Why he's interesting ... Zone, councilman for the Detroit-Shoreway neighborhood, is carrying on a family tradition. His dad served on council for 13 years. When he died at age 54, his wife, Mary, took over the seat. During Matt's tenure, he has helped to reinvigorate the Gordon Square Arts District and serves as chair of the National League of Cities' Energy, Environment and Natural Resource committee.
Table talk ... "My mom wasn't sure whether she wanted the position." So during a Sunday dinner, the Zone children debated whether she should do it. "In the end, every single one of us said, •You have to do this for dad.' "
Walking the walk ... Zone's mom accompanied him to City Hall after his election in 2002. "It was one of the proudest moments of my life."
Political scrape ... Last year, he tried — and failed — to depose council president Martin Sweeney. "I think Marty Sweeney is a committed public servant. But I saw lapses in council which made me think Marty might not be the most effective person at the job."
Changing climate ... Zone, who maintains a "very robust home recycling system," was a delegate to the International Climate Conference last December in Copenhagen, Denmark. "The greatest gift we can give to our children and grandchildren is a cleaner environment."
Home bodies ... "Most weekends my wife and I park our cars in the driveway then don't start them again until Monday morning. We shop in the district; we eat in the district; we pray in the district."
Hidden talent ... Break dancing. While at Cleveland State, Zone started the Project Five dancers. "We were the pre-eminent group in Northeast Ohio. We were doing shows three or four times a week and giving lessons at several dance studios."