By Jim Newell
Orion Township has a new trustee.
The township board of trustees voted on Friday to appoint Julia Dalrymple to the position. She was sworn in on Monday before the board meeting.
The appointment brings the seven-member board back up to capacity.
The appointment came after the board interviewed six members of the community for the position on Friday. After deliberation, the board voted 5-1 to appoint Dalrymple. Trustee John Steimel cast the lone nay vote.
Also interviewing for the position were business owner Lee Smith; law enforcement professional Calvin Higgins; Lake Orion School Board President Scott Taylor; attorney Lin Goetz; and Michele Arquette-Palermo, Head of the Freshwater Forum at the Cranbrook Institute of Science.
Dalrymple, a marketing teacher at Lake Orion High School, has been employed with the district since 2004, teaching Introduction to Business, Marketing 1, Marketing Workshop, Social Media and Digital Marketing, Sports and Entertainment Marketing, according to the district website.
She also is the DECA advisor for LOHS. The Lake Orion DECA Club is a chapter of the international business club that specializes in marketing, hospitality, management and finance.
She attended Eastern Michigan University and Marygrove College.
Dalrymple fills the trustee seat vacated by former Trustee Ron Sliwinski, who resigned in May.
Dalrymple will serve until Nov. 20, 2020 when the term expires.
During her interview, Dalrymple said she loves living in the Orion community and that “I think the most important role of local government is making sure we’re listening to everyone.”
Among the top priorities/issues confronting the township in the next two years, Dalrymple said it was important to create “business opportunities while keeping the small-town feel” and development while maintaining parks and recreation; “balancing the bigger picture for the whole community” by showing people that, yes, they will have to give something, but this is what they will get back; and
“I think that my number one strength is that I’m a problem solver,” Dalrymple said. “Being able to look at a situation and kind of separate the pieces of what needs to be done, I really think that’s one of my strongest points…here’s the five things we need to do, how are we going to get those done and in what order do we need to do them.”
She favored regionalism – being able to work with surrounding communities and groups.
As for handling criticism or differences of opinion from the community, Dalrymple said she would listen and try to convey how a particular course of action benefited the greater good.
“It’s a daunting task to think that you’re making decisions for everyone, but someone has to do it,” she said. “What can I do in my community to make a difference? I love Orion. This is where I want my kids to be.”
By Jim Newell