Mr. Scott Neely

  • Hometown:  Westerville    
  • Appointed by Governor Kasich pursuant to ORC § 5101.34(A)(6)  
  • Occupation:  Director of Government Affairs for Children's Hunger Alliance
  • Year started with Ohio Commission on Fatherhood: 2006 

Scott currently serves as the Government Affairs Director for the Children's Hunger Alliance, a statewide non-profit organization that purposely ensure children without access receive healthy food, nutrition education and physical activity.  Scott previously served for 26 years as Legislative Liaison for the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections and for over 5 years as a Budget/management Analyst for the Office of Budget and Management.  Scott has a Masters of Science degree in Agricultural Economics from the Ohio State University and a Bachelor of Science degree from Purdue University.

In addition to his service on the Commission, Scott currently serves on the boards of the Ohio Practitioners' Network for fathers and Families and the Community Economic Development Corporation of Ohio.  Scott also volunteers regularly for a Columbus community service agency that attempts to address issues of poverty and homelessness.  He previously volunteered for 10 years for Urban Concern, a faith-based agency in the South Linden neighborhood that focuses on youth education and mentoring programs.

Scott lives in Westerville with his wife Dana and their 3 children.          


Commissioner Spotlight: Scott Neely – Interview for Dec. 2018 OCF e-newsletter

Scott Neely has been a commissioner since OCF’s founding in 2006. As the government affairs director for the Children’s Hunger Alliance, he’s committed to ensuring that children receive healthy food, nutrition education and physical activity. He previously served for 26 years as a legislative liaison for the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction, and he’s the proud father of three. He kindly sat down with us to share his thoughts about parenting and the commission’s work. 

1.    What do you find most rewarding about parenting your three children?

I think being a parent has been one of the most challenging but also one of the most rewarding things I have ever done. Probably the most rewarding thing for me has been to see my children taking sometimes scary steps to grow in their characters and in their ability to relate to and serve others. I love to encourage and support them as I see them develop these life skills. Being a parent has also changed my character. For instance, I used to think I was a patient person, but I realized in being a parent that this was a quality I was going to have to improve on to be a better father.

2.    How does your connection with the Ohio Commission on Fatherhood affect your parenting perspective?


The Ohio Commission on Fatherhood has continued to reinforce to me the importance of being an involved father in my children’s lives. It encourages me when I question if I am really making a difference with my children, and it challenges me to a deeper level of commitment. For me, OCF has been a continual source of knowledge and inspiration over the years, and I am very grateful to have been a longstanding commissioner.

3.    How has the Commission on Fatherhood helped Ohio’s communities?

OCF has helped Ohio’s communities in many ways, but I think the most important is the grants that have been provided to eight community-based nonprofit organizations that fund direct services to nearly 3,000 fathers annually. Hearing the commitment and excitement from these grantees at OCF meetings as they explain their services and programs, and especially hearing the testimonials from actual dads who have benefited, reflects the impact of OCF funding in these communities.

4.    How has the commission changed over the years?

Having been a commissioner since the inception of OCF, I have seen the commission grow in its strength and influence after having its funding cut and then restored by the legislature. I especially credit Chairman Beagle and Executive Director Dent for their strong leadership, which I believe stabilized the commission and has resulted in an outstanding and motivated group of commissioners and grantees. OCF is now viewed as a national model, and many states have inquired as to how they can establish something similar in their jurisdictions.

5.    What advice can you give young fathers?

The best advice I can give young fathers is to always be there for your children, even during the times when you question whether they want you involved in their lives, or when you question whether your involvement is making a difference. Over the long haul, by striving to be an engaged and involved dad, including having the best relationship you can with their mother, you will make a huge impact in their lives and give them the best chance to be successful and productive adults.

6.    What would you like the world to know about fathers and the Ohio Commission on Fatherhood?

I would like the world to know that almost every father has an innate desire to be a good parent and to love their children. Many fathers have barriers, including having poor role models, and lack the skills to do this. This is why the Ohio Commission on Fatherhood is so vitally important as it assists fathers with the needed services that help to increase their economic stability, foster responsible parenting skills, and promote healthy relationships.

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The Commission Meeting is scheduled for Thursday, May 13, 2021 from 10:00 am. – 12:00 p.m. It will be a Virtual Microsoft Teams Meeting.

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2021 Commission Meeting Dates:    Feb. 11, May 13, July 8, Sept. 9 and Nov. 18.  

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