Nordonia Hills schools welcome new treasurer

April Helms
Kent Weeklies
Matthew Brown

NORTHFIELD CENTER -- A new face will be seen at the head of the Nordonia Hills City Schools treasurer's office in the new school year.

The school board voted 4-0 to hire Hudson resident Matthew Brown as the district's new treasurer Wednesday evening. Board member Tammy Strong was not at the meeting.

Brown is currently the treasurer and chief financial officer of the Euclid City School District. He will take over from Karen Obratil, who will retire Aug. 1, after serving as the district's treasurer since 2012. 

“The board is very excited to hire Mr. Brown as the next Treasurer of the Nordonia Hills City School District,” said Nordonia Board President Chad Lahrmer. “Mr. Brown will be a fantastic addition to our administrative team and will continue the legacy of excellence in our treasurer department. I look forward to working with him.”

Brown has been the Euclid City Schools Treasurer/CFO since August 2019. Before that, he was the assistant treasurer in Euclid starting in January 2016. Before entering public education, Brown worked for a private accounting firm.

“I am truly thankful for the opportunity to serve as the new Treasurer of Nordonia Hills City School District," Brown said. "It is a great privilege and honor to be given this responsibility. I look forward to working with the Board of Education and district staff and continuing the tradition of fiscal responsibility and accountability.”

Brown will be given a three-year contract, and will officially start Aug. 1. The contract expires July 31, 2024. His salary for the 2021-22 school year will be $125,000, and $126,250 for the 2022-23 school year. Any adjustment to the salary during the remainder of the contract would need approved by the school board. Under the contract, Brown will pay 24 of the cost of the health insurance premiums the first year, and 25% the second year.

In addition, the contract includes performance incentives; if the district receives an overall "A" grade on the state report card, or the highest rating should the grading system be changed, Brown would receive a lump sum of $6,000. Brown will receive $3,000 if the district receives a "B" or equivalent on the state report card.

By Aug. 31, the board and treasurer will come up with between three and six goals. The school board will decide by July 31 if he goals have been reached. If 80% of the goals have been met, Brown will be paid a bonus of $2,500; if all of the goals are met, he will receive $5,000.

Brown also will be given up to 20 days in July at the per diem rate to work with Obratil, whom the board approved up to 30 transition days in August through September at the per diem rate.

The school board welcomed Brown during the Wednesday meeting.

"Welcome to Nordonia Hills, we are glad to have you," said Liz McKinley, vice president.

Brown, who has lived in Hudson for 10 years, said that "there were a number of attributes that attracted me to this position."  

"The strong community support towards the school district," Brown said. "A very dynamic and stable leadership team. A high performing school district in academics and extra-curricular activities. Of course, the proximity to where I live played into that decision as well."

When not working, Brown said he liked to spend time with his family, going on weekend camping trips, golfing "and attempting to do carpentry work on our house."

Reporter April Helms can be reached at ahelms@thebeaconjournal.com