Cleveland Owns

Building power through collective ownership


Cleveland Owns is a radical incubator that equips groups to build wealth and power through collective ownership.

We believe who owns what matters. To build an equitable city, we must have an equitable distribution of ownership.

In a Cleveland owned by its residents, everyone has a stake in businesses and commercial real estate and other productive assets. Groups of workers and neighbors prosper alongside the city, and have the power to exercise control over what affects them.

As more people own assets that appreciate in value, we'll shrink the ownership gap, which is inextricably tied to the racial and gender wealth gaps. This is one step towards addressing the historical and present-day effects of white supremacy, patriarchy, and an economic system built on exploitation and extraction.


What we do

What we do
We enable groups of workers and neighbors to turn what they have into what they need to demand their share of the region’s prosperity.

Our work focuses on food justice, and on a just transition to a clean energy economy.

For example, we're working with a group of residents and representatives from local institutions in the Central and Kinsman neighborhoods to see if a food co-op could help meet the needs of local residents.

In the neighborhood of Hough, we're working with neighbors out to build the city's first community solar garden. We're also working with groups from Lakewood, Detroit Shoreway, and Cleveland Heights to found the Cleveland Solar Cooperative, a community-owned co-op that aims to promote energy democracy through democratic ownership of solar infrastructure.


  • 5/26/2020 04:21 PM

This weekend the Cleveland Solar Cooperative held its first official member meeting, approved bylaws and elected a board. We're thrilled to see this group take flight! The Cleveland Solar Cooperative, a project of Cleveland Owns, will promote a more democratic energy system through collective ownership of solar arrays.

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  • 5/14/2020 10:37 AM

Access to electricity, gas, water, and internet is a human right. We're proud to join more than 50 anti-poverty groups in Ohio in a letter to Governor DeWine and Chair of the Public Utility Commission of Ohio Randazzo calling for humane statewide utility policy during the covid-19 crisis, to ensure every household has electricity, water, gas, and internet. Doing so will upset the large, profitable corporations that have monopolized the provision of these human rights for decades. But before the crisis, and more than ever today, in the middle of a global pandemic, their profits are less important than our rights.

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  • 4/22/2020 02:09 PM

Today in an article in Cleveland Scene, board members Mordecai, Adam, and Jonathan describe the urgent need to use collective ownership to rebuild a more equitable economy in Northeast Ohio.

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  • 3/26/2020 11:15 AM

We're standing with people in Northeast Ohio living without power during the pandemic, and with people at risk of having lights shut off when bills come due after the crisis, through a petition to demand that First Energy handle this crisis in a way that's humane and accountable. We're conducting the #covid19blackout on Thursday, March 26

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  • Cleveland, Ohio, United States