Community Voices Articles

The Community Voices component of Environmental Dashboard is designed to celebrate and promote thought and action that build stronger, more sustainable and more resilient communities. Community members representing the diversity of this community are being interviewed to share their perspectives. Click below to view recent interviews or search by subject name, interviewer or any keyword or topic to view associated stories. Many of the quotes used for Community Voices slides are taken from these interviews.


Ron Bier

Ron Bier

Ron Bier is a Chemistry and Environmental Science teacher at Oberlin Senior High School. While he hails originally from the east side of Cleveland, he and his family currently live in Amherst, Ohio.


Che Gonzalez

Oberlin resident Che Gonzalez is a librarian at the Oberlin Public Library. A few years ago, she started a home-based business for affordable, healthy foods. Gardening since she was a kid, Ms. Gonzalez grows many of her own vegetables at home.


Melissa Thompson

Melissa Thompson is an Oberlin resident who has made sustainable changes in her home and daily life as a result of POWER (Providing Oberlin With Efficiency Responsibly). She has lived with her husband and two children in Oberlin for over thirteen years and believes that being environmentally conscious is a natural part of being part of this community.

Copy of Maureen Simen

Maureen Simen

Maureen Simen received her BA from Michigan-Flint in English and Social Sciences. She then pursued a Masters in Reading Education from Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan. She has years of experience in curriculum design and development, as well as educational technology. Currently, Maureen works at the Bonner Center for Service and Learning as the Coordinator for America Reads. Outside of work, she enjoys fixing up her house as well as relaxing and reading the classics. Her love for reading is seen in her job, where she inspires college students involved in the America Reads program to volunteer in many schools around the Oberlin area to promote literacy.


Ayana Morrison

Ayana Morrison is going to be a senior at Oberlin High School in the fall and is born and raised in Oberlin. This summer she was a Ninde Summer Fellow. As a Fellow, she was a role model for the Aspiring Ninde Scholars during their summer program. She was especially helpful in matters of cooking, visual art, and writing, as these are some of her talents.


Anita Lock

Mrs. Anita Lock has lived in Oberlin for 10 years. After visiting Oberlin when she was 15 and getting a flavor of the community, she thought, “I hope someday I’ll live here.” She is the proprietor of One-On-One Tutoring of Lorain County and is a music educator. Mrs. Lock also hosts “All Things Irish,” which airs on WOBC 91.5 FM every Saturday from 4-5pm.


Robert Cole

Fr. Robert Cole has been Pastor at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Oberlin for 5 years. Born and bred in the Cleveland area, he is glad to be serving several churches in the Cleveland Diocese. Fr. Cole has been a priest for 41 years.


John and Anne Elder

John and Anne Elder are residents of Kendal at Oberlin. John served as Pastor of the First Church in Oberlin UCC from 1973 to 1991. Anne was a Supervisor in the Lorain City Schools from 1973 to 1991. John enjoys papermaking, printmaking and watercolors. Anne is a Court Appointed Special Assistant to advocate for children in the court system.

Copy of GlennGallWeb

Glenn Gall

Glenn Gall is an activist, a writer, and a farmer living in Oberlin. He received his Bachelor’s Degree from Huntington University, and has training in permaculture and grazing techniques. He proposes the use of natural systems as a multidimensional approach to the problem of climate change. More of his ideas can be found on the website:


Linda Arbogast

Linda Arbogast lives in Brownhelm Township with her husband, Bo, and their three children on an organic blueberry farm. Both Linda and her husband were Peace Corps volunteers in Sri Lanka.