The Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame was created by former Governor George V. Voinovich in 1992 to demonstrate his concern for Ohio veterans returning home due to military downsizing as a result of the end of the Cold War.
Former Ohio Bureau of Employment Services’ Administrator, James Conrad, proposed the Hall of Fame to recognize the post-military achievements of outstanding veterans and realized how such a program would spotlight all veterans’ contributions to the civilian workplace.
In 1992, a special panel of representatives from the state’s veterans organizations was brought together to discuss the idea of establishing the Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame. The panel endorsed the idea for the purpose of increasing awareness of the lifetime contributions of veterans after completion of honorable military service.
Charter members of the Hall of Fame included the six Ohio military veterans who were elected president of the United States and all Medal of Honor recipients from Ohio. A committee of veterans serves as advisors for the Hall of Fame and selects up to 20 inductees annually from nominations solicited from all citizens of Ohio throughout the year. Men and women chosen for this honor come from all eras, all branches of service and all walks of life.
The Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame is not a military hall of fame. Those selected for the honor are veterans who have honorably served their country and who have continued to serve and inspire their fellow man with their deeds and accomplishments throughout their lifetime.
Harry A. Donovan
United States Navy Veteran
World War II
Harry Donovan returned from his service in the Navy during World War II and enrolled at the University of Akron. He became a Certified Public Accountant who, after working for others, started his own firm. Harry has also been an active volunteer all his life in his community and with veterans.
He is a life member of Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 349 and an active supporter of the Wounded Warrior Project. He has established a scholarship fund for children of veterans. He is a donor and volunteer with the Summit County Stand-Down for homeless and displaced veterans as well as at the new Valor Home, a 30-bed facility for homeless veterans named after his son, Harry Donovan, Jr., a Vietnam veteran.
In the greater Akron community, Harry has served on the boards of the Fairlawn Chamber of Commerce, the Honor Flight of Akron/Canton, Hospice & Palliative Care of the Visiting Nurse Service, and Open-M, a non-profit consisting of all faith organizations that provides food, health care, tutoring and social services for those in need. He was honored in 2012 as Summit County Veteran of the Year. Harry Donovan has given selfless service to many causes.