Banner image that reads First Annual Vision Over Sight Awards Celebration with the date and time of event


Saturday, February 25, 2023, National Underground Railroad Freedom Center

Thank you to everyone who joined us for our inaugural Vision Over Sight Awards Celebration. Thanks to YOU, Clovernook Center raised more than $113,000 for our mission of ensuring people who are blind and visually impaired have the resources and support they need to be full members of the community.

Please click the link below to access photos and memorable moments from our celebration. We encourage you to share them on your social media channels and tag @ClovernookCenter and use #VisionOverSight.

CLOVERNOOK CENTER PRESIDENT’S AWARD | Nicola Pietoso: The President of Clovernook Center for the Blind & Visually Impaired honored Nicola Pietoso for serving the BVI community with excellence throughout the tenure of his career. His commitment to individuals who are blind or visually impaired went well beyond his role as a member of the Board of Trustees and serving on numerous committees. Prior to the pandemic, he loved taking personal time each month to drive individuals who are blind to their doctor’s appointments and provide transportation to other important appointments. Then as a member of the board, Nicola held an exclusive annual fundraiser for Clovernook Center at his award-winning restaurant, Nicola’s. After its debut in 2016, Five Courses for Clovernook immediately became a favorite sell-out event bringing new awareness in our community around the importance of accessibility and inclusion for people who are blind or living with low vision.

Nicola Pietoso receiving award at Vision Over Sight Awards Celebration

Vision Over Sight will also honor those committed to the BVI community with the following awards.

CLOVERNOOK CENTER COMMUNITY AWARD | Wilbert (LeRoy) Johnson: Wilbert Johnson is considered a “Superman” at Clovernook Center. Dedicated and caring are two words that are often used to describe him. Though recently retired, Wilbert ensured that Clovernook Center’s campus was safe and clean. Wilbert cares about each staff person. If he could somehow make their day better, he would work to do it until he was no longer needed. He was always quick to respond to any special needs from anyone on staff. When asked about the favorite part of his work at Clovernook Center he said, “Just coming in every day and being here with all the people. It feels like family.”

CLOVERNOOK CENTER VISION OVER SIGHT AWARD | Matthew Whitaker: Twenty-one-year-old jazz phenom Matthew Whitaker plays several instruments including piano, organ, drums, keyboard, and percussion. Whenever he takes the stage, audiences are in awe of his musical genius. Born blind, this child prodigy began playing the keyboard at the age of three and when he was nine years old he taught himself to play the organ. By age ten Whitaker was the opening performer during the induction ceremony for legendary musician Stevie Wonder into the Apollo Theater’s Hall of Fame. A master at improv, he has performed across the globe in Europe, Indonesia, Japan, and Morocco. Nationally, concert venues include the famed Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center, and Carnegie Hall. In 2021, Clovernook Center was honored to host his premiere performance in greater Cincinnati.

Thanks To Schwartz Jewelers for sponsoring our Double Diamond Raffle!

Thank you to our Vision Over Sight Sponsors!

Community Award Winner Sponsor

  • Charles Abbottsmith

Braille Excellence Sponsors

  • Bill and Sue Butler
  • Judy and Mike Ehrensberger
  • Eurostampa North America
  • First Financial Bank
  • Gries Financial Partners
  • Hamilton Casework Solutions
  • P&G
  • Bob and Dell Ann Sathe
  • Spearhead Labs

Advocacy Sponsors

  • Bill Dorward
  • Great American Insurance Companies
  • Microsoft
  • Matt Shad and Eric Soderlund

Assistive Technology Sponsors

  • Barnes Dennig
  • Blue & Co.
  • Kathy DeLaura and Ron Steinhoff
  • Arthur J. Gallagher & Co.
  • Horan Associates, Inc.
  • Journey Advisory Group
  • Spotted Yeti
  • Tomahawk Strategic Solutions

Double Diamond Raffle Sponsor

  • Schwartz Jewelers

*Sponsors as of 1-25-2022