Citizens For A Better Norwood

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Candidate blog series: Ward 2 candidate Steve Thornbury (R)

Today, the CBN Blog has invited all of us who are running for office to tell you why we think we deserve your vote. In a minute I’ll tell you why I think I’ve earned your vote to once again represent the great folks in Ward 2. First, however, I want to talk about what I think is the most important vote you’re being asked to cast on Tuesday, November 3.

Roughly a month after I was sworn into office on January 1st of 2008, Jim Stith was chosen by the Norwood Republican Central Committee to fill the vacant position of Auditor for the City of Norwood. He inherited a department that was badly in need of, well, just about everything. What it needed most, however, was strong leadership to re-energize a demoralized the staff, re-organize its operations and update a seriously antiquated IT system. What Jim Stith has achieved in the last 20 months as Auditor is nothing short of miraculous. In less than two years he has taken a department that was spiraling into chaos and transformed it into, without question, the smartest, most efficient office in City Hall. He has been present for administrative reports and to answer any question asked of him at every Council meeting and nearly every Finance Committee meeting and has created the most open, transparent and informative web site in Norwood City Government. (

Now, because of a ruling by the Ohio Secretary of State (a Democrat), Mr. Stith is being forced to run in November for the remaining two years of the Auditor’s four-year term. Frankly, the ruling was a procedural victory for the local Norwood Democrats who understood that, given four total years of outstanding work by Mr. Stith and his staff, they would have no chance of unseating him. Their hope this November is that enough people will still be unaware of Jim Stith’s outstanding work and will, instead, choose to vote for an old Norwood political family name in the person of the son of the current Safety/Service Director. And while “Junior” appears to by a nice guy, clearly he’s no Jim Stith.

That’s why it is so important that when you fill out your absentee ballot in the coming days or visit your local polling place on Tuesday, November 3 to make sure you cast your vote for Jim Stith for Auditor.

So, why have I chosen to spend roughly half of my 700 words allotted to this blog entry advocating for Jim Stith? The simple answer is that if I’m going to remain involved in Norwood City Government, I want Jim and more people like him running our City. He proves the point I’ve been trying to make to anyone who will listen for the last ten years: That, with the right people in office, government works. Sometimes it just has a hard time getting the word out.

That’s why in my first term on Council as a member of the Streets and Infrastructure Committee I took it upon myself to publish details of the 2009 Street Maintenance Program in the Norwood Star and online here on the CBN Blog (as well as on my Ward 2 web site - And why, when the current Administration began quietly pushing the idea of shutting down the Norwood Health Department, I forced the discussion about the future of the Norwood Health Department out of the back rooms and onto the floor of Council.

Keeping citizens informed has been a big part what I do for my constituents and will continue to do as long as I’m representing the people of Norwood.

Bottom line: As an elected representative and I take the idea of representation very seriously. That’s why I am asking for your vote for re-election to Norwood City Council and asking for your vote for Jim Stith for Auditor. Thanks, and congratulations for reading this far.

If you would like to speak to me about any issues or concerns, please call me anytime on my cell phone at 373-9653 or email me at

Steve Thornbury