Lakewood City Council and later as Legislative Liaison for Cuyahoga County government. Later I had the privilege as a “lobbyist” to advocate on behalf of Adoption Network, a not profit organization focused on finding families for abused, abandoned children. In 1988 I ran for and was elected to the Ohio House of Representatives and served four terms representing Lakewood and Cleveland’s Cudell and Detroit Shoreway neighborhoods. My legislative efforts focused on children and family issues, my proudest being the drafting and sponsorship of legislation creating the first Stalking Law in Ohio making it a serious criminal offense in our State. In 1995 I became Mayor of the City of Lakewood.