Brownhelm Township Trustee profiles

Monica Bauer – Brownhelm Township

Monica Bauer, 291 Aldrich Road, is running for one of two open seats for a four-year term on the Brownhelm Township Board of Trustees.
Bauer stated what prompted her to seek a position on the board has always been her desire to run for public office and be involved in politics. “I feel it is my duty and obligation as a citizen to give back to my community, and I feel that between my background in working with people and my desire to continue, this is the best way for me to personally be involved in my community,” said Bauer. “Before now, being a parent was my greatest and most treasured priority, but now that my children have grown and my duties to them have changed, I have the opportunity and support from them to pursue my dreams in politics. I truly believe that now is the right time and Brownhelm Township is the right place for me to make my goals a reality.”


“My top priorities as a trustee of the township are the priorities of the people of Brownhelm Township. I want to be a voice for the people’s needs and desires for the community, working with the people rather than merely enacting my own wishes. Personally, my priorities include road maintenance, zoning, and maintaining and improving parks and recreation in the area. These smaller parts of life may not be regularly considered by everyday citizens, but they are used and affect our lives every single day. It is my desire to be part of the process of maintaining and improving these aspects of life so that our community as a whole can thrive,” stated Bauer.


Bauer said as a first-time candidate for this position, she does not have personal knowledge or experience with the exact uses of the tax revenue for Brownhelm Township. “However, from my knowledge as a citizen, I am aware that the revenue is used for road maintenance, vehicle maintenance, public safety and planning, and upkeep of parks, cemeteries, and community events. I am eager to take on a more active role in this process and give back to my community.
The candidate said her greatest joy in life is being the parent of four phenomenal children, Rose, Collin, Emerson, and Conner. She is currently employed as a residential treatment specialist working with individuals with developmental disabilities. She was formerly a hairdresser by trade in New Mexico as well as having worked in special education with a concentration in D-Level behavioral disorders and life skills in Albuquerque Public Schools.


She is also a former volunteer facilitator and State and Area Trainer in NM for “Look Good Feel Better” with the American Cancer Society. She has been a shavee participant several times to raise money for children’s cancer research for the St. Baldrick’s Foundation in both Albuquerque and Cleveland. She volunteers intermittedly for Grace’s Kitchen and hopes to continue her volunteer work.

Orrin Leimbach – Brownhelm Township

Orrin Leimbach, 8888 Bank Street, is running for one of two seats open for a four-year term on the Brownhelm Township Board of Trustees.
Leimbach stated he is a lifelong resident of Brownhelm and is concluding his second term as one of the trustees. He was prompted to run for re-election because he looks forward to continuing to serve the residents of Brownhelm by ensuring appropriate rural zoning, good roads, adequate drainage, emergency service, and pleasant cemeteries and parks. “Brownhelm is a wonderful place to live due to its small town and rural atmosphere coupled with its proximity to diverse opportunities in Cleveland, along the lake, and to the west. I became a trustee to serve the community I was blessed by God to be born, raised, and, with regard to my farm and bed and breakfast, am employed in,” said Leimbach. “I welcome questions, comments, and feedback from all township residents and strive to address their concerns.”


“As a Brownhelm Township trustee, my top priorities have been, and continue to be, one, to encourage assimilation of those who wish to move into the community, but when doing so, to ensure that the local charm we now enjoy remains. Two, to continue working with the city of Vermilion to address as legally and financially able the concerns of those in the city/township overlap. This would be through the continued callaborative efforts of jointly identifying roads and ditches in need of repair and leveraging the fact that Brownhelm Township can apply for, and, as historically shown, receive street repair grant money unavailable to the city alone,” stated Leimbach.


In response to the use of tax revenues from city residents on the Lorain County side of Vermilion, Leimbach said, “I work with the city of Vermilion to prioritize road maintenance and repair projects in the city portion of Brownhelm Township and, being familiar with the competitive process whereby local governments acquire project monies, I have participated in the formulation of grant applications to leverage the tax dollars from the city portion of the township to provide those residents with higher quality roads than the city’s road maintenance funds alone could provide. The township assists the city with mowing its roadsides in the summer and plowing snow and salting the roads in the winter. Township trustees work with the city to identify and address drainage issues,” stated the candidate.


“In the rural part of the township, I am active in road maintenance decisions. I respond to drainage concerns, assess the need for repairs and upgrades, source funds, and oversee improvement projects. Road and drainage work involves collaboration with the Lorain County government and our neigboring communities. In doing so I have established relationships with those at the county level responsible for serving us. Relationships that would take years for a new trustee to develop,” said Leimbach.


Leimbach and his wife, Cathie, have two daugters, both recent graduates of Vermilion High School, who are now attending Ohio State and Ohio Wesleyan. He is an information technology engineer at Ford’s Ohio Assembly Plant in Avon Lake. He manages the family farm and with Cathie, runs a bed and breakfast just up river from Mill Hollow Park. Leimbach holds an MBA and a B.S. in agriculture from Ohio State University. He is a graduate of the Ohio Township Association’s Leadership Academy and the Lorain County Sheriff’s Citizens Academy. Training by the Federal Emergency Management Agency has prepared him to serve in the case of a natural or man-made disaster in this area. Each year he attends sessions in Columbus honing his skills in public records, open meetings, and zoning law. He is also the vice president and a past treasurer of the Lorain County Township Association and his church’s Deacon Chair. At Christmas, he is a third generation Santa in Brownhelm’s Community Christmas Program.
To learn more visit his website at

James Northeim – Brownhelm Township

James “Jim” Northeim, 1835 Sunnyside Road, is running for one of two open seats for a four-year term on the Brownhelm Township Board of Trustees.
“I originally ran for office eight years ago, working for the township 33 years prior to that, and as road superintendent for 18 years. I am a lifelong resident of Brownhelm Township and the city of Vermilion. My children are the fifth generation to grow up here, stated Northeim. Being so deeply rooted in the community was what prompted Northeim to run for re-election. “I wanted to use my knowledge of how the township operates to help make this entire area a great place to live and by also using my 41 years of experience working for Brownhelm Township to achieve this.”


“My top priorities if re-elected are to continue to pursue all grants available to the township. During my last eight years as a trustee, we have applied for and received approximately $568,000 in grants for major road projects as well as other grants for drainage. These grants are a very important part for the township. Our local government funding has been cut over the years. Without these grants, the township would only be able to provide bare minimum services,” said Northeim.


Commenting on the tax revenue from the city residents living in Brownhelm Township, Northeim stated that the township uses these revenues to plow and salt some of the city roads. “We also use the township roadside mower, which is a Boom mower, to mow some areas of the city roads where the city cannot reach with their mower. We also use it to cut back branches along city roads. Brownhelm Township provides dumpsters for all its residents on Claus Road. The township has also repaired or replaced approximately $1.25 million of city roads that otherwise may not have gotten done. The township further maintains the Brownhelm Township Lakefront Park.


Northeim has been married to wife, Carrie, for 30 years. They have three children, Tyler, Cody, and Paige. He is a graduate of Firelands High School in 1978 and Lorain County Joint Vocational School. He has been a successful business owner for the past 23 years, and a Brownhelm Township employee for 41 years, 18 as road superintendent. He has served eight years as a township trustee and is currently chairman of the board.


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