ACG Cleveland Special Editorial 2022 - Letter from the President


ACG Cleveland: moving beyond your expectations

Crain's Special Issue 2022


After a remarkable year in the dealmaking community globally, I’m proud to say that Northeast Ohio continues to punch above its weight. That’s largely thanks to the overachieving group of members, sponsors and stakeholders that make ACG Cleveland so special.

With about 500 members, ACG Cleveland is the fourth-largest chapter in the nation. We have a great history and an incredible network of private equity groups, corporations, investment bankers, attorneys, accounting firms, lenders, advisers, and others dedicated to raising capital and growing businesses in the middle market. 

That’s a great foundation for a wonderful chapter, but I think it’s something much more that makes this such a strong dealmaking community – it’s that word “community.” 

ACG is much more than a networking community. It is a place for professionals to meet, build relationships, develop professionally and help each other thrive, while we help companies grow.

As I reflect on why ACG Cleveland is such a strong chapter, I am sure it has to do with the unique culture of Cleveland itself.  For example, I remember joining a group for dinner one night before the annual Deal Maker Awards. I sat with dozens of people, and we all had a great time. Many were direct competitors, yet we were all happy to share our time, networks and insights with each other. Some guests to Cleveland pulled me aside in amazement, noting that such camaraderie doesn’t exist in their market.

That’s just one small slice of what makes Cleveland, and the ACG Cleveland chapter, so special: We understand that collaborating makes us all better — and makes working a lot more fun.

Speaking of Deal Maker Awards, it will take place later this year and we are thrilled to celebrate the 25th anniversary of this event. Congratulations to the winners for standing out in this unusually high volume but competitive past year.

The Deal Maker Awards event is a great reminder of what makes ACG Cleveland such a big force for good in Northeast Ohio and beyond — it’s a celebration of members of our community and their biggest accomplishments. We hope to see you there!

ACG Cleveland is all about improving our dealmaking community and therefore, our broader region. I’m grateful for the opportunity to take part in it and to be leading this chapter. I’m looking forward to an active and promising 2022.

Cheryl Strom is chapter president of ACG Cleveland and principal at The Riverside Co. Contact her at 216-535-2238.



ACG is a global organization focused on driving middle-market growth. Its 15,000-plus members include professionals from private equity firms, corporations and lenders that invest in middle-market companies, as well as experts from law, accounting, investment banking and other firms that provide advisory services.  Learn more at ACG Cleveland serves professionals in Northeast Ohio and has about 500 members. For more information, visit