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Cornelius News

New man on Town Board puts people, service first


By Dave Yochum

The new man on the Cornelius Town Commission is a man of many talents. Bruce Trimbur, 59, grew up in Munster Ind., a Chicago suburb, where he worked as a supermarket bagboy and stocker as well as a driver and helper at a funeral home. He tinkers with antique clocks and pinball machines.

The Indiana State graduate has been an industrial engineer for a lighting fixture manufacturer, a lighting specification sales person and an entrepreneur, having owned and sold Bagby Co., a lighting firm in Charlotte which did the lighting for Food Lion, Family Dollar, Belk’s and Panther Stadium.

That’s not to mention launching his own residential real estate brokerage and working with former Mayor Wes Southern and former Town Manager Bob Race in a commercial real estate brokerage.

He currently is eastern regional sale manager for a Los Angeles-based lighting company.

But giving back may be Trimbur’s true calling. “I think one of my prayers is I always pray is to be a good example for others and contribute something to this world. It’s been my mantra forever,” says Trimbur, who lives in the Antiquity neighborhood with his wife of 31 years, Val.

A 20-year member with his wife of Davidson United Methodist Church, Trimbur serves on the staff parish committee.

“When I came to Cornelius, I wanted to be involved in the community and I am very proud to say I am involved,” Trimbur says.

Indeed, he went on the town’s parks and recreation board a decade ago. When former Mayor Lynette Rinker stepped up from Town Commission in 2013, Trimbur volunteered—along with a few other people—to fill her commission seat. He also served on a street lighting advisory board, and a sub-committee for the Cornelius Arts Project.

He has been steadily “involved in some of the tedious meetings and unglamorous meetings and some of the meetings that aren’t even recognized, but [whose] decisions are taken to the board, which matter and make the positive end results.”

In part because of his quiet, steady service to the town, Trimbur was selected to fill Rinker’s seat. When the elections were held in November a year ago, Trimbur stepped down.

He had agreed, back then, not to run for the town board. This time, he did not.

“I plan to run,” Trimbur says, pointing out that the people involved in Cornelius’ non-partisan government are “great.”

“We have a good mayor a good board, good people on staff,” he says.

As a commissioner Trimbur said he would like to “see more unification of North Mecklenburg” on issues like zoning and economic development.

“Where are our Class A buildings? That’s what I want. If we can’t generate it, we have to recruit,” he says, explaining that a new exit on I-77 at Westmoreland is “imperative for the future of our community. I want to make sure we get Exit 27,” he says.

Trimbur was appointed by a 3-1 vote of current members at the Dec. 15 Town Board meeting—Commissioner Dave Gilroy voted against him, having championed, instead, Dr. Mike Miltich.

“I’m a huge people person, and if I have be involved in something, I’m going to be at the top, or one of the lead dogs,” he says, promising a positive—as in not negative—approach on the Town Board and in the fall when all five seats on the Town Board will be up for grabs.

“I won’t say anything negative…negative campaigning has driven me crazy.”