Cincinnati Chamber Launches New and Expanded ChamberHealth® Program with Medical Mutual

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Member Spotlight: Backhaul Direct

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Read articles and learn more about the Cincinnati Chamber through our related news articles

Heritage Bank’s Treasury Management Services can help your business thrive
Member Spotlight: Backhaul Direct
Recognize & Celebrate businesses & people

Great Living Cincinnatians: Honorees

Celebrating the leadership, vision, tenacity, and love of community shared by the recipients of the Great Living Cincinnatian Award, presented annually by the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber since 1967.

Eugene Ruehlmann

Awarded In 1998

1926 – 2013


From his law-office window, Gene Ruehlmann could see one of his major legacies: Cinergy Field, formerly Cincinnati Riverfront Stadium.

As a member of Cincinnati City Council from 1959-72, and as mayor the last four of those years, Ruehlmann led the charge to keep the Reds in Cincinnati, attract an NFL franchise to the city and build Riverfront at a cost of $44 million.

Ruehlmann graduated from the University of Cincinnati in 1948 and Harvard Law School in 1950, then forged a political career that left monuments on the landscape of his hometown, including Riverfront and the Convention Center.

Less tangible, but just as meaningful, was Ruehlmann’s work in healing the city following the riots of 1967. As mayor, Ruehlmann reconstituted the city’s Human Relations Commission, and founded the Mayor’s Housing Coordinating Committee and Cincinnati’s Project Commitment – all aimed at bringing the community together.

On Sundays, Ruehlmann and his wife Virginia attended black churches unannounced. “We developed wonderful relationships with black ministers,” he recalled. “Some of my fondest recollections, friendships and sense of career accomplishments was in easing the social tensions of that time.”

Looking at his most visible accomplishment out his window, Ruehlmann reflected on the spirit of cooperation that made it happen.

“The timing was ripe; the city’s stodgy old downtown was in need of change,” he said. “Once it got started, it picked up momentum. People working together … That was the answer.”

Eugene Ruehlmann died June 8, 2013 in Cincinnati.

Nominate a Great Living Cincinnatian

Recipients are selected from candidates by the Cincinnati Chamber’s senior council based on the following criteria: – Community service – Business and civic attainment on a local, state and national or international level – Leadership – Awareness of the needs of others – Distinctive accomplishments that have brought favorable attention to their community, institution or organization