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Chris Ball
Director of Communications
(216) 664-6918

Contact Chris Ball regarding
all Cleveland Housing Court
media inquiries. 

Cleveland Housing Court Insider

Cleveland Housing Court announces Myra Embry as Chief Magistrate and Tamela Womack as Deputy Chief Magistrate

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Cleveland Housing Court Judge W. Moná Scott announces Myra Torain Embry is the court’s new Chief Magistrate. Formerly the Deputy Chief Magistrate, she replaces Tracey Gonzalez.

Stepping into the Deputy Chief Magistrate role, in another internal promotion, is Tamela A. Womack. Both moves are effective immediately.

As Chief Magistrate, Embry’s duties include supervising the personnel and assignments of the Magistrates Department, including all regular civil dockets, motions, and nonroutine civil matters. She also will monitor scheduled jury trials, hear civil, criminal and corporate dockets as needed, and coordinate last-minute stays to ensure timely ruling on motions.

As Deputy Chief Magistrate, Womack will assist Embry in various aspects of the Magistrates Department, including developing recommended procedures, as well as consulting with and advising other departments on procedural issues.

Embry has worked for Housing Court for 21 years, joining as Magistrate in August 2000. She became Deputy Chief Magistrate in January 2020. Previously, she was an attorney in the Civil Division of the Legal Aid Society of Cleveland for nearly seven years.

Embry earned a Bachelor’s Degree from Spelman College and her Juris Doctorate from Case Western Reserve University.

Womack joined Cleveland Housing Court as Magistrate in July 2020. She previously served for 12 years as Magistrate for Fairborn Municipal Court. Before serving as Magistrate, she worked as an assistant prosecuting attorney and as an assistant public defender.

During her time as Magistrate with Fairborn Municipal Court, Womack presided over various criminal, traffic, civil, eviction and small claims matters. She has served in several volunteer roles collaborating to improve the system of justice. In 2012, she was elected to the board of the Ohio Association of Magistrates, where she served as second vice president, editor of the newsletter, and chairperson of the municipal practice area.

Womack earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Bowling Green State University and later earned her Juris Doctorate from the University of Toledo, College of Law. 

Liz Cullen retires from Cleveland Housing Court

Liz Cullen retires after 31 years.     CONGRATULATIONS to Liz Cullen, who retired Nov. 30, 2021, after working for 31 years in the Justice Center, including the last 14 at the Housing Court!
     “Time for a new chapter,” says the West Park resident. She began as a deputy clerk with the Clerk of Courts and spent time as a secretary for the Cleveland Police Department and as a scheduler with Central Scheduling. With Housing Court, she provided outstanding service first as a project coordinator and then as an administrative assistant.
     Next on the docket for the Disney devotee is travel, probably a Caribbean cruise, as well as visits to her beloved DisneyWorld in Florida. At a recent surprise party hosted by Judge W. Moná Scott and attended by Liz’s Housing Court co-workers, she received a commemorative plaque and a unique, special-ordered, cruise-themed cake.
     Good luck, Liz, we’ll miss you!

Mayor-elect Bibb visits Judge Scott

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Cleveland Mayor-elect Justin Bibb met Monday, Nov. 22, 2021, with Cleveland Housing Court Judge W. Moná Scott in her courtroom in the Justice Center. Their discussion centered on Cleveland housing issues and how the City can continue to work with the Court around housing concerns.

Chris Ball and Valentina Pass join Cleveland Housing Court


Chris Ball

    Cleveland Housing Court added Chris Ball and Valentina Pass to its team Nov. 15, 2021. Ball is the new Director of Communications, and Pass is the new Chief Social Worker.

    Ball is the spokesperson and media contact for the court, led by Judge W. Moná Scott. Ball can be reached at 216-664-6918, email ballc@cmcoh.org. And follow on social media: Twitter: @CleHousingCourt. Instagram: clehousingcourt. Facebook: @clevelandhousingcourt.

    Ball served as Managing Editor of FreshWater Cleveland in 2019 and 2020. He spent 20 years at The Plain Dealer as a Copy Editor and Writer. For 15 years, he also wrote a weekly DVD review column for the PD and Cleveland.com. Ball has written or edited for various publications and media companies, including Crain Communications, the Sun Press, Small Business News, the Cleveland Free Times, the Cleveland Edition, Corporate Cleveland Magazine, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Northern Ohio Live, the Lorain Morning Journal, and the Elyria Chronicle-Telegram.

    A resident and native of Cleveland Heights, Ball graduated from Hawken School and Oberlin College.

   Pass takes over as the Chief Social Worker for the court. She can be reached at 216-664-3864, email passv@chcoh.org.

    valentina pass IMG_7183Pass will advocate for Housing Court litigants by seeing if they qualify for social services and referring them to appropriate community providers; coordinating and assisting with crisis intervention and de-escalation; seeking providers for those who don’t qualify with current agency partners; assisting court employees with social service concerns; and assessing outcomes to help improve service provisions and court operations.

    “My passion is advocating and being the voice for individuals who can’t speak up for themselves,” Pass said.

    Pass spent the last 2½ years as a Victim Witness Advocate at the Cuyahoga County Prosecutors Office. She began under a grant for a cold case sexual assault task force, where rape kits were retested for DNA and reinvestigated, leading to some cases being prosecuted. She spent six months on the SAKI task force and was promoted to working with current cases for the Major Trial Unit, General Felony Unit, Juvenile Homicide Unit, and Sexual Assault Unit. Previously, Pass worked at the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Southern District of Illinois as a Fact Witness Coordinator.

    Pass graduated from Harris Stowe State University in St. Louis with a BS degree in Criminal Justice, with a concentration in Juvenile Justice. She recently graduated with an MS degree in Psychology from Tiffin University, with a focus on clinical and behavioral psychology.


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